Expert Info

Posted by DomS
on 12 Feb 2019

My husband and I are thinking of moving from Canada to Thessaloniki, Greece, with our two small children, 5 years old & 6 years old. We are Greek, and we all speak Greek, including our children. We have a place to stay, so we would not be renting or buying. We are all Citizens of Greece so we would have access to the Health Care system. Not sure if we would also need private health care?

Our dilemma mostly lies in how the current public education system is now in 2019? I have found a lot of info online but it is older information and I am not sure if things are improving? 

Sending them to a private school would probably not be an option because from what I have read it is very expensive. I am worried that the opportunities for my children would be limited regarding education but I am not sure if this is just a fear or a reality. Can anyone please tell me how things are in Greece right now. "Overall living and education system?"

I am trying to make the best decision for myself and my family and am having a really hard time. Canada is great but the Winters are horrible and the lifestyle is very regimented and monotone. I would love to live in Greece where the weather is warm and the lifestyle is more relaxed and enjoyable (if thats how it really is).

I would appreciate any advice, that would help me make my decision for the best for my family and especially my children. 

Thank you in advance for all your input. 

Daniela de Castro on 18 Feb 2019 - 07:45

Hi there

When are you hoping to move? Moving to a new country can be a daunting task. Hopefully, some local expat experts will also be able to get back to you, but you might find some of our guides helpful as well. 

Although your family is eligible to use the public healthcare system in Greece, most expats choose to supplement this with some form of private health insurance. The public education system in Greece is not known for its quality, and many local and expat families with children in public schools pay private tutors to help their children after school hours.

Hope this helps!

- Daniela

DomS on 21 Feb 2019 - 15:34

Hello Daniela,


Thank you for your reply. We are thinking within the next month or two to make the move. I have gone over the various guides on this website and they have been helpful! 

Thank you for providing this information. It is really unfortunate about the education system. We may be able to invest in private schools later on but at this point we are unable to. I hope that the education system improves - I read there is an initiative for the government to address the failing education system and hope that will make a difference in the long run for everyone. I find it foulish that people have to have tutors teaching their children what they should be learning in schools. I imagine the teachers can make a difference in this situation as well. Not sure why they are not teaching kids in the classroom. Anyway, that is my small rant and I hope that when we get there, we will be able to find a solution to this problem for our children. 

We will be doing a trial period of approximately one year to see how we like it. Aside from the education system, we are looking forward to the slower pace and lifestyle that Greece provides and we are definitely looking forward to the better weather and much shorter winters. 

If anyone else has some insight and/or experience with moving to Greece, and perhaps more specifically Thessaloniki, I would greatly appreciate it!

Michelle_3181 on 12 Oct 2020 - 13:22

Hi there,

I am wondering if you have made to the move over to Greece and how you have found it, in particular your children and the education system?


I am researching this for my children, who aren't currently of school age but one will be soon; we too are considering moving to Greece.


With thanks,


Bells on 9 Nov 2020 - 04:01

Hi there, 

I am following this discussion, as I am very curious about Thessaloniki, particularly with kids. We are planning a move, and I am trying to find as much information as possible from moms who have lived or are planning to live there. 

? Chloe 

Trevor on 20 Mar 2023 - 16:11

Sorry to tag this onto your post but I can not find how to post a question on this website as it is not clear. I will be visiting Greece this year on holiday and wondered if there are any classic car shows or vintage tractor or vintage exhibitions as I have not seen any advertised yet and know that Greece is ten year behind Northern European countries. Any information on any vintage machinery events would be good. Trevor on this blog.

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