7 expat suggestions that will help you settle overseas simply
Uprooting one’s life and moving abroad is a major upheaval for anyone, but major changes often create great opportunities and there is much to discover in such a move.
While living abroad is a big life change, it is usually a fantastic one and once you are settled in you can look to the future and enjoy every second. Although every expat would like to have plenty of time to get used to in their new home, this is unfortunately not an option for many. Work, family and other obligations mean that you often have to land, unpack and jump straight into the expat’s day-to-day life.
So how can you best settle in without a few weeks to find your way around and find your way around? The following seven tips will help you find your way around your new environment so that you will feel at home in no time.
Update your news sources
There are now many news sources and specialized websites and publications focusing on British expats and the expat lifestyle. ExpatRoute is one such site that specializes in financial news for overseas residents, keeping up with the latest developments regarding expat pensions, overseas banking development, tax planning and other relevant stories. Likewise, there are websites that focus on specific communities abroad that translate news from around the world into English for those still working on their bilingual skills.
A big move abroad could be one of the best decisions you have ever made
Get out there and go
It may seem like you don’t see much of your new home, especially if you work late hours and only really get to sleep at home before getting up and going back there. Taking the time to roam your new neighborhood can be very useful, even if it’s just for a morning stroll around the block or a nightly run around the area. You will discover something new with every excursion and it will help you orient yourself and choose places to return to on your days off.
Find your tribe
Overseas communities often have their own groups and clubs, and in large cities it can seem like one is never far from an expat society. Google, join Facebook groups and ask around your new hometown to network with those who have already moved -minded individuals.
Take care of oneself
Moving abroad is both a physical and a psychological upheaval and it is important to prioritize your own well-being during the acclimatization phase. Make time for something you enjoy and take some time for yourself each day, even if it’s just a few breaths over morning coffee or a morning meditation.
Join local like-minded expats in groups and benefit from their local knowledge while making long-term friends
Be a tourist in your own hometown
In the UK we are often guilty of visiting many places elsewhere but never exploring our own hometown or town. You’re in a new place so why not meet it? Take in some of the local popular tourist spots and attractions that are on offer to learn more about the place and don’t be afraid to tell your contacts that you just moved there. Who knows, maybe they can just give you friendly advice or tips about the area that you wouldn’t otherwise have discovered.
Have multiple payment options ready
Finances in a new country can take a while to clear, and some countries are looser than others when it comes to deadlines and customer service standards. Make sure you have some cards and cash with you for at least the first few weeks so that if a payment option doesn’t work, you have a backup.
Keep a ‘home visit’ basket
If you are homesick or intend to visit your home country, it may be helpful to keep all essentials for that country in a box or basket. Not only do you have everything to hand when you go on your next trip, but you also have a small box of reminders when you need them. Pack your keys, cards or passports, your passport and some photos and trinkets that will make you smile.