Where is the best place to move overseas?

(11 Posts)
WallyBantersJunkBox Fri 22-Mar-13 09:15:28

Although cost of living is expensive, tax would be extremely low in the Italian speaking part of Switzerland - Lugano, Ticino etc.

The area is beautiful, you are surrounded by Europes most beautiful lakes, youhave the warm balmy summers of Italy, and the exciting snow filled Winters for sports in the Alps.

Swiss schools are outstanding in quality - maximum 18 kids to a class, two teachers to each of those classes, extra support in Italian lessons provided free for kids to catch up with the system.

Life is straightforward in a safe, honest environment. As you would live on a border, it's very easy to shop in a cheaper European country tax free and then your outgoings are just rent and utilities (which are actually on a very fair par with the UK).

NotTreadingGrapes Fri 22-Mar-13 06:55:47

(I think, comparing Italy and Spain and my own experiences of both... I lived in Spain 86-87 and then moved to Italy in 94 and remain a bit shock that Italy now in 2013 is kind of how Spain was in the 80s)

NotTreadingGrapes Fri 22-Mar-13 06:54:28

Italy (generally speaking) only fits the sunny one of your criteria...(and at the moment we are deep in storms, wind and damp)

I am very happy with the Italian education system, happier than I ever thought I would be......but that is because dd is like me, studious, booky, learns stuff in an instant and is passionate about everything. The Italian education system (I am more or less quoting from an Italian MNer who once said this, and I realised she was spot on) teaches you things, facts, stuff whereas the UK one teaches you how to do things and stuff. As a parent you are totally expected to "follow" your child's homework in the afternoon, and if you work, then you have to find someone else to help them.

My dd is 9 and has a minimum of 2 hours homework a night and has done since she was 6. They are regularly tested, and have reports with marks out of 10, and yes, even though it's unusual, it would not be unheard of for a child (even at elementary) to fail a year and have to resit.

For home birth options you would 100% need the north. Here in the south 60% of all births are C-sections. Pregnancy and childbirth generally is very very medicalised. Healthcare is good, because most people when they have more than just a run of the mill cold, pay to see someone privately. Dentists are extortionate.

The cost of living in Italy is far higher than the UK. (for general day to day stuff) Food, clothes, utilities, rents.....We pay for a tiny 2 bed flat with kitchen-come-living-room and a shower not a bath, more than what my Mum rents out a 4 bed house with huge garden and double garage for in the UK.

I am that person who uses the quote "I spent so many years in Italy because I really wanted to live in Spain" grin so I know where I'd be headed if I had my time again! (I would head west in Spain, forgetting totally the south and east coasts) In my next life I'm living in Salamanca. grin

dikkertjedap Sat 16-Mar-13 11:44:03

Education system in Italy has not a great reputation. However, there are good private schools I believe but you will then probably want to locate close to a specific school.

It is a beautiful country, great weather, great you already speak the language and kids can become fluent quickly (may lose their English though as there will be very little opportunity to keep it up unless you make a huge effort).

Healthcare can be patchy. What doesn't help is that Italy is in a deep economic crisis, which unfortunately means that crime is increasing. (depends a bit where you go as well, but it is not for nothing that there are so many electronic alarms on houses/gates/big metal shutters (not just for the sun, also increasingly in shady areas just for security).

ripsishere Tue 12-Mar-13 00:56:08

Extramadura in Spain is not remotely touristy.

AmberSocks Mon 11-Mar-13 14:13:34

no thats ok i will show dh,i have heard that about Spain.I do like it as a holiday destination but wouldnt wat to live there.the kids can speak much better spanish than italian though which is a shame.

botandhothered Mon 11-Mar-13 13:40:48

In my experience the education system in Spain is far pushier than the UK.

Primary children are regularly tested and stay down a year if they don't get good results, there is alot of pressure. You can expect at least an hours homework a day from age 7.

The health service would not support a home birth here. Births are always in hospital, as far as I am aware. C Section rate much higher than UK.

On the plus side, the weather is good, the children get long holidays, which is great if you don't need to work...although 25% of the population are unemployed so if you do need to work you may encounter problems.

Maybe things may have picked up a bit in 2 yrs time. Sorry, quite doom and gloom!

papooser Mon 11-Mar-13 13:39:46

If you're looking for somewhere not too touristy, I wouldn't recommend Florence! I lived there for a few years and it is full of tourists year round! As a result it's a very expensive place to live. DH lived in Bologna years back and adored it and also have friends living/have lived in smaller Italian towns, e.g. Pisa, Perugia, who had a great time. Afraid I don't know about maternity and education there, although did work in a high school there for a time and it certainly wasn't pushy - possibly the other extreme!

AmberSocks Mon 11-Mar-13 13:26:49

no we wont have to work,we can talk spanish and italian,as i am half spanish and he is half italian!Kids are semi fluent in both.

I am thinking Florence or Sicily.I like Spain but i find it feels very Eglish whereas Italy is very erm,Italian!

RichManPoorManBeggarmanThief Mon 11-Mar-13 13:17:27

Well if you think UK education is pushy, whatever you do, don't move anywhere in Asia grin.

Assuming you'd still have to work after selling the business, what do you both do for work and which languages can you speak well enough to work in them?

AmberSocks Mon 11-Mar-13 12:30:12

Hi me and my husband are starting to think of moving abroad when he sells the business i 2 years.

We want to move somewhere that is sunny,that has good education options(ad isnt too pushy as i feel the uk is)that has good maternity services and supports home birth,and that isnt touristy and english.Also has to be child(and large family)friendly

I was thinking parts of italy?although im not sure if it meets parts of my criteria,i did spend time working there when i was younger ad loved it,dh would prefer a spanish speaking country.

not asking for much am i!

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