Pros and Cons of Moving to Brussels

Brussels, like any big city, has its share of low points, but overall, from those who live and work here, there is more to praise than pan. Brussels Expert Kimberley Lovato polled a handful of expat friends and here were the most noted pros and cons in each category.

Pros of living in Brussels:

  • Multicultural and multilingual society
  • Excellent variety of foods, restaurants, ethnic food shops, and markets
  • The choice of housing accommodation in varying sizes and price brackets
  • Access to top-notch health service, from doctors to hospitals, at reasonable prices
  • Excellent access to other European countries by train or plane
  • English is widely spoken 
  • Language schools are ubiquitous. 
  • The people are mostly friendly towards foreigners, regardless of an expat's origin
  • Lots of green space in and around the capital for biking and walking
  • Thriving art and music scene
  • Good schools for children and adults
  • Safe to walk around alone (however common sense applies)
  • Reliable phone, internet, utility services at relatively reasonable prices
  • Not as crowded as Paris or London in the summer
  • One of Europe's best kept secrets

Cons of living in Brussels:

  • The obscene rates of tax and the cost of employing staff
  • The absolutely dire standards of customer service 
  • The weather- it's cold and rainy all year round
  • Public transport to the airport may take longer than the flight itself
  • Aggressive drivers and the “priority from the right” rule
  • The constant underlying battle between the Flemish and French speakers
  • Parking and parking fines are expensive 
  • City could be cleaner, with facades polished up and graffiti erased
  • Landlords. Some take advantage of expats. Be attentive and get everything in writing

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Our Brussels Expert

KLovato's picture
Los Angeles, California, USA. Brussels, Belglium
I am a freelance American writer and author of a soon to be released culinary travel book Walnut Wine... more

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