Things you should know before you immigrate to Austria

Moving to Austria: Things you should know before you immigrate to Austria

Ranked as one of the richest countries in the world and with one of the highest standards of living, Austria is a popular destination among immigrants and expats. But there is more to this small country located in the heart of the Alps. With its important role in the history of the last several decades, it has become an international country where citizens from all over the world feel at home. And that is no surprise when you know that Austria is bordered by eight countries. Would you like to know more about Austria and everything related to immigrating and relocating to Austria? In our article, we uncover all the secrets of the musical capital of Europe.

International removals to Austria with Eurosender

Moving to Austria from the USA is a thing that many Americans dream of. With the grandeur of Vienna, the knowledge centre of Graz and with Salzburg being the birthplace of Mozart, there is lots to choose from. But what if you visit Austria on holiday and fall in love with this magnificent country? Permanent settlement is something completely different than staying somewhere on holiday and there many more things to keep in consideration. That is why we have created this easy relocation guide, that will show you the most important topics when relocating to Austria.

Before you can start walking the streets of Vienna or ski down the slopes in Tirol, you should first know all the basic info about this amazing country in the Alps.

CapitalVienna, with 1.8 million inhabitants also the largest city in Austria.
CurrencyThe Euro (EUR)
PopulationAustria has a population of about 8.8 million inhabitants.
How do you call someone from Austria?Austrian
Official languageAustrian German, which is a variation of Standard German
International dialing code+43
Emergency number112 (for emergency) 122 (fire) 133 (police)
DrivingOn the right side
TippingTipping is not obligatory as wages are included in the bill. However, the payment is often rounded-up for good service.
Unusual factAbout 25% of the Austrian population lives in the capital Vienna.

When you are relocating from the USA to Austria, there are some things that can help you make your international removals to Austria a big success.

Living in Austria

Like in any other country on the planet, Austria also has its own peculiarities. Let’s look at them so that you won’t be shocked when you relocate.

  • The Austrians abide by the law and something seemingly innocent as jaywalking is frowned upon.
  • When you are invited to someone’s home, don’t forget to take off your shoes when you enter the place.
  • Austrians have a love for cash and even though you can pay by card in many establishments, there are still a bunch of cafes and restaurants that only accept hard cash.
  • When you are a smoker, you might feel like taking a step back in time. Austria is one of the few countries that still allow smoking in cafes, bars and even restaurants

Visa Regulations for Austria

Getting a visa is not necessary for many Europeans but for others, it is still necessary to get the obligatory paperwork done.

  • Citizens from EU/EEA countries don’t need visas or work permits. However, they do need to apply for permanent residence within 4 months after arriving in the country.
  • Citizens from non-EU/EEA countries need a visa to enter, a work permit and a residence permit. Contact your local embassy for the documents and requirements for the country that you hail from.
  • The “Red-White-Red” card is an option for highly skilled workers who found employment in Austria. This document will allow you to stay up to 1 year.
  • The “Jobseeker” visa allows you to stay up to 6 months to look for a job. This doesn’t allow you to work in Austria and is only available for highly skilled workers from non-EU countries.

Healthcare in Austria

Most employees in Austria are covered by public healthcare insurance for which you pay through the social security system. You are free to choose a healthcare insurance provider, which will then, in turn, provide you with an E-card which functions as your insurance card when visiting a hospital or any other medical facility.

School and education in Austria

The school system (which is compulsory until the age of 15) can be easily divided into the following stages below.

Primary school6-9
Lower Secondary school10-13
Upper Secondary school14-18

After lower secondary school there are several levels of upper secondary school, which will determine which kind of vocational or university education you can attend.
Private education takes up about 10% of all education and is in most cases organized by the Roman Catholic church.

The job market in Austria

No less than 70% of the inhabitants of Austria work in the service industry and a large part of that industry consists of tourism. This means you can easily find seasonal work in one of the tourist hotspots around the country.
Also be aware that Vienna is home to many international organisations like OPEC and the OSCE, which brings many expats to the capital and job opportunities for new settlers as well.
Don’t forget the Jobseeker visa mentioned above, which gives you up to 6 months to find employment in Austria.

