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How To Get Paid To Move to Scotland In (2024)

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Getting paid to move overseas is a great way to boost your income while enjoying a change in scenery. And luckily, many countries can provide lucrative programs to attract new residents. So, can you get paid to move to Scotland?

After reading this article, you’ll have a complete picture of Scotland’s relocation programs as well as jobs and companies that pay people to move there. You’ll also find out more about the country’s taxes, cost of living, and alternative locations to consider. Let’s dive right in!

Can You Get Paid to Move to Scotland?

The answer to this question can be a bit complicated, as you can still get paid to move to Scotland.

However, this would be through paid relocation jobs and work visas rather than traditional government-funded programs.

The Islands Bond

In August 2021, the Scottish government announced a new relocation scheme under the name of “the Islands Bond”, which was also informally known as the “Golden Hello”. The program was due to start in mid-2022.

In this program, the government will offer young people and families incentives of up to £50,000 (around $64,350) to move to some of the Scottish islands, such as The Isle of Skye and Orkney.

According to the announcement, the Scottish government allocated around £5,000,000 for this program, which allows it to offer the bond to up to 100 people by 2026.

Recipients of this bond are to use those funds to buy homes on those islands and establish new businesses in the area, which helps boost the local economy and reduce the impact of depopulation on those islands.

Public Reception and Cancellation of the Bond

The national island plan received a lot of interest from people around the world, and according to Virgin Radio UK, applicants from as far as Ecuador in South America inquired about the program.

However, the reception from the locals on the islands was quite negative, and some critics called the program an “election gimmick” that doesn’t actually solve the root problem.

In other words, the program was quite unpopular with the local islanders because they believe the money should’ve been spent on improving the island’s infrastructure and housing benefit instead.

For those reasons, the Scottish Government ended up scrapping the relocation program in August 2022, according to The Guardian.

Are There Tax Benefits to Moving to Scotland?

Scotland has an income tax that it applies to its citizens as well as non-citizen residents, according to the Official Scottish Government website.

If you move to Scotland or stay there for a period longer than anywhere else in the United Kingdom within a tax year, you’ll need to pay income taxes to the Scottish government. The tax year in Scotland extends from April 6th to April 5th of the following year.

Keep in mind that income tax in Scotland doesn’t only apply to your wages but to any other source of income, including pension payments.

You should also know that Scotland doesn’t have a constant tax rate, as it varies according to the taxpayer’s income.

That being said, Scottish people pay relatively less tax money than most other places in the UK, and earn more value in return, including free NHS prescriptions and free education/tuition, according to the Scottish National Party.

Are There Jobs That Pay You to Relocate to Scotland?

Although Scotland doesn’t currently have a paid relocation grant, the Scottish economy offers plenty of job opportunities to those who are willing to relocate, along with extra incentives.

Let’s have a look at some of the most in-demand jobs in Scotland that can pay you to relocate there.

Registered Nurses

Registered nurses in Scotland need a nursing degree, which qualifies them to work for the NHS as well as private clinics, hospitals, and non-profit organizations.

How Much You Can Make

According to a report by Indeed, registered nurses can earn around £36,978 (around $47,000) per year or £21.5 ($27.6) per hour.

This is lower than a registered nurse’s salary in the United States. However, you’ll still need to keep other factors in mind, such as the cost of living in both countries.

What Makes This Option Great

Nurses are in high demand in Scotland, which makes it pretty easy to land a job in this sector if you’re qualified. You’ll also enjoy plenty of non-monetary benefits besides your salary, including free healthcare.

 Business Analysts

A business analyst is someone who uses metrics and research results to evaluate the performance of various aspects, including the workforce, the products/services provided, information and data, technology, etc.

How Much You Can Make

A business analyst makes an average of £41,176 per year in Scotland (around $52,800). However, many job opportunities also include lucrative relocation packages that add up to £8,000 (around $10,000) or more.

What Makes This Option Great

This option is ideal for those who have plenty of expertise in this field and can’t find proper job opportunities where they live.

The relocation packages also add an extra incentive to consider moving to Scotland. However, you should keep in mind that the salary on its own is around 8% lower than the national average.

Software Engineer

The tech industry is going through a boom in Scotland, with many companies in the UK trying to incorporate technology into their fields.

For that reason, many Scottish companies will offer a relocation package to attract more software developers to the country.

How Much You Can Make

The average wage of a software developer can vary significantly depending on your field of specialization.

Ideally, however, you should expect an annual salary of around £44,778 ($57,400) while working as a software engineer in Scotland.

What Makes This Option Great

Although a software developer can find better job opportunities in other UK cities like London, the lower cost of living in Scotland can offer more value in the long run.

Why You Should Consider Moving to Scotland

If you’re considering a move to Scotland but you’re still on the fence, here are five reasons why moving there might be the right step for you.

Stunning Sceneries and Places to Visit

Scotland is one of the most beautiful countries in the world. It has a rich and diverse geography, ranging from towering mountains and highlands to islands and coastlines.

This makes it an excellent spot if you’re an outdoorsy person who enjoys activities like camping, fishing, hiking, swimming, or simply taking in beautiful scenery.

