Living in Austria
Why should I live in Austria?
Austria is a German speaking country located in the heart of Europe. As one of the continent’s richest jurisdictions, it sits in a prime geographical position between Switzerland, Germany, Slovenia, Italy, Hungary and Lichtenstein.
Along with being well placed in terms of its easy access to a host of affluent neighbour countries, Austria is also attractive courtesy of its own strengths: covering an area of nearly 84,000 km, it provides a stretch of stunning mountainous scenery and modern cityscape which retains a historical heritage, most notably its capital Vienna, which is nestled between the Alps and has a population of just under two million.
Living in Austria brings you all the benefits which come with living in a well-developed, stable economy whilst also enabling you to enjoy the invigorating Alpine air.
Whether your dream home is a chalet, a house or a city apartment, the array of property options on the Austrian market means there is something to suit every taste and requirement. As a country humming with prosperity, Austria has experienced a steady rise in the residential property market over the past decade whilst the majority of Europe has seen a boom and bust. This may be because Vienna in particular has become a magnet for foreign property purchase, with new money flowing from emerging nations such as Russia, as part of a bigger trend along with areas such as New York, Hong Kong and Paris.
The free and public education system in Austria is very similar to its German and Swiss neighbours. There are nine years of mandatory schooling, followed by the option of various vocational and university preparatory routes. There are four years of primary/ elementary education before secondary schooling, which is then further split into two four year periods. After completing compulsory education, students may move onto tertiary education and technical college, should they not wish to pursue a university degree.
When considering entertainment in Austria, the first activity which might spring to mind is its thriving winter sports: skiing, snowboarding and tobogganing are of course very popular owing to the mountainous terrain and snowy pistes. You could also try out sailing or canoeing on its vast stretch of glassy lakes, or even mountaineering. For those who are not so sports inclined, Vienna is a hub of culture and leisure, and here you can immerse yourself in its jazz, classical or opera music scenes through attending Vienna’s various grand concert halls, then paying a visit to its many museums and theatres throughout the city.
Austria benefits from a very low crime rate and is considered a highly safe country in which to live and visit, with an effective legal and social security system which are regulated in line with EU standards and reflected through Austria’s low crime rate.
Austria has a two-tier healthcare system through which individuals can receive publically funded care; however there is also the option to purchase private health insurance. Some individuals choose to pay completely for their health care privately.
When living and in Austria, you may not have the same level of access to the healthcare system as to the local population. Consequently, it is crucial to have some professional advice on how to choose the right expatriate health insurance in Austria.
Cost of living
As well as being situated in the centre of Europe, Austria is also in the middle range in terms of costs, with a high standard of living for reasonable prices. Since joining the EU, basic food costs have increased in line with those in the rest of other member countries, with products originating from across Europe and imported from all over the world.