Living in Holland...

Living in Holland...

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The Nur

Original Poster:

9,168 posts

149 months

Friday 2nd November 2012
quotequote all
I may be visiting Holland, Arnhem to be specific, for a potentially extended period in the new year.

Not being a particularly well qualified chap I am wondering if employment for British, non-Dutch speakers is a possibility and whether a living wage is achievable? I appreciate that realistically I will be restricted to bar jobs and their ilk but I have experience in a small number of fields that I could apply myself to. I am interested to know if anybody on here could possibly shed some light on the situation for me?

Anybody got any similar experiences?

Any and all input is greatly appreciated

spikeyhead

12,397 posts

161 months

Friday 2nd November 2012
quotequote all
I've worked just south of there, but doing a very technical job. A lot of the big technical companies use English as their primary language.

I can't imagine being able to get a job doing barwork if you don't speak Dutch.

DodoRacing

539 posts

171 months

Friday 2nd November 2012
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In my view, for any job where you would have to interact with the public, you need to speak reasonable Dutch. That applies to most entry level jobs as well, except for working at international organizations and possibly multinational companies. It's relatively easier to find a job at management level as an English (only) speaker.

The Nur

Original Poster:

9,168 posts

149 months

Friday 2nd November 2012
quotequote all
Thanks very much guys, if I am honest you have pretty much confirmed what I thought. My reasoning behind this is that my girlfriend is an exchange student here who is returning to Holland at the end of January so I am thinking about going over to stay with her for a while but my funding doesn't really allow me to stay there without working in some way. It is one of those hopelessly romantic situations in which I can't bear to see her go and she doesn't want to leave me here but circumstance seems to be intent on splitting us up. Perhaps it would be better to face facts and just deal with it but I am always one to try to find a way around circumstance if possible.

With regards to not speaking Dutch I am learning but I doubt that I will be able to learn enough in the time that I have, perhaps I will just go over for a week or so and see what happens when I get there. Test the waters so to speak. On the other hand, I could just really try and push hard to get a better knowledge of Dutch as a language, hell it may even click one day.

The funny thing is that I have been tempted by living in Holland/on the continent for 10 years or so, the place just has a natural attraction to me for some reason and now that I have a Dutch girlfriend it seems to make sense that I should make the leap and try it while I am still relatively young. As with most things in my life though there seem to be insurmountable hurdles to overcome.

Once again, thank you very much for your input, it is truly appreciated.

The Nur

Original Poster:

9,168 posts

149 months

Friday 2nd November 2012
quotequote all
A lex said:
I'd say its possible, but far from guaranteed and likely to be hard work.
In my opinion, all the best things in life are smile

The Nur

Original Poster:

9,168 posts

149 months

Saturday 3rd November 2012
quotequote all
A lex said:
Learning basic Dutch - enough to pass as a waiter or barman should be possible in a few weeks on a good, intensive course. They arent cheap though.

There are several national job agencies specialising in English speak staff - a Google should find them.... UnDutchables is one from the top of my head. All of my friends partners who wanted work, found it - but like I say the Maastricht area is quite heavily populated with Multinationals and international Universities etc.

If you really cant make the residing/working thing happen, commuting to NL from the UK is pretty damn easy and not expensive..... work 3 days in the UK and come to NL for 4 days in the week...........
Hmm, how about a few months with a natural Dutch speaker? Thanks for the input A lex. I have perused some of the jobsites you describe in your post, as someone who doesn't hold a degree I get the feeling that I may be at a disadvantage to pretty much everyone else with the same idea smile

I think I will just have to try my best with the language for the next few months, go over, see what happens and see if I can make it float. You never know, it might just work out or it might just end up as a stressful holiday biggrin

markcollings7890

130 posts

102 months

Saturday 3rd November 2012
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A lex said:
It's possible.

I have colleagues with ex-pat wives who have managed to land stuff with various multinationals.

The big Irish pub in Maastricht has several English only staff, but Maastricht itself is a bit of a special case as its got a massive international University.

I'd say its possible, but far from guaranteed and likely to be hard work.
Why will it be hard work?

Ignore that^ smile

markcollings7890

130 posts

102 months

Saturday 3rd November 2012
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A lex said:
I've explained myself already - I've lived and worked here for 6yrs and I'm marrying a cloggy.

What's your experience in the subject??
I meant ignore my question, not your post!

markcollings7890

130 posts

102 months

Saturday 3rd November 2012
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A lex said:
Ah, fair enough - long day at work here.

Is Arnhem a University town?
http://www.google.co.uk/#sclient=tablet-gws&hl=en&tbo=d&biw=768&bih=914&q=arnhem+university&oq=arnhem+uni&gs_l=tablet-gws.1.0.0l2j0i30.2004.5005.0.6526.10.9.0.1.1.1.531.2501.2-7j1j0j1.9.0.les%3B..0.0...1ac.1.IZznX4J0PwI&pbx=1&bav=on.2,or.r_gc.r_pw.&fp=7b88cbb83eae43b&bpcl=37189454

spikeyhead

12,397 posts

161 months

Saturday 3rd November 2012
quotequote all
A lex said:
Ah, fair enough - long day at work here.

Is Arnhem a University town?
From memory there's not a great deal there. Nice town center with a crowded market. Interesting bridge but that wasn't so close. ...

The Nur

Original Poster:

9,168 posts

149 months

Saturday 3rd November 2012
quotequote all
A lex said:
Only 600 students according to Wiki - OP, best give it a go - nothing to lose. smile

After 4yrs of living with my OH ive picked up enough Dutch to survive easily in daily life, but still a long way from fluent. In fact right now I am at a very frustrating stage as I often want to construct far more complicated sentences then I am able to.

