What will happen when I first arrive?
Upon arrival, you will be taken to the initial reception centre in Traiskirchen in the district of Baden close to Vienna where you will stay for a limited time. There, you will receive medical support and asylum status after you have taken an interview. After that, you will be transferred to the accommodations of the primary care in the Federal states.
This status entitles you to a legal stay for 3 years. At the interview, your data will be recorded and a picture of you will be taken. You will be given an ID Card. That is why it is very important that your name and other personal data are recorded correctly. You will have free access to the labour market.
What social welfare services are available to me?
During the first four months, as a resettled refugee, you are supported within the scope of the basic welfare system (Grundversorgung)
This comprises health insurance, food, pocket money allowance, clothing and accommodation. Subsistence allowance for a single adult will be a maximum of 215 € a month, for an underage person 100 € a month. You will receive vouchers for clothing and food supplies. Basic care can last only up to 4 months after you are granted international protection.
In case you are unable to cover your living expenses after the 4 month period of basic care, you can apply for a needs-based minimum benefit (BMS). At that stage, you can no longer live in an organized accommodation. You need to apply for BMS at the Social Welfare, Social and Public Health department responsible for the district you live in. In addition, you need to register for the Arbietsmarktservice (AMS), which is the national agency for labour market.
Can I bring my family to Austria?
As soon as you are granted asylum, your family members will have 3 months to apply for family reunification under easier conditions (no need to justify sufficient income, accommodation or health insurance). After that period, the application of your family members will follow the more complicated path of other regular applications for immigration. Family members that you can bring to are spouses and children who are minors at the time of the application.
Accommodation (On arrival and in the future e.g. renting, social housing etc.)
With your new refugee status, you are entitled to governmental funded accommodation for up to 4 months.
The housing can be either in organized facilities or in private rented rooms. In the case of private housing, benefit will be a maximum of 150 € a month, if you live with your family, it will be 300 € a month.
After that period, you will need to find a place for your own. Keep in mind that you can apply for the needs based minimum benefit.
A rental contract is an oral or written agreement between the landlord (owner, principal tenant) and the tenant (respectively sub-tenant). Recommendation: conclude your rental contract in writing – you might need it if any disputes come up.
Heating is included in the rent of some apartments. In many apartments you have to pay separately for natural gas, electricity and heating.
Before you conclude a rental contract it is advisable to seek out an appropriate counselling agency (tenant association, tenant protection association), in order to verify the legal validity of the agreement.
Popular ways of looking for a place to rent are through advertisements online and in newspapers, but also through private networks.
When you move to a new place, you have to report your new address at the registration office of your new administrative region within 3 days.
Further Information and Links
ENTERING & STAYING IN AUSTRIA
(Pages 19 and 20)
basic care and service benefits
Migrants & Refugees
Information on Registration of an Address
Folder Start accompaniment for refugees (multilingual)