Da Vinci International School: Empowering Global Citizens as a Newly Designated IB Continuum School

Antwerp, Belgium – 18/06/2024

Da Vinci International School is thrilled to announce its official designation as an International Baccalaureate (IB) Continuum School. Following a rigorous evaluation process encompassing the Primary Years Programme (PYP), the Middle Years Programme (MYP), and the IB Diploma Programme, Da Vinci International School has proudly met the high standards set forth by the IB organisation.

“Becoming an IB Continuum School is a testament to our dedication to fostering inquiry, critical thinking, and global citizenship in our students.” – Ian Stanley, Head of School at Da Vinci International School

This significant achievement reflects the school’s unwavering commitment to delivering an internationally recognised education that fosters inquiry, critical thinking, and global citizenship. By successfully completing the verification process for all three IB programmes, Da Vinci International School now stands among the elite institutions worldwide recognised for their excellence in education.

“Obtaining IB Continuum School status is a testament to the dedication and hard work of our entire school community,” remarked Ian Stanley, Head of School at Da Vinci International School. “We are immensely proud of this milestone achievement, which underscores our commitment to providing a holistic and rigorous education that prepares our students to thrive in an increasingly interconnected world.”

As an IB Continuum School, Da Vinci International School looks forward to further enriching its curriculum and educational offerings, empowering students to become lifelong learners equipped with the skills and knowledge needed to navigate a complex and dynamic global landscape.

For more information about Da Vinci International School and its IB programmes, please visit https://www.da-vinci.be/


Antwerp City and Region will soon boast an own International House / Welcome Centre. To help get the project off to the best start, they are looking for an experienced freelance interim manager.

Download the details and apply here.


Employees who structurally and regularly work from home can receive a flat-rate expense allowance from their employer for this purpose ProPay informs our members. The maximum amount of this expense allowance was increased from EUR 151.70 per month to EUR 154.74 per month on 01.06.2024.

Increase in desk allowance

As the costs associated with homeworking are relatively small and difficult to prove, the NSSO and the tax authorities accept to estimate these costs on a flat-rate basis. Among other things, the flat-rate desk allowance is intended to cover costs for heating, electricity, water, insurance, office supplies and refreshments.

In its interim administrative instructions, the NSSO informed that the office allowance had been re-indexed. The maximum amount of EUR 151.70 per month was increased to EUR 154.74 per month with effect from 01.06.2024.

The tax authorities follow the amount of the agency fee as set by the NSSO, as well as the evolution of this amount. The amount of EUR 154.74 is therefore exempt from social security contributions and taxes.

The amount of EUR 154.74 per month is a maximum amount. It is therefore not compulsory to grant this maximum amount, but you are free to increase the amount to 154.74 EUR per month from 01.06.2024.

We would also like to remind you that a written agreement should be drawn up for homeworkers, in principle at the latest when the employee starts teleworking. This writing should include certain mandatory entries, such as the place where the employee will telecommute, the way expenses will be reimbursed, etc.

Other home working expense allowances

In addition to the desk allowance, the employer may also reimburse the following on a flat-rate basis:

  • EUR 20 per month if the employee uses his/her private internet connection for professional purposes.
  • EUR 20 per month if the employee uses his/her own PC for professional purposes OR EUR 10 per month (EUR 5 per item) for the professional use of his/her own second computer screen and printer/scanner (and this for a maximum period of 3 years). Please note that this allowance cannot be cumulated with the flat rate of EUR 20 per month for the use of one’s own PC.

These allowances were not increased: the maximum amounts therefore remain the same.

Obviously, the lump sums can only be granted if the office and internet costs are not already reimbursed to the employee in another way.

Action point

Inform your Payroll Business Partner if you wish to increase the lump sum desk allowance. The increase is not mandatory.

ABRA member ProPay is happy to help you with these and other payroll questions.




Still a hidden gem for many, The European School of Mol plans to introduce a new school bus service to Leuven from September 2024.

