Just as working abroad is often seasonal, the return home is also temporary.
Constantly missing their family and children is one of the migrant workers’ most common shared experiences. No matter how frequent, phones or video calls cannot diminish the distance between home and abroad. However, working abroad seems to be their only chance at ensuring a better future for their children. When working for an employer who complies with contractual terms, the income earned in 3 or 4 months of seasonal work can cover a decent livelihood at home for the rest of the year.
Driven by the far too low wages in Romania and the desire to ensure a better future for their families, most workers wish to return to working abroad.
Romania’s minimum wage cannot even cover monthly expenses, much less the necessary income for investing in one’s own house, in the children’s education, or for treating certain health problems. Most of the time, the decision to go to work abroad is determined by these financial shortcomings.
For mobile workers, returning to Romania stirs up thoughts of joy at seeing their family again, but also the need to return with enough money. Those who have had favorable work experiences, in which their contracts were upheld, plan to go to work abroad next year. Considering the gross physical exertion they are subjected to, working abroad is often a temporary life strategy, which depends on their health status and ability to work.