A growing number of British expats are returning home, according to the Office for National Statistics. The TimesOnline.co.uk article also highlights the findings that fewer British expats are also leaving in the first place. As one would think, a drop in job opportunities due to the economic downturn is being blamed.
A tragic house collapse has resulted in the deaths of two British expats in Spain. Christine and Christopher Martin, both in their 60s, were both pronounced dead at the scene, according to Mirror.co.uk.
The last few weeks, we’ve reported about several surveys that have “determined” the best countries and cities to live throughout the world. It was all happy and syrupy and fun for everyone.
But what about the opposite?
Forbes Magazine has put together a list of the world’s most dangerous countries, and the list is not likely to surprise many people. For example, nobody will find himself or herself saying, “geez, who would have thought Somalia is one of the most unsafe places to live.”
Here is the top four most dangerous countries as reported by Forbes.com:
Most expats know that they can check in with the U.S. State Department’s web site to get travel warnings, but in case you don’t you can also visit them on our ExpatExchange.com’s travel warnings page.
Ever read an article written by someone that just flat out doesn’t like British expats? No? Well, now you can. Brian Reade has written a commentary about the British expats he’s met, and it includes this gem:
If I was offered the choice of being castrated with a broken cider bottle or spending a night with an expat there is only one request I’d make.
Can you make it a bottle of Magners and give me a slug before you smash it?
Here are a couple thoughts about each side of the immigration issue mentioned in the piece:
If a person doesn’t like “foreigners” coming to their country, does he or she stop to think what the natives will think when he or she moves to their country?
On the other side of the debate, however, I wonder about Mr. Reade’s assertion that most of the immigrants want to integrate. Well, how many don’t? How was this established? And what impact will they have on Great Britain over time? Is there a political impact? What might it be?
As always, it’s a controversial issue, and one that is not likely to go away any time soon.
I’d love to hear some comments from British expats about this, and of course, about the assertion that fuel allowances should be pulled from pensioners living abroad.
It seems like every week there is a new report out that crowns a city or nation as the best place to live in the world.
Last week, we let you know about International Living’s report that declared France the winner. This week, a report by the Economist Intelligence Unit declares that Olympic Host city Vancouver is the most livable city on Earth is featured in ExpatExchange.com’s blog.
Canada and Australia should be especially proud, according to the report, as they have placed seven in the top 10.
New York and London? Forget it. You don’t even want to know. (Just according to THIS report, mind you.)
For the fifth year in a row, France has been voted the best place in the world to live for the fifth year in a row by International Magazine.
Here is an excerpt from an article about the report on CNN.com:
“The bread, the cheese, the wine,” Dan Prescher, special projects editor at [International Living] magazine, told CNN, when asked why France just keeps on winning year after year. “That weighs pretty heavily in quality of life.”
And, of course, there is a personal story about health care in France. As usual, too, it’s about a woman who recently gave birth and loved it. It’s actually pretty amazing how consistent the praise is for having a baby in France.
Remember that Expat Exchange has reports from all over the world about Having a Baby Abroad
Here’s a little bit of cultural commentary…
In a recent commentary piece, a professor in Canada writes about his perspective on a few separate topics. One, his view about the differences in Indian vs. Western students:
“I tell [my current students] about how the students at JNU take their education much more seriously than do students in Western universities, about how they don’t complain about extra work or the difficulty of classes, but rather appreciate the increasing competitiveness of a globalised economy and therefore the importance of every small iota of knowledge or skills an educator can provide.”
And, he also writes about whether China or India will be the dominant force in the world economy.
“I would like to respectfully suggest that it will be India, not China, which will take the world’s economy and culture by the collars and shake it till the human race takes note.”
Did I even have to point out that this is commentary?
Read more about “Lazy Western Students and China vs. India
A Bit of History: As a World War II history buff, I was interested to see this book review of Lynn Olson’s Citizens of London: The Americans Who Stood with Britain in Its Darkest, Finest Hour. This 496 page book is about Key Americans in London during the blitz that helped push America toward “entry into the war.” Anyone interested in the Kennedy family’s political history should familiarize themselves with this part of their story. (As a side note, JFK’s travels in Europe in the run up to WW II are also fascinating and worth researching. Michael O’Brien’s John F. Kennedy: A Biography is a great place to start.) Olson’s book is important to highlight as a tribute to the importance of those that are actually on the ground at critical times in history. Then again, nobody knows that more than expats themselves!
On the Forums: An interesting discussion on our Global Forum about Pickpockets and Thieves. This is a topic always worth revisiting, even if just to remind us to take appropriate precautions while abroad.
Here is a book review for Lunch in Paris by Elizabeth Bard on SFgate.com. One humorous note in the review:
“American writer Elizabeth Bard says her French husband was halfway to home base when she cut into a succulent steak during their first lunch in Paris.”
Expat Exchange Forums:
Being talked about:
It’s not always easy for Expats to Establish Credit in the U.K., and this is being talked about on our U.K. Forum.
Needs to be answered:
A student in the UK considers whether or not to expatriate to Singapore upon graduation.
Expat Youth Scholarship
Clements International has announced a May 13, 2010 deadline for its Expat Youth Scholarship. The winners will be announced on September 13, 2010.