If you’re thinking about international relocation to Birmingham, consider this; in the space of just one year, some 5,480 people moved from London to Birmingham, making it the most attractive city for Londoners. Next was Bristol, some way off at 3,290, followed by Manchester with 3,260, Nottingham with 2,990 and Oxford with 2,720.
Birmingham is winning people over due to house prices, culture, restaurants and bars, as well as schools, wide open spaces, and low start-up costs for new companies. It really is a city that has changed for the better in recent years, becoming as famous for its parks and botanical gardens, canals (32 miles worth, more than Venice!) and museums as it once was for endless road systems and heavy industry.
Birmingham is located in an area known in the UK as the West Midlands. It is the biggest city outside of London with a population of just over a million people. It’s about two and a half hours drive from London.
Many expats love Birmingham for its ethnic and cultural diversity. It has a young population by comparison to the rest of the UK. Around 70% of its population is white, but there is also a significant Asian population of around 20% and vibrant black community (around 6%).
As an expatriate moving to Birmingham you'll find good accommodation at competitive prices, in areas you’d actually like to live in. The average price of a house in London is a 400,000 GBP, but in Birmingham it’s just 133,000 GBP. If you want to rent, the average rent for a three-bedroom house is around 710 GBP per month.
Birmingham has a marine west coast climate that is mainly mild, with no dry season, and temperate summers. Winters are often rainy, but rarely harsh. You will see a dusting of snow in the colder times of year, but it will soon disappear as milder weather arrives.
UK immigration offers a number of different visa options for moving to the UK, and you will need a valid passport to travel to Birmingham. There are no restrictions for nationals of EU/EEA member states (including Switzerland). All other nationals will require a visa and a work permit depending on the length and purpose of their stay. For more details on this topic, take a look at our articles on Visa & Administration in the UK.