Expats moving to Belgium often have questions about what life will be like in their new home. Below are answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about living in Belgium.

Should I learn to speak another language in Belgium?

Depending on where one settles in Belgium, learning French, Dutch, or even German could be beneficial. Brussels is a bilingual city, and the majority of its citizens speak either French or Dutch. While most English-speaking expats moving to the city will find they can get by without learning another language, doing so can improve communication and integration and help gain favour with locals.

Is Belgium a good place to raise children?

Belgium is a great place to raise children. The communities are safe, and the education system is excellent. There are also plenty of international schools in Belgium, particularly in Brussels. Public medical facilities are world-class, and the quality of life in Belgium is second to none.

How safe is Belgium?

Belgium is generally safe, but like any country, it experiences incidents of crime. Petty crimes such as muggings and pickpocketing can occur, particularly in Brussels, at major railway stations and on public transport. More serious crimes are less common but still possible. The best way for expats to avoid becoming victims is to be aware of their surroundings and keep valuables out of sight.

What is the cost of living like in Belgium?

The cost of living in Belgium can vary depending on the city or region. Brussels and other major cities usually have a higher cost of living than smaller towns and rural areas. However, the cost of living in Belgium is largely considered moderate compared to other Western European countries. Expats should be aware of costs for housing, utilities, groceries, transport and healthcare when planning their budget.

How do taxes work for expats in Belgium?

Expats living and working in Belgium are generally subject to Belgian income tax. The tax system in Belgium is progressive, with high-income earners paying a larger percentage of tax. Expats should familiarise themselves with the tax system, including any tax treaties between Belgium and their home country to avoid double taxation. It is highly recommended to consult a tax professional to ensure compliance with Belgian tax regulations.

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