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A Guide to Working Abroad in Chile

In 2013 Chile became recognized as a high-income economy by the World Bank, officially marking its endorsement as a fully developed country. With continent-leading rankings in economic freedom, per capita income, human rights, and globalization, it is no wonder why Chile has become one of the most stable and prosperous countries in all of Latin America. But beyond the promising jobs in Chile, lies the opportunity to work abroad in a fun, beautiful, and culturally rich country.


Santiago, the nation’s capital, is the obvious first choice when looking for a job in Chile. By far the country’s largest city, Santiago is the nation’s political, economic, and cultural center. Many multinational corporations have headquarters in Santiago, making it a globally connected city. With a culturally rich history extending back centuries to the earliest days of colonization, Santiago has since developed into a highly modern city replete with skyscrapers, expansive suburbs, and South America’s most extensive public transportation system. Located in Chile’s central valley only hours away from the mountains and Pacific Ocean, jobs in Santiago are highly desirable for international workers in any field of employment.

If you are looking to live away from the big city, then consider seeking employment in Chile’s rural or smaller urban areas. Certain cities, such as Concepción and Valparaíso offer a thriving urban environment without the globalized atmosphere of Santiago, which provides expats with a more uniquely Chilean experience. Since Chile is one of the most geographically diverse countries in the world, environmental jobs are also popular. From the Andes Mountains to the Atacama Desert to the Southern coastal Patagonia region, environmental enthusiasts will find no shortage of jobs and places that spark their interest in Chile.

Jobs in Chile

At the heart of a country which boasts the most stable economy in Latin America, Santiago is an emerging city of international business, innovation, and entrepreneurialism. Foreign investment has led to the rise of many startups in the nation’s capital. For those who want to work in Chile in the business, tech, communications, or media industries, Santiago provides a great emerging market to work in Chile.

Individuals interested in teaching English, or working in other education focused jobs, will find there are many job options available throughout the country. Chile has a strong education system, but English teachers, as well as Spanish-speaking teachers, are frequently sought after to work at language institutions or international schools. Generally, there is a lack of English language abilities in Chile, and many Chileans want to become bilingual to increase their job prospects in the international market. Therefore, teaching opportunities in Chile go beyond teaching school aged children. 

Nonprofit work in Chile is also a popular field for foreign job seekers. Though Chile is a highly developed country, the problems which rise from social inequality have created friction in Chilean society, which many NGOs and locals organizations make an effort to improve through social work and community development initiatives.

Spanish is the language of business in Chile, although some international companies offer positions to exclusive English speakers. Regardless, Chiliens tend to have the least English language skills in all of South America, so it would be greatly beneficial for foreign workers to know at least a minimal amount of conversational Spanish upon arrival. Some companies will also offer Spanish language courses to foreign employees.

Salary & Affordability

Average salaries will obviously vary heavily depending on your field of employment in Chile. It is also important to keep in mind that there is quite a large income gap between rich and poor in Chile. The median monthly income in the country hovers around $4,000. Workers in the lowest income bracket will often make around $1,000 a month, while workers in highly profitable fields of business can sometimes expect to earn upwards of six figures. Take respective salary and benefits into account when searching for different jobs in Chile.

The national currency is the Chilean Peso, which runs at about 585 to $1 US. Although Chile is a developed country, the cost of living is still generally cheaper than in the United States or Europe. Necessities, such as food and housing, are typically quite affordable. Prices in Santiago tend to be higher than in the rest of the country, as one would expect.

Accommodation & Visas

Real estate prices are fairly cheap in Chile, because it is not a densely populated country. Santiago will be the most expensive place to find accommodations, but it is still very possible to locate affordable housing even in the nation’s capital. Most permanent employees will want to find their own apartment depending on where they want to live. It is possible to locate fully furnished apartment listings on various websites, so discuss options with your employer and research possible accommodations before you start your job in Chile.

You will also have to obtain a visa with the endorsement of your employer to begin full time work in Chile. Each job in Chile and length of stay may require different visa types, so consult GoAbroad’s Chilean Embassy Directory to locate an embassy near to you where you can inquire about more information.

Benefits & Challenges

Chile has had a tumultuous past, but ever since 1990 the country has been growing as an increasingly prominent player on the global stage. Whether your interests lay in domestic labor or international business, Chile is a highly stable country in which to land employment abroad and experience the distinct Latin American culture. From the Andes to the Pacific, there is no shortage of opportunities to explore the beautiful countryside while advancing your international career. If you are looking for a job in Latin America, then there is no better place to get started.

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A Guide To
Working Abroad in Chile


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