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Old 25.06.2009, 23:50
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Why come to CH when you already live in Australia?

For quite a long tim I've been wondering why people from Australia choose to leave their country and relocate to Switzerland...

Before I made my decision to come here, Australia was one of my relocation choises (due to postgraduate opportunieties concerning my profession and of course lifestyle). Unfortunately I had to turn down going to AU because of travel distance and family matters.

It is said the last years that AU is having such a big economic growth that employment opportunities are many. Adding to that the important factor of lifestyle it seems to me that there is no reason leaving such a country and coming to CH.

The only thing I can think about is the money factor (fatter salaries...)

Could someone please illuminate me?

Thanx

Last edited by Time Bandit; 25.06.2009 at 23:59. Reason: missing word
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Old 26.06.2009, 00:13
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Re: Why come to CH when you already live in Australia?

Good question !! Maybe it is same thing as drinking pepsi-cola ansted coca-cola (I hate theme all the same) same gos for CANADA,NEW ZEALAND
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Old 26.06.2009, 03:55
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Re: Why come to CH when you already live in Australia?

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For quite a long tim I've been wondering why people from Australia choose to leave their country and relocate to Switzerland...

Before I made my decision to come here, Australia was one of my relocation choises (due to postgraduate opportunieties concerning my profession and of course lifestyle). Unfortunately I had to turn down going to AU because of travel distance and family matters.


The only thing I can think about is the money factor (fatter salaries...)

Could someone please illuminate me?

Thanx
Sure. It would be my pleasure, as people often ask this of me. I can see that "relocating" for you was a choice, so you have not been located in Australia before.

I did not come for the fatter salary. Actually, I did not have a job before I bought my one way ticket.

I lived in Australia for 30 years, and the other side of the world always sounded so exotic (I did go on family trips though). In Australia, if you go away for the weekend, it is normally 2 hours up the coast. Money, people and language are all somewhat similar. When you hear that in Europe you can travel two hours and be in a different country it is somewhat unfathomable.

I would find living in London boring. Too many people I already know, and Australia is already somewhat of a little Britain. I wanted to be somewhere where I could learn a different culture and language, and ideally ski also.

I also like the Swiss people I had met in Australia: on paper and in practical it is a brilliant place.

It is not like I will never return, but I will do it when I am good and ready. There is so much to see here, and the more that I see, the more that I want to see more. I still cannot believe how lucky I am to live in a foreign country, that is pretty much in the middle of the world (or the world that I want to experience in this stage of my life).

The travel distance from Europe is a factor in why we move abroad. We want to be closer to where the action is.

As for the family, I felt that it was a good time to get away. My life was too staid, everything was too comfortable. And I can always go back there when I want and my friends will still be there: best part about that is that they change too, and you learn a lot about them and yourself.

I have never made a better decision in my life, and if things don't work out here, I can always go home. It is an experience.

Why were you seeking to move abroad in the first place if it was not for the experience?
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Old 26.06.2009, 06:21
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Re: Why come to CH when you already live in Australia?

Why leave Aus and go to CH (or anywhere else)? Less Australians!

Just kidding!!! I think many people move to a new country for the experience. I know my wife & I did.

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For quite a long tim I've been wondering why people from Australia choose to leave their country and relocate to Switzerland...

Before I made my decision to come here, Australia was one of my relocation choises (due to postgraduate opportunieties concerning my profession and of course lifestyle). Unfortunately I had to turn down going to AU because of travel distance and family matters.

It is said the last years that AU is having such a big economic growth that employment opportunities are many. Adding to that the important factor of lifestyle it seems to me that there is no reason leaving such a country and coming to CH.

The only thing I can think about is the money factor (fatter salaries...)

Could someone please illuminate me?

Thanx
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Old 26.06.2009, 06:59
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Re: Why come to CH when you already live in Australia?

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Sure. It would be my pleasure, as people often ask this of me. I can see that "relocating" for you was a choice, so you have not been located in Australia before.

I did not come for the fatter salary. Actually, I did not have a job before I bought my one way ticket.

I lived in Australia for 30 years, and the other side of the world always sounded so exotic (I did go on family trips though). In Australia, if you go away for the weekend, it is normally 2 hours up the coast. Money, people and language are all somewhat similar. When you hear that in Europe you can travel two hours and be in a different country it is somewhat unfathomable.