Property information

Most people in Austria, including the Austrians themselves, choose to rent accommodation. Prices, of course, depend on your wishes, but let’s shine a light on some of the things you should pay attention to.

  • Service charges (such as for garbage collection) are not included in the rental price. They can add up to additional costs of about 25% of the rental price. On top of that, you will have to pay for gas, water and electricity.
  • With most people living in the cities, it might be hard to find a suitable place. So, start your flat hunt well in advance.
  • Want to avoid a €726 fine? After moving into your new digs, you will have to register at the local municipality within 3 days. Failing to comply will cost you dearly.

Cost of moving to Austria

When you are preparing your move, your biggest question is most likely: How much is shipping from the USA to Austria? When you choose to ship your items with Eurosender, you have 4 options that determine the cost of moving house to Austria:

So whether you are looking for the cheapest way to move furniture to Austria, or you want to ship something as big as your sailboat or motorcycle, you are guaranteed to have the lowest average moving costs to Austria when you arrange your relocation with Eurosender.

Cost of living in Austria

Many people have probably told you that the cost of living in Austria is high and unfortunately they are right. However, it is not all as expensive as people might want to make you believe. The price level in Austria is just a bit above the European average and also, you have to keep in mind that in one of the richest countries in the world, salaries are also higher.

Driving in Austria

To drive your own, or a rented car, in Austria, you need the documents listed below. Failing to have them with you could lead to fines.

  • Driving License (Citizens from Non-EU countries also need an International Driving Permit (IDP) to be allowed to drive in Austria)
  • Passport
  • Insurance documents
  • V5C certificate (proof of ownership)

Driving in the mountainous landscape of Austria might take some getting used to. However, with the tips below, from both locals and expats, you know exactly what to expect when driving across the country.

  • Dashboard cameras are prohibited, so when you use one, don’t forget to remove it when you cross the border.
  • It is obligatory to always have the following things in your car with serious fines when failing to abide by this rule:
    • Reflective jackets,
    • Warning triangle,
    • First-aid kit
    • Headlamp beam deflectors
  • You need a “Vignette” to enter the Austrian motorways, which are all tollways. They come in the form of a digital pass or a sticker on your windscreen. They are available at gas stations near motorways and are sold for periods of 10 days, 2 months or 1 year.
  • After buying a “Vignette” you might still have to pay additional toll fees for several tunnels and the famous “Brennerpas”.
  • From 1 November to 15 April it is obligatory to have winter tires on your vehicle. Not complying means risking a fine.

See the most popular destination from where you can move


Moving from Canada to Austria is a move between two winter nations. Both Austrians and Canadians like to spend their free time in the outdoors for activities such as skiing, snowboarding, hunting and hiking. That’s is why Canadians will easily feel at home in this Alp country. But obviously, there are also many differences between these nations. Canadians who have settled in Austria praise the slow pace of life, the proximity between villages, towns and cities, and all the history that Vienna and other parts of Austria have to offer.


Moving from Ireland to Austria is a relatively small step as the two countries are only about 2.000 km apart. The countries have in common that the majority of the population live in the capital. But where Austria offers the fresh air of the Alps, Ireland is rather flat. So, when you are Irish and you are looking for something completely else, but still want to stay within the EU, Austria is the ideal pick for you. With ample job opportunities, an impressive ecological situation and a high standard of living, Austria has everything, an Irishman could wish for.

United Kingdom

Moving to Austria from the UK is a convenient option when you want to live abroad but still often want to visit your friends and relatives. London-Vienna is only a 2-hour flight and prices are decreasing year on year. But when you are frequently flying back and forth you also want to bring your stuff. Only then you will understand the exorbitant prices for excess baggage that air companies ask. When you ship with Eurosender you don’t have to worry about paying too much as we know how to move your items across the world at the lowest price.

Other destinations?

Disclaimer: The materials provided in this article were collected from other credible resources to be used for general information purposes only. Given that the legislative basis of the country and its economic development have a changing nature, the information provided in the article could be subject to change. Whilst we endeavour to keep the information up-to-date and correct, Eurosender will not be liable for any inappropriate, incomplete, or inaccurate information. Certain links will lead to websites which are not under control of Eurosender. Thus, Eurosender accepts no liability in respect of materials, products or services being not under control of Eurosender.