Live, Work & Travel in Italy
Rome is a must see on any tour of Europe but there is much more to Italy than the eternal city. Italy also offers Florence, the home of Michelangelo and Machiavelli, Venice and Pompeii, among other places, and then there is the food - Italian peasant food is one of the world's great cuisines. Among the big countries of the EU, Italy is the least likely to offer significant employment prospects to unskilled workers.
Working in Tourism
Despite being surrounded on three sides by the sea so low key are Italy's seaside resorts compared with Spain or Greece that we presumed rather than knew of their existences - though of course this is partly due to our own ignorance. Brits tend to head elsewhere in the Med so the demand for English speakers is not so great. German speakers will fare better.
British tour operators to Italy include Thomson Lakes and Mountains, part of the TUI Group, or Club Med, but for jobs with smaller businesses nothing will beat being in the right place at the right time, preferably equipped with the Italian language. We see very few jobs in hotels, bars and restaurants advertised online but - though none of the following websites have recruitment pages - we have in the past spotted all of these hotels looking for staff via English language media: Relais il Canalicchio, Villa Grazioli, Lake Orta Hotels, Hotel Cannero, Hotel Francesco, Cà Masieri, Hotel Colibri, and Hotel Morandi alla Crocetta.
With no guarantee any of these hotels are hiring now a browse through TripAdvisor will unearth more cold call contacts. Not all holidaymakers to Italy stay in hotels though. Try Bolero Holidays for courier and site rep positions at the Union Lido Holiday Park. A second language is a bonus here but not essential for jobs between April and October. EuroCamping.eu lists hundreds of campsites across Italy, some of which may be looking to hire.
One industry that tends to spread its recruitment net overseas is animation. One animator, Angela - who worked for Enjoyland - wrote about her experience in 2009 as an animator in Italy. She describes the role as “harassing guests to join in your tournaments, making public-relations around the pool, doing quizzes and bingo, dressing up in costumes, animating over the microphone, taking volleyball tournaments or face-painting the living daylights out of the children.”
Wintour have used our Jobs Abroad Bulletin to look for animators with a good knowledge of English and/or German, with Italian and French appreciated, to work for eight weeks between May and September. Applicants should be enthusiastic, open minded, friendly, funny and communicative people, aged 18 to 28. Italian speakers may also find work through Darwinstaff.
Much of Italy's tourism is inland, around the northern lakes, in Rome and the towns and cities of the renaissance, particularly in Tuscany. Among the visitors are US high school students enrolled in summer programmes with Abbey Road and Travel for Teens. More companies running such programmes in Italy can be found via GoAbroad.com.
Ski Resort Jobs in Italy
France, Austria and Switzerland are better bets for finding jobs in the Alps but resorts in Italy provide decent employment prospects to foreign seasonal workers too. Workaseason.com recruits for the Inghams, Esprit and Ski Total brands. Other British tour operators represented in the Italian Alps include Mark Warner, Powder Byrne and Crystal.
Each year school travel specialists Interski employ a team of over 45 seasonal workers to ensure the smooth running of their overseas operation, based in the Aosta Valley.
For those thinking of fixing up jobs on the spot, resorts can be researched in advance through sites such as OnTheSnow or Skiresorts.info, which also lists accommodation options in each resort via Booking.com.
Teaching & TEFL in Italy
For younger working travellers and those without teaching qualifications summer camps provide the best opportunities to teach in Italy. Running for a fortnight or two these camps are intended to teach English to Italian children in as fun a way as possible through games, activities and songs and the role is more akin to that of a camp counsellor, a title some of the companies given below use for this position.
All native English speaking EU nationals need to be considered for a job is an energetic, bubbly personality and a genuine interest in working with children. Organisations to approach include Alice in Citta, Lingue Senza Frontiere, MB Scambi Culturali, Cambridge House, London School Rovereto, The English Camp Company, Canadian Island, Bell Beyond and ACLE.
If you have a drama background we also suggest investigating ACLE's Theatrino Theatre In Education drama programme. Each year ACLE select 30 young, energetic performers/ musicians/ teachers to tour across Italy. Theatrino provides performances consisting of fairytales, sketches, musicals, and adaptions of Shakespeare or literature for various age groups with each show followed by a drama based language workshop. Bell Beyond do something similar.
Au Pair & Nanny Jobs
AuPair.com gives the regulations for non EU au pairs looking to work in Italy. Agencies sending girls and boys to Italy aren't hard to find but one agency with regular vacancies that makes good use of our boards is Totalnannies. Alpine tour operators (see above) are an attractive option for skiers looking for childcare work. Euroma focus their au pair placing efforts on Rome.
Low Cost Options for Volunteering
From local NGOs to work exchanges we track down and list a number of opportunities for free or cheap volunteer work in Italy on another website in our small group.
Other Ways to Travel or Stay for Free
Stay for free in return for caring for local residents' homes or pets. Join Trusted Housesitters to live rent free as a house sitter (Americans may prefer this link).You can get a free $25 Airbnb credit from us here.
More Resources from our Sites
Articles on Living, Working & Travelling in Italy
Articles on other websites and blogs:
The Time I Was an Au Pair in Europe - After a poor start, Amanda’s au pair job helped immerse her in to Italian culture.
Alternative Ways for Making a Living in Rome - Sharon Moran learnt the tricks of showmanship working as a vocalist in a stylish cabaret and burlesque club while paying the rent as an English romantic literature museum employee.
Animation – An Adventure Job Abroad - The honest and sometimes brutal facts for everything you need to know about the life of an animator, including answering the question: just what is an animator anyway?
How to Get a (Good) Au Pair Job - Amanda follows up on her experiences as an au pair in Rome with some tips.
The Life on an Au Pair - Writing for University Times, staff writer Jane Farrell, descibes the 11 weeks she spent with a family in the Italian seaside town of Albissola Marina in Liguria.
Work in Italy. Where to Find Jobs and How to Network - Emma Bird, who spent many years working in Italy writes for Transitions Abroad.
Working in an Italian Vineyard - Oana describes her picking job in Tuscany.
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