Work and Travel in Denmark

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VOLUNTEER AND PAID WORK OPPORTUNITIES IN DENMARK FOR TRAVELLERS

Working and travelling in a Scandanavian country like Denmark can be challenging for a backpacker on a budget, due to the high cost of things like accommodation and food. 

But on the other hand, the culture of the country is progressive, diverse, and accepting, with a good work-life balance. Not to mention, the nature is spectacular and unique, with rugged coastline, ancient forests and even sand dunes to explore. So, if you can set yourself up well, you’re in for a rewarding experience. 

See if you can match your skills with one of the many work and travel opportunities in Denmark with our travel guide below.

1. Restore vintage boats in Jutland

Surrounded by water, Denmark’s livelihood is intimately connected with the sea. If you have experience working on or sailing boats, or at least some restoration, carpentry, or painting experience, you’ll be able to find opportunities for boat restoration either with hobby sailors or perhaps an established company.

2. Work at a festival

Denmark takes advantage of warmer temperatures in the summer by putting on lots of outdoor festivals, from music concerts to hot air balloon competitions. These event coordinators need practical help such as building sets or cooking and cleaning. Catering or event planning skills will definitely get you hired with these types of festivals.

3. Bartend in Copenhagen

As the capital, Copenhagen is a major destination for tourists, students, and locals on business. Especially as we emerge from the pandemic, bartenders or other serving positions are in high demand, and your English skills will serve you well, as most Danish speak the language excellently.

VOLUNTEER WORK VISA / PERMIT REQUIREMENTS FOR DENMARK

Denmark’s visa requirements are very similar to neighbouring countries such as Sweden. It is part of the European Union (EU) and part of the Schengen Zone. That means your Schengen visa will apply to the whole of the area. You can spend a total of 90 days in the entire area before you have to leave for a minimum of 90 days. This applies to all nationalities, apart from residents of the EU, who can stay and work indefinitely.

North Americans, the Japanese, South Koreans, Australians, and Kiwis can obtain this visa for free when they arrive. However, Russians and South Africans have to apply for a Schengen visa in advance.

SEASONAL BACKPACKER SKILLS NEEDED IN DENMARK

SPRING WORK

In general, Denmark is a great place to head to for fishing and coastline work, and spring is when to secure positions that can last until the early autumn. During spring, things start to pick up along the open coastal shores. Sea trout become increasingly active as they start to forage in the fjords and out to sea. May is also peak salmon trolling season in the Baltic Sea. 

If you have or desire to build skills in the industry and to work and travel, this is the season to book up work on fishing vessels.

SUMMER JOBS

Like in many countries in the northern hemisphere, summer is the high time for seasonal opportunities for working travellers in the hospitality sector - in bars, hotels, clubs in the major cities and especially the islands such as Zealand. 

Work as an au pair is especially easy to come by in the summer vacation months. And as mentioned above, if your skillset is in the event industry, festivals this time of year are snapping up workers with catering, lighting, and sound system technician skills.

And believe it or not, surf camps along the coast exist for a few months each year. If you have been backpacking around hopping from surf spot to spot and have teaching or board technician skills, don’t look past Denmark in the summer season.

AUTUMN

Denmark has one of the world’s most famously well-operating social welfare schemes, so there are substantial opportunities for working travellers to find work within centres helping the elderly and disabled members of society.

Teaching jobs are also most readily available in autumn, when the academic school year begins. When the weather starts to cool down, it’s smart to start to book up indoor work like this.

WINTER

Tourism does pick up in the wintertime, as people come to check out Denmark’s ski resorts and cold-weather trekking destinations. If you have guide skills, you can book up work as a tour leader for snowmobile, cross-country ski, ice climbing treks, etc. 

Cooking, waiting, cleaning, and receptionist work is also sought after at these resorts in wild areas like Jutland. People even come for snow holiday vacations during Christmastime, so those with retail or acting experience can gift wrap or play one of Santa’s elves.

ATTITUDE TO FOREIGNERS WORKING OR VOLUNTEERING IN DENMARK

Denmark has an open and accepting view towards foreigners, and the majority of people in the major cities have a good grasp of English. Lots of backpackers around the world feel comfortable coming to Denmark, so it’s not a bad place for novice working travellers to get a head start.

Just keep in mind the high cost of living and the rigorous requirements for work visas when considering travelling here.

So, how about putting Denmark on your list of countries to work and travel in?

Recent Contributors

  • Edited on Jun 11 2021 by Lily

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