Living In Serbia Expat Guide – that will be the topic of today’s article.
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Have you ever thought of living in Europe? If that sounds like a yes, Serbia is one of the first things to be put into consideration. Or, you’re wondering if Serbia is in Europe, right? Of course, Serbia is a country located in the southern region of Europe, sharing borders with numerous other European countries.
This country is fun, and it offers expatriates everything needed to enjoy their relocation to a new country. Aside from that, the country offers a culturally diverse experience to foreigners. Also, you can experience a walk in the mountains to the opera and theatre. Is that what expat have to enjoy in Serbia?
Well, that’s a NO! In fact, there’s a small community of expats living in Belgrade, and they work mainly for foreign embassies. Not only is that, but the average salary in this country is nothing less than 300 Euros per month. Well, the unemployment rate is high; that’s why you need to secure a job before moving.
Those who take time to explore Serbia will find that it’s one of Europe’s best-kept secrets to date. From deep blue lakes and rivers to soaring mountains and natural beauty, the benefits of living in this country cannot be overemphasized. English is widely spoken, and learning Serbian is quite easy as well.
However, in this article, we will walk you through the pros and cons of living in Serbia as an expat. Why do you think Serbia remains one of the best expat destinations? And have you been surfing the internet to get the right information about moving to Serbia? Look no further as we’ve compiled this article to explain everything you need to know. Would you love to know more about this country? Read further!
10 Interesting Facts to Know About Serbia
Sandwiched between Hungary, Romania, North Macedonia, Bulgaria, and Montenegro, Serbia is a country that’s known as the heart of the Balkans. It’s home to several outdoor activities, countless historical relics, hearty cuisine, and many others, to mention a few.
Whether you’re planning to visit this country for vacation, or are just curious about what to expect in Serbia, here’s what we have for you. Warm, welcoming, and a hell of a lot of fun things to do will give you the life you crave for. Without further ado, below are the top 10 interesting facts about living in this country.
1. Home to World Most Expensive Cheese
Believe it or not, it’s in Serbia that you’ll see the most expensive cheese in the world. Now, to correct what you don’t know, cheese doesn’t hail from Switzerland, Italy, France, or other countries you might think of. In fact, it comes from Serbia and is made from a blend of goat and donkey milk. This is also referred to as Pule and costs a handsome 1,000 euro per kilogram.
2. Home to Europe’s Oldest Cities
What have you imagined to be the oldest city in Europe, Rome? That sounds like a wrong idea. But to tell you the fact, Serbia’s capital holds the title. With excavations showing inhabitation for at least the past 7,000 years, this is one of the best cities for seeing the oldest place in Europe today. And just outside Belgrade, you’ll undoubtedly find the oldest cultures Vinca, and Starcevo.
3. Home to a Stone Village?
In Serbia, you won’t believe there are villages completely made from the stone until you see it yourself. In south-east Serbia, you’ll find a village by the name of Gostusa, known to be a small village with a lot of historic charm and natural beauty. Thanks to the government, as it has weathered the centuries with even the roof having a stone.
4. Home to a stellar Landscape
You wouldn’t want to visit this country without taking a walk to the Serbia natural landscape. This is among the country’s natural wonders from ancient times. Also, from the famous Devil’s Town made up of over 200 natural rock towers to the Derdap Gorge that holds the title for Europe’s most immense gorge, Serbia has a lot to offer in the way of natural beauty.
5. Serbia is Home to Few Scientist
Apart from Nikola Tesla that claims to have Serbian and Croatian heritage, the country has given the world tons of great minds to date. Among these notable individuals are the world-famous physicist Mihajilo I. Pupin and mathematician. Not only is that, but there are also astronomers, geophysics, civil engineer extraordinaire, and climatologist.
6. Home to an impressive Orthodox Church
Have you ever seen a church that’s more beautiful than the one in Belgrade, Serbia? Well, if you’re reading this article, the Church of Saint Sava in the heart of Belgrade is one place to need to go. This is because; it’s known as the largest Orthodox place of worship in all the Balkans and churches in the world. Opened in 1935, this incredible church has remained one of the nation’s iconic religious symbols.
7. Serbia Is a Home Of Celebration
Serbs, as the name implies, has its definition to be a happy-go-lucky nation. The locals are cheerful, and they love to celebrate every chance they get, and there are extremely vocal about their cultures and traditions. In fact, they’d love to get you involved if you’re just coming to the country for the first time.
Even if you’re expatriates in Serbia, the locals will make sure they tag you along for all the fun. While there’ll be fireworks going off for hours, you’ll see a lot of people dancing on the streets, cars honking, which will probably go on late into the night. You can check what a typical Serbian wedding looks like to know more about this beautiful nation.
