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Moving to Europe speaking only English?

Moving to Europe speaking only English?

Old Jun 6th 2008, 8:59 am
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Default Moving to Europe speaking only English?

Hello

I am currently living and working in the UK but would like to move to Europe. I only speak English and am only able to do unskilled work. I would also like to have a job offer secured before having to relocate (but this isn't absolutely necessary).

I'm wondering if anyone can give me any advice on what I should do? Not speaking the language is a disadvantage but hopefully it isn't a complete showstopper. Many Poles move to Britain, France, and Germany etc. speaking extremely little/none of the language of the country they're moving to, and I have indeed talked to some at my workplace who were in that situation.

Germany would be my preferred destination but I would consider most countries in Western Europe.

I'll also just say that if you're going to mock/post knowingly unhelpful information, please do not. It's sad that such warnings are needed but that's the way it can be on forums with people feeling anonymous and feeling that the recipient of their comments is somehow not a real person.

I hope someone can help.

Thanks

Martin
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Old Jun 6th 2008, 11:54 am
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Default Re: Moving to Europe speaking only English?

Germany has one BIG problem with out of work !!! and everything costs a bomb it is not the best idea for a unskilled person to move to Germany in fact its a defo NO NO !!!
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Old Jun 6th 2008, 6:11 pm
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Default Re: Moving to Europe speaking only English?

Originally Posted by martin245 View Post
Germany has one BIG problem with out of work !!!
I thought I recently read an article in the BBC about Germany having the lowest unemployment rate in quite a long time (8%). Perhaps I'm confusing that with another country.

To answer the OP, I would suggest a large city within a country that has multiple native languages, like Brussels, Belgium. The reason being that locals in those situations often learn English in order to communicate with other locals.
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Old Jun 6th 2008, 6:51 pm
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Default Re: Moving to Europe speaking only English?

http://germaneconomy.blogspot.com/20...uary-2008.html

3 and a half million Germans are a lot of unhappy Germans

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Old Jun 6th 2008, 8:02 pm
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Default Re: Moving to Europe speaking only English?

Or pick a touristy location where English can be an advantage. You could do bar work on any Greek island.
Of course winters are sort of unemployed, but you find things to do.
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Old Jun 6th 2008, 10:49 pm
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Default Re: Moving to Europe speaking only English?

I just had dinner in a German owned Restaurant in Spain. The owners words were that Germany is a "catastroph" at the moment. The people there are taxed to death, many are in debt, and times are hard.

Sounded a bit like the UK in fact.
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Old Jun 7th 2008, 9:58 am
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Default Re: Moving to Europe speaking only English?

The problem is going to be this: Unemployment rate and costs are almost always inverse. This means that in low cost areas, you will probably find very few employment opportunities. In some of the lowest costs areas (Eastern Europe for example) it will be very difficult to find a job as an unskilled laborer.

On the otherhand, Switzerland may be an opportunity. Swiss do not like to do unskilled, low wage jobs. Therefore, they are often looking for foreign workers. However, costs are very high in Switzerland. If you get a low paying it will be difficult to afford good housing etc.

If English is the major criteria for you, you might want to consider The Netherlands, Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Finnland, Iceland, etc. These countries all have their own languages. However probably 80% of the population speak EXCELLENT English. You will have few problems communicating until you learn the local language.

The other issue is your passport. Do you have an EC passport? If so, it should not be very difficult for you to relocate and job hunt. If not, you will face a huge obstacle finding work.
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Old Jun 7th 2008, 5:59 pm
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Default Re: Moving to Europe speaking only English?

I have a British passport, yes.

It doesn't have to be Germany, by the way, I said I would consider most countries in Western Europe.

I'm wondering if there are any agencies I can use? As I said before I know Poles that spoke almost no/no English before coming here, and there are agencies that operate in Poland to send unskilled workers to Britain/France/Germany etc. Obviously the problem is that the numbers of Poles and Eastern Europeans wanting to go to Western Europe is much smaller than the number of unskilled people from Western Europe wanting to go to other countries in Western Europe. So I guess no specialised agencies exist?

Last edited by MartinGB; Jun 7th 2008 at 6:10 pm.
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Old Jun 7th 2008, 6:22 pm
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Default Re: Moving to Europe speaking only English?

Originally Posted by MartinGB View Post
I have a British passport, yes.

It doesn't have to be Germany, by the way, I said I would consider most countries in Western Europe.

I'm wondering if there are any agencies I can use? As I said before I know Poles that spoke almost no/no English before coming here, and there are agencies that operate in Poland to send unskilled workers to Britain/France/Germany etc. Obviously the problem is that the numbers of Poles and Eastern Europeans wanting to go to Western Europe is much smaller than the number of unskilled people from Western Europe wanting to go to other countries in Western Europe. So I guess no specialised agencies exist?

