Questa volta abbiamo cercato: [Serious] Americans who moved away from the US, what are the pros and cons of where you live now?
[Serious] Americans who moved away from the US, what are the pros and cons of where you live now?
Ed ecco le risposte:
I moved to Germany.
There is lots more to experience here due to the proximity of different cultures and the very diverse immigrants. I have learned a lot about other languages, foods, and cultures that I never had exposure to in the US (or at least not where I come from, the Midwest.)
Worker’s protections. 25-30 days vacation is standard, salaried workers often still get overtime, both parents get a comfortable time off for each child born, it is easier to defend yourself in the case of unrightful firing, unemployment and underemployment protections are much fairer and more consistent (this was especially important in the Covid economic crisis, I may not even have a job if I were still i the US)
More liberal life attitude: This isn’t just politically, although that is also nice, but I find in general people here are more open and understanding and empathetic. There is a lot less “us vs. them”, and I feel like I can just be myself without people treating me like a freak for not being religeous, dressing a certain way, having certain hobbies, etc.
Mountains are nearby! Skiing and hiking and trail running are all much more accessible than they ever were back home.
Language barrier is obviously an obstacle, and it can be quite frustrating at first not being able to communicate yourself effectively. (After about a year it was not a problem for me anymore though)
Income is generally a bit lower and non-essential goods a bit more expensive.
There is less wild nature, and some things like tent trekking are more limited.
Been in Taiwan since 1999. I go back to visit every two years or so.
- Affordable healthcare
- A healthier diet (on average)
- Better public transportation
- Cost of living (outside of Taipei)
- A safer place to raise my kids
- The constant threat of China
- Ambivalence about Taiwan’s national identity
- Summer heat when I have to work
- Good hamburgers and pizza hard to find
- Worrying about my kids’ future (see: #1)
Moved to Australia
Pros: Universal healthcare, preferential voting, no community transmission of COVID in my state for more than a month, very generous legally mandated annual leave and long service leave for permanent employees.
Cons: Its hot, like super duper hot. We keep changing leaders as often as we change our socks. I keep getting geo-blocked when I try to look at cool things on the internet (yes I know VPNs exist). Video games cost $100. I once found a big spider in my bra when I went to put it on and I once found a venomous snake in my bathroom at 5am when I had a sleepy pee.
Edit: someone asked to include how difficult it was to immigrate. For me it was relatively easy but that is due to timing more than anything. I married an Australian which made things a lot easier. However I have heard that the process is a lot longer and more arduous than when I did it more than a decade ago. I paid a decent chunk of $$ and filled in some forms about me and provided proof of our ongoing relationship (I’m not a mail order bride I promise). I can tell you that the interviews to prove our relationship was stressful, and equally stressful was waking up every morning thinking that the decision regarding if I could live with the person I love is in the hands of a stranger and not knowing when that decision would be made.
Moved to Japan in 2018.
Pros: Affordable healthcare, healthier and more active lifestyle due to walking and running for the train, sushi, people are polite and helpful if you need help, lowish cost of living, always something to do, even if you live in the countryside. Living in Kansai region means easy access to cities, historical areas, and awesome nature scenery to hike in. Vending machines on every block is a godsend in the summer heat with cold drinks for a dollar.
Cons: Creepy other foreigners (had a guy from NZ try to kiss me at a club and tried to make me touch his bare chest), creepy Japanese people exist too, many people running to Japan thinking it’s like anime, COVID support could’ve been better and not enough testing, earthquakes, typhoons, murder hornets, some aspects are too militaristic, people are almost too passive sometimes.
All in all, I love living in Japan and I have no regrets.
Moved to Italy.
Cons- nothing is convenient. There are no 24 hour stores. Scheduled times are more of a suggestion. If a store opens at 10am it will actually open anywhere between 1015 to 1040. Personal protection laws make no sense to me. You are not allowed to attack home invaders
Pro- driving laws are more lax. Easy traveling