If there was ever a type of international job to be found in a variety of countries, it would be in the media sector. Whether you’re interested in breaking a story about a political scandal or hosting a Top 40 radio station, working in the media industry means being at the forefront of global issues and acting as a gatekeeper of information. Media jobs overseas are as diverse as the countries themselves, with media job opportunities in both traditional and digital outlets. If you’re a good communicator and eager to be “in the know” with how information is dispersed to the masses worldwide, than obtaining a media job abroad is the right choice for you.
As an expat, your understanding of the country you’re trying to work in will be essential for acing the interview and securing a media job abroad. If you’ve got your eye on that production assistant job or as a social media community manager for a radio station, be prepared for a career landscape that may vary from your home culture. Standards for the media industry will vary from country to country, and this is important to keep in mind alongside the limitations and freedoms that come with working in this sector in each particular country. For example, working as a journalist in China will include more government regulation and censorship than you might find in Western European destinations.
Media jobs in places like Australia or the United Kingdom are ideal for those who speak English as a native language, but keep in mind that applying for a work visa can be more competitive and expensive in these countries, in comparison to less traditional locations like Portugal or Mexico. The United States is also a great option for English-speaking media jobs, as there are a large variety of positions to apply for, whether you might be interested in urban life in cities like San Francisco of New York, or in a more political landscape like Washington D.C.
Media Jobs Abroad
Applying for media jobs overseas can be competitive, depending on the destination. There is typically a structure in place for available positions, and where you end up will depend on the knowledge and first-hand experience you bring to the table. Media is what makes the news happen, whether it’s celebrity gossip or hard-hitting news, so there will always be a need for these kinds of jobs abroad.
Media jobs abroad will vary depending on the size and specific sector of each organization or company. If you desire a role focused on covering news and current events, a job as a news reporter would be a good fit for you. If you are perhaps more interested in developing marketing strategies for a corporate organization, than a media position as a marketing assistant makes more sense. With the onset of numerous new technologies, jobs abroad associated with social media management are also quite popular and growing in number. The media job opportunities abroad are endless.
As a member of a media team, you will be communicating with locals, so most international media jobs will require that you are fluent or have a basic understanding of the native language. Those working in the media industry can expect hours of work to also vary by organization. It’s generally important that those looking for media jobs abroad be flexible in working unconventional hours, whether it’s because of a news story that breaks or because of a tight deadline. Your previous job as well as your international or internship experience will also be deciding factors in where you can obtain media work abroad.
Salary & Costs
The average salary associated with working in media abroad varies greatly depending on the destination, living costs, lifestyle choices, and the specific type of media job you want. The median pay of a news reporter in the United States falls at around $32K for an annual salary, while the average pay for a radio producer in Australia falls at around AU $50K per year.
It’s important to keep in mind that because there is so much variation here, that you research the hiring organization and living costs associated with with the destination you’re looking to work. This is especially true when moving abroad, as your home country may be cheaper than the place you’re relocating to. If you’re trying to cut down on costs, consider locations like the Netherlands or Spain, which have a lower cost of living compared to England or Germany.
It’s certainly possible to make a living by working in media abroad, but this will of course depend on how you budget your finances compared to what you’re making. Set limits for yourself, and be sure to stick to them!
Accommodation & Visas
Plenty of accommodation options are available for those working in the media sector abroad. Whether you opt for a solo apartment or shared living will depend on what you’ve budgeted for living costs in a particular destination. While it is typically up to the employee to go about securing accommodation, a hiring organization may assist with making recommendations or housing arrangements.
Like other international jobs, the requirement of a visa will depend on your nationality and where you’re interested in working abroad. If an organization is looking to hire an international employee, they will typically help you through the process of applying for a visa and providing the necessary information in order to secure it. It’s important to note that depending on how long you’re planning on working abroad, the required visa may also vary if you’d like to obtain additional benefits. If you’re seeking a job in Canada, for example, you’ll either need a residence permit or temporary work permit. Most countries will require that you apply for these documents before entering the country, and the hiring organization may work with you to accomplish this.
Benefits & Challenges
Obtaining media jobs overseas can be one of the most rewarding opportunities, as it’s a chance to truly understand how a culture communicates and become more skilled at intercultural communication tactics. It will also allow you to become a more quick-thinking, creative problem solver, and this can open the door to a variety of other media opportunities abroad.
Depending on the specific type of international media job you’re seeking, growth opportunities will typically present themselves if you can showcase success with the level of your work, and how you interact with co-workers.
Media has long been a powerful force for making people ask questions, start discussions, and bring about major changes. That being said, there may be challenges and obstacles you face as a member of the media, but the rewards make the legwork, long hours, and lessons learned more than worthwhile.