Hacker News new | past | comments | ask | show | jobs | submit login
List of 30 European Tech Visas and Work Permits (docs.google.com)
221 points by gonsanchezs on March 8, 2019 | hide | past | favorite | 168 comments

American in Paris for 1 year working as a Senior DevSecOps Engineer (or whatever they want to call us). Went from 225kUSD/yr in usa to 95kEUR in Europe (most senior devs are lucky to get 75k, paris tech salaries are lagging behind London, AMS and Berlin. I felt like I was getting underpaid until I figured out (awkwardly at a dinner) that i make more than a lot of doctors and government ministers. Plus the healthcare, subsidized transit, subsidized lunches 20 days a month and TRUE vacation means I'm never going back to the states.

All that being said, I'm bouncing to Berlin for a higher salary and a roughly 30 percent drop in cost of living compared to Paris.

Check out jobbatical.com

Amsterdam is a hot scene, Berlin is hot and affordable, dont come to Paris unless you really speak French and or have deep Fintech/banking tech background.

Californian in Dublin - I feel embarrassingly overpaid in Ireland. But every time I go to the US, I feel embarrassingly underpaid.

My wife and I went from California to Ireland, then back to California for a year, and when she used up her whole 1 week of vacation and we realized even in tech we'd never afford a house where our kids could walk to a decent school, we moved back to Ireland.

I'd make 2-3x as much in the US, but I wouldn't be happy.

Also - "TRUE vacation " - WHAT THE FUCK is up with Americans who think it's appropriate to bug people about work on vacation. Or to have "unlimited" vacation policies and act surprised when someone wants to take what would be _the legal minimum_ in a lot of other countries. And sticking people on pagerduty half their goddamn lives. Seriously, fuck right off to hell.

It's evil.

The thing to do is to work in the US for a while making a much higher salary, but living as cheaply as possible and banking all that cash. Then go move somewhere where you can enjoy quality-of-life.

Three things:

1) Part of the idea is to make work more pleasant, not endure a bunch of misery and then retire happily.

2) I'm alive now. Tomorrow, I might not be. The idea that we should be miserable in the present for a happy future doesn't sit well with me (I've already used up 35 of my years of life!). Around the time I hit 30 I was startled how friends started dying. Not loads, of course, but the rate definitely is creeping up. The mom (and baby) who died of eclampsia really struck home and reminded me that you do not save the best for last. Tomorrow Is Not Guaranteed.

3) Life is a series of closing doors, so they say, and there are huge chunks of life where picking up and moving to another country is completely impractical.

Got a husband/wife with a career already going? Hope you're ready to throw out their career or get divorced. Got a kid in a school they like? Kiss that goodbye. Already in a career and think sticking around a couple years will push you further up the ladder? Better just wait a while longer, than longer still, and longer still...

Also I graduated college in 2008 and it was a bloodbath. I couldn't get interviewed for ages, and I get plenty of interest now. For any young'uns it's hard to convey just how different (and awful) it can be. And I had it pretty good - at least I was employed. BUT it meant that I wasn't throwing away a career to move to Europe - I had a pretty mediocre job anyway. In a sense, I should be grateful I had the freedom to know I wasn't really losing much by leaving.

>1) Part of the idea is to make work more pleasant, not endure a bunch of misery and then retire happily.

I never recommended spending your entire career living someplace miserable. It doesn't take very long to save up a nice amount of cash if you're working in a tech job.

Tons of Frenchies do that. Hell, thats basically Docker. A bunch of smart Frenchineers that wanted to get paid what they're worth for a while. Im talking about founders and those first 100 hires. But it seems as soon as they want to have kids its right back to France.

Do you mind sharing what role/salary you were offered in Dublin?

I was offered 35k for a junior role, but declined it as that seemed pretty low (especially taking into account housing difficulties there).

That does sound low. I started a junior role for a big company at 33k back in 2010. Every year that jumped significantly for new hires. I hear some java houses are still low balling though...

I moved to Paris from San Francisco. The startup I joined uses English as its working language, so the language barrier hasn't been a problem at all. Also I found French to be relatively similar to English and quite easy to learn. It's been a huge joy being able to speak to people in a second language. I've wanted to learn a second language for a long time and I finally have a good reason to do it.

Also there are interesting startups in Paris outside of fintech, like Alan (where I work), Algolia, and Datadog. Airbnb, Facebook and Google have offices here as well I believe.

I've never been to Berlin, so I can't really compare, but I really enjoy living in Paris so far. I certainly like Paris more than San Francisco.

