Work out of season in Chania area

General information or questions about working in Crete.
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Work out of season in Chania area

Postby CathF » Mon Jun 09, 2008 10:00 pm


My partner and I are looking at moving out to Crete, maybe Chania. We were wondering what is job availability like out of season? I currently work in Marketing, any ideas where to look for jobs in this area? And are language barriers a problem?

I hope you can help, I also wondered how anyone else finds living in Chania out of season?



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Postby andheath » Tue Jun 10, 2008 12:30 am


I am sure you are a nice person but please do a little research. jobs out of season are nil. None existant. It is not going to happen for you. And yes the language barrier is a huge problem because surprise, surprise, most people in Greece speak Greek and if you don't you won't be able to talk to anybody.
Now marketing is not my subject but I can have a guess that it is difficult to market anything to anybody you can not communicate to.

I am not going out of my way to be rude (it comes naturally) but there is a mountain of chat on this and other forums about the difficulties of living here if you need an income.

You do yourself no favors joining a forum and asking such silly questions. Use your marketing experience and do a little homework before making a fool of yourself.

Andy (in a bad mood)
This Cretan Adventure thing is way beyond a joke.


Postby latsida » Tue Jun 10, 2008 9:46 am

Dear Andheath-This is not like you?you had a whole section devoted to your move here and received much help and advice and encouragement..Surely by asking her question Cath is trying to do some research?We live at the other end of the island but I do know a few people with full time jobs though these are mainly bar jobs, real estate and in the building industry or their own businesses.
Latsida(in a good mood)

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Postby CathF » Tue Jun 10, 2008 9:54 am

Thanks Latsida for your reply.

Andy there really was no need to be rude, this is my prelimanary research as it is a relatively new idea for us and I thought this looked like a friendly enough forum to ask what you refer to as 'stupid questions'. I had looked at some other websites but thought it a good idea to ask the people who knew and had experienced it.

And thank you I am fully aware that in Greece people speak Greek.

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Postby lshall05 » Tue Jun 10, 2008 10:42 am

Cath - we are a nice bunch of people really!!!

We are moving to the opposite end of the island so don't know about out of season jobs in Chania. In resorts that mainly rely on the tourist trade (ie Malia where we are moving to), it's highly unlikely that you'd get a job out of season as it's difficult enough for the locals to get permanent year round jobs. Also, it may take a season and a winter for the locals who can give you year round jobs to believe that you're going to stay and get to know and trust you.

Until you know for definite that you will be able to get out of season work, you do need to make sure that you have enough funds (either savings or income from the UK for house rental etc) to last you for 2 summer seasons and a winter inbetween (plus possibly 3 or more months when you first move depending when you move over). This is because you won't get IKA 'unemployment' benefit after the first season you work. Obviously if you get work during the season you won't dip into your funds as much as in the winter but even after you start getting the IKA winter money you will still need a bit put aside (either the funds or money saved during the season) as you will only get I think it's about 300 euro per person that is able to claim it (per month).

There's so much information on the forum, on the website and in Carol's book - Living in Crete. Feel free to ask any questions you have even if you think they might be stupid because we'll have all thought about them at some point!!

Ignore Andy as he's normally fairly helpful - I'll give him a Glasgae Kiss which will either make him snap out of his bad mood or knock him unconscious!! :D :wink:

Living in Crete!!

Retired in Crete

Postby Retired in Crete » Tue Jun 10, 2008 11:37 am


You havn't said why you want to move to Crete. If it is to improve your career prospects and earn mega bucks just forget it, as Andy said, it ain't going to happen.

The vast majority of Cretan businesses are small, family affairs. The concept of marketing, as you understand it, does not exist here. The few, reasonably large businesses that do exist, and maybe could use your skills, are usually offshoots from mainland based companies. Your expertise has a value in Athens, but not here.

As Lynn said, year round work is extreemly difficult for a non Greek to get. A summer job in the tourist trade, working seven days a week for less than the UK minimum wage, and the winter spent picking olives at five euros an hour is about as good as it gets. To my mind, the only worthwile occupation which has any hope of giving a reasonable income and lifestyle, is to start your own business. In the UK 80% of new businesses fail in the first two years, I guess that it is even higher here!

I have said before, and been lambasted for saying it, but you must be mad to want to work here. The weather is too hot, the hours are too long and the pay is not worth getting out of bed for! Crete is a wonderfull place to retire to, but work, you must be mad!

You may not have liked what Andy said, but take note of it, he told the truth.


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Postby Nita » Tue Jun 10, 2008 11:42 am

Cath - first thing you need to know is that Andy is (normally) a nice guy but he does tell it as it is.

I live just west of Chania and can tell you it can be difficult to find summer work, the money is often poor and many employers do not pay IKA - forget what the law states, rules are made to be broken and here they often are. You must be prepared to work long hours and in some cases every day of the season, although the majority offer 2 days off per month often the reality is different. Also many employ people based on personal recommendation, if you don't already have friends here it may be more difficult. You also need to realise that the majority of jobs, seasonal or otherwise, are advertised in Greek (very few in English) and that a basic knowledge of Greek is often required.

As for winter work you may be lucky to find work helping harvest the olives - or something similar - but, with the rapid decrease in income for those with olives many are now talking about not harvesting at all or will do the work themselves. Certainly in this area we had this last winter a huge influx of non-Greeks seeking winter work, most were unlucky which lead to a host of other problems. Further there is little chance of finding fulltime employment similar to what you are currently doing, you really need to be prepared to do anything.

Good luck in whatever you decide to do and, as Andy has pointed out, the most important thing is research, read through as many of the threads on this forum as possible as the advice they contain is invaluable even if it's not what you want to read!

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Postby Carolina » Wed Jun 11, 2008 3:45 pm

Cath, you might want to think about teaching English in a private language school here - one of the few options for winter work. A TEFL or TESOL certificate should give you some experience and credibility when applying for teaching jobs. There is some info on the working in Crete page.

Perhaps with your background in marketing you could set up an internet marketing company or some such, where you can work from any location.

As the others have said, winter or year-round work in Crete is rare; there are very few options.

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Postby andheath » Wed Jun 11, 2008 10:50 pm

Dear Cath

I think your idea of moving to Crete is a fantastic idea. I did it and have no regrets, every day is an entertaining challenge. The Greek people are so friendly, the lifestyle is fantastic, children are well behaved, petty crime doesn't seem to exist and the weather..............

Some friendly advice, learn the language. Ordering a coffee is easy, so is shopping but talking to the neighbors or trying to explain the problem with your car is not. To get a job without the language will be very, very difficult.

Do as much research as you possible can, Caroline's book is an excellent start, buy read it and read it again. Try to make some good contacts in Crete and keep in touch with them, it will help you a lot when you arrive and also help you to meet other people.

If your heart is set on the move as mine was then you have to do it. Rather that than spend the rest of your days wondering about the "what if". Expect it to be very, very difficult and then it won't come as a shock but if you treat it as a challenge you will enjoy it.

On the financial side you will need a cushion. I came here not expecting to earn any money for five years. I was 49 with no pension or other income. Having been here less than a year, I realize my cash is likely to last for less than that but I am optimistic on the earning side too.

Andy (in a much better mood and trying to be helpful)
This Cretan Adventure thing is way beyond a joke.

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