I would find living in London boring. Too many people I already know, and Australia is already somewhat of a little Britain. I wanted to be somewhere where I could learn a different culture and language, and ideally ski also.

I also like the Swiss people I had met in Australia: on paper and in practical it is a brilliant place.

It is not like I will never return, but I will do it when I am good and ready. There is so much to see here, and the more that I see, the more that I want to see more. I still cannot believe how lucky I am to live in a foreign country, that is pretty much in the middle of the world (or the world that I want to experience in this stage of my life).

The travel distance from Europe is a factor in why we move abroad. We want to be closer to where the action is.

As for the family, I felt that it was a good time to get away. My life was too staid, everything was too comfortable. And I can always go back there when I want and my friends will still be there: best part about that is that they change too, and you learn a lot about them and yourself.

I have never made a better decision in my life, and if things don't work out here, I can always go home. It is an experience.

Why were you seeking to move abroad in the first place if it was not for the experience?

Natasha, your answer was perfect!!
Exact reason I moved to Europe.... was living in London for awhile and like you said, got bored. but then met my man who's swiss and moved here and best decision i've made
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Old 26.06.2009, 07:29
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Re: Why come to CH when you already live in Australia?

Natasha i'm with you too! People abroad (or overseas as we aussies like to say!) dont understand how isolated it is for us in Australia, and that being in the middle of Europe where 2 hours driving either way gets you into 4 different countries sounds like heaven to us! And again we dont have to stay here indefinitely, Australia is wonderful but a change is lovely too after close to 30 years in Australia!
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Old 26.06.2009, 07:31
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Re: Why come to CH when you already live in Australia?

Thanks guys for the answers... Personally having lived in a country which offers no educational & vocational chances of evolvement that is a very good reason for leaving it.

Since AU offers all the above (and I've been there as a tourist) I've always thought that seeing the rest of the world as a tourist would be satisfying enough for the people of AU. Clearly for some people it is not and even though I don't really know why I'm glad to hear that...
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Old 26.06.2009, 08:22
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Re: Why come to CH when you already live in Australia?

I left Sydney at 22 and have now spend more of my adult life outside Australia. It has been 10 years now. I've been back to visit every year for more than a month each time, but I would never move back.

Life here is just too easy In Sydney our working hours were longer, work had many more deadlines than here, and then you are paying crazy amounts of tax. There's something wrong when my dad was paying in tax more than my brother and I were earning in salary.

In Sydney you need a car to get to many workplaces, crimes such as house breakins and car breakins happen all the time. I find that people are generally more agressive there, meaning road rage and public assults are very common. I've had someone throw a bottle in my face in a club because they wanted our table and telling someone to be careful about kicking my son's pram on the ferry led to a string of abuse from a bloke who said we offended him. We could see he was about to bump it again and we just didn't want him to wake up. Walking the streets on New Year's in Sydney at least 10 people tried to pick a fight with my husband and a group who had had too much to drink tried to bust into the bar we were in that had already stopped serving drink and had locked the front door. Here on New Year's we walked from Cham to Zug around the lake with a baby when we missed the train and the kid's out just wished us happy new years
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Old 26.06.2009, 09:11
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Re: Why come to CH when you already live in Australia?

I second Natasha and MarieZug's comments, though I did come here for lerv, shucks. I have to say that I haven't experienced the level of "aggro" that MarieZug mentions, it is there, but I've seen it here in Zurich as well.

In the end the pull of family, backyards, beaches and warm winters will see me back in Perth.
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Old 26.06.2009, 10:09
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Re: Why come to CH when you already live in Australia?

Interesting responses. There is often a presumption amongst the people I work with that, as an Australian, I would be itching to get back home. This presumption seems stronger for Aussies than for other nationalities.

I left Australia aged 34, but I would have left a lot earlier than that if I could have found a job. The reason was curiosity about the world. Australia can be very "comfortable" (in the positive and negative sense), but also isolated. Certain cities (e.g. the one on the west coast) even more so, where the media and the people scarcely think beyond the city/town/village itself.

Now I don't think I'll ever go back, except to visit family and friends. I quite like being a foreigner! And, like someone else posted, I wouldn't like to be in London. I enjoy having to speak another language and being somewhat of an outsider.