I wrote a blog post about my move a few weeks ago: https://medium.com/@kkwteh/why-i-moved-from-san-francisco-to...

The salary in the parent comment it's out off the charts. What do you think of Parisian salaries? Most devs make 2618 per month after taxes which is barely enough for a very modest life. I would like to hear your thoughts on that.

Really not true in my experience. For senior devs with one or two solid infra/CLOUD/multi app deploys under their belts. Hired.com and LOCAL french recruitment firms (talent.io) regularly send me Paris intramuros based (forget idf) offers between 70k-100k depending on the job.

My first job offer upon arriving in France was 110k at Thales as a lead DevOps Sngineer. Red Hat EMEA offered me 100k as a solitions architect.

I ended up taking a lower offer but in a much more relaxed environmemt at Publicis Groupe in the 11eme. If you aren't hitting the pavement doing inteviews and keeping yourself up to date, and be willing to jump from time to time, you will miss out on higher salaries. France is slowly realising they have to match a bit more with the rest of the world.

Most devs get between 45k(2618 euros per month after taxes) and 55k(3074 euros per month after taxes). Paris being on the top 3 most expensive cities in the world. 225k would account for 10125 per month after taxes, but in Paris thats unheard of.

Don't forget Doctolib

It's interesting that you're moving to Berlin for a higher salary. I thought Berlin was infamous for very low salaries, but perhaps that's only among junior developers.

Like everything, ymmv. You are correct about lower junior salaries but taken in the context of an even lower cost of living...go to Berlin. Also sounds weird to say but germans are 1000x nicer and more welcoming than the French. Berlin good stuff is that the tech scene soeaks English, all the hot iot, telekom, autonomous vehicle stuff is in berlin and its the cheapest of the cities to live in. I am coming from a background around 10 years in the industry with a lot of finance and defence experience. Plus I just always apply for 5 jobs then let them duke it out ;)

From personal friends, I know you can get paid >120k EUR if you have 5-10+ years of experience.

I would be interested to know what these friends do.

From my personal experience in game-dev in Berlin, the highest earning coding individual-contributor (so not a manager) salary I ever saw was 70-something €k per year (and it is quite rare to go above €65k even as a very senior programmer).

You will literally have to be C-level at a large and succesful company to earn €120k+ as far as I can tell (in this sector).

Game development is famously underpaid. After all, you're competing with wide-eyed 23 year olds with no bills or family who have dreamed of making games their whole life.

I was apparently pretty well paid at my last job (Game Dev) at 68k EUR a year.

Also, note that a lot of Europeans quote salary after tax, which can make a big difference.

    you're competing with wide-eyed 23 year olds
Not for senior/lead roles (I've done hiring in several companies). There are lots of people competing for junior roles but its still not that easy to recruit true seniors (10+ years work experience).

> salary I ever saw was 70-something €k per year (and it is quite rare to go above €65k even as a very senior programmer).

That's my impression as well, of the job market in Berlin as dev contributor in many industries. There exists just rock solid ceiling at 70k EUR and that's it. No idea about stricte managerial roles but these are oftentimes reserved to native Germans and the competition is beyond fierce so forget about it (unless you are Abmahnung, Betriebsrat, and Arbeitsrecht virtuoso).

I’ve not experienced managerial roles being reserved for native Germans in the Berlin tech industry at least - had plenty of non-German managers.

Haven't the game industry always relied on offering a "dream job" to underpay?

Sure, I expected web devs to earn maybe €80-90k but not €120k+

I cannot confirm this at all. I have some friends who work in Germany (I left several years ago to the US), and even those in senior tech jobs with years of experience only get up to ~80k EUR and the sky-high taxes push that down to <50k.

I'm working in Munich in a reasonably senior role (but <10 years, of which <3 years at that company), total compensation is ~120k Euros before taxes. It's not super common, but it's definitely possible.

Literally the exact same offer I accepted for me, but in Berlin. I prefer Bavaria but all my biz is in Berlin. +1

In my experience this salary is only available for team leads and only in some companies. Certainly not for 5 years of experience.

However sometimes there seem to be like parallel realities when it comes to salary.

At $225,000 what was your total compensation and did that include healthcare (which is basically universal at that salary)? If you're earning that much, essentially all of your healthcare costs should be getting covered by your employer, as would be typical (it's typical at half that salary).

I can easily understand a preference regarding culture and ease of transit, however it's hard to believe that 20 subsidized lunches per month is a perk worthy of losing a million plus dollars per decade over.

