Work in Argentina

With bustling cities and a low cost of living, Argentina is a desirable place to live and work. However, finding a job in Call Argentina can be difficult because the country has strict employment laws, high unemployment, and typically favors native workers. Consider transferring to the Argentinian branch of a multinational company from your home country or applying to jobs in industries that tend to hire foreign workers. Once you’ve received a job offer in Argentina, you can begin applying for a work visa using the required paperwork.


Securing a Job

  1. Get a job offer in Argentina in order to apply for a work visa. To apply for a work visa in Argentina, you will first need to be sponsored by a company in Argentina who has extended you a job offer. Although the country is slowly recovering from the recent economic crisis, job opportunities for foreigners are sparse.[1]
    • You can be sponsored by either a foreign-based company with an Argentinian branch or a domestic company looking to employ foreign workers.
    • You are more likely to find a job if you can speak Spanish and are comfortable working for Argentinean wages (which are generally lower than those in other major cities).[2]
  2. Hunt for jobs in information technology, banking, or the oil industry. Companies in these 3 fields are regularly looking for foreign workers, particularly in major cities like Buenos Aires. Search for job listings online, in the classified sections of newspapers, or by networking with contacts in Argentina.[3]
  3. Transfer to your company’s Argentinian branch if possible. If you work for a multinational company, you may be able to transfer to a post in Argentina rather than searching for a new job. The advantage of working for a foreign company, rather than a domestic company, is that you will most likely be paid in your home currency, which will go a lot further in Argentina than the Argentine peso.[4]
    • This is also a good option if you don’t already speak Spanish.
    • Spanish, French, and U.S. companies are the most heavily represented in Argentina.
  4. Teach English or another foreign language at a language institute for another option. A popular option for young people without dependents hoping to work in Argentina is a job as a foreign language instructor. The wages for ESL teachers are not very high, and they are paid in Argentine peso, which is worth much less than most foreign currencies.[5]
    • A Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL) certification can help with finding a job, but isn’t mandatory. You can take a course online, in your home country, or in Buenos Aires.
    • If you plan to work for less than 3 months, you may be able to get by with a 90-day tourist visa. Many ESL companies do not require a work visa for you to be hired, although you should double-check with your specific company to make sure it’s true in your case.

Applying for a Work Visa

  1. Apply for a passport in your own country. This is the first step to working and living abroad. In some countries, this can take 3 to 6 months to receive, so make sure you begin this process far in advance of any plans to travel to Argentina.
  2. Determine which type of work visa you should apply for based on your position. The most common type of longer-term work visa is Article 23 (A), which is issued to interns or employees of companies in Argentina. This lasts up to 3 years, with an option for extension.[6] You should speak with your company or an official from your country’s Argentinian consulate to determine which visa is right for your situation. Other relevant visas include:
    • Article 23 (E), which applies specifically to specialists, scientists, and certain technicians, managers, and administrative staff.[7]
    • Article 15 (E), which is issued to employees who have been sent to work abroad for their companies for a minimum of 6-12 months.
    • Article 29 (E), which is a short-term work visa granted for 15 days (with the option of extending for another 15 days once the employee is in Argentina).
    • MERCOSUR visa, which applies to citizens of Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay, Uruguay, Venezuela, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, and Bolivia. It allows many South Americans to work in Argentina through a streamlined visa application process.
  3. Apply for a residence permit through your company. A residence permit, or “permiso de residencia,” is granted by the Dirección Nacional de Migrations (DNM). Your company or an immigration lawyer will initiate the procedure for this permit and help collect the necessary paperwork. Once your company has submitted your documentation, including a work contract, and paid any fees, the DNM will issue an "Acta de Notificación" to confirm your residence permit.[8]
    • If your company cannot handle this process for you, you may consider hiring an independent organization to do so. Companies such as Argentina Residency & Citizenship (ARCA) will charge a fee to help process your paperwork for you. Argentina is known for its bureaucracy, so having support with the process will be helpful.
  4. Schedule an interview at the Argentinian consulate in your country. Once your residence permit has been issued and sent out by the DNM, you must make an appointment to apply for a work visa. Schedule this appointment through the Argentinian consulate in your current country of residence.[9]
    • Depending on your country of residence, you may be able to schedule the appointment online. You may also be asked to send an email or call the consulate office.[10]
  5. Gather the paperwork required for your work visa application. You will need a valid passport (with copies), your employment contract, several passport-sized photos, your birth certificate, a notarized copy of your diploma or professional credentials, and a certificate of good conduct that proves you don't have an international police record. If applicable, you will also need to provide any marriage and divorce certificates.[11]
    • Any items that are in English will need to be translated into Spanish by a certified translator.
    • Some consulates require you to send in your paperwork in advance of the interview.[12] Others require the paperwork to be presented in-person at the consulate before the interview is even scheduled. Check your consulate’s website to clarify the rules in your country of residence.
  6. Attend the interview at your country’s consulate. Plan to arrive earlier than your scheduled interview time since the consulates can sometimes get busy. The specifics of the interview will depend on your consulate, but it may include fingerprinting. If your paperwork is in order, the consular official will ask that you pay a fee for submitting your application.[13]
    • Charges for submitting your visa application vary across countries, so check with your local consulate to determine the fee in your area. In Europe, the cost of issuing the work visa is approximately 100 Euros (paid to the consulate).[14]
    • In the U.S., the application fee is $100. There is also an $80 charge for consular certification of your signature on the employment contract.
  7. Receive a 30-day temporary work visa. Once you pay the fee, the consular official will approve your application at the appointment and you will be granted a “residencia precaria”—a temporary work visa that lasts for 30 days. This allows you to be officially hired by your company.[15]

