Brussels preview

Belgium

For expats moving to Brussels long-term, it is highly recommended to learn at least one of the local languages. The official languages in Belgium are Dutch (Flemish), French and German. In Brussels, although not in the Flemish area of Belgium, French is the more common language of choice, though many people speak Dutch as well, and/or English as well as a minority who speak German.

The civil servants are generally very good in Brussels and most of them do speak English, though may sometimes be reluctant to do so. A little knowledge of either French or Dutch can often go a long way to more enthusiastic assistance as it shows you are trying to learn the local languages. In general, in everyday dealings in the city, English will usually suffice as Brussels is an international city. In addition to civil servants, restaurant and bar staff, and shop attendants usually have at least some knowledge of English. However, part of moving to a country is learning the languages and the culture and there is so much in the city and the country that is unlocked by knowledge of the local languages. For expats not willing to learn the languages, there is ample opportunity to just stick to English as there is a large English-speaking community.

Purchase to read full guide