That was total comp. I was a Solutions Architect at Dell EMC. But I worked 60 hour weeks, did the usual client facing bs, used my own time to fill out reimbursement forms yaddayadda. Id rather make 80k in France any day of the week.

When I was studying a buddy got a programming job and his salary was insane, or at least I thought it was.

Then I learned he never worked less than 10 hours a day, usually more like 12, and a lot of weekends etc. Effectively he worked 1.5x a normal job here. Taking his salary and dividing by 1.5 I got something which was quite mediocre.

Thats it exactly. The math lays bare the truth of the hampster wheel in the usa. And Europeans rarely overwork. Its weird to be in the office after 7. In france its illegal for my employers to contact me after hours or on the weekend or when im on sick leave.

At the end of the day time is one thing you can’t easily buy - even if you’re making out like a bandit you can’t pay to work fewer hour or get more vacation days (it’s possible sometimes but I always had a much harder time negotiating for those than for higher pay).

You realise that peace of mind, a social safety net, paid maternity/paternity leave, walking home while the sun is still out, etc. all are infinitely more important than overworking just to get the next Porsche SUV or whatever.

Peace is it's own reward.

>walking home while the sun is still out

While the rest is all true and great, this one isn't true in western Europe for a good chunk of the year. Remember, Europe is at a higher latitude than the US, so the days are really short in the wintertime. Expect it to get dark by 4pm or so.

WELCOME to Germany! <3 Lovely and smart people all around, great foreigner scene and startup scene as well, so you’ll never feel alone. People super open and approachable, love Americans :))

> 225kUSD/yr

That seems insanely high by European standards. That is well above what I would expect even a CTO to make.

That’s what he/she was making in the United States.

I understand that, but I still find that to be extremely high. I'm in Denmark, a country that's known for high cost of living and high saleries to match, and I wouldn't expect a senior dev/ops/sec position to pay more than half that.

Its not high if you live in NYC or SF. Its above average but not by much.

It's normal for people to be paid $120k/y straight out of college in SF Bay Area. $225k/y is normal for seniors.

Total comp for a Senior SW Engineer at one of the big tech companies would be 300-400k/yr.

Amsterdam is pricey and the salaries are not that good, if you want to come for the experience sure go for it. But to settle in? Think twice.

Rent in Dublin is ridiculous too.

Ah, the magic of the Tiquet Resto and 38 days of paid vacation/year ;)

Is that literally a meal voucher?


Yes, usually 10-20 Euros a workday.

For a fair comparison, look at contracting/freelance in Europe. You will have the same social safety net and benefits as the US (i.e. none) and the pay will be around 160kEUR per year (180kUSD) with 7 weeks of holiday. Given our lower cost of living you might even be better off.

Welcome to Berlin! Make sure to check out the Factory coworking space Friday night social event, and lemme know if I can be of any help!

How do the post-tax salaries (Paris vs US) look like? I’m asking because France is reported to have the highest taxes in the world.

I live and work in Paris. My net income after taxes, social contributions, etc is 65% of my gross salary.

This includes the new prélèvement à la source, so in theory I shouldn't owe additional taxes next year.

I personally calculate every mandatory contribution that comes off my gross salary as "taxes" even though many people will disagree. IMHO, it's mandatory, it comes off the top, so it's "taxes"

I wouldn't consider 35% of my gross salary as being overly high, considering the excellent quality of life here. I cannot comment on how this compares to US taxes since I've never lived or worked there.

The taxes/quality of life I experience in Paris is similar to what I had living in Germany.

Given that we have so much vacation here, rent is reasonable, and infrastructure is very good (I can be in Brussels in 2 hours with the TGV) it's unlikely I'll ever move back to Canada.

From what I've read, France is using a trick (used by other countries in Europe as well, Poland for example) where the "gross" amount stated on your employment contract is not the real gross amount, because the employer pays additional taxes (invisible to you) on top of it. So, effectively the employment contract is taxed on both your end and employer's, for a total 50%+ of effective taxation. I suppose this trick is used to not make people angry when they see their payslip.

> France is using a trick (used by other countries in Europe as well, Poland for example) where the "gross" amount stated on your employment contract is not the real gross amount, because the employer pays additional taxes (invisible to you) on top of it.

You mean (insofar as this is a trick), just like the US does?

I do not know US taxes, if US does that as well, then I guess the trick is just too good to not be used. If you're wondering if this is a trick at all, just read some tax theory, where they define a well-constructed tax as (amongst others) one that brings lots of revenue and does not create lots of resentment/social unrest in return.

>> My net income after taxes, social contributions, etc is 65% of my gross salary.

