Essential Employment Paperwork in Albania



Albania is one of the countries in Europe which is oozing with natural beauty and potential for economic growth. Though it is not yet a popular expat destination, this former Soviet Union member has caught the attention of foreign investors that created employment opportunities for locals and expats alike. Know what is needed in order to smoothly enter the blooming nation of Albania.

In general, foreigners coming from the Schengen area and EU member states are exempted from getting a work permit, while non-EU/EEA foreign nationals are required to have a work permit before they can go looking for a job in Albania. To obtain a work permit, an expatriate must first possess a valid Type D long term visa. Upon issuance of the visa, a temporary residence permit should be acquired to apply for a residence permit in Albania. Citizens of several other countries also fall under the visa exemption for Albania and can enter the country by only presenting their valid ID card.  


Expats coming from countries that are not mentioned above must apply for a visa at the Albanian Embassy/Consulate in their home country. There are two types of permits that foreign assignees can choose from: the short-term and the long-term visa. The short term visa for Albania is valid for up to 90 days within a 180-day period while the long-term visa is valid for 180 days within a 12 month period. Processing time normally takes a minimum of seven days whereas the costs depend on the applicant’s home country.

Work Permit

After obtaining a visa, the next process that expats must do is to get a work permit. Foreign assignees must submit their work permit application at the Albanian Diplomatic representative office in their country of residence. The processing type usually takes about 30 business days, and expats can perform work upon presenting proof that their application for a work permit is already in progress. Some of the documents needed for the application are: 

  • Original copy of the employment contract (notarised and translated in Albanian)
  • Registration of the legal entity of the company/employer who will hire the expat
  • Copy of the applicant’s passport (certified by a public notary)
  • Five passport sized photos

The work permit should be renewed at least 15 days before its expiry date whereas the renewal process takes about a month. It can only be renewed if an expat can present a valid employment agreement and he/she has become a legal resident of Albania.

Residence Permit

Foreign nationals who wish to remain in Albania for longer than one year either for work or studies purposes must apply for a temporary residence permit at the Regional Directorate of Border and Migration Police near their area of residence. A temporary residence permit is issued for three, six or 12 months with the possibility of renewal of no more than five times. Permanent permit, on the other hand, will only be granted to a foreign national if she/he has lived in Albania for five consecutive years and is deemed to have adequate activities and ties with the country.