Holiday work experience trainees

General information

'Genuine holiday work experience trainees'

'Genuine holiday work experience trainees' are school pupils and students who perform a required or standard activity as part of the curriculum and study regulations. This is subject to the condition that the employment is not practised in any case under the terms of a work or apprenticeship arrangement.

A (holiday) work experience placement can be completed not only during holidays but also at any time throughout the year. The primary focus is on educational and training.


For compulsory work placements, there are curricular terms and conditions that include, for example,

  • the duration of the work placement
  • the type of activity and
  • the completion of a report.

The practical activities in the operational organisation must be consistent with the applicable school type and the study regulations. Proofs of training requirements must be retained.

General information about employing young people

To be able to work as a young person during holidays, the following conditions must generally be met:

  • Age: 15 or over,
  • End of general compulsory school attendance

Compulsory school attendance (→ text ends after the end of year nine (roughly equivalent to year ten in the UK), at the start of the summer holiday (main school holiday).

Minors who celebrate their 15th birthday before the start of the summer holiday following year nine, are considered children as defined in the Kinder- und Jugendliches-Beschäftigungsgesetz. Only with the end of compulsory school attendance – at the start of the holiday – are they considered young people and are able from that time to work in a holiday job.

Persons under the age of 15 who have already finished compulsory school attendance can only be employed as part of 

  • Apprenticeships
  • Special holiday work experience placements (Ferialpraktika), the purpose of which is to catch up on tuition missed during the school year
  • Compulsory work placements in accordance with the Schulorganisationsgesetz
  • Training schemes within integrated vocational education (→ text

This is subject to the provisions of the Kinder- und Jugendliches-Beschäftigungsgesetz that apply for young people (sections 3 to 5), although these persons are considered children as defined by law.


'Genuine holiday work experience trainees'

'Genuine holiday work experience trainees' are only covered by accident insurance. For these trainees, no separate registration for accident insurance by the employer is required. The accident insurance is financed from the budget of the Family Compensation Fund and the General Accident Insurance Institution (AUVA).

As a rule, the citizenship of school pupils attending school in Austria is irrelevant in terms of statutory accident insurance (Unfallversicherung). However, students studying at a domestic higher education institution are only insured against accidents at work if they hold Austrian citizenship.

Nationals of other countries are only treated as insured if there is a social security agreement (Sozialversicherungsabkommen) in place between Austria and the other country. For individuals from Switzerland or another EU/EEA member state, checks should be carried out to determine which country should be held responsible for dealing with any social-security related issues. This rule also applies to residents of "third countries".

Where students and pupils studying at educational institutions outside Austria undertake holiday work practice in Austria, checks must be carried out to ensure they have accident insurance in their home countries, and that this insurance will cover them for the duration of their stay in Austria.

Holiday staff/workers

If holiday work experience trainees are taken on as employees, they must be registered within the notification deadlines with the Austrian Health Insurance Fund (→ ÖGK)German text. The procedure for registering/de-registering holiday work experience trainees will in these circumstances be the same as for the Registration of employeesGerman text!


Whether or not wages are payable – except for those collective bargaining agreements that make express provision for pay – will depend on voluntary agreement between the employer and the trainee.

Please note

If pay or 'pocket money' is provided, this is considered income tax-liable pay. The relationship is one of employment, meaning that registration with the Austrian Health Insurance Fund is required.

The contributions must be deducted in respective the contribution group intended for employees. 

Further links 

Certified Translation
Last update: 12 February 2021
Responsible for the content:
  • Federal Ministry of Labour
  • Association of Austrian Social Insurance Institutions

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