For most foreigners, to work in Belgium you need a work permit. It is best to come to Belgium already with a work permit as you may have to go to your country of residence to apply for the permit anyway. It is also necessary for the employer to show that no Belgian or European Union worker is able to do the same job. Below are a list of websites in English you can use to search for jobs in Belgium.
- Monster – Job-seeking site offering all sorts of jobs. http://english.monster.be/
- Stepstone – Job-seeking site offering all sorts of jobs. https://www.stepstone.be/home_fs.cfm?lang=BEN
- Manpower – Job-seeking site offering all sorts of jobs. https://portal.manpower.com
- Huxley – Portal for Information Technology (IT) job seekers. http://be.huxley.com/
- Randstad – Job-seeking site offering all sorts of jobs https://www.randstad.be/en/
People exempt from a work permit in Belgium are:
- Nationals of the European Union.
- Spouse of a Belgian and their under-21 dependents.
- Holders of a residence permit.
- Foreigners admitted into Belgium for an unlimited period of time.
- Acknowledged refugees.
- Students with a holiday working pass.
- Students on training courses necessary to their course-work.
- Apprentices hired under contract that qualifies for exemption.
There is no specific visa for people who want to look for work in Belgium. Instead, if you would like to do a reconnaissance trip to set up interviews and find out more about Brussels, you could consider a Tourist Visa which is usually valid for 3 months (See You want to go on reconnaissance). Even if you are hired by a company to work while you are in the country on a Tourist Visa, most of the time you will have to return to your home country to apply for the work permit. It is difficult to change visas once you are in Belgium.
If you already have a job, please see “You have a job and need to relocate” for further information on work permits.