Finalizing Your Work Visa

  1. Apply in person for a Documento Nacional de Identidad (DNI) within 90 days. Register for a DNI with your local Registro Nacional de las Personas no more than 3 months after receiving your work visa. Locate the closest Registro Civiles online at [16]
    • A DNI can be compared to a social security number and is necessary for business or financial contracts.
    • The application for a DNI costs AR$15.
  2. Request a Clave Único de Identificación Laboral (CUIL). Once you’ve received your temporary visa, your company can officially hire you. Then, they will register you with the Administración Nacional de la Seguridad Social (ANSES), which makes you eligible to receive a CUIL—an official work number that’s used for tax identification purposes. To apply, you will show your DNI card and a copy of a document that includes your full name, current address, and DNI. There are 3 ways to apply for a CUIL:[17]
    • Online, through the ANSES website at
    • In person, at a nearby ANSES offices
    • By telephone, through customer service units known as Unidades de Atención Telefonica (UDAT)
  3. Visit the immigration office in Argentina and present your CUIL. Present your official documents from ANSES, including your official CUIL number, to the officials at the immigration office. You will then be given your official work visa.[18]
    • This comes in the form of several papers stapled together, and you must carry it with you when you exit and re-enter the country.
  4. Renew your work visa after a year. You may need to renew your visa after 12 months, although the immigration office can stipulate a longer authorization period. You can extend your work visa through the National Immigration Office in Argentina.[19]
    • You may be required to return to your country and apply for the visa after your visa has expired. Speak with your company about handling the reapplication process.

Adapting to a New Work Culture

  1. Learn Spanish. Fluency in this language will help you both when you are in Argentina and when you are looking for work before you go. Most business is conducted in Spanish, although there may be a multilingual culture in some foreign firms.
  2. Adjust to a work schedule with a long midday break. The work week in Argentina is different than that in the U.S. or much of Europe. For example, Argentinians work from approximately 8 am to 12 pm, then take a break mid-day and work from 4 to 8 pm.[20]
    • Argentina also has many public holidays. Sometimes, these are combined into “puente” (bridge) holidays of four-day weekends.
    • Most workers get 14 days of paid vacation every year.
  3. Expect people to run late in professional settings. In Argentina, tardiness is more acceptable both in casual and professional settings than it is in many other countries. If a boss or fellow employee arrives late to a meeting, don’t take it personally.[21]
    • While you shouldn’t plan to regularly show up late to work or to an office meeting, if you’re running behind on occasion you don’t need to stress out.
  4. Wear casual outfits to the office, especially in the summer. Although some workplaces in Buenos Aires (particularly in the downtown business district) require their employees to wear suits and pencil skirts, in general, the dress code is less formal than other major cities. Especially if you’re not interacting with clients every day, it is acceptable to wear casual outfits to the office.[22]
    • This is particularly true in the summer when it gets very hot. Men often wear button-down shirts without a jacket, while women wear light skirts or dresses.
  5. Spend time with your coworkers “after office.” Argentinians often use the phrase “after office,” which refers to a happy hour occurring outside of work hours. Argentinian workers typically don’t put up boundaries between their work lives and personal lives and often have strong relationships with their coworkers.[23]