I have recently been receiving more and more emails from people who are thinking about relocating to Jersey. Therefore, I thought I should write a post that tells you 20 important (some less important) things you need to know and should consider before you move to Jersey.
What You Need To Know Before You Move To Jersey
Yes, moving to Jersey means you won’t have to worry about learning a new language. Everyone speaks English. There is also Jèrriais which is a Jersey Norman French. However, very few people speak this language nowadays.
Jersey has its own currency. We have pound notes. Very exciting, because it means we can feel like millionaires when we actually only have £10 in our purse. You can also use British currency in Jersey
Jersey tends to have a much milder climate than the UK. We hardly ever get snow. We did get some snow this year but that was the first time for 5 years. You won’t have to spend hours scraping frost off your car in the morning as we rarely get frost too.
Closer To France
We are actually closer to France than we are to the UK. It only takes half an hour to get to France by ferry. The fast ferry to the UK takes 4 1/2 hours. It is easier to fly and you can fly to Jersey from most of the major UK airports in under an hour.
If you arriving from a city then you will want to prepare yourself for a bit of a culture shock. Jersey is small, 9 by 5 miles to be precise, and therefore you are not going to have the facilities that you will find in a city. However, Jersey does have a decent high street with two large department stores and shops you will recognise from the mainland. Jersey also has many magnificent beaches!
In Jersey, there is no NHS and that means you have to pay for doctor’s appointments, referral letters, hospital stays and appointments, scans and operations etc. A doctor’s appointment is about £45. However, paying for your healthcare does mean that you can normally get an appointment on the same day and you shouldn’t have to wait too long when you arrive at the surgery.
If you have been offered a job on Jersey you will want to make sure that your job entitles you to “Licensed” status. Licensed status is really needed if you are thinking of moving here. It means that you are entitled to buy and rent. Without licensed status you will find it very difficult to rent as there are less rental properties available to people who are not licensed and also they tend to be of poorer quality.
Property Is Expensive
Renting and buying on Jersey is expensive. Buying on Jersey is something that causes great debate as it’s not easy to get yourself on the property ladder. The average price of a three bed house in 2017 was £573,000. However, you will find that there are still some serious compromises to be found in this price range. This could mean no garden, no parking, and very overlooked etc.
Renting is also expensive. We had to give up on our dreams of renting a 4 bed as we couldn’t afford it. I would say that for a 3 bed rental you are typically looking at around £2,000 plus.
In Jersey there are no car MOTs which means you can see some right bangers knocking around.
No Road Tax
You don’t have to worry about paying road tax and car insurance is usually cheaper.
Lower Speed Limit
When you arrive in Jersey and see the national speed sign don’t mistake this for being 70 miles per hour. On Jersey the top speed limit is 40 miles per hour. Although, there are very few roads where this the case. The majority of the island’s roads are 30 miles per hour and less. This is a small island so you don’t need to get anywhere fast.
No Council Tax
In Jersey we don’t have council tax. We have parish rates that are significantly cheaper.
Food Shop Is More Expensive
You will notice that your food shop is noticeably more expensive because in Jersey our food has a tax on it called GST which is 5%. We also have less choice when it comes to our supermarkets. We have 3 Waitrose supermarkets and one large Co-op, we then have smaller Icelands, Co-ops, Marks and Spencer food halls. Also, over the winter months you can sometimes find that supermarket shelves are bare because the boat has been unable to get into port. However, farm shops always have plenty of food.
Jersey does have a lower crime rate than the mainland. You will find that some people still leave their car doors and front doors unlocked!
Buying Furniture Can Be Expensive
Buying decent furniture that doesn’t cost the earth can be tricky on Jersey. Many people will get their furniture from IKEA in the mainland and get a delivery company to bring it over as it will often still work out cheaper. However, we now have Next Home and that has improved things!
I believe that paid maternity leave was only brought in during 2014. You can now get 18 weeks maternity leave. 2 weeks paid by the employer and the rest is unpaid. However, you can get a maternity allowance from the States for a maximum of 18 weeks which is paid at £209.51 per week.
There is no paternity leave on Jersey.
There is a saying that to stay sane you need to escape the rock every three months. I would say that’s about right! Plan ahead and book your flights in advance and you should be able to escape the island without breaking the bank. The weather can stop you from leaving sometimes. The island frequently becomes fog bound over the winter and autumn months.
We Follow The National Curriculum
Jersey schools follow the National Curriculum but I would say that they are a bit behind the British schools when it comes to tracking and raising attainment. The teaching crisis that hit the mainland over 5 years ago is just starting to impact on Jersey with Jersey teachers now starting to feel the pressures that the mainland teachers are under.
Different Tax Rates
Jersey has different tax rates to the mainland. On the whole you are taxed less on your earnings but cost of living tends to be more expensive.
There you go, 20 things you need to know before you move to Jersey, Channel Islands. You might also be interested to know that Henry Cavill (aka superman) is a Jersey boy, we have the best potatoes and the best cows and some of the finest Michelin starred restaurants. Jersey is also a very family friendly island and a great place to raise a family. It can feel like you are living in a little safe bubble on Jersey. However, most importantly, you should know that a Jersey born and bred is called a “Bean” and you never complain about living on Jersey because they will just tell you to get on the next ferry back to the mainland. But that’s true of most places; it was most certainly true of Yorkshire, “if it ain’t from Yorkshire, it ain’t worth knowing about”
If you have any questions about Jersey then please feel free to contact me.