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Tips for Work and Travel in Europe

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Avlaus polycounter lvl 6

    

          So, I turned 30 years old! And I need some tips for life. 


But first, boring context explanation below:

 

           I began to think that I did not really live and started to have ideas. Have you ever felt this in your life?




I'm basically a hobbyist but I've done some freelancing with game art for the local market, and I've received positive feedback, maybe I have some talent. I work in another area, something that is not a career but is stable and pays well. But as I said, I started to get ideas ... 

I've been thinking about traveling. Destiny? ITALY, land of my ancestors. But I would like to get to know it well, not a 10 day rush trip where you barely get to see and learn about anything. I was thinking of staying a year :o  , living side by side with the Italians, learning the language and the history.

But for this I would need to work and earn in euro, my country's currency is very weak and I would go bankrupt fast without seeing everything I want. So I thought about the possibility of working with art for games in Europe.

 And that's where you come in. :#

 


     - 
Do you think that someone with no experience and just a little bit of certified training (and kind of old) would be able to fit into some European studio? -

In a junior position would be great already. I'm open to doing an improvement course and everything.

 

Obs. It could be in any country of the European Union, I already have citizenship and passport

 

Thanks, André.

Replies

  • Andreicus
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    Andreicus polycounter lvl 3
    Hi, i'm 22, i'm italian and i'm still living here, i can give you some information about the country like expenses, how is the general life here and so on but first of all, do you actually want to settle in Italy and find a 3D artist job or do you want to come as a tourist for a year and then return home ?

    Because i'll tell you straight away that Italy is a good country for a holiday but not to live in until you are old, at least in my opinion.
  • Avlaus
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    Avlaus polycounter lvl 6

    Andreicus said:

    Because i'll tell you straight away that Italy is a good country for a holiday but not to live in until you are old, at least in my opinion.
    Hello. Thanks for answering Andrea.

    You say that because you think Italy is very monotonous? If so, I would like to inform that I live a super monotonous life here. :D

    My wish would be to work in a studio but have the weekends free to travel using public transportation. I do not need a lot of things, but I would like a place with individual bedrooms to live in.

    My main fear is that my abilities are much lower than the local professionals to the point of being totally excluded from the market.

    Now for the time that I will spend. I believe that one year is a good time to see a lot. But you never know, maybe I get to visit neighboring countries.
  • Biomag
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    Biomag polycounter
    Keep in mind that working requires a visa and those are hard to come by. You should first check this before even start thinking about what country would be fun to live and work in. It is most probably going to be a big issue when you are not talking about just a simple vacation. In my previous company we had to wait 10 months for a highly qualified and experienced developer from Venezuela to get her papers to work in Austria - I have no clue how hard (or easy) it would be to get a working permit coming from Brazil.
  • Avlaus
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    Avlaus polycounter lvl 6
    Biomag said:
    Keep in mind that working requires a visa and those are hard to come by. You should first check this before even start thinking about what country would be fun to live and work in. It is most probably going to be a big issue when you are not talking about just a simple vacation. In my previous company we had to wait 10 months for a highly qualified and experienced developer from Venezuela to get her papers to work in Austria - I have no clue how hard (or easy) it would be to get a working permit coming from Brazil.
    Hello Biomag. Thanks for answering. I believe that this would not be a problem because I already have Italian citizenship and a European passport. Now, do I need something else for the work visa?
  • Biomag
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    Biomag polycounter
    Ah, that should solve it :) As far as I know Italians have no limitations within the European Union in regards to travel and work :)

    Sorry, i missed that part in your original post.
  • Avlaus
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    Avlaus polycounter lvl 6
    Hey, no problem. And it's good to take those doubts out of the way :D 
  • sacboi
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    sacboi sublime tool
    Though I'm not familiar with the game production scene over there, but I assume you've already got a few places lined up to try your luck getting a foot in the door and also do you have a backup plan if things don't work out, for example bill paying job prospects, living off savings...etc?
  • Andreicus
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    Andreicus polycounter lvl 3
    Yes, if you are a citizen of one of the EU contries you can live, travel and work wherever you want inside EU.

