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Cost of living in Gdansk

tonykenny 18 | 131  
4 Aug 2008 /  #1
I am about to qualify as a teacher of English as a foreign language (CELTA for those in the know). I am also an experienced computer programmer (10 years)

So, moving to Gdansk in late September and trying to work out if I can earn enough from teaching to live in Gdansk. I also have to pay for my car back in England which is on credit. Unfortunately, getting rid of the car is not possible or I will still be paying off the credit and simply have no car!

I understand my cost of living may be something like this each month

Flat 1300
Bills 300
Car 1000
Food 1000 (for 2 people)

Does this sound about right for the area? Is there anything I missed? Could bills be more?
of course, this means I need to earn at least 4000zl net to just survive to a basic level. Anybody know the TEFL industry know if this is even possible for a newly qualified teacher?

Many thanks in advance and maybe I'll be on this forum a lot over the coming years.

cjj - | 281  
5 Aug 2008 /  #2
1. What programming are you experienced in ?
2. 4.50 zloty/litre for petrol. diesel i've seen at 4,42 but our local filling station is still cheerfully hooking cars at 4,67
3. are you bringing your car here?
4. what about car insurance? car tax is in the fuel.
5. I'm not much help on food bills as I'm buying for 4 people but it's not as cheap here as you might imagine / hope. Oh, and forget buying in bulk to save a few zloty - things come in much smaller packages (often individually sized) so sometimes cost a ridiculous amount.

6. no idea about teaching salaries. will you be paying taxes? the equivalent of N.I. ?
7. are you any good at stringing words together?
8. travel in and around Trojmiasto - will you be living in the city (and which) or out in the sticks?
9. a ticket for Multikino (a cinema in Gdansk) will cost 17-20 zloty depending on the day.
10. A packet of M&Ms is 2zloty in the vending machine downstairs (and chilled, too - excellent value)

end of random thoughts.
OP tonykenny 18 | 131  
5 Aug 2008 /  #3

I am experienced in (3 years), SQL Server (10 Years) Cold Fusion (7 years before the .net). I specialise in winforms and I'm pretty good with customer user controls and ADO.NET 2. I'm a big fan of object orientation to make the job easier, but not for the sake of it.

I do have the car here and will keep it. Though, I understand it's worth more in Poland than the outstanding credit, so it's tempting to sell it and get something cheaper. THe car is fully insured for 12 months in the whole of Europe.

I will be paying taxes here in Poland though I'm told that it's often cheaper to set up as self employed to reduce the tax burden especially if I decide to ditch teaching and do contract work for British companies remotely.

As for strinign words together, I've been learning Polish sporadically for about a year and am takinga 100 hour intense course before moving to Gdansk. So I fully expect to be at a pre-intermediate level by then. I will be continuing my studies in Polish with am aim to become fluent as quickly as possible.

What about bills, does 300zl/month sound realistic in the winter months?

Thanks for all the answers.
Simmy 3 | 24  
5 Aug 2008 /  #4
10. A packet of M&Ms is 2zloty in the vending machine downstairs (and chilled, too - excellent value)

This is a reason itself for moving to Poland =) ;)
cjj - | 281  
5 Aug 2008 /  #5
i can't do the bills thing as we don't live in a blok ... we don't even have cable/sat so let's leave cost of living to someone more useful.

how were you planning on finding accomodation? where? trojmiasto is strung out sandwiched between the coast and the forest so where you live and where you work need a bit of coordination.

if your car is right hand drive it's no use here long term .. should be a good few threads about that here and there.

are you familiar with Poland in any way? how are your patience-with-bureaucracy levels?

p.s. could you PM me?
scottie1113 7 | 898  
5 Aug 2008 /  #6
Depending upon where you live in Gdansk, rents can vary a lot. Last year I had a very small flat across the street from Madison and paid 700 plus bills. It came to about 1100 total, including a telephone which I never used, tv, high speed internet, gas and electricity.

