Singapore Expats Forum

Looking to move back to the UK

Discuss about the latest news & interesting topics, real life experience or other out of topic discussions with locals & expatriates in Singapore.

PeanutButterJam
Member
Member
Posts: 35
Joined: Fri, 11 Dec 2015

Looking to move back to the UK

Postby PeanutButterJam » Mon, 16 Jan 2017 11:29 am

Has anyone who recently moved back to the UK anything to say about how it has been for them so far, and if they are able to get used to life in the UK again? Has anything (in areas like transport, NHS, housing, education, daily cost of living) in the UK changed since they left in the first place? How does it compare to Singapore now?

We are looking to relocate to the UK after being here in Singapore for more than 10 years. Having lived here for such a long time, we do not know the UK anymore. At the moment, we can say we prefer the living environment in Singapore with all its conveniences but with our children's education in mind, we are considering a move back. Our children have dual citizenships; one of us is SPR. Both of us run our own businesses and work from home so we need not live in London but close by will be great.

We have two girls, aged 2 and 6 and International School fees here are taking up too much of our disposible incomes. A Singaporean education is not on the cards for us at the moment unfortunately.

PNGMK
Director
Director
Posts: 4899
Joined: Thu, 21 Mar 2013

Re: Looking to move back to the UK

Postby PNGMK » Mon, 16 Jan 2017 2:41 pm

I don't know about the UK but I could happily move back to Australia. Any advantage is the lower cost of taxes here is easily factored out by the idiot factors.
I have gay, black, Asian friends and then JR8.

User avatar
Barnsley
Manager
Manager
Posts: 2094
Joined: Tue, 10 Jun 2008
Location: Pasir Ris
Contact:

Re: Looking to move back to the UK

Postby Barnsley » Mon, 16 Jan 2017 8:28 pm

PeanutButterJam wrote:Has anyone who recently moved back to the UK anything to say about how it has been for them so far, and if they are able to get used to life in the UK again? Has anything (in areas like transport, NHS, housing, education, daily cost of living) in the UK changed since they left in the first place? How does it compare to Singapore now?

We are looking to relocate to the UK after being here in Singapore for more than 10 years. Having lived here for such a long time, we do not know the UK anymore. At the moment, we can say we prefer the living environment in Singapore with all its conveniences but with our children's education in mind, we are considering a move back. Our children have dual citizenships; one of us is SPR. Both of us run our own businesses and work from home so we need not live in London but close by will be great.

We have two girls, aged 2 and 6 and International School fees here are taking up too much of our disposible incomes. A Singaporean education is not on the cards for us at the moment unfortunately.


Hope you were getting paid in SGD , if so Brexit came in at a handy time , and it looks like the £ might even slip a bit more to boost your money transferring back.

My understanding of folk living in UK , is that schooling it also quite tricky as places at the "better state schools" are at a premium.

If you are living "near London" Public Transport costs an arm and a leg :) , with no gaurantee it will even be running especially Southern Trains :mrgreen:

Have you been travelling back and forth in that time?

Clothes / Groceries and things like that are dirt cheap compared to here for the same brand.

Alcohol is cheaper. :D

I was surprised to find that pub/cafe grub is more or less the same price after currency conversion.
Life is short, paddle harder!!

PeanutButterJam
Member
Member
Posts: 35
Joined: Fri, 11 Dec 2015

Re: Looking to move back to the UK

Postby PeanutButterJam » Mon, 16 Jan 2017 9:48 pm

PNGMK wrote:I don't know about the UK but I could happily move back to Australia. Any advantage is the lower cost of taxes here is easily factored out by the idiot factors.


Hi PNGMK, I dont mind moving to Australia if I could be granted some form of residency. We are now at Stage 0 of planning, but will definitely look into it. Been to Perth, Melbourne and Sydney and Perth seems to be a great place to raise young children.

But my impression is that items like clothes are only slightly cheaper than what you get in Singapore, though daily groceries and housing are definitely cheaper. Not sure about education though cos my children I believe will not get the usual benefits citizens get.

PeanutButterJam
Member
Member
Posts: 35
Joined: Fri, 11 Dec 2015

Re: Looking to move back to the UK

Postby PeanutButterJam » Mon, 16 Jan 2017 9:54 pm

Barnsley wrote:
PeanutButterJam wrote:Has anyone who recently moved back to the UK anything to say about how it has been for them so far, and if they are able to get used to life in the UK again? Has anything (in areas like transport, NHS, housing, education, daily cost of living) in the UK changed since they left in the first place? How does it compare to Singapore now?

We are looking to relocate to the UK after being here in Singapore for more than 10 years. Having lived here for such a long time, we do not know the UK anymore. At the moment, we can say we prefer the living environment in Singapore with all its conveniences but with our children's education in mind, we are considering a move back. Our children have dual citizenships; one of us is SPR. Both of us run our own businesses and work from home so we need not live in London but close by will be great.