The new bus line will make our school accessible for expats living in and around Leuven and Brussels, which is a very exciting development for families seeking a competitively priced, high-quality international education for their children.

Contrary to the four other European Schools in Brussels, we still have availability and are accepting new admissions for 2024-2025.


ABRA Member PREMIER SUITES, a leading provider of serviced apartment accommodation is thrilled to announce the launch of its latest initiative, “Suite Little VIPs.” Designed to cater to their youngest guests, this initiative promises to make family travel more convenient and enjoyable. And best of all, it’s free of charge.

Understanding the unique challenges that come with travelling with infants, PREMIER SUITES will provide a range of baby essentials to significantly reduce the stress of packing for parents.

Families can expect amenities such as a travel cot, fridge and freezer for baby food, highchair, baby bath, steriliser, bottle warmer, nappy bin, and an anti-slip shower mat. By providing essential amenities for infants, they aim to significantly lighten the load for parents. No longer do families need to worry about the extra luggage space for baby essentials, as they will be available in their apartment.

Availing of this new offering is simple and convenient, simply select the ‘Suite Little VIPs’ option, available on their official website, when making your reservation. This will ensure that all the listed amenities are ready in your apartment upon your arrival at no additional cost.

Suite Little VIPs is just one of many helpful initiatives available. The ‘Life at PREMIER SUITES’ concept focuses on enhancing the guest experience by bringing the comforts of home into their serviced apartments. Key features include a commitment to safety and security for guests travelling alone, pet-friendly services, and wellbeing support to maintain health and fitness routines. They have also partnered with Mobility Mojo to independently rate the accessibility of all their apartments. Their unique ‘Homegrown Greens’ concept invites guests to pick fresh herbs and vegetables from their lobbies and gardens. Additionally, the ‘PS Social’ programme fosters a sense of community among guests through in-house events. They also partner with small local businesses and encourage guests to immerse themselves in the neighbourhood, recommending their teams’ favourite, authentic places to visit.

ESG is also a major focus for the PREMIER SUITES brand. They are accredited by Green Tourism and Green Key, globally recognised certification programmes which audit the commitment of tourism businesses who are actively working to become more sustainable. Every apartment includes an energy saving guide which has hints and tips on how guests can help to reduce energy and conserve water. There are bikes available for guests to use in many locations.

PREMIER SUITES pride themselves on being more than just a place to stay. The apartments are spaciously designed, providing the perfect blend of luxury and practicality. Whether you’re visiting for business or leisure, they are an excellent choice for extended stays, corporate overnights, or relaxing family holidays.



February 29, 10:00 AM Boston / 3:00 PM London


One-Way Transfers are increasing, and it is important for Mobility and Compensation professionals to be prepared.

Claire Fielding recently joined AIRINC’s Advisory Services team, bringing her Mobility experience from both in-house and vendor roles. Join us for Claire’s conversation with AIRINC’s Adam Silver about her lessons learned regarding One-Way Transfers, including:

  • The realities of handling One-Way Transfers in-house
  • Common misconceptions about One-Way Transfers
  • How to keep different stakeholders informed about One-Way Transfers
Register for the webinar


On 14 September 2023, we’re throwing open the doors
of our Brussel’s campus for our annual Vlerick Expat Event.
This is a wonderful opportunity to connect with fellow
international professionals in Brussels, share ideas and
experiences – and hear from our keynote speaker,
Professor Andreea Gorbatai.

WHEN? 14 September 2023
WHERE? Vlerick’s Brussels campus
WHAT TIME? 6-10pm
FOR WHOM? International professionals

In her keynote speech, Professor Andreea Gorbatai will share:
• Why diversity matters for you, your company and our future
• How a well-planned diversity strategy can help your company thrive
• Evidence-based approaches for managing diversity initiatives in
your company

You’ll come away with the insights you need to explain what diversity,
equity and inclusion mean – and why they matter to your organisation
and our society.



