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Double return migration: failed returns to Poland leading to settlement abroad and new transnational strategies

International Migration

Published online on


Many Poles who have arrived in the UK since EU accession show signs of settling. Often (especially for families with school‐age children) this is a gradual process. Other Poles have returned to Poland, but Poland currently seems to be having problems keeping its return migrants. Many go back only to depart again. This article focuses on why some returnees change their minds and decide to make a long‐term home abroad. It explores the implications of this decision for transnational practices and identities. It argues that often the key objective is stability. Choosing to settle abroad in the hope of a stable life, returnees attempt to live less split lives. While maintaining certain transnational practices, they scale down others, such as return visits to Poland and keeping well‐informed about Polish current events. Simultaneously, they make a decisive effort to integrate into the regular UK labour and housing markets.