Steps to Work in Greece: Necessary Documentation

Embarking on a professional journey in Greece, with its rich history, stunning landscapes, and vibrant culture, is an enticing prospect for many. However, transitioning to a new work environment, especially in a different country, requires careful planning and preparation, particularly when it comes to the necessary documentation. This comprehensive guide aims to navigate you through the essential paperwork required to work in Greece, tailored for both EU citizens and non-EU nationals.

For EU/EEA/Swiss Citizens:

The freedom to live and work in Greece is one of the many privileges enjoyed by EU, EEA, and Swiss citizens, thanks to reciprocal agreements within the European Union. However, several key documents are still necessary:

1. Valid Identification: A current passport or national identity card is essential for entry and subsequent administrative processes in Greece.

2. European Health Insurance Card (EHIC): This card provides you access to necessary healthcare services during your stay. While it’s not a substitute for comprehensive travel insurance, it ensures you’re covered for basic healthcare needs.

3. Proof of Employment: Having your employment contract, job offer, or any official document that verifies your employment status in Greece is crucial. This document facilitates various administrative procedures and serves as proof of your purpose of residency.

4. Registration Certificate: After living in Greece for more than three months, EU citizens are required to register with the local authorities and obtain a registration certificate, which serves as your residency document.

For Non-EU/EEA/Swiss Citizens:

For those outside the EU/EEA/Swiss framework, the process involves more stringent requirements:

1. Passport: Ensure your passport is valid for at least six months beyond your period of stay.

2. Work Visa/Permit: Depending on your nationality and the nature of your work, you may need to obtain a work visa or permit before entering Greece. The process typically involves your prospective employer initiating the application on your behalf.

3. Residence Permit: Upon arrival, you’ll need to apply for a residence permit, which is necessary for long-term stays and employment in Greece. The required documents for this application usually include proof of employment, health insurance, and accommodation, among others.

4. Health Insurance: Valid health insurance is a prerequisite for both your visa application and residence permit. Ensure your coverage meets the Greek authorities’ requirements.

Common Requirements for All:

Regardless of your nationality, certain documents and procedures are universally necessary when seeking employment in Greece:

1. Tax Identification Number (AFM): Everyone working in Greece needs an AFM, obtained from the local tax office. This number is essential for all tax-related issues and many other transactions.

2. Social Security Number (AMKA): This number is required to access healthcare and social security benefits. You can obtain it through the IKA (Social Insurance Institute) office.

3. Bank Account: Opening a local bank account in Greece can facilitate your financial transactions, including receiving your salary. Required documents typically include your passport, AFM, and proof of address.

Additional Tips:

  • Document Translation: Non-Greek documents may need to be translated by a certified translator. In some cases, an apostille or authentication may also be required.
  • Keep Copies: Maintain several copies of all your documents, both in digital and physical formats, to streamline any administrative processes.
  • Stay Informed: Regulations and requirements can change. Regularly consult official and updated sources for the most current information.

Further Resources:

For additional information and up-to-date guidance, the following resources can be invaluable:

  • Greek Ministry of Foreign Affairs: Provides comprehensive information on visa requirements, work permits, and other consular services.
  • IKA (Social Insurance Institute): Offers guidance on social security numbers, healthcare services, and insurance for workers in Greece.
  • Your Home Country’s Embassy in Greece: Can provide personalized assistance and advice regarding documentation and other requirements for working in Greece.
  • EU Citizens Portal: If you’re from the EU/EEA/Swiss region, this portal offers detailed information on living and working rights within the EU.


Working in Greece can be a fulfilling and enriching experience, offering both professional growth and personal enjoyment. However, the foundation of a successful transition lies in the thorough preparation of your documentation. By ensuring you have all the necessary paperwork in order, whether you’re an EU citizen enjoying reciprocal rights or a non-EU national navigating through visa and permit applications, you can look forward to a smooth start to your new professional chapter in Greece. Welcome to the land where history meets modernity, and work-life balance is embraced amidst breathtaking landscapes.

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