We have two girls, aged 2 and 6 and International School fees here are taking up too much of our disposible incomes. A Singaporean education is not on the cards for us at the moment unfortunately.


Hope you were getting paid in SGD , if so Brexit came in at a handy time , and it looks like the £ might even slip a bit more to boost your money transferring back.

My understanding of folk living in UK , is that schooling it also quite tricky as places at the "better state schools" are at a premium.

If you are living "near London" Public Transport costs an arm and a leg :) , with no gaurantee it will even be running especially Southern Trains :mrgreen:

Have you been travelling back and forth in that time?

Clothes / Groceries and things like that are dirt cheap compared to here for the same brand.

Alcohol is cheaper. :D

I was surprised to find that pub/cafe grub is more or less the same price after currency conversion.


Thanks for the reply!

Yes, we go back once a year but only for a month or so therefore it's hard to tell how running costs are really like. But yes, definitely groceries, children's stuff like clothes and toys are at least 1/3 cheaper. We never ever buy children clothes in Singapore. The same brand, as you rightly pointed out are more expensive than what you can get in the UK. Amazing.

True about education costs; my reasoning is that if we have to pay a premium for better schools, and it costs the same as International Schools in Singapore, then there's no point for us to move back.

Girl_Next_Door
Reporter
Reporter
Posts: 612
Joined: Thu, 28 Aug 2008

Re: Looking to move back to the UK

Postby Girl_Next_Door » Tue, 17 Jan 2017 1:03 pm

Parking myself here, to stay tuned on discussion.

My husband and I have been planning a move back, for 3-4 years. We are looking to move back due to his ageing mother, and he is the only child. With the view that London rental is obnoxious, we bought a place in London a few years ago. We also had the view that London is a major financial center, so it will be easiest for both of us to find a job. Of course, Brexit happened... and now, everything is not too clear.

Fortunately, our place is rented out with a pretty good rental (for now), which can covers all mortgage, agents fees, maintenance, etc, in spite of the low currency (mortgage is in SG). The job market seems quiet, at least the area that I am in. I will be there next week, and plans to meet up with a few recruiters, so hopefully I will have a better idea.

PeanutButterJam
Member
Member
Posts: 35
Joined: Fri, 11 Dec 2015

Re: Looking to move back to the UK

Postby PeanutButterJam » Tue, 17 Jan 2017 2:00 pm

Girl_Next_Door wrote:Parking myself here, to stay tuned on discussion.

My husband and I have been planning a move back, for 3-4 years. We are looking to move back due to his ageing mother, and he is the only child. With the view that London rental is obnoxious, we bought a place in London a few years ago. We also had the view that London is a major financial center, so it will be easiest for both of us to find a job. Of course, Brexit happened... and now, everything is not too clear.

Fortunately, our place is rented out with a pretty good rental (for now), which can covers all mortgage, agents fees, maintenance, etc, in spite of the low currency (mortgage is in SG). The job market seems quiet, at least the area that I am in. I will be there next week, and plans to meet up with a few recruiters, so hopefully I will have a better idea.


Do update us when you're back. I understand from some recruiters that the job market is picking up slightly in the area I'm in (oil). But unless they confirm on this "shall we be totally out" or "half in half out of EU" uncertainty is definitely not good.

User avatar
rajagainstthemachine
Manager
Manager
Posts: 2793
Joined: Sat, 24 Nov 2012
Location: Singapore

Re: Looking to move back to the UK

Postby rajagainstthemachine » Tue, 17 Jan 2017 2:24 pm

isn't the weather here a good enough reason to Stay in Singapore? I remember feeling miserable when i visited the UK in November, it was cold, clammy and dark.
A compromise could be to live in both places for say 6 months in a year.
To get there early is on time and showing up on time is late

PeanutButterJam
Member
Member
Posts: 35
Joined: Fri, 11 Dec 2015

Re: Looking to move back to the UK

Postby PeanutButterJam » Tue, 17 Jan 2017 2:48 pm

rajagainstthemachine wrote:isn't the weather here a good enough reason to Stay in Singapore? I remember feeling miserable when i visited the UK in November, it was cold, clammy and dark.
A compromise could be to live in both places for say 6 months in a year.


Yes we would prefer to live in Singapore if not for the expensive International School fees. And fees seem to be adjusted every year. Of cos we could consider a local education but not at this moment during their formative years. I prefer that they do less academic and more playing/exploring at this age.