8. Hospitality, Friendship, And Family Is Incredible
Hospitality, family, and friendship are one main thing you’ll be happy about in this country. This is because; hospitality is quite essential to Serbians. In that case, even if you’re just a tourist in Serbia, you’ll be showered with kindness and affection. And this is something that perfectly translates to their food because you’ll like it when you taste it.
9. Endless Fields of Raspberries
Another interesting fact about this country is about the Raspberries. Besides, as of the time of writing this article, Serbia still remains the 4th overall country worldwide in raspberries, right behind Russia, Unites states, and Poland. Not only is that, but they also use raspberries to make a fruit preserve called slatko. So, if you ever had a chance, try and order a pancake drizzled with the delicious jam-like topping.
10. Home to a Unique Holidays
Since Serbians are known for celebrations, it shouldn’t surprise you when you see or hear tons of holidays in the country. Speaking of celebration, every Serbian family has their own unique day to celebrate their tradition. On this day, the family throws a huge feast for all their friends while investing guests and some expatriates. Not only is that, but there’s a special dessert made from boiled wheat called koljivo.
Best Places to Live In Serbia as an Expat
While many expats know this country, the number of visitors is relatively low. Those who have ventured over to the southeastern European country might have discovered the legendary nightlife of this country. In a nutshell, below are some of the best places suitable for expats to reside in the country.
Home to many outdoor activities is Serbia’s dynamic capital. This state has unmistakable energy, especially because of its vibrant café culture. Moreover, it has a stroll along the pedestrianized knez Mihailova Street. Visitors can check out the nightlife along the Sava and Danube rivers to explore the buzzing nightclubs of the country.
Until 1918, this Belgrade suburb was known to be part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. And with that, this becomes immediately obvious as you walk along the Danube and see the sort of baroque architecture typical of Budapest. Well, after checking out the morning food here, you can also take a walk to the top of the town to Gardos tower that the Hungarians built-in 1896.
● Novi Sad
As an expat, you need to have this place in mind while moving to Serbia for the first time. On warm days, we can tell you that nothing beats grabbing a sun lounger on the Danube beach by most Slobode freedom bridges. Aside from this fact, you’ll have the opportunity to explore Habsburg heritage through its fine neoclassical buildings and café-filled squares.
Subotica has been living us with tons of surprise with its architecture. While relocating to Serbia, it’s easy to think that you’ve crossed the border into Hungary when you reach this place. Aside from this fact, the Hungarian flavor in this town can be savoured in everything from bilingual Serbian/Hungarian.
Moreover, trains and buses connect to neighboring Lake Palic, which is a popular lake resort that also has a strong collection of fine art nouveau buildings. With all the facts stated above, you should know that this is one of the best places to visit in Serbia.
Zlatibor is another town to explore in Serbia. This place is suitable for expats, and it is known to have beautiful playgrounds and a collection of mountains. Not only is that, but it is famous for the glorious hiking trails and the popular mini ski resort Tornik. Moreover, for a glimpse into Serbia’s past, there’s the open-air museum of Sirogojno and many other things to explore in this beautiful town in Serbia.
Pros and Cons of Living in Serbia In 2021
Of course, every country has its benefits and disadvantages. Whether you’re planning to move to this country or just interested, you need to be aware of the pros and cons. I can confidently tell you that the advantages of living in Serbia by far outweigh the cons. Do you want to check it out yourself? Not to worry, below are some of the pros and cons of living in Serbia as an expat.
1. IT Tax Advantage
Both the expats and the locals enjoy the tax advantage in this country. As research disclosed, the capital city, Belgrade, has become one of the finest and technologically advanced cities in Europe. With the research, each year, the national employment service publishes various incentives for the employment of new staff, both locals and foreigners.
2. Incredible culture and Lifestyle
Serbia has become the best country in Europe known for its culture, forests, vibrant lifestyles, relaxed environment, superb mountain escapes, and many other things, to mention a few. Aside from this fact, the countryside also has a lot to offer expatriates with its abundance of places to experience traditional life in the country. Moreover, they bring their historical uniqueness and relaxed pace for expats to enjoy.
3. Excellent Educational System
Undoubtedly, Serbia education is known in Europe because they have a rich history of tertiary education for local and international students. According to the Shanghai University list, the University of Belgrade was founded in 1808, which has been ranked severally as the top three hundred universities globally.
In addition, there are various international primary and secondary schools in this country. Some of the notable ones include; American schools, Russian, French, and British schools. However, their tuition fees are lower compared to other schools you might think of in Western Europe.
4. Best Healthcare System
The national healthcare insurance fund manages all the health in Serbia for all citizens and permanent residents. Meanwhile, in 2020, the research disclosed that the EU offered about 250 million Euros to reconstruct and construct twenty large hospitals across the country. Aside from this fact, the healthcare system in Serbia has been ranked thirty-third globally, providing world-class facilities and patient care, making the country an attractive place for expats to live and enjoy their lifestyle.
