Life & work
Warsaw or Łódź? Tobias from Germany moves to Poland
What made you move to Poland?
There were a couple of reasons why I decided to move to Poland last year. The first one was the favourable situation on the labour market, especially for German speakers. The other reason was that my grandmother, from my father’s side, was born and raised in Poland.
Can you tell us a little bit about your job?
When I came to Poland, I was working remotely as a content editor & copywriter for a German company, but on 1st July I joined the Philips team, here in Łódź. The company offered me a very interesting position in the e-commerce sector, which was exactly what I’d been looking for. Apart from that, I write branded content for selected online shops on Focus Online, a German news-site.
What languages do you use at work? Do you speak any Polish?
I write in German, but English is the language of internal communication at Philips. However, I think it’s always important to learn the local language too, so I attend a Polish language course twice a week. I have just completed the A1 level and plan to continue with the A2 course in October.
In your experience, is it true that speakers of German are in huge demand in Poland?
Definitely. You can see a lot of opportunities for German speakers on Polish job boards or LinkedIn. If you happen to be a native speaker, you are in a really favourable position.
You’ve lived in Warsaw and Łódź so far. How would you compare these two cities?
I think both cities have their advantages. Warsaw has a lot of pubs and green areas where you can spend your free time. It is a great destination if you’re looking for a job because there are so many international companies. But Łódź feels like a more “authentic” Polish city to me. And it is a growing business hub too. For instance, my new employer, Philip’s Global Competence Center in Łódź has a team of around 2,000 people! Apart from that, the cost of living in Łódź is lower than in Kraków, Warsaw, Gdańsk and Wrocław. I rented a modern, small, nice apartment with a balcony in the city centre and paid only PLN 1,600 (including all utilities). Also, Łódź has a rich cultural life - you can see a lot of street musicians in the summer on the streets, there are many cinemas, theatres and it's just fun to walk around the city! My favourite place here so far is the Manufaktura complex.
Have you noticed any cultural differences between Germany and Poland?
Before I came to Poland, I did some research because I had never been here before, so I was wondering what I can expect. But after 11 months I have to say I do not feel too many differences. Our cultures are very similar so it was also easy for me to adapt to living in Poland.
What about your relocation process? Was it challenging?
My company helped me to make the relocation to Poland smooth and I was really satisfied with the whole process. I can’t complain about the formalities so far, since everything went better than I expected. The thing I was struggling a bit with was finding an apartment in Warsaw, because I had to move in by the 1st of August and I soon realized that I was competing with a lot of students who were looking for accommodation too.
Have you had a chance to travel around Poland yet?
Unfortunately I don’t have that much time to travel but I would like to explore Poland more. I would definitely like to go to Mazury and to the Tatra and Carpathian mountains.
German cuisine has a lot of delicious meals to offer. How do you like Polish food?
Actually I like it even more than the German one! That’s because it tastes more “homemade” to me. I am a fan of pierogi.
What would you say to other foreigners – or Germans – planning a move to Poland?
If you have the chance – just go!
Thank you, Tobias!