I dont want to learn Dutch from my OH in any formal way - im pretty sure id end up sleeping on the couch hehe Most (maybe every) local Gemeente provide courses for new arrivals as you have to pass a Dutch exam to claim benefits here! bow The courses are often free or cheap, but ive avoided them purely for what are probably quite snobby opinions hehe
A lex, I have to say your contributions to this thread have inspired a lot of confidence in me to take the opportunity. With regards to learning dutch I think I should be ok, I just have to persevere and get on with it!

I have to be honest, I didn't think this section of the forum was as well frequented as it is hehe

markcollings7890

130 posts

102 months

Saturday 3rd November 2012
quotequote all
A lex said:
NL is a great place - I prefer to the UK 99% of the time, and its where I now call 'home'.

The culture is broadly similar, meaning you dont feel like a complete alien but its subtly different to let you know you that you arent at 'home' as it were.

Some of the Dutch bureaucracy will frustrate the crap out of you, as will some of the taxes!! But other than that I really think its great here.
Bureaucracy, specifically?

Do you get much snow?

The Nur

Original Poster:

9,168 posts

149 months

Saturday 27th April 2013
quotequote all
Seeing as I am here I thought I might as well update smile

I am still with the cloggy lady, when she left the UK in early February we decided to see what happens. So far I have been over 3 times,twice for a week and once for ten days and am currently still here on my third visit.

I love Holland, it is a great place. Seemingly more relaxed than at home in all the right ways and the people are great (except the incredibly tall chap I keep bumping into who seems to have taken offence to my existence hehe)

I'm not sure I can see myself living here yet if I am honest, whilst I love the place in find myself mildly intimidated by the language. I am picking it up and can understand a surprising amount of conversational dutch but I feel mildly embarrassed to try and use it... My problem I know and something that will only be resolved through implementing what I have learnt so far.

Carnival in boxmeer was an experience hehe and I am looking forward to queens/kings day on Tuesday. Arnhem is a lovely city with most things anybody could need but I still find myself wanting something. Coming from the Gower I think that might be hills, scenery and sea seeing as the longest and furthest I have ever been from the sea was the ten day visit here last month smile

Thanks to everybody who posted before for your input, it was invaluable in weighing up the pros and cons of a potential move, alas it was something I decided not to go forward with for the moment. Maybe one day me and my lady friend will live together but not right now.

Anybody in Arnhem fancy a pint?

croyde

17,870 posts

194 months

Saturday 27th April 2013
quotequote all
As said already. Get on a course in Holland and then use the fact that you are surrounded by locals to try it out on. Immerse yourself and stop them speaking English to you and you'll pick it up. It's a Germanic language very similar to English.

Head to the countryside and you'll be forced to speak the lingo as outside the cities it's a different world, very religious and about 50 years or more behind everyone else. Well it was when I used to frequent the place.

Caught a cab from a country rail station and was amazed that I was able to hold a conversation with the driver but after a while it got too complicated so I said in Dutch that I was having a problem understanding as I'm English.

"Engels!" said the driver "Ik dacht dat je Belg was". (English! I thought that you were Belgian)

I was quite proud of this until a Dutch friend told me that the Dutch don't like the Belgians much so it may have been an insult biggrin

troc

2,646 posts

139 months

Tuesday 30th April 2013
quotequote all
If you fancy beers, Theresa bunch of us around The Hague, Leiden, Delft area who meet up semi-randomly for a few. However, half of em are Porsche fanciers!

The Nur

Original Poster:

9,168 posts

149 months

Tuesday 30th April 2013
quotequote all
troc said:
If you fancy beers, Theresa bunch of us around The Hague, Leiden, Delft area who meet up semi-randomly for a few. However, half of em are Porsche fanciers!
That would be awesome, I'm leaving for home on Thursday but I will be back next month. If anybody fancies organizing a PH NL meet in the pub I would be very interested. I spend my time in arnhem but a trip to Den Haag could easily be arranged!

troc

2,646 posts

139 months

Tuesday 30th April 2013
quotequote all
The Nur said:
That would be awesome, I'm leaving for home on Thursday but I will be back next month. If anybody fancies organizing a PH NL meet in the pub I would be very interested. I spend my time in arnhem but a trip to Den Haag could easily be arranged!
Let me know when you are back and ill try to be useful smile

Foppo

2,344 posts

88 months

Friday 17th January 2014
quotequote all
Two years should be fine to learn Dutch.Anything longer and you are not trying hard enough.I hate the word cloggy,its' like calling a German Kraut.Or calling a Brit Limey.

Adapt listen to people and if you are willing to learn people will accept you,no matter where you live in the Netherlands.

Het allerbeste en een goede toekomst in het land van Maas en Waal.The Belgians cook better chips and are more laidback.>smile


cloggy

4,956 posts

173 months

Saturday 18th January 2014
quotequote all
Foppo said:
Two years should be fine to learn Dutch.Anything longer and you are not trying hard enough.I hate the word cloggy,its' like calling a German Kraut.Or calling a Brit Limey.

Adapt listen to people and if you are willing to learn people will accept you,no matter where you live in the Netherlands.

Het allerbeste en een goede toekomst in het land van Maas en Waal.The Belgians cook better chips and are more laidback.>smile

Oi.

troc

2,646 posts

139 months

Saturday 18th January 2014
quotequote all
cloggy said:
Oi.
biggrin