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Place of Living Choice: Poland vs Hungary vs Germany

27 Jan 2019 #1
Hello! I've been attracted to Central Europe for along time. Obviously Germany's the richest economy of the 3. But I'm not big on medieval old town districts. I prefer tree-lined streets, wide avenues and places. Hungary looks the most like what I like. Linguistically, Polish is closer to me but on Google Street View apart from Lublin, it seems tree-lined streets are not as common. And aside from Warsaw wide avenues and places are not as prevalent. I am not crazy about those bone-shaped pavement tiles lol, they look terrible. But I love Polish TV. :) Polish have a difficult grammar but Hungarian is a totally different thing. German is not easy either. What place would you recommend? Where would a Bulgarian fit better?
delphiandomine 88 | 18,475
27 Jan 2019 #2
If you're starting your career, Poland is a no-brainer these days. It's a very easy place to get promoted to manager level in a corporation, then to transfer out to a place of your choosing.
OP Zlatko
27 Jan 2019 #3
Yes. I find Lublin the most livable in my definition (good infrastructure and high presence of tree-line streets preventing excessive heat waves in summer and providing beauty). My neck got sunburnt in Slovakia and Czechia and I found their cities devoid of greenery on streets. It's like they want to showcase the buildings for tourists, but research has shown locals are happier in cities and towns with a lot tree-lined roads. But they told me Lublin is not very ecobomically feasible. For capitals, I prefer Budapest the most. However, I'd go with Debrecen if I decide on HU. Warsaw is second. Always wanted to see both Buda and Wawa. Berlin not so much. Culturally I can't decide which I like the most, growing up with German TV but also some Polish things. Hungary is the most unknown to me, I mostly know Elso Emelet, gulas and Ikarus buses lol.
OP Zlatko
30 Jun 2019 #4
I'm still looking for jobs. The thing is in Poland from photos I like just Lublin and Kraków from the larger cities. Others look with cold-ish (more modern) architecture. Warsaw looks great for a visit (it's like an American city and it's exotic in Europe but that's the reason it feels cold and plastic to me). For Germany I like Bavarian cities and towns with their colourful houses and cobblestone streets.

Hungary is put due to the language and subpar healthcare. I have a thyroid autoimmune condition. Is Polish healthcare better or worse for working (insured) people?
johnny reb 28 | 5,015
30 Jun 2019 #5
(it's like an American city and it's exotic in Europe but that's the reason it feels cold and plastic to me).

I feel the same way about going to visit Warsaw after what my friends have told me who have visited there.
It's like going to Disney World, after a three days visit you have seen it all, after a week you are bored and ready to come home.
OP Zlatko
30 Jun 2019 #6
I meant I have a job but I'm considering relocating to work and live in either Poland or Germany* as I've liked their cultures a lot since forever!

*(Bavaria to be specific but outside of Munich, more like the Frankonians and Upper Palatinate). It's great there are Polish food stores in even the small German cities. :)

For Poland I fancy Krakow, Lublin and some smaller towns like Kielce, Rzeszow and Torun. I find those places look the most inviting like architecture and feel. How popular is living in a small town and commuting by train daily for work in a bugger city in Poland? Afaik lots of Germans live that way as their trains are fast. How about Poles?
Rich Mazur 4 | 3,185
30 Jun 2019 #7
It's like going to Disney World, ....after a week you are bored and ready to come home.

Precisely my experience. To add to that "why am I here" feeling, all the familiar places are gone and so are the people; either dead or you can't find them. Not that they would be thrilled to see an American who is clearly better off or will claim to be. Not much fun having that conversation for either side. So, it's just the streets and restaurants.

I like them better here.
Lyzko 29 | 7,235
30 Jun 2019 #8
Probably Germany would provide your best opportunity for any sort of business advancement, although in either of the above countries, you should of course learn at least the basics of the language before anticipating a serious move:-)
cms neuf - | 1,579
30 Jun 2019 #9
Living in a small town and commuting is feasible but the trains are not as frequent as they are in Germany. In winter that is going to be a challenge - dark cold mornings and evenings with quite a lot of travel disruption. I don't know Kielce we'll but in Torun or Krakow there are plenty of quiet areas of the city where you could live quite cheaply.
Crow 146 | 9,107
30 Jun 2019 #10
Germany is out of Poland`s and Hungary`s category. Its a place where God said ``Good night``.
OP Zlatko
1 Jul 2019 #12
Hungarian cities look great to me. I found the people friendly when I went to Balaton. However that language! It makes Polish and German seem easy. So it's relegated to "would definitely visit again but as a tourist, not for long-term living". I like how both Polish and German sound but I find German orthography easier.

Also I must mention jobs and careers I could do and be good at:
Graphic design
Interior design
Open my own Balkan food restaurant or own a gallery
Journalism/blogging, event planning (would definitely need to learn the local language for these!)

I also know my way around HTML and CSS. I'm currently learning Python although I'd say I'm more of a creative mind. Afaik creatives are not well-regarded/paid in ex commie countries.

But I'd also do a call center job until I learn the local language. :)
Lyzko 29 | 7,235
1 Jul 2019 #13
Many educated Hungarians also speak truly excellent German, in certain instances, basically at a native speaker level, from my experience.
OP Zlatko
2 Jul 2019 #14
What are locals in Polish cities like? I've heard about Polish hospitality but also about grumpy old women lol.

