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Why Do 1 in 3 Brits Want to Emigrate and Live Abroad?

Leading pollsters Gullup, who have been studying human nature and behaviour globally for over 75 years, have combined the results of their 2010 studies in the UK relating to migration trends and opinions, and determined that one in three Britons would like to emigrate and live abroad if they had the opportunity to do so.  This makes Brits the most dissatisfied with their current lives out of all Europeans.

So what is it that makes us Brits unhappy with life in the UK, and what drives us to believe that we could have a better life abroad?  We have taken the findings from Gallup and combined them with some research of our own by speaking to a Expatra target group of would-be expats currently living in the UK, all of whom are actively planning a relocation overseas in the short to medium term, to help determine what makes us Britons have such itchy feet.

If you’re back at work now after the Christmas break and you’re feeling fed up and in need of a change of scene – perhaps more permanently than in the form of a short holiday – read on and see if you can relate to what our readers have told us, and what Gallup’s findings show us in relation to why one in three Britons would like to up sticks and live overseas.

Gallup’s findings show that whilst so very many Britons are unhappy with their lives in the UK, only 2% polled were actively planning their move in the next 12 months.  They suggest a ‘malaise’ on the part of those who would like to leave but who are not taking steps towards changing their lives – however, from speaking to our own readers we would say this is a little unfair.

According to our research, many Britons have it in mind to relocate but at a non-defined future date, perhaps nearer retirement for example.  It is not the case that one in three Britons don’t like UK but only 2% can be bothered to do anything about it!  From speaking to our target group we understand that to emigrate with the greatest chances of success, research and effort has to go into planning the move well in advance of it.

Naturally this is absolutely accurate – after all, Britons who want to relocate have to find work, a new home and perhaps even schools for their children and a community abroad where they will be able to integrate relatively smoothly.

Of those who want to relocate most, Gallup determine that they are well educated professionals of working age – i.e., perhaps the number one demographic that absolutely has to get the move right in terms of finding well paying work abroad to support their move.  As anyone who has even just dreamed of living abroad knows, to find work overseas is not necessarily easy, and this could be one of the main reasons why so many would like to make the move, but why so few are actively planning a relocation within the next 12 months.

Gallup’s own findings also reveal some of the factors driving us Britons to be so dissatisfied with our lives in the UK.  According to their research the following is true: –

“A closer look at those who would like to go reveals dissatisfaction with not only economic conditions, but also with conditions in local communities.  Those who say they would like to migrate, for example, are more likely to be dissatisfied with their communities as places to live in general and with aspects of their local infrastructure such as the quality of the local schools and their roads and highways.

“They are also less likely to approve of their local leadership and trust their local police.  The daily wellbeing of Britons who express a desire to leave their country also tends to be slightly worse than that of those who would like to stay. Would-be migrants are more likely to report experiencing a lot of stress, worry, and anger the day before the survey, and are less likely to report experiencing a lot of enjoyment, feeling well-rested, or having the opportunity to learn something interesting.”  SOURCE: Gallup.com

In speaking to our target group about these comments and findings, we learn that 83% strongly agree and 100% agree that finding the right community to move to live in abroad will be critical to them if they are to improve upon their current living standards and lifestyle.

An overall assessment of Gallup’s findings and the feelings of our target group brings us to the conclusion that many Britons remain unhappy with their lifestyle in the UK, but that it is not easy to find a nation and a new life abroad where the grass will definitely be greener.

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