It certainly depends on your income?

IT workers' salaries would fall into 30% income tax rate category anyway. Should be noticed that french taxes for EEA residents are made of household total income divided for spouses, so one might pay less.

>> 225kUSD/yr in usa to 95kEUR in Europe

95k is about 50k after taxes and other no opt-out insurances and social taxes. Most EU countries have VAT 19-24%.

I usually compare USA with Western Europe using factor 2 (3 for Eastern Europe). So, if you get $150k in USA, you have to get €50k in Budapest to have similar quality of life.

In my experience, even with that VAT, everyday stuff in Germany is still significantly cheaper than in America. Plus, all the prices in Europe include the VAT, unlike America where the taxes are secret and unknown until you get to the register and your bill is higher than what was advertised.

Yeah, salaries are terrible in Paris. I work here, most places offer between 45k and 60k a year which after all the taxes accounts for 2618 and 3354. But most people get 2618 per month. A 30m2 apartment is 1200 euros minimum. So devs here live a very modest life.

Are you single? I know the blue card extends to spouses so just curious if you had a partner with you and if they also wanted to work in Europe

Wait you can get more than 95k in Berlin as a developer?!

As a fellow developer in Berlin, that sounds pretty outrageous! I'm making half of that.

Welcome to Berlin, great ecosystem over here, would love to hear your experience in Paris sometime

I get paid 250K EUR in Geneva for writing deadbeat Scala code for Banks. I doubt anyone can match that in Europe

I am straight out of ETH Zurich so my experience is negligible.

Switzerland is an outlier in many aspects for Western Europe :)

And not only in terms of earning - look for example at benefits you get for having kids (amount of parental leave, cost of kindergarten, etc).

It’s like a weird capitalist Enklave in the middle of Europe. I’ll bet a lot of people thought of having kids in Germany or Austria and moving to Switzerland after a few years of taking advantage of generous benefits for having young kids in the former.

What is also common is to live at the border in one of those or France/Italy and cross the border every day. That way you take advantage of the higher wages and lower living expenses respectively.

You're lucky. I talked to Lombard Odier some time ago and they pay their Scala devs 120-130k CHF tops.

250k for a software engineer is quite a lot in Geneva, and even Switzerland. Only Google regularly pays that much after a few years of experience.

Saying I am lucky downplays my hardwork which I put through the university. I hope are you aware of my investment or commitment to studies which got me here

For someone who works in finance, you should understand that the market for software engineers in Switzerland simply doesn't pay this kind of money. The average salary of an ETHZ new grad is 80-85k CHF. You can be the top of your class from MIT or whatnot, companies aren't going to triple their entry-level range to hire someone with zero experience, just because they put a lot of effort through university.

I know top 1% students from ETHZ and EPFL who then did PhDs and postdocs under world class professors. They'll probably never get close to 250k if they stay in Switzerland. Even after 20 years on the job.

How did you come across the job posting ? And also whether you are Swiss should also make a difference as to whether you get the job ? Whats your take ?

I highly contemplated both Zurich and Luxembourg because of my finance tech experience (SocGen, BoA, Wells Fargo, Goldman Stackzzz). I love Switzerland.

Left the states a few years ago. After a 2 years stint in Toronto at a startup I now work for a Swedish development agency in Gothenburg.

6 weeks of paid vacation, great public transit, and affordable housing all mean I'm never going back to the states. If your considering moving to Europe, I'd highly recommend it. Salary isn't everything in life.

Happy to answer any questions

What's so bad about Toronto? Ontario looks like a nice region to live.

It's all right but the housing market is absolutely insane. I was paying 1600 CAD for a 50 sq ft apartment.

The public transportation was also awful. TTC is a joke. I also wasn't a big fan of the culture of the city. Lots of finance people and I also feel a lot of the hyper competitive status focused culture of the states has seeped in to Toronto.

I also have much more flexibility and vacation with my current job. 6 weeks vs 4 plus I can work remotely now though this is more of a function of the company I work for

I don't think anything is bad with Toronto per say (maybe housing prices), he explicitly said states, maybe life just pulled him to the EU

Pretty much this but there are some gripes I have with Toronto as I posted above

3 weeks vacation is the norm here.

Average rent is $2100. Average house price $750,000.

How's agency life compared to working at a startup? I'm currently at an agency in Stockholm and I'm thinking if I should go try out what's it like on the other side.

It's a very different pace of work. I really loved working at a startup but there were some months where I was working 60-70 hours a week to get something shipped because runway was short. I learned a lot and had a lot of fun but I prefer agency life. Lots of variety of projects, reasonable time budgets, generous time off, and I always get to work on pretty cutting edge technologies.

