Where Should We Go? Part 2

If you didn’t start at the beginning of this series, you can read the first part here: Where Should We Go? Part 1

Option 2: Bucharest, Romania

Pros

  • Cost. The cost of living difference between our current location and Bucharest is huge.
    • Indices Difference Info
      Consumer Prices in Jacksonville, FL are 93.26% higher than in Bucharest
      Consumer Prices Including Rent in Jacksonville, FL are 106.27% higher than in Bucharest
      Rent Prices in Jacksonville, FL are 153.02% higher than in Bucharest
      Restaurant Prices in Jacksonville, FL are 99.60% higher than in Bucharest
      Groceries Prices in Jacksonville, FL are 132.39% higher than in Bucharest
      Local Purchasing Power in Jacksonville, FL is 156.42% higher than in Bucharest
    • See the full comparison chart here.

  • Business opportunities.  The reason Bucharest made the list is because Romeo’s new business is going to require some stellar programmers in the beginning months.  Romania, Ukraine and other Eastern European romania mapcountries have a great employment pool when it comes to competent and affordable programmers.
  • Proximity to awesome travel.  Being in Romania would allow for travel to some European cities.  This is much more reasonable and affordable when the difference in the cost of living is so huge.
  • Length of Stay.  Romania is outside the Schengen region  of Europe.  We would not be required to leave the country for 90 days  as we would with many other European choices.
Cons
  • No Beach. Not the end of the world, but it would be nice to have the beach.
  • Language.  Probably the biggest concern.  Apparently, if you can speak Spanish, it is pretty easy to understand the other romance languages.  However, English isn’t as widely spoken as it is in other countries and it might be hard to get around without speaking the language.
  • The Weather.  Coming from Florida, this is a pretty big deal.  Compare degrees in Fahrenheit:bucharest
    • Average high/low January 65/41, April 79/55, July 92/73, October 80/61 in Jacksonville, Florida
    • Average high/low January 37/23, April 64/41, July 86/59, October 64/41 in Bucharest, Romania

As you can see, Romania is not a clear winner either, although we are beginning to narrow the requirements.  We want the beach, we want a lower cost of living and we need to live somewhere that isn’t going to freeze our Southern blood.  So what should we consider next?

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5 thoughts on “Where Should We Go? Part 2

  1. I’m pretty sure Romania also has some visa requirements. It might even be stricter than Schengen zone for all I know. It is quite cheap, yes. Is Berlin on your list?

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    1. I had some friends really recommend parts of Romania in particular the sea front in Constanta. We heard fantastic things about Brasov as well. It’s fairly easy to get a longer than 90 day visa from what I heard. Especially as I planned to support the local economy by hiring Romanian nationals.

      I love the idea of Germany, however the cost seems prohibitive. It’s hard to find the exact costs of a 3BR apartment in Berlin. But just looking at Numbeo it seems like it’s just slightly lower than what we pay in the states. But we’re looking for an experience, and also saving money from stateside living. They sure make it tempting with the freelance visa though. If the biz flames out, I can always freelance and make quite good money, so Germany might then become more tempting.

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      1. The Numbeo prices have a catch in them. Many are probably supplied by expats, who tend to be renting/buying in the expensive part of town. A huge city like Berlin will have apartments for any budget, and living in the suburbs has its benefits, with the German public transport the downtown is still within easy reach. You’d have to compromise somewhere, so its of course your choice what you make count the most.

        Doing business in places like Romania and Bulgaria has its upsides, but can be challenging due to cultural differences and corruption. Not sure how that impacts software businesses, but its sure something to keep in mind.

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  2. Long term stay in Berlin(a year+) is definitely do able. The prices are quite good in that case. But for short term 3 months or so, it can get very pricey. But I do have to say the freelancing visa is just a killer idea, I wish there were more options like that worldwide.

    Some of my ideas of what I want are a little different than the red-head. I’ll probably have a companion post somewhere.

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