As a city on a major port, Georgetown is an important location for trade throughout Guyana, and in the Caribbean. Despite this, Georgetown remains the capital of one of the poorest countries in the region, with huge disparity of wealth, evident in the contrast between the slum areas and the hugely wealthy residential areas. Tourism is only recently a growing industry, particularly since 2007 when the Cricket World Cup semi-finals were hosted in Georgetown.
Much of the economy of the city of Georgetown is now a service based industry, but this is supported by the agriculture and the manufacturing in the area surrounding the city. The sugar industry in particular has been one of the largest contributors to the economy of Georgetown for many years.
It is possible to find employment at any of the educational institutions throughout Georgetown, and the best way to go about finding these positions is by contacting the schools or universities directly. The private international schools are the best employers for expatriates wanting to work in Georgetown, offering a salary which will allow a comfortable lifestyle in the city.
There are also volunteering opportunities, particularly doing environmental work in the area surrounding Georgetown, and these positions can be found on websites through non-governmental organizations such as gooverseas.com. In terms of professional work in Georgetown, the fact that English is the main language means that it is possible to get professional work in Georgetown, but with little involvement from international corporations, this can be very difficult, particularly as locals would be favored over expat foreigners.
Having said that, jobs can be found online or, once you are already in the country, in local newspapers and on bulletin boards, particularly in the tourism industry as this is where international involvement in the country is significantly growing.
As tourists from many countries can stay in Georgetown for 90 days, three or six months without a visa, employment can be found during this time, and it is possible for provisional expats to apply for a work permit from within the country. In order to apply for a work permit, a certificate of employment from your employer is necessary, and your passport will need to be valid for the length of the visa. It is illegal to work in Georgetown without a visa, so even if you find employment once you are already in the country, you must ensure that a work permit has been secured before you start work. In any case, you can apply also when in your home country, by taking your letter of employment to the local consulate or embassy. Work permits in Guyana usually last generally for one year, up to a maximum of three years.