Affordable housing? I heard that Stockholm is super expensive relative to local salaries.

I live in Göteborg but there are other things than relative salary that make Sweden attractive. I think it depends a lot on what you want out of life. The US or Canada might be good for some people. If you want to maximize your salary relative to cost of living, Austin or Seattle may be a good choice.

For some reason the UK Tech Nation visa isn't filled in. Proper name is Tier 1 (Exceptional Talent). Tech Nation are the 'designated competent body' for the tech specialistaion - it's a generic visa for specialists who've been endorsed by a body in the UK from their industry. It cost something like £600 all up for the actual fees, then they sting you with an NHS surcharge which is now £400 a year I think - another gift to immigrants from Mrs May. They only give about 400-odd of them a year.

I've got the visa, I feel like the requirements for this visa should mention that putting together the application process was a shitload of work because it goes to a panel of industry people to be assesed, so is much, much harder to get than a lot of the other ones which are more criteria based. Really, if you want it, you need to convince the panelists that you'll add value to UK tech somehow, beyond just being an employee.

Also, don't be like this guy if you don't get it...https://www.technation.sucks/

> Tech Nation, the Giant Ape, has no sign of intelligence and is there to destroy beautiful things that go beyond her comprehension ability.

Man, somebody's got an axe to grind...

Oh yeah, can't edit my comment, but you've got the cost wrong. It's a two part application process, so when you apply to get endorsed, it's £456. Then, once you've been endorsed, you can apply for the actual visa using the endorsement you got from tech nation. That's £156. It used to be £268 for each stage, so split 50/50.

I'm also very confident there's only 400 a year. 2000 is the total for all the Tier 1 (Exceptional Talent) visas, across all industries and disciplines - so engineering, art, music, etc etc.

Details here: https://www.gov.uk/tier-1-exceptional-talent

Is this Tier 1 visa the same as, or similar to, the earlier HSMP (Highly Skilled Migrants Program)?

I have a Danish startup visa and happy to answer questions.

One thing re funding I wish I understood before I moved here: Europe has no favoured state laws which prevent governments from unilaterally propping up local companies, startups are no exception. However, there is a "no one cares" de minimus limit of 200k euros. Any published funding accompanying a startup visa will come out of this amount, and in practice there are many other schemes to receive money up until the 200k limit. Beyond that you start applying for European wide funding schemes. I'd choose your destination on other factors, since all state money is subject to the same limit.

I'm moving to Denmark in a month. A few questions, if you have time:

- Do you have an opinion on the Copenhagen tech scene? Companies, talent, access to funding etc.

- How've you found integrating with the Danish culture?

- Any suggestions for how to build your network there?

Dane checking in here. On your last question, I'd say meetup.com for professional network, and if you enjoy any sports, join a club.

I had a friend from Spain who struggled for almost a year with socializing with us cold Scandinavians. That is, until she joined a Kendo club (is that what it is called? The bamboo sword thing). By the end of her two years here she didn't want to leave.

I have another question to add to this list (part of your question #2 actually): how is dating in Europe for an American?

As a Dane, I'd say no problem.

Is the visa hard to get? How long did it take?

Theoretically 5 months (3 months to is the business panel, 2 months to apply for the visa). Took me 10 months because I didn't quite get everything perfect the first time.

If you've worked in SF or NY I'd say you're almost guaranteed acceptance. Otherwise I've heard it's pretty hard to get, and it will come down to your credentials and business.

It's strange when I think about it that I could tell you quite a bit about the US immigration and visa system (and I've never even used it apart from a J-1 years ago) but I have absolutely no idea how my own country the UK does immigration and visas.

I don't think it's that strange at all: information about your native country's visa system is almost entirely irrelevant to you. I also don't know what's on my country's citizenship exam because I'll never have to take it.

> information about your native country's visa system is almost entirely irrelevant to you

It's not irrelevant to me - I depend on doctors and nurses who are recruited on that system to give just a single concrete example, and what's more I'm responsible for the system via my representative as a voter.

Exactly. People think it's easy so they vote for it to be made harder, again and again, resulting in an increasingly unfair system.

Surprisingly, the UK is not that bad.

For the UK I hit some dead programs (ex. Sirius, which is supposed to be one of the endorsement options for the Tier 1 Graduate Entrepreneur visa). Is it because no one knows how Brexit will affect the rules? Just this program stopped being interesting or is on temp hiatus?

