The BEST Guide to POLAND
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If you moved from US to Poland, could you please share your experience?



f stop 25 | 2,528    
12 Dec 2013  #1

it would be greatly appreciated

That is disappointing. With this influx of the Polish emigrants returning to Poland I'm hearing about, I hoped some of them would find their way here..


Wroclaw Boy    
13 Dec 2013  #2

are you thinking of moving back f stop?
Kowalski 7 | 623    
13 Dec 2013  #3

It's been over all a very good move for me to leave US for Poland, after 12 years. I still remember first days when I definitely had experienced a culture shock - everything was so familiar but at the same time alien it was. It was a great relive to be able to speak polish again, some of my first polish sentences had elements of English grammar - I've been using a lot passive voice...but words would come up out of me with joy....walking around my home town was a blast...I had this feeling of being among my own people again, would be starring at school soccer field with open jaw, walking old paths again and again - this would last for months! Being race conscious I realized polish people were racially different, had different shades of skin colour, some were Latino alike, some had Asian features, I would notice lots of American culture influence - something I don't see or notice anymore - guy waling with Oakland Raiders baseball hat, music with lyrics I could understand and judge while others could only hear the melody...It was shocking to realize people don't save water and consider it stupid to save water or electricity, I would tip American way and in fact still do; I found food to be delicious and apples with worms considered organic prove. Polish appeared to be sometimes extremely rude and customer service was a joke (attitude). Women were cleaning the table after family dinner...
OP f stop 25 | 2,528    
13 Dec 2013  #4

go on, Kowalski..

WB: I've always thought about it.
Harry 79 | 13,413    
13 Dec 2013  #5

I would tip American way and in fact still do

Please don't do that: rewarding bad service makes people think that bad service is acceptable; tip when service is good, that way you reward the good servers.
OP f stop 25 | 2,528    
13 Dec 2013  #6

You never know what's going to work, Harry, or why servers have an attitude. Maybe, they think that no matter what they do, they'll still get the same sh!tty tip? Sometimes I tip at the beginning of the service. That work especially well with the bartenders..
Szczerbaty 4 | 49    
14 Dec 2013  #7

Sometimes I wonder what it would be like for my wife if she went back. We've been here in the U.S. a short time and she is really happy, but I can guess that she misses her homeland and family. My question is just how 'wrecked' she is; she's not the Polish girl from the country side I met ten years ago.

What are you looking for fstop?
Hubertus 4 | 26    
15 Dec 2013  #8

I come from the American South, so it's a pretty big change in that everyone in Wrocław that I've met has been generally knowledgeable about the world around them: cultured, intelligent, open to different kinds of music, art, literature, and such. It's a nice change. Sometimes I meet people that are really interested in America. Sometimes, though, they have a prejudice against some American things - things that are simply customs of ours that they feel they have a right to denounce just because it's American. One of my friends thinks that all American scientists are stupid and he won't believe any kind of scientific study I show him if it's in English. I have no idea why. There seems to be some kind of popular myth about crazy American scientists, who come up with all kinds of snake-oil health remedies and such. It seems like they're confusing American scientific studies with tabloid magazine titles.

Polish people are crazy drivers, but they insist that they're good drivers and Americans are just whimps. When I'm riding with a friend, I'm always thinking things like, "We can barely see here, what if someone was in the road??" Traffic signs aren't as frequent and helpful as they are in the States, so it's not always so obvious what you need to do.

Customer service obviously is no where near what it is in the States, and just the attitude of people is different in general when dealing with strangers. I've found that it's best to always assume that no one wants to have anything to do with me and that I should consequently behave the same way as them. It's a little bit of a relief but also kind of depressing.

Polish hospitality is great of course, but I always feel so restricted in Polish households. I think the etiquette is much tighter here than back home, so I'm always worrying if I've done something wrong. It's apparently customary for a guest to decline things and try to restrain themselves when it comes to eating much. When I've had friends over and shared some food with them they insisted on doing the dishes and were always so polite - it's nice but, you know, we're college students... I would think it would be an atmosphere that's more laid back and informal.

Wrocław is great in that there's always cheap entertainment available, whether it's some special at the cinema, or a play at the theater, or some concert, stand-up routine, club specials, really all kinds of things. You can always find something to do. It's different from when I was living in the city back home and we would just sit around at someone's apartment on a weekend watching movies.

Well, there are some thoughts for you. Hopefully it helps. :P
Jardinero 1 | 380    
15 Dec 2013  #9

Thanks for sharing your experiences, Hubertus.

