“Why Krakow, Poland?” is one of the most commonly asked questions I get from friends and family when talking about the big move. A simple answer is that our Poland office is growing and the job opportunity was there.
When I accepted this amazing opportunity… we have never been to Poland before. The closest we came was Budapest, Hungry back in 2009. I know it sounds crazy – who moves to a place they have never been?! As someone (don’t ask me who) once said, “take every chance you get in life, because some things only happen once.” This was our chance to finally cross off an item in our bucket list, which is to live and experience all Europe has to offer!
In no terms am I saying that moving to Krakow, Poland is a consolation prize of sorts compared to other popular European cities such as Paris, London, Berlin, Milan, Barcelona, etc. There’s absolutely lots to love about Krakow! This past December I had the opportunity to work at our Krakow office and visit potential neighborhoods to live in. And from what I’ve experienced during my short visit – it’s a great city! I am thrilled to be moving there this Spring.
Krakow is located in the southern region of Poland and is its second largest and one of the oldest cities. There are about 24 universities/colleges in Krakow which contributes to its growing cafe culture and thriving night life (yup! #1 reason for moving.. lol) which I was able to witness while I was there.
The cost of living in Krakow is also one of lowest in Europe. When I was looking around for apartments this past December, I saw a 56 square meter, furnished 1 bedroom/1 bath apartment with 2 balconies for 2.950 zloty (U.S. translation = 600 square foot for approx. $736). The apartment was modern and only 10-minute Uber ride from the city center in traffic! If you were to compare that to Manhattan, Brooklyn or Jersey City – that size for that price is an absolute steal!
Food was inexpensive too. I spent on average $7-8 for a decent lunch including a drink at our office cafeteria. Chinese food lunch specials nowadays in the New York City metro area are closer to $10 per meal! Dinner for two with a few glasses of wine and beer at a fabulous Italian restaurant in the city center cost less than $50. When was the last time that happened unless it was BYOB and you had no appetizers (the horror!)?
Aside from the cost of living, I found the people of Krakow to be absolutely nice and so polite! I even noticed that they are very serious in following traffic rules. No one crossed the street, even when there wasn’t ANY traffic until the walk signal was on. Of course having gotten used to walking around Manhattan streets – I found this crazy! But I was told they take jay walking seriously and you will get fined if they catch you (if they can… haha).
Last but not least, have you looked at a map yet? Do you see how centrally located Poland is in Europe? It’s the perfect base as we jet or drive around Europe and maybe even make our way to Asia!
Hopefully I was able to answer the question “why Poland?”. Cannot wait to share more about this beautiful country and all the adventures yet to come!
Here are some photos of the Christmas market when I was there in December.