Expatriates considering working in Bulgaria have a relatively limited range of options available to them and the majority of those buying property in Bulgaria are doing so for investment purposes rather than to move to Bulgaria and live and work there full time.
Having said that there are employment opportunities available to foreigners in Bulgaria and this article provides you with a guide to working in Bulgaria
First things first it’s important to remember that Bulgaria is not yet a member of the European Union and so those who herald from another EU country or the UK, USA or Australia for example have to have a visa to remain in the country in excess of 30 days. These can be easily obtained before travel from your local Bulgarian embassy or on entry to the country.
Those expatriates who wish to remain living in Bulgaria and take up employment can do so if they have a permanent resident’s permit or if they’ve been offered a specific job. In the latter case a temporary work permit is issued that bears the name of the employer and employee and states the duration for the permit’s validity.
If the department issuing the work permit deem that the work in question could be undertaken by a local Bulgarian then permission will be denied and it’s worth noting that employers in Bulgaria cannot employ more than 10% foreign staff.
Another alternative for a foreigner wishing to work in Bulgaria is to become self employed or work as a partner in a firm but the downside to this is that such action requires the individual take out insurance with premiums in the region of 29 - 32% of income.
In terms of the options available to anyone contemplating working in Bulgaria there are seasonal jobs available in the summer resorts on the Black Sea coast and winter ski jobs in Bulgaria’s winter sports resorts. Opportunities range from ski instruction to chalet maid and from bar work to working as a holiday rep.
In Sofia there is a steady flow of foreign business starting up and these companies seek international staff who have specific qualifications as well as fluency in English. Furthermore there are opportunities for teachers living in Sofia who can teach English as a foreign language or who are qualified to work in the international schools.
Most recently a large number of estate agencies and property construction and development companies have started up in and around Sofia, along the popular coastal regions and also to a slightly lesser extent in the main ski resort in Bulgaria. Many of these companies require English speaking staff to liaise with international property buyers and investors.
If you’re serious about working in Bulgaria you should travel to the country, get your bearings and start networking as soon as possible because it is often easier to find employment when you’re in the country and literally in the right place at the right time. A lot of openings are discussed openly and then filled simply through word of mouth. If you’re seeking a specific type of job consider targeting suitable employers with your CV and a covering letter and also look in local English language Bulgarian press and on the internet for advertised positions.