Guide to Becoming and Working as a Freelancer in Albania

Written by Xolo
on July 07, 2022 5 minute read

Albania has a population of around eight million, and it’s nestled on the Adriatic Sea. The land mass is relatively small compared to most countries. It’s estimated that the entire size of Albania is roughly the same as the state of Maryland. This can open up many opportunities for freelancers willing to invest their time and talents in working in a more small and intimate country. Read on to find out registration steps to become a freelancer in Albania…

Advantages and Disadvantages of Working as a Freelancer in Albania

Advantages of Working as Freelancer in Albania

The coastlines of Albania are simply breathtaking, and this area features massive mountain ranges and expansive skies. The cultural backdrop of this area is based on the ancient Illyrian traditions, which can be an enriching experience for any foreigner in Albania. Hiking adventurers can enjoy plentiful paths that are free of snakes and other dangerous wildlife. Doing business in the country is easier than in many of the larger nations of Europe, so this is beneficial to freelancers in certain situations or industries.

Disadvantages of Working as Freelancer in Albania

Getting to know the local customs might prove challenging to new arrivals when freelancing in Albania. For example, the way the people here indicate agreement or disagreement is reversed; a slight nod of the head indicates negation. Shaking the head will indicate agreement. These small differences can make it challenging to create mutual understanding at first. However, all it takes is a good sense of humor and some patience to be eventually accepted as a guest in this country of warm and loyal people.

Legal Form for Freelancers in Albania

Registration to become a freelancer in Albania is done under the classification of the sole proprietorship. This process is relatively straightforward, and it’s easier than many other countries within the EU. There is no requirement to relocate to Albania in order to conduct business as a freelancer. The e-Residency option is also available. Under most conditions, it will only take a few days to register to freelance in Albania, and this can be the perfect solution for those adverse to bureaucratic hurdles and excessive paperwork.

Pay Taxes as a Freelancer in Albania

Albania uses a system that allows freelancers to pay taxes online through the General Directorate of Taxation platform. There is no added cost involved in using this method, and it simplifies the entire process of meeting your tax obligations when freelancing in Albania. The taxes paid include your personal income tax, social security and health insurance payments. There is also a method available on the website to ensure that your VAT obligations are met. This can simplify tax season for freelancers who work in Albania.

  • The National Registration Center handles all of the types of companies that can be registered to conduct business in Albania, and this includes freelancers, or sole proprietors.
  • Once registered at the NRC, your freelance business will be automatically linked to the tax, social and health insurance systems as well as the relevant office of labor.
  • A Unique Business Identification Number, or UBIN, will be assigned within around 24 hours after completing your registration.
  • Check the online NRC portal to stay updated on the status of your registration; you will also receive a registration certificate at the end of this process.

VAT Obligations for Freelancers in Albania

The Department of VAT exists within the General Directorate of Taxes. This is the place you need to go if you have any doubts about your VAT responsibilities when freelancing in Albania. This is the authoritative site you need to confirm any information obtained from secondary sources. Take this precaution to ensure that your freelancing business remains compliant in Albania.

Here’s what you need to know about paying VAT in Albania:

  • After registering your business, you must charge customers 20 percent VAT when selling to clients in Albania.
  • If your client is another business, there is no need to add or collect the VAT.
  • Albania uses a reverse-charge system to apply the VAT to the business or buyer afterwards.

How to Invoice as a Freelancer in Albania

Invoicing clients in Albania is the method many freelancers will use to get paid. However, there can be some obstacles involved when dealing with VAT as well as the language barrier. Additionally, Albania requires registered companies to pre-print and purchase invoices through the Tax Authority. This is part of what’s called the Fiscal Procedure Law. There is a company number on the invoices, and the business must also create a company seal.

Xolo Leap is the preferred way to get paid through digital invoices while staying legal. This system enables you to freelance while generating VAT-compliant invoices as well as manage the whole admin side of running an EU business. This encourages clients to pay on time while minimizing your paperwork headaches. 

How to Open a Freelance Business in Albania

Once you open business in Albania as a freelancer, you are now familiar with the same process you might go through if you choose to do a formal business registration in Albania later. This is a common procedure where you start as a freelancer before changing your business structure after you grow for a period of time.

This is what you should know about business registration in Albania:

  1. Once your business is entered into the commercial registrar, you can function as a legal entity in Albania.
  2. Make sure to search online to obtain the rights to a unique company name before registering.
  3. The National Registration Center processes company applications within a day or two in most cases.
  4. This is the place where your registration certificate is issued upon completion.
  5. You can also apply here for any necessary licenses or permits, depending on your industry.
  6. The single application process is fast, and it covers taxes, company registration, social insurance, health insurance and labor inspectorate registration.
  7. Apply online or in person. If you apply online, you need to sign electronically.


An alternative option for location-independent freelancers is to have your business set up with Estonian e-Residency with the help of Xolo Leap. You’ll get a presence in the EU market from a trusted business entity that's been incorporated through a simplified setup process. With paperless administration and full remote control, you can run your business from anywhere in the world.

The laws that regulate freelancing in Albania include the issuing of visas, as per the Law on Aliens. The Albanian State Police has the responsibility and authority to regulate migration across the borders. Anyone with questions about the visa process can contact the Albanian Diplomatic Mission within the home country. However, it’s not necessary to have a resident permit for the first year, and you can stay for the year without a visa while you work to become a freelancer in Albania. After your successful business registration in Albania, you can establish a residency. You can also continue to freelance without formalizing a business structure.

Here is some more useful information about becoming a freelancer in Albania:

  • Check the list of countries that don’t require a visa to enter Albania; these are the Schengen area countries.
  • Short-term stays without a visa are allowed from another select group of countries, and this includes Russia, Egypt, Bahrein, Thailand and other Gulf countries.
  • The long-term visa is called type D, and this is required for those who wish to remain in Albania for more than 90 days within a six-month period of time.

Become a Freelancer and Set Up your Solo Business in Albania

Become a freelancer in Albania by registering with the appropriate authorities that cover taxes, healthcare and insurance. It’s important to ensure that your paperwork is in order at the beginning of your journey. This includes business registration in Albania as well as creating a marketing plan to expand your business operations. This is a great option for people who are interested in exploring the opportunities for freelancing in this small yet friendly country.

Freelancing in Albania can be more exciting and hurdle-free when you have adequate support for your business. Grow with ease by leveraging Xolo Leap features. Launch your location-independent business today!

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