Opening new hotel in Antwerp: Smart & Simple Travel at Holiday Inn Express® Antwerp – City Centre

The hotel is ideally located, in the centre of Antwerp, opposite the state-of-the-art Opera House and just a few steps away from the Meir, Antwerp’s premier shopping street. The brand new hotel is just a 5-minute walk from Antwerp Central Station. Here you will find a direct 30-minute train connection to Brussels International Airport.

Holiday Inn Express® is the largest hotel brand of IHG®, InterContinental Hotels Group. It is managed by PREM Group, an Irish hotel operator headquartered for Continental Europe in Ghent.

At Holiday Inn Express® Antwerp – City Centre, we like to keep it ‘Smart & Simple’. Travellers arrive in a pleasant place to rest after a long day, recharge and possibly work in quiet surroundings.

The hotel offers 102 sustainable rooms equipped with a smart TV, USB ports, free Wi-Fi and tea and coffee facilities. In the morning, you start your day with a delicious hot and cold breakfast buffet that is always included in the room rate. Throughout the day, you can linger in the cosy lobby bar with a drink or snack .

You can discover the vibrant city by strolling to the commercial and authentic shops, museums, restaurants and bars. Furthermore, the Flanders Meeting and Convention Centre and the campus of the University of Antwerp are a short walk away. The edge of the port of Antwerp can also be reached within 10 minutes by car.

The hotel is part of PREM GROUP:
PREM Group, founded in Dublin in 1996, is an international hospitality company operating in Ireland, the UK and Continental Europe. It is the parent company of several companies, including its hospitality management division PREM Hospitality, Rate Wise (revenue management company) Sprint Digital (digital marketing agency), Trinity Hotel Groups (contracting tour operator business) and Premier Business Centres (serviced offices).

PREM Group in figures:
2,200 rooms and flats
31 locations (including lease, freehold and management contracts)
6 international hotel brands
Active in Ireland, England, Scotland, Belgium and the Netherlands

For further information, please contact Wendy Croes at wcroes@prem-hospitality.com

Frankrijklei 4-6, 2000 Antwerp


Belgium: Belgium-based operator BBF Apartments expands further with a new residence, Initium, in Antwerp.

BBF Apartments, a Belgium-based operator, will open their new residence in June. Initium is a modern apartment complex located only 10 minutes from the city centre and Central Station. Antwerp has always been a large business hub in Belgium and these new accommodations are aimed at ex-pats and business travellers in Antwerp. BBF Apartments will offer studios as well as one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments.

BBF is a specialised provider of serviced and residential apartments since 1992. With more than 1600 units in top locations in Antwerp and Brussels, they can offer short-, mid- and long-term rental packages combined with professional services. Moreover, renting an apartment with BBF allows all foreign tenants to register in the local town hall according to European Law.

“We are thrilled to expand our presence in Belgium with the launch of Initium in Antwerp,” said Raquel Van Canneyt, CEO of BBF Apartments. “Antwerp is a vibrant and dynamic city, and we are excited to offer our guests a comfortable and convenient home away from home.”

Antwerp is an important business hub in Europe for several reasons. One of them is its harbour, which is the second largest in Europe and the tenth largest in the world. The harbour handles a wide range of cargo, from containers and cars to chemicals and petroleum products. It also connects Antwerp to other major ports and cities in Europe and beyond. Another reason is the long-term infrastructure projects that Antwerp is undertaking to improve its accessibility, mobility, and sustainability. These projects include the expansion of the ring road, the construction of a new lock and a new tunnel, and the development of smart city solutions. These projects aim to enhance Antwerp’s attractiveness as a place to live, work and invest.

Antwerp is one of the most well-connected cities in Belgium, thanks to its extensive network of roads and public transport options. Antwerp is located on the banks of the Scheldt River, which connects it to the North Sea and other ports in Europe. Antwerp is also a major hub for highways, with several ring roads and motorways linking it to Brussels, Ghent, Bruges, Liège, and other cities in Belgium and beyond. Antwerp has a modern and efficient public transport system, consisting of buses, trams, metro, and trains. The Antwerp Central Station is a stunning architectural landmark and a major railway junction, serving both national and international destinations. Antwerp also has a bike-sharing scheme and a waterbus service that runs along the river. Antwerp’s connectivity makes it an attractive destination for tourists, business travellers and residents alike.

