World Explorers Working in London
Many people come to London looking to enjoy what the city offers for a couple of years. London offers a wide range of working opportunities but the city is famous for its competitive climate and you need to be prepared to work for long hours and, as it is an expensive city to work and play in, it is common for Londoners to spend a significant amount of their pay check on rent.
The straining financial climate has had an impact on workers in London as many companies have had to make many of their workers redundant. This is a difficult situation for anyone to find themselves in, particularly if your family and other forms of support are far away. As such, make sure that you have sufficient finances to live comfortably in case you end up being unemployed for longer than initially anticipated.
Do I need a visa or work permit to work in London?
The first thing to note is that the UK immigration system is, to a large extent, points based and rather complex. Getting the right visa is essential as you may otherwise not be allowed to enter or stay in the country. This can be a tedious process and you may want to get expert legal advice to ensure that your application is handled as smoothly as possible. Professional solicitors will be able to guide you through the steps and ensure that your best interests are looked after.
Whether you need a visa or not will depend on a range of circumstances, such as your country of origin and whether you are a national of another EU country.
Some prospective employees do not need a visa but they may still need a work permit for their time in London. Research properly what regulations are applicable to you; it can be a good idea to seek advice from a professional if you find yourself in the dark on how to apply for a work permit.
Nationals from some countries can come to the UK and work as long as they have all their papers in order, without having to seek further specific permissions. They may be allowed to stay in the country as long as neither they, nor their family, are a burden on public funds. This is the case for the majority of nationals from other countries within the European Economic Area.
Once You've Found Work
Great, you have successfully accomplished the most difficult part of the process and secured employment. Your rights as an employee are sometimes dependent on the amount of time that you have spent with your employer. For instance, if you are made redundant then you can only apply for redundancy pay if you have been with your employer for at least two consecutive years.
However, not all rights are subject to the same criteria as redundancy rights. Some employment rights are immediately applicable to you as a non-native worker. These include the right to a safe working environment and to not be exposed to any form of discrimination.
Many travellers come to London as part of their journey through Europe. If this situation applies to you then you are recommended to refrain from the temptation of getting involved in temporary unregulated employment. Many travellers can't resist the idea of earning some extra money and agree to work without any form of contract.
Getting involved in such agreements can put your health and safety at risk as your employer may not pay too much attention to your rights under employment law. Furthermore, in case any of your rights are breached then the lack of a formal acknowledgement of your situation may be an obstacle to you seeking redress.
Many are attracted to London for the potential of earning quick and good money but it is important that you always put your own wellbeing first so that your trip is not destroyed by a poor working experience.
MONEY & COSTS