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Belgium

Expat Articles


Belgium

Managing Your Money As An Expat In Belgium

Posted on Thursday March 26, 2015 (21:31:15)
Belgium has a considerable expat population and much of it is concentrated in the capital city of Brussels, which is also the de facto capital of the European Union. There are approximately 10.8 million people living in Belgium and of these, nearly 13 percent were not actually born there. The expat community comprises of businesspeople, families and also many politicians and international diplomats, since the NATO headquarters are located in Brussels.

The cost of living in Belgium is considered to be on the higher side. The city of Brussels also ranks among the top 50 most expensive cities in the globe. But the advantage for expats, especially those coming from EU countries, is that living in Brussels is cheaper than most other capital cities in Western Europe such as London and Paris.   more ...

Germany

Questions You Need To Ask Yourself Before Moving To Germany

Posted on Thursday March 26, 2015 (21:23:39)
Expats in Germany will find that life in this cosmopolitan and inventive society is anything but dull. Germany is a highly modernized nation with a rich heritage and great regional diversity. But whether you are moving to Germany for a new job, retirement or personal reasons, the following questions will help you determine if you are making the right decision at the right time.

Is it affordable?
Making such a big move is exciting, but you need to consider practical matters such as your financial situation. Will you be able to afford the move and daily life in Germany thereafter? The cost of living in Germany is considered high, especially in the major cities.   more ...

Finland

Ten Basic Phrases In Finnish For Expats Moving To Finland

Posted on Thursday March 26, 2015 (21:14:57)
Finland, the fifth largest country in Europe, is a place of spectacular beauty. Almost 68 percent of its area is covered in forests and there are nearly 187,000 lakes located across the country. Apart from the incredible natural beauty, there are other reasons why many expats choose to move to Finland. The Finnish government places a great deal of emphasis on family well-being. There are maternity packages and grants available for expectant mothers and adoptive parents that are covered by the social security scheme. Women can take advantage of the ample maternity leave and maternity allowance that is even available for self-employed and unemployed individuals. There’s also paternity leave and a paternity allowance for men and following the birth of a child, mothers and fathers can take parental leave and receive parental allowance. Finland also performs well on other measures of well-being such as high living standards, good education, employment and overall life satisfaction.   more ...

Greece

Ten Top Insider Tips About Greece

Posted on Thursday March 26, 2015 (21:06:35)
Greece’s pleasant weather and comfortable lifestyle are just a few of the reasons why many expats are drawn to its shores. There is a lot to discover in this land of great culture and heritage and to make it simpler for you, here are ten insider tips that will help you make the most out of your stay in this fascinating country.

Best historical places
Crete is a paradise for history and mythology lovers. According to mythology, Zeus, the towering figure in Greek mythology and the ‘Father of Gods and men’ was hidden in a cave in Crete by his mother and raised there by nymphs. In Minoan times, Crete was the headquarters from which the rest of the island was controlled. The remnants of the Minoans' power bases can be seen at Phaistos and Gournia.   more ...

Italy

5 Experiences You Must Try As An Expat In Italy

Posted on Thursday March 12, 2015 (23:23:33)
Moving to Italy is the stuff that dreams are made of, and Italy has long been a bewitching destination for tourists and expats alike. While living in Italy may not always live up to your expectations, there’s no denying that the country and its attractions will wildly surpass all expectations. There is just so much to see and do in Italy that a lifetime wouldn’t be enough. Italy has been the home to some of the greatest artists and scientists who have redefined the world and our perceptions of beauty, art and science. The country is not surprisingly home to a great concentration of UNESCO World Heritage sites. Italy has a wealth of historical and cultural sites, museums, theatres, art galleries, carnivals and fashion and shopping centers.   more ...

Mexico

A Few Tips For Expats Driving In Mexico

Posted on Thursday March 12, 2015 (23:16:48)
Expats in Mexico are often worried about driving, as they have heard stories about drug cartels, crooked cops, and carjackings. While there is some basis for these stories, most of the information is greatly exaggerated. It is true that many of these problems exist, but most of it is concentrated on the back roads and not on the main highways. Driving in Mexico can be a great experience, so here are a few driving tips to help you get around.

The Green Angels

The Angeles Verdes or The Green Angels is a government-run organization of auto mechanics that provide free assistance in case of a breakdown or accident. The organization has an impressive 300 vehicles that patrol the Mexican highways on a daily basis.   more ...

Greece

A Short Expat Guide To Buying A House In Greece

Posted on Thursday March 12, 2015 (23:08:59)
Greece, with its place in antiquity as the beacon of enlightenment, culture and civilization, holds a lot of appeal for expats and tourists from around the world. Whether you are drawn to Greece because of its rich history, art and culture or the beautiful beaches and pleasant weather, you will need to do some serious thinking before you actually make that move. On the surface, Greece may seem like the perfect place to relocate to, because it would appear that you can get a lot more property for your money, but appearances can be deceptive. While you might be able to get property in prime locations, possibly with a sea view, for the same price you’d pay for a 2-bedroom apartment in most big cities in the US or UK, there are other factors to consider.   more ...

Brazil

Dealing With Culture Shock In Brazil - Some Advice For New Expats

Posted on Thursday March 12, 2015 (22:11:56)
The very mention of Brazil conjures up images of a tropical paradise with breathtakingly beautiful beaches, pristine rain forests, football and the carnival. While all of this may be true, moving to Brazil as an expat is no picnic. You may be setting yourself up for a huge disappointment if you’re expecting the same kind of thrill and satisfaction from living in the country as you got from your holiday here. Brazil is a great place for expats, but it’s important to have realistic expectations. There are many cultural differences, some that are glaringly obvious, and others that may start to get under your skin only after a few months of settling down.   more ...

Panama

Moving To Panama - What to Expect as a New Expat

Posted on Thursday March 12, 2015 (22:05:07)
Panama is gaining recognition and popularity as an expat destination since it has something for everyone – from students and globetrotters to drifters and retirees. Panama is developed and modern, and expats have described their stay here as a “first-world lifestyle at third-world prices”! The country does indeed offer a rather luxurious lifestyle with the best amenities at rather affordable prices due to its low cost of living.

There are several pros and cons to moving to Panama. It is important to find out as much as possible, as this will ease your transition and help you to settle in faster. Here is a short list of what you can expect as a new expat in Panama:   more ...

Financial

Quality Of Life Is Biggest Reason To Leave UK, But Family Ties Make Us Stay

Posted on Thursday March 12, 2015 (20:33:36)
Simon Hilton
by Simon Hilton, senior foreign exchange consultant at World First and official Expat Focus foreign exchange partner

Spring has sprung and we’ve had a taste of sunshine. But merely a ‘taste’ may not be enough – you may be tempted by something a little more, well, permanent.

Ask yourself this - what would make you want to pack your bags and go more than anything else? If you said a better a quality of life, you’re not alone.   more ...

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Expat Focus Preferred Health Insurance Partners


Bupa Global

At Bupa we have been helping individuals and families live longer, healthier, happier lives for over 60 years. We are trusted by expats in 190 different countries and have links with healthcare organisations throughout the world. So whether you're moving abroad for a change of career or a change of scene, with our international private health insurance you will always be in safe hands.

Cigna

Cigna has worked in international health insurance for more than 30 years. Today, Cigna has over 71 million customer relationships around the world. Looking after them is an international workforce of 31,000 people, plus a network of over 1 million hospitals, physicians, clinics and health and wellness specialists worldwide, meaning you have easy access to treatment.