Where to relocate from United States?

I am considering relocating to London or Vancouver BC next year.

Differences between the two places

  • Major:
    • London is very close to India. For e.g., Delhi is just 9 hours away as compared to ~22 hours from Vancouver.
    • We’ll be upper middle class in Vancouver and middle class in London. We won’t starve or anything, just that we’ll have lesser savings in the latter.
      • Salaries will be lower in London.
      • Tech scene less bustling in London, so lesser opportunities to switch companies.
      • Taxes, rents and expenses will most probably be higher in London.
      • While we could buy a home in Vancouver right when we move, we won’t be able to in London for at least a few years.
  • Minor:
    • London’s outdoor scene isn’t as great as that in Vancouver. Should be okay though as Himalayas and Alps are still accessible with a little bit of planning. On the other hand, London is very close to Europe (including Norway and Iceland)!
    • Public transportation better in London.
    • City vibe better in London.
    • It will take slightly longer to get permanent residency in London (~5 vs <2 years).

What’s the same

  • Healthcare is free.
  • Education until high school: definitely free in London but probably so in Vancouver too.

Other noteworthy things

London:

  • Visa situation for parents:
    • While I am on work visa, they can apply for a long-term Standard Visitor visa that lasts 2, 5 or 10 years. That will allow them to stay for 6 months on every visit.
    • Once I become a UK citizien, they can get a family visa which will allow them to stay for a longer duration and make them eligible for UK healthcare.
  • College isn’t free in the UK but could be in some European countries.

Vancouver BC