I've lived in Bratislava and Prague and found the Slovaks much friendlier in general. Czechs in Prague are kinda standoffish (better hotel service though). No one looks at you and you feel lonely in a huge crowd. I've heard on here Poles stare more (I don't mind staring or occasionally acknowledging passers bys, I found the way no one looks at no one else in Prague disturbing).

What I liked about Bratislava is that while you can meet jerks you can also meet very nice ppl. Slovaks seem to be more real, no fake niceness but they also aren't scared to look at you while passing you by. They seem to also speak to strangers more than in Czechia. Just my personal experience of course.
Miloslaw 8 | 2,818
2 Jul 2019 #15
about grumpy old women lol

Yeah, plenty of them in Poland :-)

and found the Slovaks much friendlier in general

They are much more friendly than Czechs, or even Poles.

Poles stare more

Yeah,guilty as charged...... Poles are not afraid to stare......
OP Zlatko
13 Apr 2020 #16
Actually I like Sweden, Poland and Hungary the most. I like Germany as in the closest big Western country to my Central European favorites - HU and PL. I enjoyed people in Hungary more than Slovaks and Slovaks more than Czechs and Germans. I loved visiting Balaton.
13 Apr 2020 #17
Poland vs Hungary vs Germany

Actually all the abovementioned countries are good places to live, but Poland would be my first choice (surprise, surprise ;)). Especially Gdańsk/Danzig - bustling with life and history, the place of meeting of different cultures and religions, the place I am proud to call my home.

No lovelier city...

Magic of Gdańsk

... magical. :)
dolnoslask 6 | 3,085
13 Apr 2020 #18
Poland would be my first choice

Me too , especially in the current crisis, my wife and I feel very safe here, I could not say that about any other country that we have been to/ lived in
13 Apr 2020 #19
Where are you from, Dolno?
dolnoslask 6 | 3,085
13 Apr 2020 #20
Born and bred in the UK to Polish parents who were exiled after WWII, living the last 7 years in Lower Silesia
13 Apr 2020 #21
All right. Nice to see you settling down well in the old country. :) Wszystkiego dobrego!
Ironside 50 | 10,907
13 Apr 2020 #22
Where would a Bulgarian fit better?

Who the hell cares? It is up to said Bulgarian.
If you have enough money you will fit everywhere.
OP Zlatko
14 Apr 2020 #23
That's the thing though, most non-Western countries don't offer good salaries in academia or industries outside of outsourcing. I only see clerical or support/back office jobs advertised online, same as in my country. So it's not going to be much different, actually it's more difficult in a new country.

After 4 years experience in outsourcing in 4 different jobs (in 3 countries) I am done with this industry for good.
Spike31 2 | 2,148
15 Apr 2020 #24
Poland is my fatherland yet, thanks to our unique common history, Hungary feels like a very natural place for Poles to live and quickly accomodate abroad.

I have Hungarian friends and we've clicked instantly right from the day we've met. Before I 've started working abroad, travelling and meeting people from all over Europe I didn't know that traditional Polish-Hungarian friendship is so vibrant and alive and not only declarative and reserved for political occasions.
Ironside 50 | 10,907
15 Apr 2020 #25
don't offer good salaries

So, you don't have money ergo go to a country where you can make it more easily or stay in your own country and do you best there. Why post such an academical question here?
15 Apr 2020 #26
Hungary feels like a very natural place for Poles to live and quickly accomodate abroad

Probably. The language seems a bit of a problem though.
mafketis 24 | 9,133
15 Apr 2020 #27
The language seems a bit of a problem

It's very alien to both Polish and English ways of thinking but it's far more regular than either and once you adapt to the basic framework not so hard....

On the other hand, Hungarians are a lot less forgiving of foreigners mangling their language than Poles are. To be sure, most are quite forgiving and nice but the minority of jerks is a bit bigger..... ( it also might be influenced by Austro-Hungarian brusqueness which is very deeply ingrained there).
OP Zlatko
16 Apr 2020 #28
Well actually on my travels to Balaton they were more accommodating. Even those that didn't know English were shy but not rude about it (unlike Czechs or Germans).
OP Zlatko
18 Apr 2020 #29
Anyway, what sectors are developed in Poland?
What I'm good at and would rather do: teaching/research, journalism (IT, culture or automotive), writing, car sales, the performing arts, having some autonomy and physical movement in a job.

What I totally dislike and suck at: IT (as in support and programming), logistics, administrative jobs, clerical work, anything with Excel, Accounts payable/receivable, call center work, huge corporate offices, too much computer work.

All my qualities are in areas which require knowledge of the local language so it's smart to ask well in advance about any possibilities to do those jobs.

It's a waste of time to learn a hard language only to discover local economy pays call center and back office workers more than front office direct salesmen, uni researchers, uni teachers (and even doctors and nurses but I digress). Artsy ppl are underpaid everywhere yet they're still more important for society than a clerk at Johnson Controls imo.

This is the situation here in Bulgaria - uni students with a foreign language get more money than their profs (but less job satisfaction and outsourcing is not a career). It's hard not to feel like a servant of the West in such a meaningless job. And no, phone sales are 1000 times worse than direct F2F sales. I've done outsourcing jobs since 2017, time to think about a career change after the Covid situation is over. ;)
Spike31 2 | 2,148
18 Apr 2020 #30
Anyway, what sectors are developed in Poland?

IT, fintech and gaming industry are very developed in Poland. More developed than in the most countries of Western Europe

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