Is living across the border worth it?

Whether in France, Belgium, or Germany, living on the border in one's own country when one works in Luxembourg has certain advantages. First of all, there are naturally financial advantages! With less expensive rents, purchasing power is greater and living costs are lower: Border countries offer certain advantages compared to Luxembourg. Incidentally, for the past 10 years, the number of Luxembourgers working in Luxembourg and living near the border in France has risen continuously.

In addition, the two major French cities, Metz and Thionville, offer a wide range of services, beautiful cultural events, many restaurants and cafés, and the highest quality of medical care. In Germany, the beautiful city of Trier provides similar benefits.

Basically, only good features, if there wasn't a catch: transportation.

To travel every day from France, Belgium, or Germany can take a long time, even a very long time. If all goes well, estimate 30 minutes on the train and 45 minutes by car. Otherwise, an hour, an hour and a half, if not much longer. More than 80% of the “frontaliers” (border workers) say that transportation is the main reason why they plan to change profession or move.


In the end, one must also realise that it is naturally more difficult to understand the culture of a country where one does not live but one only works, and to finally integrate oneself there.

This raises the question: Why not live in Luxembourg and save those hours of commuting time? The cost of living is certainly elevated but this is outweighed by the high level of salaries, the public services, and the favourable social services (the pension system, a robust infrastructure, as well as clean and safe roads). For people with a medium salary and for their families, life can be quite affordable.

Documents are no problem. No visa or work permit is required. As a frontalier, it is easy to establish yourself in Luxembourg. You must apply for a registration certificate of your address at the Population Office in your municipality no later than 3 months after you arrive. You must prove that you work here, either by presenting your contract of employment or job commitment or, if you are self-employed, by providing documentation of your activity.

And without wanting to disparage any other country, one must admit that Luxembourg has many advantages. High-quality infrastructure, well-equipped hospitals, modern sports complexes, a cosmopolitan population... and, not to be forgotten, tax benefits. The city of Luxembourg was ranked the world's safest city in the 2019 Mercer Quality of Living survey, which also included internal stability, crime rates, implementation of laws, freedom of the press, and restrictions on individual liberties.

Luxembourg’s multicultural aspect can also be a plus. With more than 170 nationalities, you experience the European open spirit, which is particularly appealing. Luxembourg’s cultural activities easily compare to those of the great capitals, and the city is well connected thanks to the airport and the TGV. Moreover, its surrounding countryside, and the nearby forests, vineyards, and lakes are also enjoyable. There is something for all likings. 


My Money