    Regarding the game industry here in Italy there are only a couple of medium sized companies and a lot of indies but with "indies" i don't mean like Cloud Imperium Games...i mean from 2 to 5 members for every company and they make mostly mobile games or VR stuff.
    The most famous companies here are: Milestone ( MXGP series and MotoGP series ), 34BigThings ( Redout, quite famous on Steam ), Forge Reply ( Joe Dever's Lone Wolf ).
    There is also Ubisoft Italy in Milan.
    Aside from the companies that i mentioned early there are a lot of indies but as i said they are very small so it's hard to get a job there especially if you don't know italian.

    Avlaus said:

    Andreicus said:

    Because i'll tell you straight away that Italy is a good country for a holiday but not to live in until you are old, at least in my opinion.
    Hello. Thanks for answering Andrea.

    You say that because you think Italy is very monotonous? If so, I would like to inform that I live a super monotonous life here. :D

    Ahah, nope it's mostly because a lot of things like public transportations, services in general works really bad and the salaries are low compared to the cost of living.

    With that said, let's talk for a moment about the cost of living.

    Italy unlike other countries like USA or Japan, has a lot of small city and very few big ones and even in the big ones you won't find skyscrapers or similar stuff.
    The cost of living is high, very high compared to the average salary and unfortunately is more or less the same in all the country but it becomes a bit more expensive in Milan, Turin, Naples and Rome ( the big ones ).

    The average salary in Italy is 1200 € per month after taxes.
    The money that you will spend every month to sustain yourself in a medium sized city ( ex. Modena or Bologna ) are more or less:

    - Rent: 450 € is the minum for a 40 mq apartment
    - Bills ( water, gas and electricity ):  100-200 € per month, electricity is expensive here because Italy produces only the 30 % of the total electricity, the remaining 70 % is bought from other countries
    - Food: 200 € per month 
    - Internet: 20-30 € per month
    - Public transportations: 40 € per month ( depends on the city )
    - If you work you will probably eat lunch in a restaurant or fast food so: 20 € for a restaurant or 10 € for a fast food

    Total per month: 1000-1100 €

    And this is the reason why i say that the cost of living is too damn high and the real problem is that unless you work in a medical, laws or government field you will still earn the average salary of 1200 € even if you have a bachelor in IT or engineering.

    I don't want to make a wall of text so i'll give you some reasons to live in Italy and some to not to live here.

    Reasons to live in Italy:

    - Food, if you want to stay healthy and eat well Italy is the country for you
    - Art and culture, Italy has the highest number of cultural sites recognized by UNESCO World Heritage
    - Weather, quite balanced, summer is not too hot and winter is not too cold but unfortunately this trend is changing because the global warming has raised the temperatures
    - Free health care for everyone

    Reasons to not to live in Italy:

    - Unemployment, the unemployment rate is over 12 % and the youth unemployment rate is 40 %
    - High cost of living and low salaries
    - No meritocracy, if you know someone you will have a bright career and you will get the job but if you don't know anybody...well you know how it works. There is a reason if the majority of researchers, engineers, artists and other top talents leave the country and go abroad
    - Italy is technologically backward compared to other developed countries
    - Public services are poorly managed and public transportations are old and often late and you will probably need a car anyway because if you don't live in one of the big cities like Milan or Rome there will probably be only a couple of bus and maybe a couple of trains in a day.
    - Corruption and criminality, corruption is spread across the country and there are a lot of robbery and other crimes every day even in school
    - Racism, a lot of people in the small and medium cities are quite racist especially towards black people or eastern european people

    Hope it helped
  • Avlaus
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    Avlaus polycounter lvl 6
    sacboi said:
    Though I'm not familiar with the game production scene over there, but I assume you've already got a few places lined up to try your luck getting a foot in the door and also do you have a backup plan if things don't work out, for example bill paying job prospects, living off savings...etc?

    Hey, Sacboi. Thanks for answering. I have selected some studios, but it seems that I do not have many options unfortunately. I have some plan Bs and Cs. The best option would be to get out of here halfway with a job i guess.

    Andreicus said:
    Yes, if you are a citizen of one of the EU contries you can live, travel and work wherever you want inside EU.

    Regarding the game industry here in Italy there are only a couple of medium sized companies and a lot of indies.....

    Owa Andreicus!! Great summary, thank you very much. I'll take it with much consideration.

