You’re finally ready to chase your dream and start working abroad! It’s time to discover a new place and culture, meet new friends from all over the world and take your international career to the next level. The next step is to do a lot of research and find the right country and city for you. Maybe you’re interested in living and working in Portugal and you want to get to know more about some Portuguese cities. In this article you’ll read more about the second-largest city in Portugal: Porto. We listed a number of pros and cons of working in Porto to help you decide if Porto is the right city for you!
The pros of working in Porto
Are you fantasizing about starting your new life in an historic European city? Then living in Porto might be perfect for you! Porto is a beautiful and romantic city with a culture that is both welcoming and relaxed. Even though Porto is the second largest city in Portugal, after Lisbon, it’s not a huge city. Porto only counts 230,000 citizens and 2.4 million people live in Porto’s metropolitan area. When walking through Porto you will discover lots of charming streets, colourful facades, trendy bars, breathtaking views and beach fronts.
Below you will find a couple more reasons why working in Porto is amazing. After reading this article with pros and cons of working in Porto you will hopefully be able to decide if Porto is the right city for you or not.
1. The work culture in Porto
One of the most important reasons why working in Porto is an incredible experience is the relaxed work culture. When working in Porto you’ll notice that companies have a laid-back atmosphere while also communicating in a professional way. For example, deadlines are often pretty lenient in Portuguese companies. So if you feel super stressed at your job in your home country, you will probably feel really happy working in Porto!
Moreover, corporate events are an important topic within Portuguese companies. The HR department spends quite some time planning and organizing nice team building events and most of the time the events even have a fun theme. Get ready to party!
2. Lots of career opportunities
Did you know that Porto has a thriving economy? A lot of international and Portuguese companies have their headquarters in Porto. Besides that port wine is one of the most important export products of Porto and a lot of people work in this industry as well. Therefore you will be able to find lots of career opportunities as an expat in Porto. Some common jobs for expats working in Porto are technical positions within one of the many (international) companies and English teacher at one of the universities in Porto. Furthermore you will be able to find jobs within the following sectors: IT, content writing, retail, hospitality, customer service, HR and sales.
Companies in Porto are constantly looking for new employees that can speak English, Dutch, French, Spanish or German. If it’s your dream to live and work in Porto, but don’t speak any of these languages, we highly recommend you to learn one of these languages.
3. Expats get special tax benefits
As an expat residing in Porto you are entitled to some nice tax benefits during the first 10 years of living in Portugal. Of course as a tax resident in Porto you will have to pay Portuguese income tax but there are a number of exemptions. The first benefit is that you don’t have to pay any tax on the earnings you make outside of Portugal. This is a nice benefit for people that are thinking about working remotely in Portugal. The second benefit is that you pay a fixed amount of income tax (a flat rate of 20%). If you compare this to the standard rates in Portugal, you will most likely pay a lot less income tax than a Portuguese employee, because the standard tax rates in Portugal can rise to 48%.
The cons of working in Porto
1. Personal and work life are separated
Portuguese businesspeople like to discuss business matters over a nice long lunch or a glass of wine. It’s actually quite normal for businesspeople in Portugal to network in informal settings. However, if that is not the case and you’re in a professional setting, you can really notice that Portuguese employees want to keep their personal life and work life separated. It is not very common that Portuguese coworkers grab drinks with each other after a workday. this is because employees in Portugal usually work long hours and prefer to go home after work. However, it is not uncommon to get invited by your colleague for a nice dinner at their house. Make sure to bring some wine or a nice dessert as it is common courtesy to bring something nice as a guest.
2. The hierarchical structure
Most Portuguese companies still have a hierarchical structure, which means that most big decisions will always be made by management without the staff knowing. Your boss asking for advice from employees outside management is not something that is very common in Portugal. This might be a bit hard for you to get used to at first. Especially when you like sharing your own opinion.
This hierarchical structure also means that you will need to be a bit more formal at times. Especially when you’re talking to a colleague older than yourself. Make sure to address them by Senhora or Senhor and then say their last name.
However, it’s very important to get to know the vibe within a company first. Try to learn everything about the work culture of the company you’re working at and before you know it you will get used to it and start to appreciate it.
How to find a job in Porto
Hopefully you’ve gotten to know more about Portugal and the pros and cons of working in Porto. There is literally so much to love about Porto. From the delicious Port wines, the pretty cobblestone streets and the Duoro River to the charming Ribeira district and the interesting and welcoming culture. Take your chance, discover this stunning city and experience what it is like to work in Porto at the same time!
So now that you’ve decided that Porto is the place to be, it’s time to find a job in Portugal. And with Porto’s thriving economy there are a lot of career opportunities waiting for you. You’ll find a lot of jobs abroad on our vacancy page. Here you’ll be able to find exciting opportunities in beautiful countries such as Greece, Malta, Spain and of course Portugal. Please have a look and before you know it you’ll be landing your dream job in Porto!