BBF has announced that they have future development plans in Antwerp Ghent, Mechelen, Leuven and Brussels. To find out more, go to www.bbf.be.


The ABRA Board is actively seeking applications from members who would like to help represent our industry. With your support, we will continue forwarding relocation in Belgium. We have many exciting ideas, but need your help to bring them to life. If you believe you have the experience and creativity we seek, please send your CV with a motivational email to admin@abra-relocation.com.


A full day with information for those who want to move to the United States, Canada, Australia and New Zealand. All aspects of an emigration will be talked about in different sessions:

  • social security and insurances
  • taxes
  • visa and residence permits
  • intercultural differences
  • consular matters
  • personal testimonies

A ticket to this event costs € 30 and can be purchased via https://viw.be/nl/infodag-emigreren-kan-je-leren

Info day: emigrating to USA, Canada, Australia, New-Zealand


A 5 day summer camp for expat children that are learning Dutch as an additional language. The perfect place to practice Dutch with other children from around the world. The camp is very interactive, with games, sports, city vists, singing and dancing and much more!

The summer camp is open to children 8-13 years old. Attending camp costs € 550. More info at https://viw.be/nl/viw-taalkamp-nederlands

Zomerkamp expatkinderen


Thank you for your time to read our updated invitation for our German language event on June 3rd. We are happy to share that our Parents’ Association and the Austrian Cultural Forum Brussels are sponsoring our event, our classical music concert included. As a result it is free of charge for you. We are very grateful for their financial support.

Wir sind stolz, Ihnen die Feier der deutschen Sprache an unserer Schule am Samstag, den 3. Juni 2023 von 15:00 bis 21:00 Uhr auf unserem Campus, präsentieren zu dürfen. Wir würden uns freuen, Sie als unseren Gast willkommen heißen zu dürfen. Wir möchten diese Gelegenheit nützen, um allen zu danken, die zur inspirierenden Geschichte dieser Sprache beigetragen haben. Die Veranstaltung bietet Ihnen Nachmittagsaktivitäten wie Märchen, Ausstellungen und Verkauf von didaktischen Materialen, sowie Essen und Aufführungen für Kinder und Erwachsene.  Krönender Abschluss des Tages ist ein Abendempfang mit klassischem Konzert, präsentiert von zwei Künstlern des „Trio Artio“ (Cello/Klavier) Ensemble. Beethoven, Mozart und Hayden stehen auf dem Programm.

We proudly present the celebration of the German language at our school on Saturday June 3rd 2023 from 3pm to 9pm. We gladly welcome you as our guest at our campus to give thanks to everyone who has contributed to the inspiring history of this language. The event will offer you afternoon activities, food and performances for children and adults.  Followed by an evening reception and a wonderful classical music concert performed by two musicians of the Austrian ensemble “Trio Artio”. They will play music written by Beethoven, Mozart and Hayden.

***  Be our guest and register via our homepage:  News | European School Mol (esmol.be)  ***

In naam van de hele scholengemeenschap ES Mol
PR and Communications Team
European School Mol
Europawijk 100
2400 Mol

+32 (0) 14 56 31 75


Special Offer for ABRA Members: the ultimate guide for expat partners on staying active and finding work.

You may remember authors Marie Geukens and Carine Bormans from their exclusive webinar for ABRA members and guests in 2020. In their book, they explore questions such as Can you plan your professional future as expat partner? Can you pursue a career in your new environment? What are your expectations and priorities?

This is the book that dares you to look at work differently and helps you open unexpected doors. The book allows you to ask all the right questions, both before, during and after your stay abroad. It offers inspiring examples and useful warnings about potential pitfalls. Step by step, you will be able to make the career choices that best suit you at that particular moment.

