Moving to Belgium
Moving to Belgium involves a lot of preparation and planning. This page will give you all the information and advice that you’re looking for. If you would like advice on choosing a removal company, take a look at our list of the top 10 international removal companies within the UK.
Visa in Belgium
You will be glad to hear that you don’t require a visa to enter Belgium, as we are members of the EU. However, we are unsure how this will change after Brexit, so we advise you to keep checking the news. If you would like some more information on this, you can visit our Moving to Europe after Brexit blog, which explains some of the possible outcomes of Brexit how it may affect you.
Registering in Belgium
Even though you don’t need a visa, you will need to register if you’re planning on moving to Belgium for longer than three months. You can do this at the town hall where you live, otherwise you risk being fined 200 euros. This page explains in further detail how to register your residency abroad.
Tips on Moving to Belgium
Other than registering, there are several other things that you need to think about when you’re moving to Belgium. This section provides some tips on moving to Belgium or read our moving abroad page for 34 things that you should prepare.
Driving in Belgium
Driving in Belgium varies from driving back at home. For starters, they drive on the right hand side, but that’s not all:
- Minimum age for driving is 18 years old.
- It is compulsory to have the following equipment in your car:
- Reflective jacket
- Warning triangle
- First-aid kit and fire extinguisher.
If you are interested in importing your car to Belgium, you can do so for up to 6 months within a 12 month period. Also, you must carry the following documents:
- Full valid driving licence
- Proof of insurance
- Proof of ID e.g. passport
- Proof of ownership e.g. V5C Certificate
For more information, RAC have travel advice about regulations and policies on driving in Belgium.
Housing in Belgium
It can be hard to decide whether to buy or rent a housing in Belgium before you go. Not knowing if the area is nice or if you’re getting a good deal can be frustrating for many expats moving to Belgium. Renting allows you the flexibility to find somewhere that you really love! Furthermore, most tenants have a lot more freedom in decorating their place, so you can have the same feeling as if you own a home yourself! Therefore, to help you along the way, here are some online platforms that you can use to find a home:
Working and Living in Belgium
It’s always good to have an idea of what to expect your new life to be like. Whether it’s to do with working in Belgium or what the average cost of living is, being prepared will mean less of a culture shock! Read on to find out more:
Cost of Living in Belgium
On average, the cost of living in Belgium is considered to be on the high side compared to other European countries, nevertheless it’s still an affordable place to live. It varies from place to place, cities like Brussels and Antwerp will be on the more expensive side compared to smaller towns. Below you can find the cost of living in Belgium
|City||Quality of life||Purchasing power||Safety||Health care||Cost of living||Pollution|
|City||Cappuccino price||1L milk price||One dozen eggs price||Three room apartment rent|
|Antwerp||£ 2,26||£ 0,75||£ 2,03||£ 879,88|
|Brussels||£ 2,32||£ 0,88||£ 2,22||£ 1.151,32|
For an idea on how much your move will cost you can take a look at our international moving costs page.
Healthcare in Belgium
With your European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) you can have access to state-provided health services for a reduced cost or in some cases for free. However, if you’re planning on moving to Belgium for a long period of time, in order to access the healthcare you will have to register with a mutuelle / ziekenfonds and also a Belgian health insurance fund. For more information, you can visit Expatica.com.
Working in Belgium
As an EU citizen, you don’t need a work permit to be allowed to live and work in Belgium. Something that you may have to consider is that there are three languages spoken in Belgium: Dutch in the Flanders region, French in Wallonia and German in the south-east. You may be expected to speak the language of the region where you live at your work, so make sure to brush up on your language skills before you leave.
Every region in Belgium has its own public employment office where you can browse job vacancies, upload your CV, and get advice on your job search from a consultant online or at a local office:
- ONEM is the national office of employment.
- Actiris: Brussels
- Le Forem: Walloon
- VDAB: Flanders
- ADG: German community
Education in Belgium
Moving to Belgium with family? You may want to know what the schooling system in Belgium is like then. You can decide whether to put your child in an international school, where your child will follow the same education system as in the UK, or a local school. Belgian schools follow the curriculum set out by the language communities. Education is free, but there are also privately-run schools that are also subsidised or, in some cases, free. This is a run-down of the Belgian education system:
- Primary School (6-12 years)
- Secondary School (12-18 years)
- Higher Education (18+ years)
Moving Costs to Belgium
|Size of Household||Time||Cost|
|1 bed flat||8-10 days||£800 – £1,300|
|3 bed house||1-3 days||£1,300 – £1,800|
|5 bed house||1-3 days||£1,800 – £2,900|
As you can see, here are the estimated moving costs to Belgium; from London to Brussels by road. There are several factors that can influence the cost of your move: the volume and the distance are the most influential factors of price. You can also ship your belongings via sea, but this will be more expensive and take longer. A removal company can provide you with a container that you can load all of your belonging into, however, the costs will vary. Look at our container shipping costs page for more information.
The best way to know exactly how much the removal costs will be for your move, is to request quotes. You can do this by filling out our quick and easy online form and you can save up to 40% on your move!