Working in Thessaloniki?

Connect with fellow expats in Thessaloniki
Join exciting events and groups
Get information in our Thessaloniki guides
Exchange tips about expat life in Thessaloniki

Working in Thessaloniki

Thessaloniki, despite the recent crisis, has still a top position in the Balkans’ economy, especially thanks to the leading maritime industry, which, along with the teaching and media sectors, offers many opportunities to expats planning to work in Thessaloniki. Read up on the economy, work permits, and more in this article.

Greece's recent economic problems have been well-documented, but Thessaloniki has not been as badly affected by the recession as Athens. The services and tourism industries are two of the largest employers in the city, with the city positioning itself as a key cruising hub for the south-east of Europe. As such, expats will find the tourism industry to be rife with opportunities. The regional unit of Thessaloniki had a Gross Domestic Product of 18.293 billion euros in 2011 (20.08 billion USD).

Local Economy

The growth of the cruise industry has been a boon to Thessaloniki, with the city ideally placed to make the most of the sector's rapid rise. Its position makes it the perfect place to set up a cruise business. Thessaloniki remains a major business hub in the Balkans, even though the Greek economic problems of the last few years have had an impact on the local economy.

Important regional firms such as the Hellenic Vehicle Industry, the Macedonian Milk Industry, Philkeram Johnson, and MLS Multimedia have bases in Thessaloniki and are among the largest employers in the metropolitan area.

Job Hunting in Thessaloniki

Foreigners who are from a member state of the European Union are free to travel to Thessaloniki and seek work once they have set themselves up in the city.

Expats hoping to work in Thessaloniki may also try their luck at more general job websites such as careerbuilder or OAED.  For a successful job search, you will most likely need to be able to understand Greek, though. In any case, local language skills can be a major advantage for your job search.

Teaching English as a Foreign Language is one of the most popular jobs for expats working in Thessaloniki, but there are opportunities available in a wide range of sectors. Thessaloniki has, for example, a strong media industry, too, which makes it a good place to find work for expats in this sector.

Work Permits in Thessaloniki

Foreigners from EU countries do not need either a work permit or a visa to live and work in Thessaloniki, but expats from further afield will need to secure official documents before moving to the city.

Non-EU nationals planning to work in Thessaloniki will need a visa and residence permit that includes a work permit. As such, your employer will play an important role during the application process. A working holiday visa may also be available in some cases. You can also find more information on this topic in our article on Moving to Greece.

Rajat Bhatnagar

"It is really good to speak and hear Hindi from time to time. With InterNations I got to know compatriots in Athens and Thessaloniki."

Amelie Barreau

"InterNations members are really helpful and provided us with valuable tips about the international schools in Athens."

Global Expat Guide