Moving to Vienna
Connected to three other major European capital cities by the waters of the Danube, Vienna has historically been a centre for culture, arts, science and commerce. This long standing tradition has continued into the 21st century and led to Vienna’s current ranking by the Economist as the world’s second most liveable city.
The City of Music, Vienna has been home to Strauss, Mozart, Haydn, Beethoven, Schubert, Brahms, Mahler and Schoenberg. The Vienna State Opera is a major European landmark as well as one of the most renowned operas in the world. A variety of theatres, museums and architecture add to the rich cultural tapestry and over 200 19th century style balls per year flaunt its style and sophistication.
The capital and most populous city of Austria, Vienna’s economy is dominated by banking and insurance. It also has a large manufacturing sector, is the country’s main education centre, provides a home to the government and hosts several international bodies such as UN agencies, the IAEA and OPEC.
Moving to Vienna will allow you to enjoy one of the cleanest, most efficient and most beautiful cities in the world in an environment of low unemployment, low pollution and very high standards of living.
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Moving to Vienna from the UK
As an EU citizen a Brit will have no trouble moving to and working in Vienna from an administrative point of view. From a lifestyle point of view you’ll find it much easier to integrate if you speak German. While the native population generally speak an Austro-Bavarian dialect of German, standard German is universally understood and is used as a lingua franca.
You can take a course in German for as little as €250 for four weeks’ tuition with the DeutschAkademie.
For children too old to begin German speaking kindergarten there are many international schools to choose from including the Vienna International School and the IB World School. Fees for these schools exceed €15,000 (£12,900) per annum.
Vienna’s public transport system is excellent. There is an extensive network of trams, buses, trains and U-Bahn lines which render automobiles unnecessary for most.
House prices in Vienna are only now beginning to slow after nine years of continuous rises. Prices range from €2,500 to €3,298 per square metre, making Vienna an expensive city for property by global standards though still much cheaper than London.
You can rent a three bedroom apartment in the city centre for around €1,500 (£1,275) per month.
Comparing Vienna vs London
Vienna’s climate is prone to greater extremes than London’s. Summer high temperatures average 25 °C, two degrees higher than in London, while winter lows average -2 °C, four degrees lower than in London. Unlike in the UK capital, in the Austrian capital you’re guaranteed significant snowfall in the winter. You will however see less rainy days and more hours of sunshine.
Restaurants, utility bills, groceries and transportation will all cost less in Vienna than in London, in addition to lower rents and property prices.
Viennese residents also report greater feelings of safety, higher standards of healthcare, lower commute times and less pollution.
Culturally, Vienna is a major rival to London in terms of high art - the Philharmonic Orchestra, Ballet and Burgtheater all enjoy world renown - but is understandably lacking in the diversity and variation found in a city with four times the population.
Lovers of historical architecture will enjoy styles from the Romanesque (Ruprechtskirche) and Baroque (Karlskirche), through the classical to Art Nouveau (the Secession) and modern.
Viennese cuisine is famous for Wiener Schnitzel and sumptuous cakes and desserts. Street vendors of sausages, kebabs and pizza are complemented nicely by five restaurants carrying Michelin stars.