I need advice

Discussion in 'Expat Life' started by ltcolturner, Feb 27, 2004.

  1. ltcolturner

    ltcolturner New Member


    I am going through alot. I live in North Carolina and started to date an exchange student from czech. We got serious over a few months and now I love her. She has to go back in 4 months and she has asked me to go with her. I want to but if I go I am giving up all I worked for here. Am I wrong in thinking that? I want to be with her and God knows that her country is beutifull. I hope I don't make a wrong choice.
  2. praguegirl

    praguegirl Member

    I am not going to advice you. I think you alone know what to feel to her.
    I can only ensure you that this country is very beautiful and it is interesting to live here. Only one thing - I am sure Czech life and culture is other than in US. But I think love and respect solve and help to cross every obstacle.
    Good luck! :)
  3. maartenv

    maartenv Well-Known Member

    Well, living in the Czech republic isn't easy. The saleries you are used to are much lower there.

    I don't know what your occupation is, but an average Truck driver would make some 28.000 Kč a month. The Prime minister makes 102.000 a month, and an employee working at minimum wage in a supermarket only 6700 Kč a month. These are not the net incomes, so substract 30 - 40% and you have your net income.

    Living costs are much cheaper than in western countries, and rent for your house would most likely be subsidised, so if you're lucky you'll end up paying 2000 Kč a month. This would not be easy to acchieve for a newcomer, so expect to pay much more.

    Normal things you need for living will be cheap referring to western standards, and normal for the average Czech. Luxury articles such as houshold equipment can even be more expensive than at home. Same for gas for your car.

    Then there might be a language problem, a great deal of unemployment and so on. These are some things to consider.

    On the other hand it is possible, and you could give it a try. Over 10 milion Czech people do it every day. Around Prague there are many multinationals with lot's of western employees. If you could get a job there, it would be the best.

    Your advantage is to have your girlfriend as a native Czech. She knows the how and abouts of the country, and can use her people network to help you out. Once you get to know Czech people, you'll find them kind and alway's willing to help out. Having networks is essential. I won't call it corruption, but it helps to know people in example healthcare to get better service.

    There are three options here. One way is to go and leave everything behind, as you have suggested. You'll be able to make it there, but it requires hard work and a bit of luck. The second thing you could do, is find a way to test it out for half a year, leaving the chance open to return.
    And how about staying where you are now a little longer. Take some time off, and spend a holiday there. This way your girlfriend can meet friends and family again, and you'll know a bit more what to expect. After returning from your visit, you both can make plans to emigrate to the Czech republic anyway.

    If you can take some savings with you, it's relatatively easy, since the cost of living is lower. It buy's you time to learn the language, and get a job. If you don't have that I'dd suggest to aquire some, it's hard to do without.

    I'm having a big chance to move to the Czech Republic for my work. I hope to hear more the next month. One of my requirements to go is to have a western salary, so I can return to the Netherlands in an normal way. This would mean that I won't spend much money in the CZ, and save. That way I pay some money from savings, combined with a loan for buying a house when I return. If I decide to stay, I'm a lucky sun of a .....:p

    If you need more information, please respond here on the forum. It will be interesting for the others to read as well.

    I sincerely hope I did not scare you off, since it's my dream to move there too. I would admire your courage if you'dd take the chance and go. Oh yeah, one more thing . . . . Love blinds, but it can be a beatifull thing too!
  4. maartenv

    maartenv Well-Known Member

    Any news?

  5. ondrejana

    ondrejana Well-Known Member


    Hello. I am a reader of your advice to this American fellow living in North Carolina. My husband Ondrej and I are so amazed at how kind and at how truthful you are about Czech salaries and about how difficult the life is there with differential in pay.

    North Carolinans, on the whole, do not make so much money themselves. We live in California where we are fortunate enough to have higher pay in our jobs, but my husband right now is unemployed. I work as a nurse for children at a big, reputable hospital.

    We thank you for your kind heart and how much you like to help people. This is truly nice!

    We will go to Praha for our late late honeymoon trip in May. Are very excited as Ondrej escaped from CSSR in 1985 and has only been home to his country one time since.

    Take care! We are new to this site and message boards...


  6. maartenv

    maartenv Well-Known Member

    Hi Ana and Ondrej,

    Thank you for your kind words! It was nice to read, but I consider it the next normal thing to give the info.

    I've only visited the Czech Republic several times for holiday's. The heart of my message comes from my own expierince, but most of the practical information is gathered by me via my own search for information. I found the Dutch Czech forum to be my best source. It's in Dutch, so no use for ya all. (I interface some info between here and there, so you don't miss it all :) )

    I thought it was nice to read and learn there, and if nobody would have posted the info, I wouldn't have known most of the content in my own posting here myself!

    That's the whole Idea! of a forum. Sharing info, reading and enjoying while not posting!

    I pass your thanks on to all people who post info. Mine is as good as any one elses. And thanks to the people behind the forum, they have moved a mauntain of work to make it possible for us to post and read!

    For me the only limitation is time to post, and read. Most of my effort goes into the dutch forum, but there are also new / other things here for me to enjoy!

    The admins and moderators have provided us members with the tool to share. It's up to us all to use it a lot! There will only be winners then!


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