I do think it's pretty neat that just getting into an accelerator in the UK can also help with your visa process (endorsements for entrepreneur visa)

http://www.siriusprogramme.com/apply https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/entrepreneurs-set...

UK immigration experience varies hugely by income. Some friends of mine experienced trying to move a young family from the US to the UK to be close to grandparents were separated for more than six months while the UK parent found a job and applied for the visa for their partner.

Why is that surprising? The UK has had huge immigration numbers for decades and a centrist/centre-right government that is (mildly) interested in simplifying government procedures.

Wrong on two counts. The UK home office is not interested in simplifying but in creating a hostile environment for skilled immigrants [0]. Second, the current government is certainly not centrist but far-right nationalist - if the above policy doesn't clue you in, Brexit should...

[0] https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Home_Office_hostile_environm...

I was referring to simplifying procedures in general and yes, they have done a lot of that. Look at gov.uk, look at how there are now new banks in the UK after hundreds of years with none.

The "hostile environment" is all about illegal immigration and as such is certainly not about pointlessly complicated paperwork for people who are legal immigrants. It says absolutely everything about the extremist position that some people have reached that you appear to be treating illegal and legal immigration as exactly the same, and then describe a government that tries to enforce its own immigration rules as "far right nationalist". If that's the case then practically every country in the world is "far right nationalist", which would make it a meaningless designation. Exactly what it's become!

Because reducing the number of immigrants has been a hot topic politically for over the past decade.

I think in most of Western Europe "limit immigration" is just the politically correct code for "stop immigration of Muslims and other people from non-Western nations". Skilled workers from Western nations are usually welcomed with open arms.

In England at least, there seems to be a significant “EU immigrants took our jobs” factor as well. As I understand it, that perception was a significant factor in the Brexit vote.

For example see: https://www.theguardian.com/politics/2016/may/20/reality-che...

Also immigrating from another EU country just means to move there and register with the local authorities. Also works for Iceland and Norway, but there you have to get a job within 3? months to be allowed to stay.

Although we're currently having great fun (/s) at the lower end of the German rental market due to all these new young people working here and of course wanting to live somewhere as well.

I think almost everyone wants skilled immigration. People who were supporting Brexit specifically for immigration reasons were saying they'd support exceptions for skilled immigration, especially into the NHS.

Even Nigel Farage is against a cap on immigration and for a points system for skilled immigration!

My point was more addressing why anyone might be surprised at the UK being relatively easy immigration wise.

That said, I'm not sure it really is as simple as skilled immigrants being welcome: there's plenty of people who'd rather we didn't have so many non-Western (culturally!) immigrants regardless of skill.

> centrist/centre-right government that is (mildly) interested in simplifying government procedures.

None of this is in any way true; I've known several people personally who've had difficult and expensive fights with the Home Office, and every indication has been that they're looking to reduce absolute numbers at any cost, including egregiously unfair processes.

For one person, their tax accountant made an error in filing to the Inland Revenue. That resulted in a fight that cost 6 months, £12k legal fees, and was barred from working or renting property during that time.

Nor is it appropriate to characterise any government contemplating no deal Brexit as "centrist".

Another avenue to consider is that Ireland allows citizenship by registration for anyone with a grandparent born in Ireland. It’s a pretty easy process if you qualify, and isn’t a visa, you are immediately recognized.

There are some gotchas. The US doesn’t acknowledge dual citizenship, and I believe you must travel in/out of the US with a US passport. If you have a US security clearance or wish to obtain one, you will have a problem as well.

The main problem with maintaining US nationality is taxes. There are exemptions up to a certain limit, but you still have to file and potentially pay taxes to two countries.

Both Italy and Spain have the same regime. It can take a year or two to set everything up, but you get citizenship and a passport (not a temp visa)

Italy at least is much more lenient, allowing you to go back as many generations as you like to prove Italian ancestry.

>The US doesn’t acknowledge dual citizenship

From my understanding the US just pretends that you are only a US citizen. Which doesn't sound like a problem.

> I believe you must travel in/out of the US with a US passport

This is true for every country I've heard of (if you hold citizenship for that country you're supposed to use that passport)

Canadian dual citizens must travel to and from Canada using a Canadian passport.

>The US doesn’t acknowledge dual citizenship

How is that a gotcha?

If you’re in a field where future work may require a security clearance in the US, my understanding (which may be incorrect) is that you have to renounce the second citizenship. You may have other trouble if you travel to a place sanctioned by the US, but not by the second country.

There may be others — citizenship is a deeper commitment than a visa.

