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The capital of Belgium, Brussels is home for numerous European key institutions, which is why it’s often called the capital of the European Union.

As a popular international hub, Brussels offers a beautiful blend of diversity. Moving to Brussels, you will become fond of its mouth-watering chocolates, delicious beers, picturesque parks, popular festivals and impressive architecture to name a few.

To help you move and settle into your new home city, we have assembled a team of handpicked and stingingly vetted service providers that specialise in assisting expats living in Brussels.

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Top 5 tips for expats moving to Brussels

Brussels has a welcoming expat community who speak more than 100 languages and come from more than 180 nationalities. That said, you will always find yourself surrounded by fellow expats living a similar lifestyle to you.

Below are the top 5 insider tips for expats moving to Brussels

Learn the local language
Get ready to deal with key documents written in French and Flemish as it’s the official languages in Belgium with French being the first language in Brussels. Learning French will help you quickly integrate into the community and make good friends with locals as Belgians really appreciate the efforts to communicate in their native language. 

Finding a place to live
Brussels offers a wide selection of housing options in the city districts or in an outlying suburb. If you choose accommodation in the city you will get easy access to public transport while remaining close to the action. However, expect to pay more for inner-city living. You can get a bigger property in the suburbs with lower prices and are closer to international schools. Most expats choose to rent a property while living in Brussels.

Getting around Brussels
Public transportation in Brussels is managed by STIB which operates an extensive network of metro, bus and tram systems. With a standardised ticketing system, you can get anywhere in Brussels. The metro is undoubtedly the fastest means of transportation while cycling is another popular form of transportation in Brussels.

Access to healthcare
You are in good hands when it comes to healthcare in Brussels as it has one of the most reputable and reliable healthcare systems in Europe. Once undertaking certain registrations and making the mandatory contributions toward the social security system in Brussels, you will gain access to the subsidised Belgian healthcare. In certain cases, expats qualify for non-resident tax status, if you qualify for this you may not be required to make any contributions and will probably be covered by your employer’s healthcare plan. Most expats opt to top up the state health plan with private insurance which entitles them to a wider range of treatments for their holistic medical needs.

Cost of living
Brussels is considered a moderate city in terms of cost of living as it’s less expensive than other European expat cities. Expect to have major expenses on housing and electricity while saving on food and public transportation.

Meet your Brussels Team Leader

Jaff Van Durme

With more than 30 years of experience in the moving industry, Jaff understands the challenges expats face when relocating to a new city.

As the former managing director of the Belgium branch of the Gosselin Group and current Project Manager of branches across Europe, he has in-depth knowledge and broad experience helping individual and corporate expat clients to smoothly move from one place to another.

His insight and knowledge of the local community are invaluable in providing expats moving to Brussels with guidance and assistance to settle in.

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