All you need to know before moving to Luxembourg

 

 

It is one of Europe’s smallest sovereign states, but the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg has emerged as a powerful country.

Luxembourg has the second highest per capita GDP in the world with a vibrant economy dependent on banking, steel and industrial sectors. Its productive agricultural sector is highly subsidised by the EU and government.

In past decades, the country's wealth was based on steel manufacturing with the ArcelorMittal group headquartering there: considered the number one steel company in the world. Today, with the decline of the steel industry, Luxembourg fearlessly diversified to make a name as an international financial and banking centre; it is home to 152 banks as of March 2009. Banking has become the largest sector of Luxembourg's economy. Moreover, there is a favourable climate for foreign investments that has effectively attracted medium, light and high-tech industry. US companies are major foreign investors bringing in big-name players like Goodyear, DuPont, and Guardian Industries.

Luxembourg's total landmass is 82 kilometres long and 57 kilometres wide with a population of 493,500 (January 2009). Luxembourg is landlocked by Germany to the east, France to the south and Belgium to the west and north. Aptly dubbed as the "Green Heart of Europe," Luxembourg is famous for its splendid scenery. Expats will find a land of heavily forested hills that display fascinating medieval castles and picturesque villages. Its prominent landmark is the Green Hills of Ardennes - a heartland of deep wooded valleys. Expats will appreciate the real beauty of Luxembourg on a warm day between the months of May and October.

Expats looking for the good life and a well-compensated job should start making their way to Luxembourg. In addition to being a wealthy country,  Luxembourg is also one of the safest countries in the world.

Essential relocation information

Landlocked in Western Europe, Luxembourg is a country famed for having a rich heritage of kings and castles as well as vast landscapes of natural beauty. Expats who are going to relocate in this country will not only face prosperous possibilities but will also experience deep-seated cultural influences from powerful nations such as France and Germany. 

Luxembourg is one of the smallest countries in the world with only a total land area of 1,000 square miles. But do not be deceived by its tiny size because this nation is huge when it comes to wealth and role in the global community. Luxembourg is one of the founding members of the European Union, NATO and its capital Luxembourg City is the headquarters of the European Court of Justice, the most important judicial institution of the EU. Currently, the country’s total population is only a little over half a million where 44% is comprised of foreign nationals, and 65% of its local workforce is made up of expats.

Preparations 

Visa 

Foreign nationals coming from any European Union member states are not required to prepare a visa, either for short-term or long-term when planning on relocating to Luxembourg. There are two types of Luxembourg visa for expats who are from non-EU countries. First is short-term or also known as the Schengen Visa (valid for three months) and the long-stay or resident visa which normally requires a longer time to prepare since an expat can not apply for this unless they have a work permit. These visas need to be acquired at the appropriate embassy/consulate at applicant’s home country along by presenting several documents such as: 

  • Passport valid for at least three months
  • Six or more passport-sized photos
  • A work permit or any proof that the applicant’s employer has already applied for a work permit
  • Accomplished application forms

Moving your belongings

Expats relocating to Luxembourg rarely find shipping their possessions difficult because of regulations that are quite few and simple to follow, especially with the help of professional removal companies.

For documentation, one simply needs to submit his Passport, Work Permit and a Certificate of Residence issued by the commune where one will be staying in Luxembourg. Also, a Customs Declaration in French and a Medical Certificate will be required.

Expats who are shipping their household and personal goods will not be charged any duties as long as these have been in the shipper's possession for at least six months before arriving in Luxembourg. The shipper also has to present a Certificate of Residence proving that he has relocated to the country.

Dutiable and restricted items include alcoholic drinks and new furniture while those that will never be accepted into the country are guns and ammunition, illegal drugs, and endangered animals or products derived from them. For a more detailed list of these items, one may ask movers in Luxembourg who can supply all the necessary information regarding shipping to this country.

For motor vehicles, duties may be waived when the shipper can prove his transfer of residence to Luxembourg and that he has owned the vehicle for at least six months.

Some documents for motor vehicle imports will be required, including the original title of the vehicle and an insurance certificate covering the last six months.

Overseas shipping rules and regulations may change from time to time. Hence, it is best to hire experts in removals to Luxembourg for a smooth, hassle-free import.

How to live like a local

Luxembourg is the perfect destination for expats who want to pursue a fruitful career in a cosmopolitan that is surrounded by vast recreational spaces and Ardennes forests. This landlocked country located in Western Europe is the perfect example of a country that gears towards modernisation without sacrificing its natural beauty. 

With total inhabitants of a little over 500,000 and land area of 2,586 square metres, Luxembourg is considered as a small nation compared to its neighbouring countries such as Germany. Losing a huge portion of its territory to Belgium in 1983 didn’t stop Luxembourg from rising to power. 

This country is one of the founders of the European Union, NATO and United Nations. Today, Luxembourg ranks as the second highest earner of Gross Domestic Product per capita in the world with a total revenue of $102,900. Expats moving here will not just be a part of an innovative and stable economy but also benefit from a very high quality of life. 

Weather 

Almost all regions in Luxembourg experience the same type of climate since the country is just relatively small. Expats moving here shouldn’t forget to pack rain gears or waterproof garments because it rains all year round especially in the month of November. Winters occur in January where the temperature is around 32⁰F. Summer is the best time of the year in Luxembourg and usually starts in July. During this season, people gather on the beaches while enjoying a sip of the country’s best wine and beer. 

Aside from clothes for the rainy season, some of the musts have of every expat are lightweight clothing that’ll keep them cool during summer. It is also best to pack some warm garments for winter to shield them from the cold. Overall, Luxembourg has a temperate maritime climate where the winters are just cool enough, and the summers are not too hot for people to enjoy the sunshine. 

Daily Necessities 

The overall cost of living in Luxembourg is pretty high, and one should not be surprised if the price tags of the products in the grocery are expensive. However, expats have several options when it comes to the sources of their daily necessities that’ll enable them to maximise their budget. 

There are three major supermarkets in Luxembourg:

The operating hours of most establishments in the country are from 8am to 8pm from Mondays to Fridays or until 9pm during Fridays and Saturdays. Expats will also find thrift stores, shopping centres and farmers markets scattered across the country that shelf both local and imported products as well as a variety of fresh produce. 

Restaurant and Dining 

Expats have a long list of restaurants to try during weekends or on those days when they don’t feel like cooking. On the top of the list is the Restaurant La Distillerie in Bourglinster where people enjoy local cuisine while dining on a castle like a royal. There is also Clairefontaine in Luxembourg City, a lovely terraced restaurant located in the heart of the country that serves a variety of seafood and meat dishes. 

Those who want to eat at an affordable price can try Maybe not Bob’s at 107 Rue de la Tour Jacob in Clausen's where the best burgers are served. There is also the Mousel’s Cantine in the same area where expats can order authentic local and French dishes. When it comes to nightlife, the best place to be in Luxembourg is in Les Rives de Clausen, an old street of warehouses turned into bars, clubs and restaurants. They can also go to the city centre which is one of the most popular tourist's spot for partying and a local favourite of those who are looking for nightclubs.

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