GIOVENTU » Italians relocating to London - but are they happy?

Italians relocating to London - but are they happy?

Italians are still massively relocating to London but they seem less enthusiastic than before. The newspaper “Il fatto quotidiano” has recently published an article collecting some young people’s disappointing experiences in the Uk Capital.

Istat data showed that during 2014 the number of Italians expatriated to live permanently in London has increased by almost a thousand compared to 2013.

The new immigration wave was confirmed to be very young: The majority of the 500.000 Italian people listed in the AIRE register and not, are in the 18-34 age group. 55% are men and 45% are women.   

37% of these immigrants have a degree and only 11% are young people who have only compulsory school level. The regions of origin are mainly from the north: Lombardia, Veneto, Emilia, and Lazio in the centre, while the number decreases towards the south. The smallest number of immigrants are from Basilicata, Molise and Valle d’Aosta.

The most required professions in the UK are engineers and researchers, but young Italians often work in bars and restaurants as a starting point or as their final job.

The economical crisis is clearly the main reason forcing Italians abroad in search of better opportunities, in the hope that London will offer what they can’t find at home. Is this still the case?

In an article recently published on the online page of the newspaper “Il fatto quotidiano” some young Italians talked about their dissatisfaction for their choice of emigrating to London.    

The complaints were about the difficulty of creating stable social relationships, the too high cost of living and a disappointing lack of job opportunities for some sectors. Many of them decided to return to Italy where life is cheaper, they feel at home, and the sun shines.

Other complaints were about the binge drinking and the frantic life style to which many Italians didn’t want to adapt to. In addition to this there was dissatisfaction connected to the low level of the national health service, the low quality of public college instruction and a too much career focus life style.  

Giulia Lombardo

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