For example - our 6 year old can write her own name, count from 1-20, add 1, minus 1 and read some sight words + a number of blended words using phonics. At 6 years old, the local kids have the ability to read a whole book by themselves, spelling test (of 10-20 words) once a week, do mental sums and count to 100!

okonu
Regular
Regular
Posts: 106
Joined: Mon, 02 May 2016

Re: Looking to move back to the UK

Postby okonu » Tue, 17 Jan 2017 4:22 pm

From looking at my sisters' kids, especially in London, education in the UK (private sector) has become as cut-throat and pressured as traditionally associated with "Asian" schooling. Forget getting into a "good" school unless they are confident your children won't bring down the exam averages. (amusing exception is Eton, because they don't give a freak about ranking tables, one nephew got in despite not being a genius because he is a talented footballer & cricketer)

Girl_Next_Door
Reporter
Reporter
Posts: 612
Joined: Thu, 28 Aug 2008

Re: Looking to move back to the UK

Postby Girl_Next_Door » Wed, 18 Jan 2017 11:55 am

okonu wrote:From looking at my sisters' kids, especially in London, education in the UK (private sector) has become as cut-throat and pressured as traditionally associated with "Asian" schooling. Forget getting into a "good" school unless they are confident your children won't bring down the exam averages. (amusing exception is Eton, because they don't give a freak about ranking tables, one nephew got in despite not being a genius because he is a talented footballer & cricketer)


I tried researching on the London education system but I find it confusing. My London colleagues told me that nobody send their kids to government school unless you are very poor? Most parents send their kids to private school, and they are as expensive to International Schools in Singapore as well? Is this understanding true? I understand that priority is also given to distance proximity, similar to Singapore schools?

Singapore's infant/child care are expensive, but I am also shocked by the cost of infant/child care. I did some research and those around my London property cost between £1800 - 2800/month...

Girl_Next_Door
Reporter
Reporter
Posts: 612
Joined: Thu, 28 Aug 2008

Re: Looking to move back to the UK

Postby Girl_Next_Door » Wed, 18 Jan 2017 11:56 am

rajagainstthemachine wrote:isn't the weather here a good enough reason to Stay in Singapore? I remember feeling miserable when i visited the UK in November, it was cold, clammy and dark.
A compromise could be to live in both places for say 6 months in a year.


That only works if you don't need a permanent job and have an endless pot in your bank account... and if that is the case, I won't pick London as my 6 months home... seriously..

User avatar
rajagainstthemachine
Manager
Manager
Posts: 2793
Joined: Sat, 24 Nov 2012
Location: Singapore

Re: Looking to move back to the UK

Postby rajagainstthemachine » Wed, 18 Jan 2017 12:20 pm

Girl_Next_Door wrote:
rajagainstthemachine wrote:isn't the weather here a good enough reason to Stay in Singapore? I remember feeling miserable when i visited the UK in November, it was cold, clammy and dark.
A compromise could be to live in both places for say 6 months in a year.


That only works if you don't need a permanent job and have an endless pot in your bank account... and if that is the case, I won't pick London as my 6 months home... seriously..


or if you are self employed/have your own business. The thread was about the UK in general though not just London.
To get there early is on time and showing up on time is late

PeanutButterJam
Member
Member
Posts: 35
Joined: Fri, 11 Dec 2015

Re: Looking to move back to the UK

Postby PeanutButterJam » Wed, 18 Jan 2017 1:50 pm

To get into a good state school, you need to live outside London. There are plenty good ones around. I'm only looking for a "normal" school with some good british values. Haha. And if TM gets her way on grammar schools, that will be great too. Private schools (public schs) in the UK are more expensive than International Schools in Singapore but the environment here is a lot less snotty and more casual. Theres a good international mix here too; only half of my girl's class are Brits. The rest are Indians, Japanese, Koreans, Chinese. I love the mix but it comes at a premium price.

I dont think any middle class folks will use infant/child care unless they have money to burn. Most mums stay at home when their children are young. For older kids, you can possibly look at an au pair - a part-time arrangement with foreign students looking about your kids while they study.
Last edited by PeanutButterJam on Wed, 18 Jan 2017 1:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
Barnsley
Manager
Manager
Posts: 2094
Joined: Tue, 10 Jun 2008
Location: Pasir Ris
Contact:

Re: Looking to move back to the UK

Postby Barnsley » Wed, 18 Jan 2017 1:54 pm

Girl_Next_Door wrote:
I tried researching on the London education system but I find it confusing. My London colleagues told me that nobody send their kids to government school unless you are very poor? Most parents send their kids to private school, and they are as expensive to International Schools in Singapore as well? Is this understanding true? I understand that priority is also given to distance proximity, similar to Singapore schools?

Singapore's infant/child care are expensive, but I am also shocked by the cost of infant/child care. I did some research and those around my London property cost between £1800 - 2800/month...


Yeh , childcare is very expensive all over the UK , not just in London.

You have some very nice London colleagues , and what they say bodes very well for the future of the UK, can't beat a society divided can you.... They probably all voted leave as well for Brexit as well did they?

Sadly private schools are able to offer a lot more extras on the extra curricular front like sports and arts , and that is another reason for rising popularity.
Life is short, paddle harder!!


  • Similar Topics
    Replies
    Views
    Last post

Return to “General Discussions”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 3 guests