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Expat Working Hours Revealed in New Survey

Choosing a career is never easy; accepting the right expat position can be even harder. After all, once you’ve “signed on the dotted line” and moved half way round the world for a new opportunity it’s a little bit late to realize you’ve made a big mistake.

Choosing the right expat employer isn’t just about negotiating for the best salary and expat expenses package of course; all manner of other factors can help to make some positions more tempting than others. This can include everything from free schooling to paid flights back home.

Perhaps one of the most difficult factors to predict is quite how many hours you will end up working. After all, for many senior expat positions the number of hours on your contract may have little in common with the reality of the situation. After all, you’re being paid to achieve results, and depending on the situation you’re in, and the local culture and expectations, you may find yourself working far more than a “standard” 40 hour work week.

But how many?

After all, there seems little point in accepting an expat job vacancy, going through all the trouble and expense of moving your family half way round the world and then never seeing them.

Now, thanks to a new survey from InterNations, in which 14,000 expats were surveyed about their working conditions we can now reveal which countries have the longest working weeks for expats.

In third place for the longest working week for expats comes the UAE. Expats in the United Arab Emirates work an average of 45.6 hours each week, contrasted against a global average of 41 hours.

However the hours worked by expats in the UAE largely pale in comparison when compared to the top two countries. Both African, expats in Ghana clock up an average of 47.8 hours of work per week, while expats in Nigeria top the charts with an average work week of 48.2 hours.

Interestingly the same survey found that of all the countries surveyed, Nigeria also has the largest number of high-earning expats anywhere in the world. This includes the Middle East which has historically offered higher-than-average salaries to executive expats.

The news is clear; for expats not afraid of putting in the hours, Africa now represents one of the most exciting and vibrant areas. Here salaries are more than generous and rapidly-growing economies mean the opportunities for growth and development are only likely to grow in the near future.

The question is whether you’re willing to work a 48 hour week in order to gain access to this wealth of opportunity…

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