Pre-2017 under the old guidance, taking action to acquire foreign citizenship or recognition of such was considered a disqualifying condition for a security clearance. However, answering that you were willing to renounce your foreign citizenship was considered a mitigating factor. Willing is the key word here--the government wouldn't actually ask you to do this in the course of the security clearance process because renounciation of citizenship is a counter-intelligence signal to foreign states, which could lead to them targeting you for information, which the US government does not want. Further, for many countries (eg UK) renounciation is not valid unless done before certain officials in some specific process, so any forced renunciation of UK citizenship by some other country generally isn't recognized, meaning you can just reapply for another passport. Under the old guidance, you would be required to surrender any foreign passports you held as another mitigating condition.

Post-2017 new guidance proclaimed that confiscated passports should be returned immediately, and this language was added:

> By itself, the fact that a U.S. citizen is also a citizen of another country is not disqualifying without an objective showing of such conflict or attempt at concealment. The same is true for a U.S. citizen’s exercise of any right or privilege of foreign citizenship and any action to acquire or obtain recognition of a foreign citizenship.

So generally speaking, it's not a disqualifying event to hold dual citizenship, so long as the foreign country is not "at conflict" with the US and some other conditions are met.

I'm not an expert, but this is my understanding of the current status.

It used to be like that but these days it is possible to get a security clearance while retaining the second citizenship provided there is no "conflict of interest". Whether there is a conflict of interest or not will be determined by the government investigation of course.

Missing from the Dutch Highly Skilled Visa is that there is also an income requirement based on age. I don't recall the exact numbers but if you are 35+ the income requirement is significantly higher. In any case, the required level would not be a problem for most tech workers.

It's important to note that if you qualify for The Dutch Highly Skilled Visa you will typically also qualify for the great "30% rule" tax exception, this means that you get 30% of your income tax-free for 5 years, and the other 70% will fall mostly in the lowest tax bracket. (Ostensibly to help you move, but in practice really to make The Netherlands more competitive for highly skilled migrants)

To qualify you need a salary of €54K (lower if you're under 30), which is pretty easy to get in the tech scene so it's not uncommon for startups in Amsterdam to have all their foreign workers making more than their native Dutch colleagues.

I'll add it now.

Another addition suggestion - the Dutch American Friendship Treaty.

If you're a US citizen, you've got ~$7500 in savings, and can employ yourself, you can live and work in the Netherlands.


I emailed this guy a few times and he was always happy to answer questions - http://shawnindutch.com/

Why is Israel in a European list ?

Usually, the Isreal/Tel Aviv tech scene is "grouped" with the European scene. A bunch of publications cover Europe + Israel, so I figured why not.

While Israel is a very unique cultural blend, I would call them more European than Middle Eastern. And for immigration culture is arguably more important than geography.

Because it takes part in (and occasionally wins) the Eurovision song contest.

By that logic, Australia is European, too :-)

Though I don't think they've won yet.

Realistically, the main reason that Israel is often counted with Europe is probably that they don't get along well with their neighbors. The implications for stuff like sports competitions could be nasty.

> The implications for stuff like sports competitions could be nasty.

After the murder of Israeli athletes by the PLO/Black September at the Munich Olympics, that seems a long way off.

Eurovision-wise the story is a little sad: Lebanon wanted to enter, but since the country forbids broadcasting Israeli content (!) and the EBU refuses to let countries cut the programme, this was impossible. I believe this rule was inspired by a previous incident where an Arab country cut away to a vase of flowers for 3 minutes to avoid broadcasting the Israeli entry.

Don't really know much about Israel other than what I see in the news. What is an example of someone who would move there who isn't already entitled via religious connections?

People from countries with lower salaries, obviously :)

But not Turkey...(?)

Probably because the culture is separated, which is not the case with Israel?

I worked in a startup in Turkey (Istanbul) years ago (currently working in a startup in Boston). The culture was pretty "Western". The office had a beer fountain and my manager was really chill, it was an enjoyable experience. Not sure if you would be able to find that in any other part of the country though.

I heard Turkey has changed a lot in the past 5 years. Do you think it'd be the same today?

I don't know sorry. This was ~7 years ago and I lived in the US since then. I would guess it highly depends on the company. The company I worked for was a hardware/iot/web startup that was doing really fascinating work, and got good investment, and founders were graduates of best universities in Turkey. My guess is if you research the company and see that the culture is something you like, it's probably possible to find another company like that. Though I would admit finding a job somewhere else in Europe is probably orders of magnitude safer. I wouldn't do it today, but that's because I have a job I love in the US.

