Budapest FAQs

I started this blog to be a place for people to catch up on our adventures abroad… and yet somehow I’ve only posted about crafts and dogs.  That’s a pretty big case of over-promising and under-delivering.  Sorry ’bout that.

So, to remedy that, I decided to put together a “Frequently Asked Questions” about our trip to Budapest.  Not because I don’t want people to ask us these questions – by all means, ask away – but they really are frequently asked, so I figured one big post of information might be nice.  And with that… here we go!

When are you moving?

We currently think we’ll be in Budapest in mid-March.  My last day of work is scheduled to be March 2nd, after we file our 10-K.  Richie will probably work a little longer after that, but the plan is to be in Budapest by around March 12th.

What are you going to do with your house?

We’re pretty open to selling our house in Dallas, but we’d rather rent it.  We’re going to meet with a realtor and get an idea of the selling and rental markets in our area, but if I had to put money on something right now, I’d put money on us listing it for rent in early January.  If you know anyone who’s not crazy a reliable tenant and wants to rent a really awesome 3 bed/2 bath house near White Rock Lake, let us know!

What about your furniture / belongings?

We’ll be able to ship a certain amount of our stuff (volume/quantity to be determined…) over to Budapest.  With that said, though, most rentals in Budapest are furnished.  We won’t know for certain where we are living (see below) until we get there, and since it’s apparently a purely American thing to own more junk than can fit into your residence, storage space is not abundant in Budapest.  We’ll be storing the things we love, bringing over the essentials like towels and dishes and such, and selling the things that we know we can live without.  Examples of things we’ll be selling include both of our cars, my red couch that Richie doesn’t love, and our coffee table that currently sports evidence of some sparkly nail polish (but could totally be refinished if you want to buy a cheap coffee table… hint hint).   We’ll be Craigslisting the things we want to sell, but if there’s anything you want to claim now, ask!

Where will you live in Budapest?

When we arrive, we’ll have temporary housing provided by the firm.  We’ll then meet with a realtor, provided by the firm, who will show us flats in the area that we’ve picked out.  We plan to live on the Pest side, which is east of the Danube River.  We’ll aim for two bedrooms so that we have a space for the guests we hope come to visit us (pretty please?).  Richie visited in November and looked at a number of places that were fabulous, so we’re pretty confident we can find something we’ll like in the area we want.

What will you do with your dogs?

Ahhh, the dogs.  Since over half of the entries on this blog thus far are dog-related, I can’t at all pretend we’re not crazy dog people.  They’re coming with us.  There aren’t currently any quarantine restrictions for dogs entering most countries in the EU.  As long as the dogs are vaccinated against rabies, are microchipped, and are certified healthy by a veterinarian within ten days of flight, they should have no problems entering Hungary or returning to the continental US.  It looks like the trouble starts when you go to islands – the UK, Hawaii, and Guam all have much more stringent requirements.

We also have spoken with a partner from the firm who brought her dogs to Hungary, and she’s given us invaluable information about vets, groomers, and boarding locations in Budapest.  We feel confident that they’ll have a safe and comfortable time in Budapest.  They’ll certainly get many, many more walks there than they do here, since we won’t have a yard!  Part of our neighborhood search included looking for places with lots of access to greenspace and parks.

What will you do while you’re there?  You can’t work, right?

Right.  Well – “can’t” is probably a strong word.  The company I currently work for has only domestic operations, so they wouldn’t be able to sponsor me for a work visa (obviously).  And in order to get a work visa on my own, I would likely have to prove that I’m fluent in Hungarian (um… I know the word for chicken?) or that I have significant skills that a local Hungarian doesn’t.  While I’m pretty convinced of my own awesomeness, it’s hard to say that I have such significant skills when I don’t even speak the local language.  It’s possible that I could find work while I’m there, but our plan is for me to be a non-worker.

Does this mean I’m going to sit on my tush and watch TV all day?  Well, maybe for the first week.  Hah.  Just kidding, Richie.  Nope, I’ll be taking Hungarian lessons, going to the gym regularly, learning how to go to the market in a place where I can only identify chickens, joining organizations such as NAWA Budapest (hopefully!) and meeting other expat women, et cetera.  There are English-speaking universities with adult education courses; we’ve gotten language lessons on my computer to brush up on my French and to learn German (if I can’t get the hang of Hungarian, maybe I’ll just keep trying new languages until I can find one that works!)  Others who have blazed the trails before me have taken cooking classes, joined book clubs, volunteered as docents for English-speaking tours at museums… really, the possibilities are endless.  I’m exhausted just reading it.  Maybe I will sit on my tush and watch TV.

Okay, kids, those are the six most frequently asked questions about our trip.  What’s next?  Anything else you’re curious about?  Leave a note in the comments and I’ll answer it!

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