Destination: Austrian Alps
France and Spain are the obvious choice for many people looking to move to Europe for retirement. The slow pace of living, abundance of wine, good food and warm weather make these two countries a popular choice. However, Austria can offer all of these things and more. Vienna has been named the city with the highest quality of living in Europe and it is no surprise when you find out exactly what Austria has to offer.
First and foremost, Austria has a sophisticated healthcare system. When healthcare is a priority, as it is during old age, it is a necessity that you choose a country with a fantastic service. Once a resident has been assigned a GP it is generally the case that you can be seen without an appointment, with a wait no longer than one hour. If the patient needs to see a specialist, generally they are seen within a few days or alternatively, the wait will be no longer than one week.
As mentioned already, the quality of living is a lot better to other European countries. Living in Austria is about 70% of the cost of living in London, so considerably less expensive. The housing market offers houses in main cities if you would like to be in the hustle and bustle, but also for the keen skiers and snowboarders you can also purchase a chalet in the Alps which would be perfect if you enjoy winter sports. Austria is famous for its abundance of ski resorts such as Zillertal, Mayrhofen and Sankt Anton to name but a few. The Salzburg area alone is home to more than 100 winter sports resorts. It is not only possible to get involved in skiing and snowboarding but you can also take part in tobogganing and sleigh rides in the snow.
Austria has a beautiful landscape in the winter and the summer months. In the summer temperatures are usually between 25 and 35 degrees Celsius and there are many ways to see the impressive countryside. Austria is famous for its mountain trains which take you on a journey through the mountain ranges exploring the wild. Austria’s transport system is excellent and if you are someone who likes to ramble a little you can do so with ease. Their system is very sophisticated and ‘links up’ very well through making sure buses meet trains and vice versa. Their public transport is also clean, air conditioned and comfortable. Due to Austria’s central location, it has strong public transport and motorway links with other nearby countries such as Germany, Italy, Slovenia and Hungary.
Austria is a highly cultured country, with Mozart, Lehar and Strauss all originating from there. They have an established Opera culture and they put a lot of emphasis on the classical art forms. They are very interested in music and also food and drink. Austrian wine, although not as well-known as French or Spanish wine, their wine production is also very established having been made for in excess of 3000 years. Austrian beer is similar to German and there are many varieties available, all ranging from your standard lager, to Weissbier, Hefeweizen and Dunkelbier, all with very different flavours for various palettes. The most common Austrian beer is similar to the German Märzen which dominates at events such as Oktoberfest. They are also incredibly proud of their cuisine. Apfelstrudel is a famous Austrian sweet pastry which you can find everywhere, Sachertorte is another famous patisserie they enjoy very much; which resembles a chocolate cake, and lastly, they are famous for their Wiener schnitzel, which is veal coated in breadcrumbs and can be found in most traditional restaurants. Austria is also famous for their Christmas markets (Weihnachtsmarkt) where they sell delicious food, mulled wine (Glühwein) and other festive knick-knacks.
If moving to Austria sounds interesting to you, why not take a look at our website www.immigrationintoeurope.com where you can find more information, and please contact us should you have any questions regarding this route to permanent residency. Austria is waiting for you!