The perfect inclusion for your welcome packs, Expat Partner, Staying Active & Finding Work is now available directly from the authors at a reduced rate for ABRA Members. The more copies you order, the better the discount, so be sure to reach out to Marie Geukens via Whatsapp on +32 468 160 870 to find out more!

The effect of giving up some certainties by following one’s partner abroad should not be underestimated. The expat partner is often left in the cold.

According to 71% of expats who experienced a failed foreign posting, the reason provided is an unhappy partner. Clear agreements are necessary to make a good start.

Carine Bormans is an experience expert, having lived as an expat
partner in Kuwait, Vienna, Paris, Geneva, Nairobi, Kinshasa and
(currently) Bamako. In between, she worked in the HR department of
the Belgian Ministry of Foreign Affairs as a specialised trainer for
expats and their partners.

Marie Geukens studied Germanic languages and journalism and has
moved as an expat partner to Budapest, Damascus and Ottawa. She previously was the editor-in-chief of Marie Claire magazine. Today, she lives in Kigali, Rwanda.


No doubt you will have discovered the many features of the new ABRA website by now.  A cleaner layout for easier navigation, better categorisation of member industries, and much, much more. But did you know we’ve created information only accessible to ABRA members?

Log in to discover our Best Practice Guide for publishing with ABRA (it’s pretty useful for your own website and social media too). Full Members can also access various important guidelines, procedures and documents related to registering expats, driving license exchanges, rental agreements and more.

If you are an ABRA member but do not have a login, please reach out to Fiona. Lost your password? Simply click the link at the bottom of the login page to generate a new one.



Thank you to all our members who so kindly contributed to our very first official introductory movie. We wanted to create something that introduces our work as an association and showcases the benefits of ABRA membership to potential new members.

Please help us spread the word by sharing it across your social media platforms and tagging us @ABRA Relocation or by adding the hashtag #ABRARelocation to your post.

We’re planning a follow-up later this year. If you’re interested in contributing, please be sure to reach out to us as we’d love to have your input!


Our December Member Meeting took place on Tuesday 13th December at St John’s International School in Waterloo. Our thanks go out to the entire St John’s team for their warm welcome, Dr David Brooke for his presentation, and to our keynote speaker Karlijn Jacobs, the world’s first Ombudsman for International Children.

Karlijn’s keynote looked at international relocation through a child’s eyes, raising awareness of children’s experiences and needs throughout the various stages of the relocation. You can now find the event pictures and more on the Expat Valley approach on our Past Events page.

Sam Devolder, BBF, Christophe Vandeputte, Expat & co, Arman Madatyan, BBF, Filip Declercq, Expat & co, Sandra Merckx, Expat &Co, and Caroline Stroobants, Anywr

“Until today, a German practice was just a pipe dream for us. It is a fantastic growth market with a lot of potential and opportunities, but it requires specific knowledge and skills to be successful in business. We are therefore delighted that, with our new partner and practice leader, we can immediately make a solid footprint in the German mobility industry.”- Dominique Coenen (Co-Founder and Partner, Expat Management Group)

For the full article, visit the Expat Management Group website.


Fieldfisher Belgium office |  Thursday 17 November 2022 | Noon – 1:00pm

Together with Jan Van Cauwenberghe – advisor to the cabinet of the Prime Minister – we will unravel the major aspects of the Labour Deal: the ‘ratio legis’, the new regulations and their impact on your daily HR management as well as the interpretation to be given to the different new rules. As such we will analyse (but not limited to) :

  • The 4-day week
  • The alternate working schedule
  • Right to disconnect
  • Training plan
  • New regulations in respect of termination of employment
  • Monitoring the diversity at the workplace

And we will elaborate on the practical consequences of the transposition of the directive on transparent and predictable working conditions for your HR practice.


