Navigation MenuRealWire Limited

Delivering Relevance, Releasing Influence

Tweet Facebook LinkedIn
Press Release

The top 5 reasons why migrant workers stay in UK (and it’s not the weather!)


Over 60 per cent of foreign workers feel at home here and admit the biggest surprise when they arrived was the politeness of Brits

  • 35 per cent revealed their move to the UK was primarily to accelerate their career
  • Over 4 in 10 (45 per cent) cited that job opportunities make them stay
  • Over three quarters (80 per cent) believe living in the UK has had a positive impact on their lives
  • Over 60 per cent feel at home on British soil
  • The biggest surprise to migrants was how friendly and polite British people are

London, UK 5th September 2017 – With almost 1 in 10 people living in the UK being a foreign national, new research* released today reveals the real reasons why people come to and choose to stay in the UK.

Migrant workers highly recommend Britain for the standard of living, citing positive career and education prospects, as well job opportunities and improvement in their financial security. Unsurprisingly, the weather was far down the list of reasons to stay.

The study* of over 1,000 migrant workers across UK, Spain, Germany and France revealed that the chance to accelerate their career is the primary reason that people make the move to the UK (35 per cent), with job opportunities also the top reason to live and work (45 per cent). Closely followed by the high standard of living (36 per cent), although expensive for many, it is worth it for the better way of life in the UK.

Dispelling the myth of the unapproachable and British stiff upper lip, many of those surveyed said the biggest surprise since emigrating to the UK was how friendly and polite British people are. Migrant workers also quoted culture, diversity, cuisine, and lifestyle as things that surprised them when they arrived.

What’s more, the UK has not failed to impress those living here either, with over three quarters (80 per cent) of migrant workers revealing that their move to the UK has had a positive impact on their lives, with nearly half (41 per cent) also seeing an improvement on their family’s lives, many of whom regularly send money to support their families back home.

One in two believe that the biggest impact the move has had on their lives is the friends they have made since arriving, with 38 per cent admitting they have met their life partner on foreign shores.

When asked if they feel at home in the UK, an overwhelming 62 per cent of migrant workers answered yes, with family and friends the key to feeling settled and secure.

Michael Kent, Co-Founder and CEO of online money transfer company Azimo who conducted the research, said, “Azimo’s success is a result of an amazing collaboration between British people and migrants - the majority of our London based team is from overseas. We take great pride in how supportive the UK is as a place to live and work and we’re very happy to be serving the European migrants with our cutting-edge products”.

Top 5 reasons migrant workers love living in the UK:

  1. Job opportunities (45 per cent)
  2. Friends and family (38 per cent)
  3. Standard of living (36 per cent)
  4. Quality of life (35 per cent)
  5. Financial security (32 per cent)

European comparisons:

  • Weather is the number 3 reason that migrant workers stay in Spain (the only country where weather makes the top 5), with quality of life taking number 1 spot and healthcare number 2.
  • Healthcare also ranks as the number 1 in France while family and friends makes the top 3 in Germany with 40 per cent citing this as a reason to stay.
  • Making friends and meeting a partner have had the biggest impact on those living abroad across all countries, with migrant workers in Germany revealing that they feel at home in the country only due to their friends and family.
  • An improvement in quality of life has had a significant effect on those surveyed in Spain (33 per cent).
  • Migrant workers feel most at home in the UK (62 per cent) the research reveals, compared to Germany (40 per cent) France (30 per cent), and Spain (23 per cent).


About Azimo
Launched in 2012, Azimo is the better way to transfer money around the world, touching millions of people’s lives. Fast, simple and safe, Azimo has the largest digital network in the world, enabling customers to send money to over 190 countries from any internet-connected device.

*Research methodology
The research was conducted by Censuswide, with 1,029 migrant workers across the UK, France, Germany and Spain aged 18+ between 22.08.17 – 29.08.17. The survey was conducted from a random sample. Censuswide abide by and employ members of the Market Research Society which is based on the ESOMAR principles.

Kate Stewart | 0208-834-3494