I haven't lived in CH the whole time, so I would say here's a brief list of the reasons I would live in Europe rather than AU...
  • Easy access to other countries. I can have a 3-country bike ride from my house and only have been out of the house for 20 minutes. I still find that cool. And a weekend away in another country is very easy - in Oz, you can really have only one OS trip every 1 or 2 years, and you have to plan it for ages. (Compare with: first time I left Oz I was in my mid-20s, despite a strong interest in the world around me.)
  • Languages: I enjoy trying to speak other languages, or at least hearing them.
  • Less materialism: I find the culture here less obsessed with things like house prices, number of bathrooms in your house, big cars etc. And Christmas is so much more commercial back home.
  • Less BS: Related to languages, if I don't concentrate, I can't understand the general, everyday nonsense people speak on the trams and buses. This is pleasant!
  • Better drinking culture: I was amazed to see old people that weren't truckies drinking beer in Germany. I was amazed to go to 70,000 people heavy metal festivals for several years without seeing a single person being aggressive to another. Excessively drunk people seem much rarer.
  • Weather: OK, winters are a little long at times here, but I like snowboarding and don't really like swimming. But I hate the hot summers back home. Summer in Europe is the best! And Spring and Autumn are at least distinct seasons - things happen in nature that you can see clearly, and there are lots of seasonal activities/festivals that I notice a lot more here.
  • Kids life: I am often informed that Australia is a great place to bring up kids. I think that's right, but my kids growing up here will also get to learn other languages, meet people from other countries, go to school by themselves, and perhaps (controversial to say this I know) be a little bit more caring of others. (Side note: if you let your 5 year old walk to kindy by themselves in Australia, you'd probably be arrested! I still find it hard to let my kid go, but I think it's cool that they can here.)
  • Roads: In Oz, I would probably toot my car horn 5-6 times per day, in either anger or warning some idiot not to turn there/stop there/go there etc. Here it's very rare. People drive better here. And then there's the Autobahn in Germany, which is just fun. I usually drive, when it's clear and the weather's good, about 160kmh and enjoy it a lot. Max speed in the entire Oz is 110kmh.
  • Public transport: in my home town with a population of over 1 million you pretty much NEED one car per adult in the house. Here, I could easily sell our car and survive. The trains are great! Buses and trams too.
Maybe not such a brief list...

There are disadvantages here of course, which I won't go into, but I hope that helps the OP a bit.
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Old 26.06.2009, 10:18
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Re: Why come to CH when you already live in Australia?

we also chose switzerland because of the 'in the thick of things' feeling - australia seemed too remote, and of course too many south africans!
and then we landed close to baden and found just as many south africans =)))
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Old 26.06.2009, 10:21
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Re: Why come to CH when you already live in Australia?

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  • Less materialism: I find the culture here less obsessed with things like house prices, number of bathrooms in your house, big cars etc. And Christmas is so much more commercial back home.

This so true I find that people from Sydney keep asking me which suburb of Sydney I am from. Like that really matters
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Old 26.06.2009, 12:41
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Re: Why come to CH when you already live in Australia?

Australia - great place to visit and anybody who hasn't been should - it's unique. But could I live there? No. It's too conservative and parochial for me, especially outside the main cities. Even Sydney can start to feel like a small place after a while. If you're into sport, like the open air and hot summers it will hit the spot as long as you can put up with the flies that come with it. But don't fall for the impression that laid back and stress free living is guaranteed. I know some expats who love it and wouldn't move back for any money but I know just as many who've found it quite a culture shock, very hard to integrate and are fed up with the "keeping up with the Jones's" materialism and money orientation, especially in the cities.
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Old 26.06.2009, 12:54
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Re: Why come to CH when you already live in Australia?

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"keeping up with the Jones's" materialism and money orientation, especially in the cities.
Oh I never knew that materialism was that big in Australia. My brother used to live there for a few months and I visited him for 2 weeks. He liked it and said aussies were heavy drinkers (for swiss standards) but also a little chaotic but never materialistic. That was 8 years ago tough ... I am a fan of Holdens (clubsports) since that time - that must sound cheesy to an aussie.
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Old 26.06.2009, 13:02
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Re: Why come to CH when you already live in Australia?