I did not say no agencies exist. They probably do. But I dont think you are going to find the information you are seeking about them here. But every country has its own agencies and the best thing to do is a focus on one or two markets and try to network your way through. Having lived in the Netherlands, I do know a few Agencies there that work with foreigners. But I do not know if they are involved in unskilled labor. For example:

http://www.undutchables.nl/
http://www.labourmobility.com/
http://www.xpatjobs.com/
http://www.englishlanguagejobs.com/
http://www.dambustersrecruitment.com/
http://www.manpower.com/
http://international.monsterboard.nl/

Try some of those international agencies, like monster or manpower as well as some of the local Dutch agencies. If they are not active in the area you are interested in, ask them how you can make contacts in your area. They should be able to help network your way through to the people you need to talk to.
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Old Jun 7th 2008, 6:53 pm
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Default Re: Moving to Europe speaking only English?

Originally Posted by GDE View Post
I did not say no agencies exist. They probably do. But I dont think you are going to find the information you are seeking about them here. But every country has its own agencies and the best thing to do is a focus on one or two markets and try to network your way through. Having lived in the Netherlands, I do know a few Agencies there that work with foreigners. But I do not know if they are involved in unskilled labor. For example:

http://www.undutchables.nl/
http://www.labourmobility.com/
http://www.xpatjobs.com/
http://www.englishlanguagejobs.com/
http://www.dambustersrecruitment.com/
http://www.manpower.com/
http://international.monsterboard.nl/

Try some of those international agencies, like monster or manpower as well as some of the local Dutch agencies. If they are not active in the area you are interested in, ask them how you can make contacts in your area. They should be able to help network your way through to the people you need to talk to.
Thanks for your help. It was very kind of you to include such detailed information with all those links. I will do some more research and post again.
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Old Jun 7th 2008, 10:19 pm
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Default Re: Moving to Europe speaking only English?

Thanks for your help.

It was kind of you to post such a detailed reply with those links. I'll do some more research and post again later.

Martin
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Old Jun 10th 2008, 6:19 am
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Default Re: Moving to Europe speaking only English?

Here's a link to the Swedish equivalent of the job centre (in English). In Sweden nearly everyone speaks English and Swedish lessons are free. However finding work as a non Swedish speaker can be difficult, although not impossible.

http://www.arbetsformedlingen.se/go.aspx?C=223
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Old Jun 10th 2008, 8:40 am
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Default Re: Moving to Europe speaking only English?

Hi all

Thanks for the link Celtic Princess - Holland would be preferred to the Scandinavian countries to be honest, I'll see if the Dutch equivalent is in English. By the way that Swedish site doesn't seem to actually be in English, only a small section of it is in English, the about us section etc. the actual job adverts etc. and all things to do with that are in Swedish.

I would be able to go over there for a couple of weeks to job-hunt, but I need more advice on how to go about it. Can anyone offer any more assistance or suggestions? E.g. what accommodation to stay in while doing the job hunt, where to look, how will I apply for jobs/go to interviews without speaking the language/how will I arrange permanent accommodation etc.?

Thanks,

Martin

Last edited by MartinGB; Jun 10th 2008 at 8:56 am.
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Old Jun 10th 2008, 2:35 pm
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Default Re: Moving to Europe speaking only English?

If you are considering Sweden scroll down on the link I provided. There is a link to a document called Looking For Work In Sweden. It says it contains basic information on living and working in Sweden, plus contact details if you require further information on any particular topic. I cannot open the doc myself to take a look as my computer came off the ark and cannot manage such an advanced function.

It also has a link to EURES. This is the European Commission's very own website aimed at helping people find work in another European country. I've had a quick look at the site and it has a job search facility which covers job vacancies in 31 different countries. Well worth a butchers. Here's a direct link.

http://europa.eu.int/eures/home.jsp?lang=en
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Old Jun 10th 2008, 4:43 pm
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Default Re: Moving to Europe speaking only English?

Originally Posted by Celtic Princess View Post
If you are considering Sweden scroll down on the link I provided. There is a link to a document called Looking For Work In Sweden. It says it contains basic information on living and working in Sweden, plus contact details if you require further information on any particular topic. I cannot open the doc myself to take a look as my computer came off the ark and cannot manage such an advanced function.

It also has a link to EURES. This is the European Commission's very own website aimed at helping people find work in another European country. I've had a quick look at the site and it has a job search facility which covers job vacancies in 31 different countries. Well worth a butchers. Here's a direct link.

http://europa.eu.int/eures/home.jsp?lang=en
Thank you for your help, I have used the EURES site, but all the job adverts are in native languages.
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