Fieldfisher’s HR-Law team : Stefan Nerinckx, Anne Kamp, Tim Perdieus, Davit Unusyan

Jan Van Cauwenbergh : Advisor Work, Social Affairs and Pensions – Cabinet of the Prime Minister

This is a free of charge in-person event organised at the Fieldfisher’s Belgium office : l’Arsenal/Arsenaal, Boulevard Louis Schmidtlaan 29 box 15, 1040 Brussels. Lunch will be served. 

Register now

Our team in the Netherlands is looking for an Immigration Specialist for Belgium and The Netherlands.

Your Mission

In this role you will provide in-house services and immigration advise for Packimpex Netherlands and Belgium and coordinate relocation services in both countries.

This position is offering an exciting opportunity to play a pivotal role in the growth if Packimpex in the Benelux.

Your 12-Month Employee Journey

You will spend time learning Packimpex processes for the first 3 months, while providing immigration advice and services. Your learning is done via an e-learning platform and video calls. You will work hand-in-hand with our Relocation and Immigration consultants and with your existing immigration knowledge and experience you will supervise your own cases, anticipate any issues or concerns and advise on solutions. After 6 months you will be fully immersed in your new position and be able to look at process optimisation and implementation. After 12 months you will have enough knowledge to be more strategic in the tasks you own, analysing client satisfaction metrics and analysing market gaps and suggesting innovation

What you will do

You will work in an international context and have daily interactions with assignees and our clients, such as HR, International Mobility Managers or RMC Account Managers from around the world.

What you will bring

Experience with and knowledge of Dutch and Belgian immigration law, and willingness to develop an understanding of the entire relocation journey. The tasks of this position will require adaptability, empathy, proactive communication, and accurate reporting.

Place of Work

This role will be fulfilled mostly from home office.

About Us

With offices across Belgium, Germany, UK, Switzerland, The Netherlands and Italy, we provide a wide range of relocation an immigration solutions. We support expatriates and international companies with pre-hire orientation tours, home search assistance, school search, immigration, and settling-in services. Our services range from international removals to furniture rental. Behind our success are 150 experienced and talented employees who strive for innovation and continuous improvement.

Join an international and multicultural team, and become part of a future-oriented business, who changes lives, reinvents Global Mobility, and exceeds customer expectations.

Sybille Goss
Packimpex Ltd.


Community Help Service (CHS) has recently started to design and produce its annual calendar for 2023 amidst a refreshed publicity presence.  The calendars provide an exceptionally attractive opportunity to support our organisation whilst promoting yours.  We are delighted to invite you to advertise in the 2023 calendar.

CHS anticipates printing a quantity of 3,500 calendars and distributing them widely throughout the ex-pat and international communities in Belgium.  Containing an extensive aggregate of information, the CHS calendar provides a wealth of resources and references for multiple communities.

We offer three different types of advertisements in the calendar in order to provide a choice of presence and budget.  Please see enclosed a listing of the various advertisement options for the 2023 calendar.  Additionally, as a supporter of the CHS ‘brand’ you will be listed on the Sponsors page of the CHS website and also mentioned at community events which CHS might organize or participate.

Sponsors of the CHS website (www.chsbelgium.org), depending on the sponsorship level, receive complimentary advertisements in the calendar. By example, a platinum-level website sponsor receives a quarter-page ad in the calendar commercial directory as well as two tiles in the monthly pages.  On the CHS website, there is plenty creative scope for inclusion of all sorts of presentations and we are convinced that we can make your own image appreciably attractive.

We look forward to hearing from you and hope that you will elect to support CHS whilst benefiting from the publicity and exposure which the 2023 CHS calendar and our other activities offer.  The points of contact are Victor (victor@chsbelgium.org) and Geoff (geoff@chsbelgium.org), or you can call the CHS office at +32 (0)2 647 67 80.


PwC Global Mobility Tax & Immigration Services becomes Vialto Partners

Please note that the PwC Global Mobility Tax and Immigration Services practice is now Vialto Partners. Thank you for updating your contact database with the new information above.