Besides its natural beauty and countryside, big cities like Edinburgh, are known for their aesthetically pleasing architecture and advanced rich history, including castles, abbeys, museums, exhibitions, and much more!

Free Healthcare System

The National Health Service in Scotland (NHS Scotland) provides free healthcare to all residents of the country, including expats and those who come through paid relocation programs and their family members.

This includes various aspects, such as regular health checkups, prescription drugs, necessary hospital stays, and more.

That being said, there are some limited aspects that you may need to pay for yourself, such as dental treatment. However, people 26 years old, pregnant women, and nursing mothers, are all entitled to free dental care.

On the other hand, countries, where healthcare isn’t free, can end up costing its residents a lot of money. For example, the average American spends around $12,900 per year on healthcare, so that’s all money that you can save while living in Scotland.

The Locals Are Quite Friendly and Welcoming

Another aspect that you might enjoy about Scotland is its people. The locals in Scotland are quite friendly and incredibly welcoming. Since they speak English, you won’t have to worry about any language barriers if you come from an English-speaking country.

Scottish people are known for their love of a good chat and playful sense of humor, which makes them very easy to get along with if you’re respectful of their country and traditions.

Top Notch Public Transport System

Many states and countries out there are heavily car-dependent, and with the surges in gas prices, transportation can be quite costly, especially when public transport isn’t a viable option.

However, in Scotland, you can definitely get by even if you don’t have a car. The public transport system in Scotland’s big cities and some smaller towns is great. There are always plenty of buses, trams, and trains available for you and within minutes of each other.

Free University Tuition

Scotland is known for its commitment to education, which is evident in its free tuition policy for all students, even those who aren’t citizens. This means that anyone who has been living in Scotland for at least three years before applying to university is eligible for free tuition.

This policy is particularly beneficial if you’re still a student or planning to pursue a degree in a certain field. This way, you can save a significant amount of money by studying in Scotland.

The great news here is that many Scottish universities are also world-renowned for their education quality, making them an attractive option for students from all over the world.

Is it Cheap to Live in Scotland?

Scotland is not cheap to live in, but it’s also not expensive. In fact, many reports about living costs in Scotland show that it’s around 1.27 cheaper than the average across other locations within the United Kingdom.

Of course, this still greatly depends on where you’re planning to live in Scotland. For example, the cost of living and housing expenses in larger cities like Edinburgh, Glasgow, and Dundee are fairly higher than their counterparts in the countryside and islands.

Food and groceries can cost around £320 (around $410) per month for a single person, and around £825 (around $1,060) for a family of 4.

Rent and utilities in Scotland are slightly expensive but still cheaper than many alternatives. These can cost you around £645 to £1,150 ($830 to $1,480) on average, depending on your family size and spending habits.

What is a Livable Salary in Scotland?

A livable salary in Scotland would be equivalent to the cost of living in the country. According to the latest reports, a single person may need to spend around £1,150 ($1,475) per month in Scotland while a family of four may need around £2,860 ($3673).

The average salary in Scotland, according to the same report, is around £2,000 ($2622). This makes the average salary in Scotland ideal for a single person but fairly below the requirements of a family of 4.

That being said, a livable salary is still highly dependent on your lifestyle choices and general spending habits, so it varies from one person to another.

Frequently Asked Questions

If you’re considering a move to Scotland, you may have some questions that still need answers. Here are some commonly asked questions and brief answers to each of them.

What is the Scottish Relocation Grant?

The Scottish Relocation Grant was a government-funded program that encouraged young people and families to move to the Scottish islands and earn financial incentives in return.
The grant, valued at around 5 million pounds, aimed to address the depopulation problem of some Scottish islands. However, the government scrapped the program after negative reception from the locals.

Can You Move to Scotland Without a Job?

The short answer to this question is no. In order to maintain a work permit in Scotland, you’ll need a job offer in the country. A work permit is a necessary part of moving to Scotland because you can’t work there without one.
Luckily, however, there are various job opportunities in Scotland and many companies may post jobs with paid relocation incentives.

Similar Locations to Consider

As you can see, Scotland doesn’t have a proper paid relocation program anymore. However, there are many locations out there that can still offer you monetary and tax incentives to move there.

  • Get Paid to Move to France: France is one of the world’s largest economies and has tons of expats as well as paid relocation programs. Some French regions may offer up to 5,000 Euros to those who are interested in living there.
  • Get Paid to Move to Puerto Rico: The unincorporated U.S. territory has some stunning beaches and amazing locations to visit. Additionally, it’s decently affordable with 0% capital gains tax and only 4% income tax.
  • Get Paid to Move to Africa: Many countries in the African continent are achieving excellent levels of growth over the years, making them a perfect spot to start a business. African countries are also quite affordable with fairly low taxes, allowing you to save a lot of money per year.

Final Thoughts

This marks the end of today’s guide that shows you whether you can get paid to move to Scotland. Up until recently, the country had a paid relocation program that allows young people to move to the Scottish Islands of their choosing and get up to £50,000.

However, the government recently pulled the plug on these grants due to negative reception by the island locals. That being said, you can still benefit financially from moving to the country through paid relocation programs that some companies offer.

Alternatively, you can live as an expat in various countries around the world that would pay you to relocate, including European countries like France, Switzerland, and Italy.

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