    The good parts I've heard of, otherwise I would not be planning to go. : D

    Now unemployment is kind of scary, especially since I would like to leave unskilled jobs for young people: D. And as far as I know, starting a business in Italy is not easy either.

    The social issues do not bother me because they are far ahead of my country in basically every aspect.

    And those professionals who leave, they stay in the EU? How's Germany compared to Italy? I have some friends there.

    Dang. I was counting on the public transport being good, I heard that it was good at least compared to Brazil.

    And would that be the salary that I would earn by working with environment art in a studio probably? What about hostels, I suppose it would be much cheaper?

    I will send my resume to these studios. It might work: D

    What about taking a GC course in Europe? Would that open up more possibilities perhaps?
  • Andreicus
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    Andreicus polycounter lvl 3
    Avlaus said:
    Owa Andreicus!! Great summary, thank you very much. I'll take it with much consideration.

    The good parts I've heard of, otherwise I would not be planning to go. : D

    Now unemployment is kind of scary, especially since I would like to leave unskilled jobs for young people: D. And as far as I know, starting a business in Italy is not easy either.

    Starting a business here is not really that hard but the problem is that a lot of activities are failing due to the economic crisis so it's difficult to keep a profitable company.
    Also the government will take the 50 % of all your yearly incomes.

    Unskilled jobs like waiter, bartender and so on, is not really an option in your case unless you have already all the money to sustain yourself for the time that you will be staying in Italy and you want a job only to recover some money, that's because you will probably earn from 450 € that is the minimum wage to 800 € per month.
    If you have a degree in some field like IT and you also have at least 3-4 years of experience and you manage to get a job in a company you will probably earn around 1400 € per month, as i said the salaries are low.

    Avlaus said:

    And those professionals who leave, they stay in the EU? How's Germany compared to Italy? I have some friends there.

    They usually go to the US but some of them also go to Germany and Holland.
    I don't know about the situation in Germany but the unemployment rate is very low around 3,6 % and i heard that the average salary is 1500-1600 €.

    Avlaus said:

    Dang. I was counting on the public transport being good, I heard that it was good at least compared to Brazil.
    Depends, if you are planning to visit the entire country from north to south i wouldn't count on them but if you want to visit only the major cities like Milan, Rome, Venice etc. than you will be ok.

    Avlaus said:
    And would that be the salary that I would earn by working with environment art in a studio probably? What about hostels, I suppose it would be much cheaper?

    I will send my resume to these studios. It might work: D

    What about taking a GC course in Europe? Would that open up more possibilities perhaps?
    I don't work in the game industry so i don't know about the salary of an artist here in Italy but he will probably earn as much as an IT programmer so 1400 € more or less.

    Sorry but what do you mean with "GC" course ? Game Creator ?
  • Avlaus
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    Avlaus polycounter lvl 6
    Hey, thanks again. Yea, I was not expecting the cost of living to be so high even with Euros. And I see no alternative but to leave with a job already guaranteed.

    Maybe I will see in some neighboring countries how things are going.

    Sorry, I meant CG, for computer graphics. But from what I've seen there aren't many schools in this field.
  • Alex Javor
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    Alex Javor insane polycounter
    I lived in Italy for some years. Traveling is great and I'd highly recommend it, but after you do it for a bit you're just going to realize that having a home, a steady paycheck, and some hobbies, friends, and family is about as good as living can get. Much can be learned from meeting different people and absorbing other cultures, but at the end of the day people are just people anywhere you go and eventually you have to settle down somewhere and live your own life.

    If I was going to up and move somewhere different just for the hell of it, I'd look further east where cost of living makes more sense. I think for a clever entrepreneur there is limitless possibilities in emerging countries like India and Southeast Asia.


  • sacboi
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    sacboi sublime tool

    BIGTIMEMASTER wrote:

    I think for a clever entrepreneur there is limitless possibilities in emerging countries like India and Southeast Asia.

    Yeah, no argument there. The region going forward will come to dominate with increasing coherence especially in terms of economic influence well into the remainder of this century and beyond, I should think. Also for the budding capitalist it's worth keeping in mind a linguistic fluency counts for much when 'doing' business and/or requisite cultural norms, which we're acquainted with here in Australasia.  

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