Belgium is a beautiful country; the beautiful mountains, posh lifestyle and legendary chocolate are just some of the major attractions that draw thousands of people to it from all over the world. Yet with all these attractions relocating to Belgium can be a major headache.
In order to transcend beyond these impediments, it is important to avoid being caught unawares. Knowing the challenges and cons of relocating to Belgium beforehand can help you overcome the problems and make your move as smooth as possible.
Finding Affordable Housing
Belgium is generally known as a country for the sophisticated and wealthy. This is especially reflected in the housing sector. Finding affordable housing in Belgium is one of the big challenges people face when relocating. If you are looking for a pet-friendly home with a garden and lots of space in the outdoors then you had better brace yourself to wait for quite a while. When you find one though you can be certain it is going to be worth the wait and the amenities will be top notch.
Strict Rules and Regulations
Belgium is also known for particularly stringent housing rules. These are especially as regards noise, curfews and other related factors. Very noisy dogs or playing very loud music might land you in a lot of trouble. If you find housing in an apartment complex you may find that sharing laundry facilities, for instance, is a big challenge.
Being a country for the well-to-do you might find it hard to fit in at first. With time though you will find people, you can blend in with quite easily. This takes time, however. The Belgium people love to speak their native language and for an adult, this may be frustrating if they do not know the language.
If you are moving from a place that is big on the weekends (that is Saturdays and Sundays) then Belgium will be a big disappointment. Sundays are very quiet with most joints and entertainment facilities closed.
Finding Housing before Hand
Before moving to Belgium it is among the vital things to consider befor moving to Belgium. You need to make living arrangements beforehand. The best way to make sure you are not stranded on arrival is to use a trusted agent. Such agents must belong to the agents association in Belgium as these are trusted and operate under a code of conduct. If you do use an agent counter check their credentials to ensure that they are not scammers. There is a fee to be paid and you do not want to lose money even before you get to Belgium.
Finding Work Permits
If you are moving into Belgium you will most likely need to have with you an employment contract as well as a lease on a housing unit. To get all this and meet all the other requirements set by the Belgium government you have to begin planning way before you actually get on your plane. If you are moving with your partner you can seek out agencies that find employment for couples as this is an ideal situation for most families.
Preparing For Culture Shock
Well, there really is no genuine way of preparing for culture shock because it would then not be named as such. Culture shock can, however, be anticipated to tone down its effects at least. Language, lifestyle, the concept of time (the Swiss are always on time) and dull Sundays are just a few examples. Do a bit of research before you actually travel.
No matter what country you are relocating to, there are always laws that dictate whether or not you can immigrate and if yes, how this is to be done. Last year February saw a referendum that aims to reduce mass immigration into Belgium. Over 50 percent of the Belgium population was in agreement with this referendum. Its aim was to cut down immigration through quotas.
A similar call to prevent immigration as a way of controlling population was outvoted by most residents of Belgium.
For foreign nationals to take up a job position, firms have to demonstrate elaborately that no indigenous Belgic residents qualified for the same position.
It is such immigration laws that have seen Belgium at loggerheads with the larger European Union bloc of which it is not a member.
While such laws may seem restricting and unfriendly to immigrants, every country imposes immigration laws to control various factors of its population e.g. job opportunities, population size and many more.
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