Now I'm sharing a beautiful flat right behind Hala for only 1200, but that's very unusual. Expect to pay much more if you want to live in the city center, which I do, but I'm only four minutes from school and my favorite pub and it's worth it to me.

If I were you I'd dump the car. You won't need it here as buses, trams and trains will get you anywhere you want to go, and if your car is RHD it'll be a royal pain. Besides, most of us walk a lot. Petrol, or gasoline to me, is almost 5 zl a liter if you buy 98. A little cheaper for 95.

Teaching's not lucrative but you can live here on a teacher's salary, and if you work for more than one school you can make even more. I choose not to do that because I like my school even though it get's a bad rap for not paying very well and I enjoy a little free time between morning and afternoon and evening classes. Private lessons can augment your income but I wouldn't count on them. Think of them as gravy.

Gdansk is a wonderful city. I love it here and wouldn't live anywhere else in Poland except the trojmiasto. Look me up when you get here and I'll show you around Old Town.
OP tonykenny 18 | 131  
5 Aug 2008 /  #7
it says i have to post 3 forum messages before i can PM... but maybe this on will do it.

Thanks for all the advice guys. I'm seeing a clearer picture. Maybe dumping the car is a good idea if I can make enough to pay off the loan which is secured against it, otherwise selling the car is illegal under English law which of course is the governing law of the specific contract. I would need a car to see other friends in Poland and for if I move flats because my partner and I have so much stuff... but maybe I can find a 'man with a van' who needs a few extra zloty to do that?

Anyway, I'll be up that way soon, maybe see some of you out and about? :)

BubbaWoo 33 | 3,510  
5 Aug 2008 /  #8
life in the 3M can be very cheap... or very expensive...

did anyone ever find that piece of string by the way...?
cjj - | 281  
5 Aug 2008 /  #9
>because my partner and I have so much stuff

maybe a good idea to check out the average size of a flat here ... and what people do for seasonal storage. (hint: if you're used to Vancouver-style long-term-storage arrangements there might be a problem)
OP tonykenny 18 | 131  
5 Aug 2008 /  #10
I'm from England and before I came I sold or gave away everything I owed so everything I own fits into the back of a small a Toyota Avensis. My partner has even less stuff so I'm sure we'll be fine. She grew up in a Polish flat so she's kinda used to it.

What is bad though, is I appear to have a seed from the top of the bread i was just eating lodged under my laptop keyboard making me have to press letters a littler harder and blowing into the keyboard to move it around. :)
scottie1113 7 | 898  
5 Aug 2008 /  #11
Yeah, life is full of big problems!
14 Aug 2008 /  #12
Hi cjj

I'm from London; my mum from Danzig. You said:

maybe a good idea to check out the average size of a flat here

My mum - who has resided in England now for 55 years - has always said: Your English homes are so small!

So...maybe Vancouver > Gdansk > London?

(For the first time I will be visiting Gdansk in September).
chromium - | 15  
17 Sep 2008 /  #13
I pay 1200, which includes gas and electric, for 40 sm apartment 2 minutes from Old Town. 40 for internet.

Last year in Sopot, my electric bills were outrageous, like 400+ for a 53 sm place, but I had small crappy electric heaters.

You can make more than enough to live on while teaching, but with your expenses, unless the person you're living with is earning money, there's no way for you to have your budget on a teacher's salary alone.
28 Jan 2009 /  #14
I am looking for a reliable tenants to rent my semidetached house in Gdansk. A very good location; very close to Tricity bypass and to the center. The house is located in the estate of the other houses. It's a new house; furnished and with all coins... The price 900eur/pm

If you are interested please send me an email: alisfic@gmail
17 Sep 2009 /  #15
so true.

If I were you I'd dump the car. You won't need it here as buses, trams and trains will get you anywhere you want to go

scottie1113 7 | 898  
17 Sep 2009 /  #16
Food 1000 (for 2 people)

I just reread this thread. I don't anybody who spends this much on food every month. On piwo, maybe.

So, did you move to Gdansk? If so, how's it going?

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