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Becoming an Expat

Reasons for leaving UK

Here's a forum to talk about all the ins and outs of leaving the UK and launching yourself into the wide blue yonder - selling up, saying goodbyes, all that sort of thing. NB - this is NOT for country-specific issues; please post those on the appropriate country forum.

Postby Kay » Mon 19 Dec 2005 12:53 GMT

There are also some residential care homes around too. I've seen a Scandinavian one advertised, where they care for elderly people who can no longer manage for themselves. I've no idea how they get around the visa problem. If they can't get about how are they going to manage the galavanting about to cross the border every so often? :?

So, what have we got so far?

Climate
Cost of living
Better lifestyle
Lack of crime
More space
Opportunity
Adventure
Health Care
Population density

Did I miss anything?

And reasons to go back?

Homesickness
Elderly parents
Other family/friends

Any other reasons?

I suppose if you don't like the country you're in that would be a major consideration. :P
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immigration etc

Postby yosser » Mon 19 Dec 2005 12:55 GMT

Just to be a little controversial. Do you think that immigration into the UK has overall been good for the country or bad. Just watched Lion, Witch and Wardrobe and London seems unrecognisable! Am interested and wonder how,if at all that played into people's decision to leave the UK. Obviously everyone will have different views on this one.
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Postby Savannah_Alan » Mon 19 Dec 2005 16:09 GMT

Kay wrote:And reasons to go back?

Homesickness
Elderly parents
Other family/friends

Any other reasons?


People you're comfortable with.
The countryside (all the countries comprising the UK are very beautiful).
The history, architecture etc...
The freedom (this is obviously subjective, but you try living in a country that yells about "freedom" all the time in lieu of actually having it!)

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Postby SSue » Mon 19 Dec 2005 23:26 GMT

Hi Lainey, and welcome from me too. :D

Hope you continue to join in and make yourself at home. Don't be shy, we were all new members once.

Look forward to hearing more from you.

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Postby Kay » Wed 21 Dec 2005 10:19 GMT

Do you think that immigration into the UK has overall been good for the country or bad. Just watched Lion, Witch and Wardrobe and London seems unrecognisable!


We recently spent six months in Greater London and I can't say that immigration affected us in any way. That said, every time (rarely) we went into Central London it was quite weird. It was almost like "spot the Brit". I can't say whether it's good or bad, I really don't know. I suppose we should try to promote tolerance - after all, we are foreigners in the country where we live.
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Postby Lainey » Wed 21 Dec 2005 11:31 GMT

SSue wrote:Hi Lainey, and welcome from me too. :D

[snip by Site Admin - no need to quote the whole posting. :) - Dave]

SSue 8)


Hi Neighbour!
Thank you so much for your welcome. I have been busy finding my way around the website and I think it's great. I know what JayneR meant about this being most dangerous....JayneR, I've missed Coronation Street AND Eastenders tonight and that's something!! :lol:
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Postby Kay » Wed 21 Dec 2005 12:00 GMT

Hi Lainey - thanks for the compliments!

Yosser, your question seems to relate more to people who have left recently.

Yosser was talking about immigration to the UK:
Am interested and wonder how,if at all that played into people's decision to leave the UK.


I think most of us on BE left quite a while ago, and that this doesn't apply to most of us. It may well be something which would affect people's decisions to go back, though. Whether or not it's beneficial to the country, it's certainly yet another significant change (in some areas, anyway) which could well affect the lifestyle.

In general terms, I like living in a cosmopolitan place. It does at least mean that you can get a wider variety of foods. (I like British, Thai, Indian, etc, and it's nice to have everything available - unlike you'd get in a wee village out in the sticks in the UK.) But I did find it a little disconcerting to be in Central London and so rarely hear people on the street talking in English. Now I know how the Thais feel here!
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Postby yosser » Tue 3 Jan 2006 03:38 GMT

I've been out of the UK for about 12 yrs now and really enjoy living in the States. I have a great job and house and kids are well settled. Strange thing is that I still wonder if things might be better (or improved) in England. All my mates are telling me not to return to the NHS which is apparently still in a shambles. I s'pose it is human nature to always want something you can't have. It is an intangible thing but I just don't feel American. I just got back from London and really enjoyed the culture/cosmopolitan feel etc but was completely shocked by the prices! A one bed in Chiswick for 250squids starting. That is $500k US..aagh! I think part of the problem is the emotional issue of ageing parents. I guess this is just one of those things that us immigrants/expats will have to deal with.
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Postby Lainey » Tue 3 Jan 2006 08:39 GMT

I have been reading all the replies to this subject and find them all really interesting.

I have been out of the UK for nearly 5 years and just as I was leaving, my mother died (that is another story)...I was in a dilema as to whether I should I continue with the emigration, even though our house was sold, our jobs had been filled and our possessions and furniture were on the way to Australia! My Dad made the decision for me and told me to go and make a new life.....so I did. I delayed our flight. buried my mum and then went and left Dad behind with my brother and his family.