Customer service obviously is no where near what it is in the States

I've made the move the other way not that long ago after several years in Poland and the UK, and based on my own experiences I would argue just the opposite. I too often find customer service here focused purely on going through the motions, rude, half-assed and just plain incompetent. Poland fairs better in my opinion (UK would top the list).
ChiGrubas    
15 Dec 2013  #10

I too often find customer service here focused purely on going through the motions, rude, half-assed and just plain incompetent

What do you expect from people hired part time for $8.25 (or less,depending on a state)/h and expected to multi task?Would you give a ***** didn't.Same goes for Poland with the difference that they are paid less.
OP f stop 25 | 2,528    
15 Dec 2013  #11

Thanks all, especially Hubertus.
Meathead 5 | 475    
15 Dec 2013  #12

I've made the move the other way not that long ago after several years in Poland and the UK, and based on my own experiences I would argue just the opposite. I too often find customer service here focused purely on going through the motions, rude, half-assed and just plain incompetent. Poland fairs better in my opinion (UK would top the list).

You're in New York.
slawekk - | 18    
15 Dec 2013  #13

I moved to Poland after 15 years in the US 4 years ago. I had maintained contact visiting about every two years so it was not much of a culture shock. Of course lots of things are different here and there are things that annoy me (like smoke everywhere, burning plastics in fireplaces, customer service), but overall I consider the move a success and a right decision. I think the right motivation is the key. The main problem of course is that Poland is a much poorer country. If you want to move because you think life in the US is financially hard for you and you expect to improve your standard of living, then you will very likely to be disappointed. If you move because you value closer contact with family, you know you have means to support yourself in Poland and the material standard of living is not that important for you, then you are more likely to succeed.
Wroclaw Boy    
15 Dec 2013  #14

I too often find customer service here focused purely on going through the motions

Agreed, i find the US service completely false - all theyre after is a bigger tip, all this "you have a nice day" crap, its quite sickening after a day or two.

I think a lot of people are yearning for the simplistic cultural values that Poland offers.
jon357 70 | 12,786    
15 Dec 2013  #15

When I've been there I've found service generally very good, at least on a par with Britain, even in places where the staff are forbidden to accept tips. The difference in service styles between the English speaking world and Eastern Europe is about something more fundamental than just the money.
Dirk diggler 4 | 1,180    
15 Jun 2017  #16

[moved from]
@Polonius3

I plan to move to Poland too. Its not even just the ideological differences but the taxes inflation high CPI along with stagnant wages that drive me insane. Its difficult for an educated young male to purchase a young home or get a good paying job even with a bachelors. One of my best friend is a lawyer and he lives with 3 other guys in the city and they have to argue over whoever is going to cover tonight's pizza or the next round. Even those who work really hard in good jobs appear not to be moving forward but rather living just to pay bills and not putting any significant capital aside.

20 30 plus years ago one could become an electrician welder or whatever and support a family. Now single breadinner households are becoming more and more rare. In one way its good because it empowers women but on the other hand bad because now an extra person in the house has to work to afford the same things for the family that a single breadwinner could previously attain for the household. Even middle class trappings like a 2 story home and an annual vacation are like luxury goods now.

Some 50 years ago my grandma lived in the us and she made $7.50 an hour. That may sound like peanuts but she paid $40 a month for a 2 bedroom apartment in a middle class neighborhood.

Now a family who has a household income of 70k in NYC, San Fran, Chicago, etc can't afford to buy a home in a decent area let alone send just 1 kid to the local private college unless he or she receives a scholarship. Hell its hard to live on 100k in those cities.

Things have been going down the tubes since around 2007 and its not getting any better. Yes the government says that we only have a 5% unemployment or whatever yet when you go on bls.gov and search for the graph that shows 16 to 65 year olds not participating in the labor force along with the reasons for not participating you'll see that tens of millions of adults (I believe 80 million) simply aren't participating in the labor force and the largest group is those who aren't working simply don't want a job. Other reasons included schooling, early retirement, taking care of family, poor health, etc but by far the largest group were those who aren't working simply because they don't want to.

Quite frankly I don't blame them. Why would I flip burgers for $8 an hour if I could sit at home and have the government pay for everything. It comes out to the same as making roughly $15 an hour - or twice as much as a person would make at a McDonald's.

Well, someone has to support all this people... According to some statisticians 1 in 5 Americans are on food stamps. If they counted other forms of government aid - medicaid, welfare, rent assistance, tanf, etc I'm sure that number would be higher.



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