5. Serbia Economic Landscape
The economic landscape has contributed to what makes this country one of the finest and technologically advanced in Europe. Here, there are several urban renewal development projects headed by the government of Serbia, which is aimed at improving Belgrade’s cityscape and economy by revitalizing several areas along the promenade. More so, Serbia has increased its global economic trade.
6. Love for Sports
So, if it happens that you’re looking for one of the countries to reside in Europe, Serbia should be on your list. And moreover, they are actively known for participating in different kinds of sports activities in the world. But nowadays, you cannot see kids playing outside because technology has taken over their free time. But be rest assured that there are memories that warrant different kinds of sports in Serbia.
7. Opportunity to Explore Mind-blowing Nature
Of course, if you love adventure, Serbia has it all. And for the fact that life in this country is better, you’ll have the opportunity to explore mind-blowing nature at the grasp of your hand. During this process, you’ll get to meet a hundred new friends immediately. This way, you can play and have fun with the locals.
1. Corrupt Government Officials
Bribery and corruption is one major problem of living in Serbia as an expat. As an expat, you’ll experience more while living in this country. So, if you don’t want your credentials or goods to get missing, you may need to bribe anyone that’s ready to offer help during your stay in the country.
2. High Crime Rates
You’ll also experience high crime rates while living in Serbia as an expat. We can tell you that Belgrade and other cities are relatively safe, but it’s better to be prepared for any mafia act operating in the country. To ensure that you’re safe, we have compiled some of the tips to travel to Serbia today.
3. Restrictions and Local Laws
Travelers or expats living in this country are subject to local laws, and foreign laws may be different from what you’re used to backing to home. Not only is that, but it is prohibited to take pictures of the old annex to the Ministry of Defense building or the old Ministry of the Interior building in the country.
On the other hand, you need to be careful as an expat if you want to take street photography. Besides, it would be better as for permission first. At the same time, possession or dealing of drugs is punished with strict penalties, usually including a prison term.
Top 5 Travelling Tips to Serbia in 2021
More and more expats are plunging into the weird and wonderful world of Serbia every year. Now, the question is, are you ready to relocate to this country? If that sounds like a yes, there are many things to consider. At first, check out the five traveling tips we have compiled in this article.
a) Understanding Serbia Visa
Your visa is one of the first things you should have in mind. There are different types of visas available for expats wanting to relocate to this country. If you’re hoping to stay for more than three months or less than a year, the temporary visa is what you need. So, ensure you inquire about the visa before relocating.
b) Employment Standpoint in Serbia
Have you ever heard of the employment standpoint in Serbia? Of course, it allows expats to move to the country without disturbance from a third party. So, if you think you’ll be able to rock up in Serbia and find a job easy peasy, don’t be surprised that you’re going to be in for a rude awakening.
c) Language Barrier
Getting to grasps with the country’s language can also be a barrier to living in Serbia as an expat. This way, it’s quite essential to understand some basics about the Serbian language before planning to relocate to the country. In fact, teaching their language has become some of the primary sources of income for the locals.
d) Where to Live Is Essential
While you’re planning your relocation, ensure you take a look at the best cities or areas mentioned above. Most expats take this as their secondary need, but you need to plan ahead. So, if you truly want to enjoy your lifestyle as an expats in Serbia, know the right place suitable for you to live.
e) Know Your Budget
The cost-effectiveness of Serbia as an investment destination is another thing that’d make you have a budget plan. If you want to live in the capital city, you should at least be financially buoyant enough to live an exorbitant lifestyle. Therefore, put all these things into consideration before relocating to Serbia.
Frequently Asked Questions about Living in Serbia
Is Serbia a good place to place?
Of course, Serbia is a good place to live because it is characterized by reasonably priced housing. According to our city rankings, Serbia is an excellent place to live because it has high ratings when it comes to the cost of living, tolerance, and safety.
What’s the average salary in Serbia?
As of today’s digital world, we can tell you that the average salary in this country is currently $1,970 per month or, let’s say, $23,540 a year for a salaried job and about $11.32 an hour for hourly jobs. The amount increased by 3 percent in 2018, and there’s going to be a continuous increase in the years to come.
Are taxes high in this country?
Well, the Serbian taxation system belongs to the group of jurisdictions with the lowest tax rates in Europe. So, be rest assured that you won’t be drained out if you’re an expat that’s coming to the country for the first time.
Does Serbian speak English?
Of course, you’ll definitely see expats speaking the English language in the country. But, as we discussed earlier, it’s quite essential to learn the basics of the Serbian language to know a bit. Besides, learning the basics can prevent you from paying an unnecessary bribe to the locals you meet on your way.
Living in Serbia could be your best decision today. For the fact that this country is not a widespread trend, you need to visit the place. Serbia offers a low cost of living, incredible nightlife, outdoor activities, and many other things, to mention a few. Should in case you want to know more, refer to this guide.