I think Australians think of themselves as not materialistic. And indeed, I don't think tourists would necessarily notice it.

But it's definitely there in the culture and I noticed it a lot more once I had moved away. The biggest indicator is crushing house prices (compared to incomes) and the obsession with housing, the housing ladder, renovations etc. The second biggest indicator (to me) is Christmas.
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Old 26.06.2009, 13:12
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Re: Why come to CH when you already live in Australia?

You could ask the Swiss who have emmigrated to Australia, New Zealand, Canada etc., why?
Adventure, change, a chance to explore a new culture, lifestyle, language, education, job prospects and and and ...
And much more I imagine!
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Old 26.06.2009, 13:14
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Re: Why come to CH when you already live in Australia?

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I think Australians think of themselves as not materialistic. And indeed, I don't think tourists would necessarily notice it.

But it's definitely there in the culture and I noticed it a lot more once I had moved away. The biggest indicator is crushing house prices (compared to incomes) and the obsession with housing, the housing ladder, renovations etc. The second biggest indicator (to me) is Christmas.
So true.

I've noticed that around Christmas time here people's shopping bags normally have food in them. In Australia it was giant christmas presents. Could be because the Swiss are more organised and went gift shopping earlier, but I would say that the main celebration is the christmas dinner and not the gift giving.

Popular dinner party conversation topics in Australia are how much equity you have in your home, have you released it, what are you looking at renovating in your home, what did you buy recently and what do you want to buy next. The term "negative gearing " drives me nuts - why invest in something that makes a loss?
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Old 26.06.2009, 13:25
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Re: Why come to CH when you already live in Australia?

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You could ask the Swiss who have emmigrated to Australia, New Zealand, Canada etc., why?
Adventure, change, a chance to explore a new culture, lifestyle, language, education, job prospects and and and ...
And much more I imagine!
My friends lived 10 years in Zürich then decided that Sydney was the place to live. Having never been there, they got their migration visas sorted and headed off. They had dreams of using their Swiss savings to buy a big house with land and a swimming pool, but the places they saw on the internet weren't that great when they saw them in person (on main roads ect). They also found out that they need to be resident for 2 years before buying something already built, so they had to stick to things under construction.

6 months on he's quit his job because it was too stressful, and that was with the same company he worked for in Zürich.

What attracts many people to Australia is the seemingly relaxed lifestyle and the great outdoors. The reality is so many working hours that you don't have time to enjoy life. My husband was doing 70-80 hours a week at one point

OP: other than the employment opportunities, what attracted you to Australia?
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Old 26.06.2009, 13:30
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Re: Why come to CH when you already live in Australia?

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we also chose switzerland because of the 'in the thick of things' feeling - australia seemed too remote, and of course too many south africans!
and then we landed close to baden and found just as many south africans =)))
I also considered Australia as an alternative choice and similar to SA's lifestyle i.e. braai, rugby, cricket, easy access to coasts and lots of outdoor activities especially tennis on hard court (I was big fan of Llyeton Hewitt in the past). However few oaks I knew who had moved there and returned to SA, they complained about cliquish lifestyle similar to the Capetonian one. You have to know the people who know the people and so on...

Europe has its glamour and is a nice experience but I guess SA always will be a new home. I guess similar applies for many Australians who moved here in der Schweiz temporarily.
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Old 26.06.2009, 14:45
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Re: Why come to CH when you already live in Australia?

Have to agree with pretty much everything that's been said here so far.

Back home, going to Europe is considered a once-in-a-lifetime thing, and that usually involves 2 weeks on a crowded tour bus. No thanks. I wanted to see something in Europe, and the only way to do that is to live (and, by extension, work) here.

Since leaving 6 Australia or so years ago, I've been back to visit 3 times. Nice that it's still there, but I'm not ready to go back yet. Not sure if I ever will be.


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I've noticed that around Christmas time here people's shopping bags normally have food in them. In Australia it was giant christmas presents. Could be because the Swiss are more organised and went gift shopping earlier, but I would say that the main celebration is the christmas dinner and not the gift giving.
It could also be the fact that it is normally 35+ C in the leadup to Christmas, so most Aussies seek out the biggest source of air conditioning around, which is usually the nearby shopping centre.
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