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Esus
13-09-2008, 19:10
Out of the blue, a company contacted and offered me a job in St. Pertersburg.

I'm really tempted to accept the offer, because it would be a huge occasion for my career and myself. But, unfortunately, besides knowing that SPB is a great and lovely city, I don't know much more about it.

So, since I should even make a salary proposal to them, I'd like to know what kind of monthly income would allow me to rent a nice small flat in the city centre (or reasonably near to it), pay my bills, buy food and clothes and possibly save some money.

You know, I come from Northern Italy and here life is so expensive and salaries are so low that I don't know if I can make any comparison to other cities.

Besides that, I've heard there are a lot of foreigners there and that English is generally spoken around, which was a relief since I don't speak a single work of Russian. Actually, I can barely read it, but if I'm going to accept the offer I am surely going to start learning.

So, anyone can give my general info about rents, cost of living and anything that could you would want to know before moving there? Thanks a lot!

tigereng
13-09-2008, 20:28
hi esus,

ive been working here 2 weeks now and quite like the city. to answer some of your queries...rent is pretty expensive to say the least...about 1000 euro a month for what are below standard accom in most cases....you really have to look around for a good place..check out my other post on accom...as for food things are pretty cheap going with my countries cost of living...beer and going out is slightly cheaper than the uk....i will say that i dont here alot of english being spoken at all here but some do have minimal english....it is quite difficult in shops and general day to day stuff....but i am learning some russian...if you have any other queries just mail me.....

pjw
13-09-2008, 21:58
Hi Esus and welcome to forum. I'm going to leave the advice about SPB to the local experts, but I just wanted to say a big welcome and alot to do with your liking the city will depend on 1. your having this job and the conditions, correct salary package etc and 2. knowing some locals, building a network of friends. Forum would help alot in this respect. It's a great place to meet people and find out what's happening. So Esus, benvenuto in forum and I'm sure alot of people from SPB can give you the lowdown on the town :punk:

Esus
13-09-2008, 22:14
Thank you both for your kind reply.

The whole ordeal, in fact, is that I can't really see what would be the best contract conditions, you know. Actually, this will be my first experience outside Italy and I was actually impressed by how the people that contacted me we very professional and ready to get me a answer to any question I provided.

But you know, a thing is getting answer from someone that it's trying to hire you, another is finding out things on your own and see if you'd be right with them.

From what I've read until now, I'm more and more convincted that I want to move there. I guess I just have to ask them to send me a draft of the contract and then decide.

And I hope I will be able to meet you all very soon!

pjw
13-09-2008, 22:40
Yes Esus, I know exactly what you mean. We must get some info from someone in a similar position to you. Not from those that may be potentially hiring you. There are plenty of people who can help. What kind of job have you been offered? What kind of experience do you have? How much would you expect to get for a similar position in Italy? Let's all work together on this, but you're right, we gotta leave out the employers at this stage. Even if you ask them for a draft contract, it will perhaps be too low. Although that could be a starting point for a negotiation, but there will be things that they will leave out. So come on people. What does Esus need to include and consider?

Esus
13-09-2008, 23:22
Well, I guess you're right, Pjw, I need to give you further information.

First of all I want to say 'hi' to everyone *waves* and I'm sorry I didn't get through a proper introduction from the very first post.

About me, I can tell you I'm 27 years old, I'm an Building Engineer/Architect and I will be hired by this construction company and my role will be of Architect Junior. About the job there isn't much to tell you about, except that when I heard the details I thought I won the lottery.

The right job exactly when I had the feeling I need a fresh start somewhere else. If this isn't destinhy...

Anyway, right now I've been working as an Architect here in Italy for three years and I am able to do msot of the stuff on my own... sure, this doesn't completely apply for Russia, since I've never worked with pubblic amministration there, but in the construction feel I'm pretty confident about my abilities.

Right now, the company told me that I have to take care of health insurance and they will help me searching for a flat and that the rent will still be on me. That's in exchange of they taking care of Russian taxes over my salary and getting through all the visa stuff (I just have to hand down the paper at the Consulate here).
Well, I don't mind paying for that stuff, as long as I will earn enough to survive.

Here in Italy, for a position like that, taxes not included, health insurance excluded since we already pay it off with taxes), I would earn around € 3,000.- per month (12 months + 2 bonus) and increasing as my experience grows.

So, any suggestions?

pjw
13-09-2008, 23:58
Interesting, interesting Esus. Yes the building industry is flourishing in Russia, Moscow, Petersburg. I work with a technical drawing company here in Bavaria 2 days a week. They are always talking about it. They have offices in Moscow and SPB and so we're discussing things all the time. So firstly I just want to say the building industry in Russia is huge.

2ndly there's a girl on forum who I'll now PM who is an expat working in Moscow as an architect. She'll tell you every detail you need to know. I'll email her now. She's nice :sunny: So it looks like we're getting you sorted Esus. I think you've got a positive attitude and shall be rewarded for this. I think Russia is completely international in the building industry.

Esus
14-09-2008, 12:50
Thank you so much! Really, I can't believe it took me so long to find this community... well, if was worth of waiting!
I let you know how thing will end up!

Hawk
14-09-2008, 13:31
Is to jump at the chance........

Make it work...... ok you may have to struggle like everyone of us did in the beginning, but Russia ... has a charm and mystisism about it....
its so old yet modern..

Be courageous, adventurous, be patient and enjoy Russia............. who knows what tomorrow brings......

Yes i hate it sometimes too, but i also love it.... and sometimes both in the same day :)

Rents are out of this world... just a fact of life... but if you stay out of the center you can find reasonable rents...!!!