I hope I am not going off subject too much.....but I think the point Yosser made about the emotional issue of ageing parents is very significant. In my short experience of 5 years I have found that expats I have spoken to, who have their family here, seem to be very settled. Is this because their ties to their country are here?
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Postby JayneR » Wed 4 Jan 2006 00:35 GMT

Having just come back from spending Christmas in Manchester, I reiterate, I would only ever consider going back to live as a very last resort. Ñothing's changed. After flying into Stansted and driving up the M1 to the first petrol station/food place which took a couple of hours because of the traffic, my head just kept saying "Beam me up Scottie - get me out of here!" and I still had six and half days ahead of me! :roll:

Oh, this question of ageing parents is a major issue, especially when their health starts failing. Phew! Very difficult, especially having two adolescents in tow who would have to be uprooted as well. Not really an option as they're not interested in living in the UK either. :?
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Postby SSue » Wed 4 Jan 2006 23:16 GMT

In my short experience of 5 years I have found that expats I have spoken to, who have their family here, seem to be very settled. Is this because their ties to their country are here?


Yes, I think so Lainey, and definitely so in my case.

There's no drawcard once your nearest and dearest are with you. As much as I love Aus, I don't honestly think that I could have lived so far away from my parents. Being an only child, there would be no-one there to look after them, and as kind as neighbours, neices and friends are, it's not their responsibility.

If you're in the same country at least you can get anywhere in a few hours, not so from half a world away.

I know that it also depends on what kind of a relationship you have too, and we were always very close.

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Postby kingfisher241049 » Thu 5 Jan 2006 01:09 GMT

My reason for leaving the UK were twofold. I met a wonderful lady (carol), and after visiting her here in Florida a few times, we decided to settle down together, and I must admit I have never been happier in my life.

I found life in the UK too narrow, personal freedoms too sparse, the only things that were legal were basically those things which had not been made illegal yet. As a former civil rights activist, I coud see the way the UK was going, more authoritarian, more draconian, more right wing in every aspect of life. Mrs Thatcher's legacy lives on and is thriving.

Its a sad day when people cannot be a little irresponsible once in a while, without ending up in court or in jail.

The British way of life is going downhill fast, with the NHS under constant attack, state pensions soon being a thing of the past, and politicians who will do anything to get a vote, no matter how it impacts on society as a whole.

This slide into authoritarianism started long before 9/11, but that event just gave the politicians more excuse for another round of draconian laws.

I was becoming more and more frustrated with my life in the UK, both personally and with what I was seeing the UK becoming every day.

Life here in Florida, is much easier, less stressful than I found life in the UK.
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Postby yosser » Thu 5 Jan 2006 03:44 GMT

USA is a really interesting place. I find the people really nice and friendly but none of my mates in UK have any interest in visiting. They all have these horror stories of the immigration officers harassing them. One bloke said that his (blue eyed blond) brother went to Manhattan for a conference and was asked at JFK by the INS officer how long his VISA was issued for. When he said it was for 90 days the response was "well why does it say 3 months on your application?"
Apparently he got a bit sarcy and said "well in fact 90 days is 3 months officer..!". At this point he was asked to "step aside" and detained in a room for 6 hours by which time he missed his mtg.....He vowed never to return and quite a few people have similar horror stories. There also seems to be this inherent cultural superiority complex about "dumb Yanks" and how they are all obese and stupid. Since I've been living here for a while I find this quite unnacceptable now...
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Postby Savannah_Alan » Thu 5 Jan 2006 04:21 GMT

kingfisher241049 wrote:I found life in the UK too narrow, personal freedoms too sparse, the only things that were legal were basically those things which had not been made illegal yet. As a former civil rights activist, I coud see the way the UK was going, more authoritarian, more draconian, more right wing in every aspect of life. Mrs Thatcher's legacy lives on and is thriving.
...

This slide into authoritarianism started long before 9/11, but that event just gave the politicians more excuse for another round of draconian laws.


:shock: Are we actually living in the same country here Alan? Have you heard of a guy called Bush?
I've travelled extensively and I've never been more aware of such lack of personal freedom, such a nanny state with strict government/police control and dogma than here. I find that really bizarre that you see it that way. Just goes to show how two people's perceptions can be so different.
To quote the goons, my gast has never been so flabbered!

Its a sad day when people cannot be a little irresponsible once in a while, without ending up in court or in jail.

You mean like the signs we pass every day here threatening us that if we throw a cigarette out of the window (littering), we will get 30 days in gaol (jail)?
Or the ordnance we have here in Savannah that means that if I pass the same spot in my car 3 times in 2 hours I will get a $90 fine?

I'm even reticent about writing this because I know that it could easily be taken badly by the authorities who obviously are monitoring forum postings, e-mail and Internet searches (courtesy of Google). They have recently admitted illegally listening in on international telephone conversations, blithely ignoring the legal requirement to obtain a warrant. They already have the right to break into our homes while we're out, rifle through our belongings and leave without a trace - all without even having to get a warrant or justify it to anybody!

If someone asked me to list reason to return to the UK, one of the highest would be freedom - real freedom, not the propaganda one.
I realise that things are probably getting worse in that respect over there, but there can be absolutely no doubt whose lead we are following.

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Postby ruggie » Thu 5 Jan 2006 09:35 GMT

if I pass the same spot in my car 3 times in 2 hours I will get a $90 fine?


That's an interesting one. Please tell us more. Is this supposed to be a way of reducing energy consumption ('put mind in gear before driving car')?
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