It's not a full list, I'm adding new entries every day. Happy to include Turkey if you send over the details.

And no Russia?

Russia is usually considered CIS, not Europe+friends: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Commonwealth_of_Independent_St...

The information for Ireland isn't entirely accurate. There's two separate lists for the availability of the Critical Skills Employment permit and the second list requires a minimum annual salary of €60,000[0]:

Occupations with a minimum annual remuneration of €30,000 for a restricted number of strategically important occupations contained in the Highly Skilled Eligible Occupations List. A relevant degree qualification or higher is required.

All occupations with a minimum annual remuneration of over €60,000, other than those on the Ineligible Categories of Employment for Employment Permits or which are contrary to the public interest.

For Sweden, the employment link referenced is for self-employment. The details around regular, full-time employment can be found on Migrationsverket's site[1].

[0] - https://dbei.gov.ie/en/What-We-Do/Workplace-and-Skills/Emplo...

[1] - https://www.migrationsverket.se/English/Private-individuals/...


Cheers! Just trying to help out.

To quote Hackers[0]: "We demand free access to data, well, it comes with some responsibility."

[0] - https://youtu.be/Rn2cf_wJ4f4

Absolutely, I really appreciate it.

May I suggest an addition?

Ireland has a working holiday visa that lets students and recent graduates come live and work for a year with basically no restrictions (no need for work permit, etc.) It's the only EU country I know offering such a fantastic opportunity, at least for US citizens (Canadians, South Koreans, etc. have more options)


It's fantastic for someone who probably could get their foot in the door but needs to be physically present in the place to get started. Interviewing from another continent is 100x as hard.

Anyone have advice for junior SWEs? I will have a year of co-op experience by the end of 2019, and was thinking of applying from the US to work in Germany or the Netherlands for full-time junior positions.

I'm not familiar with the immigration system of too many other countries. But for the UK this is masking a lot of major differences between visas. For instance, the Tier 2 visa requires an employer to sponsor it. The visa is then tied to that job. That employer needs a license, et cetera. Whereas the tech nation visa allows someone to come to the UK without a job and look, and then change jobs easily.

I moved from Tunisia to France 4 years ago, feel free to email, I'd be glad to help with any information.

Email is in my profile.


@gonsanchezs, please add Latvia: https://startuplatvia.eu/startup-visa

Cost: 100Eur

Family: Yes

Must be board member

Requirements: Not employed at other company or member of another board. Within 6 months 30'000 Eur investment, 18 months another 30'000;


I’m in the process of applying for Spanish Highly Skilled visa and the company told me that university diploma is required. I wonder where the author of the document got his info on that visa, to make sure whether it’s required or not.

Thanks for the list - would love to see which countries are new-grad friendly as well.

Netherlands is pretty favorable.

Get an MSc and you'll have full access to the Dutch job market for a whole year, then once you get a job you can get the highly-skilled migrant permit (with less restrictive criteria I think). After five years and passing some "integration" tests you can get permanent residence.

You're disadvantaged in some ways however because you're ineligible for the 30% tax ruling you'd possibly receive if you were recruited from abroad into a highly skilled position.

Then again, once you've started working you can do some tax adjusting and deduct a big chunk of your tuition costs from your first working year's taxes. I'm not sure if this will be possible much longer, though.

Graduates can receive 30% ruling...

Yeah I'm only getting a Bachelor's.

I think details on issuance times are needed, some of those can easily be taking half a year or more to get, other are known to routinely miss advertised times (blue card)

French tech talent visa (eu blue card) - 1 month for the visa itself. Then 3 months processing for the residency (applied dec got the card in mar).

This should include renewability and pathway to permanence and citizenship. UK tech nation has permanence in 5 and citizenship in 6 which is quite compelling

FWIW: Some countries like Poland, don't have a special visa, but regular ones are easily available. Reasonable quick (2 months) with low legal cost.

Nice, I'd love to see a list similar to this, that includes tax relief as well — similar to The Netherland's 30% ruling.

This is amazing. Thanks!

Which European city has the most SF-like weather? :)

If you are looking for cities with a decent tech scene then for SF weather it is probably London and for peninsula and south bay weather maybe Barcelona.

Nah, don’t care about tech scene since I remote and have a family. It currently costs like 11k/month just to get out of bed in the morning.

Been wanting to live in Europe for a while.

You want to look for Köppen Csb climate cities.

You could start researching here: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mediterranean_climate

Guidelines | FAQ | Lists | API | Security | Legal | Apply to YC | Contact