Dont second guess, ...

Dilek
14-09-2008, 19:30
yeah that is the architect PJW is talking about...
how can I help you :10455:

Esus, first of all...Russia is the place where really constructions pop out! at least in Moscow...there are a lot of architects here...I have been here since april and will leave approximately around the new year turn. There are a lot of opportunities here, you can jump to another company with better conditions...first of all what I advise is to find out the working hours...will you work for the contractor...my friends are working like hell, having no real life... make sure you do not work on weekends unless unexpected situations...let the company deal with all the cost(rent is min 2000$ for a one room furnished flat!), agreements, insurance and negotiate according to the net salary..language is the big barrier here, let them do everything for you...make sure there is internet connection. It took me ages to arrange my collaegue to apply. maybe your company is more organised than mine!
St Petersburg can be a better city in many sense compared to Moscow I think...I have a friend from university in SP, will give you her contacts if you want. she is working for the client. Related with details of SP, she may help more than me :)

Everybody told me that when smb comes here for 1 year and you cannot leave. I had mine, same idea to leave anyway! and why...be prepared to have an awful weather here! raining all year! depressive!did not see the winter yet! OMG! anyhow, this is a place to experience! do not hesiate and come here :)

Esus
14-09-2008, 21:11
The min rent is really SO HIGH?! Geez, I can't believe that... I've always thought Italian one were expensive, but I guess I haven't seen enough of the world!
The problem is, the company won't deal with the rent costs, so what do you suggest about the minimal wage I have to agree over?

About insurances, I've got a look around here in Italy and I guess I can take care of it without too much troubles.

But, being honest, I didn't asked about the working hours, mostly because I already work an average of 10/12 hours per day, with a lot of times I have to stay overnight or going during weekends... so, I didn't think I would get a worse treatement than the one I have here.

About the internet connection, I don't think I understood what you mean... I have to ask them to take care about activating my connection?

Esus
14-09-2008, 21:26
Oh, and the weather it wouldn't be such a big problem. I live in the northern part of Italy, I don't care too much about cold winters and I don't think I'll miss the hot, sticky and humid summers in Milan!

Oh, and if you don't mind, I'd like to talk to your friend in StP, maybe she can give me first directions about the best places where looking for a nice flat (the company will help me, but I think it's always better to be prepared) and general infos about the city.

Really, I really love to come there and start freshly, but I don't want to come and find out the reality in the hard way.

pjw
15-09-2008, 01:45
when I heard the details I thought I won the lottery.

The right job exactly when I had the feeling I need a fresh start somewhere else. If this isn't destiny...So it sounds very much like to let this opportunity fall through your hands without really considering it carefully would be absolutely crazy. Sounds like a big chance. BTW You're very positive in general Esus :sunny: It's a pleasure to hear. There are so many advantages to working overseas, for example, life skills, international experience, cultural awareness etc etc


.... been working as an Architect here in Italy for three years and I am able to do most of the stuff on my own... in the construction feel I'm pretty confident about my abilities.Yes, it sounds like you've got experience and can pretty much work independently, taking on responsibility for most jobs. Maybe now is the time for the next step, as you say :thumbsup:

pjw
17-09-2008, 00:54
Mile grazie Esus. Piacere ti connosciti. Pleasure to meet you. I hope you follow your dream and take the sun with you whereever you go. Buona fortuna Esus et bella ciao :sunny:YouTube- Giornata Solare - Rino Ceronti

DDT
17-09-2008, 04:15
I think $2000 for a one room flat in SPG is awful high. You should be able to get a nice 2 room flat for around 35 - 40 thousand roubles. I was recently renting one for 25,000 r. furnished and in the centre of St Petes. , that's only $1000/mth. There are many good areas in SPG, like around Metro Vostania, M. Chernoshevskaya and M. Vasileostrovskaya on Vasilievsky ostrov (island) and Sadovaya. There are plenty of good areas.

My personal opinion is that St Petersburg is far better than Moscow. Though I never lived in Moscow, it was a welcome relief to get back to SPG after visiting Moscow. But that is just my opinion, some people love Moscow.

I don't know who told you that English was spoken a fair amount in SPG, it is not. You had better start learning Russian. No one is going to be very helpful to you in the local grocery stores and such if all you can do is grunt and point. Besides it is a matter of respect to Russians to at least try to learn the language of your hosts. Get yourself a private tutor. Look in the back pages of the St Petersburg Times and you will find some adds for this. One is Easyrussian it is run by a couple of women that I know who are good, and will tailor to your schedule for about 350 r per academic hour ( that's cheap!) If you want their email and website pm me.

Esus
17-09-2008, 08:35
Of course I'm going to do my best to learn the language. I've always thought it's highly disrespectful to go into a country and expect people to speak to you in a different language from theirs.

It happens all the time in Italy and it gets on my nerves how foreigners take for granted you have to speak Eng to them, whilts, when you go to their country, suddenly nobody understands you if you speak in English.
It happened to me so many times that I know what I'm talking about.

No, I was just wishing the spoken Eng from people just for the beginning. You know, it's not like it is easy to learn completely a new language from scratch and until I will be able to put together understandable sentences I still will need to eat.

Thank you for the reassuring answer about the rent... I had a look around over the internet and I found rates like the one you mentioned, but, you know, not knowing what are the 'best' area in the town, it's not easy to understand if it was a good offer or not.

Anyway, I'm still waiting to hear from my contact. If the contract will sound good as I think it will, I'm pretty sure I'm going to accept the offer.
Too bad that this waiting is killing my nerves!

Thank you again to all of you!