You can find expats in different countries
5 tips on how to get along quickly as an expat in your new home country
Learn the language
Whether you already speak the local language or hardly know a word, either way you will stumble across language barriers. Even if it helps you in many countries to be able to speak English, in the long run it is inevitable to learn the national language. It's not just about the practical aspects: if you speak the national language fluently, integration is naturally much easier for you. Expats who make an effort to speak the local language even though it is not their mother tongue tend to be better recognized and welcomed by the locals.
It is advisable to start learning languages before you move. You will then make even faster progress on site by directly and constantly dealing with the language. However, if you have no previous knowledge of the national language, you should definitely attend language courses on site. There are also many ways to actively work on your language skills: watch local TV channels, read the newspaper, take part in various social activities, join a language club….
Discover the country, your new hometown, the neighborhood
Arrive in good time so that you still have a few days before you start your job. Then you can explore the new city in peace. In the first few days after arrival, it is important to find your way around the new environment as quickly as possible so that you can quickly feel at home. Get a first impression of the area around the new apartment: Find the nearest supermarkets, banks, post offices, train stations, bus stops, dry cleaning, sports facilities ...
But take time for one or two excursions and take a look at the tourist highlights. Make yourself aware: the beautiful places that others look at on vacation are part of your new home!
Live like a local
You're just getting into Thailand arrived, but have already made a few trips to a grocery wholesaler in the hope of being able to buy food from your home there. You have been living in Argentina for a few months, but so far have spent your time watching your home TV programs, meeting other expats and chatting on Skype with your friends from home ...
First of all, it is certainly reassuring to keep your old habits and not to lose touch with your homeland. However, it does not help you to arrive in your new home.
To get to know a culture, you need to become a part of it and ignore any prejudices you may have about it. Curiosity is your best ally in this. Avoid just surrounding yourself with your expat friends. Attend local events, try the local cuisine, get used to new rules of conduct ... In other words, accept surprises. It's not about becoming a completely different person and adopting all the customs and peculiarities of the new culture, but about getting involved with your host country and having a positive attitude.
Establish social contacts
The ability to develop relationships with both locals and other expats can well be seen as one of the key factors for successful integration. Spending time with other expats who already know their way around the country can make a lot of things easier and give you good tips: how to open a bank account, which doctors can be recommended, the right one Foreign health insurance, good schools, the renewal of the work permit - good advice saves time and nerves. At the same time, exchanging ideas with other people who have had the same experiences as you are confirmation and a good way to prevent the initial isolation.
When the excitement and the stress of moving have finally subsided, you should make contact with the locals. This will help you understand the country better and no longer feel like an outsider. Take advantage of every opportunity: join a sports club, chat with other parents when you pick up your children from school, meet up with your work colleagues for private activities, ask your friends to introduce you to their friends ...
Stay in touch with your old "home"
Even if you are far away from home now, the contact with family and friends in the old homeland and also with the employer should continue to exist. Nowadays, communication from abroad via email, telephone or social networks is neither time-consuming nor cost-intensive. Family and friends can be of great support in case you have problems or you should get homesick. It also makes it easier for you to return later if the network still exists in your old home. This also applies to work. The contact with the employer ensures that you and yours will not be forgotten there return is prepared.
Here you will find even more tips on how to really settle in as an expat:
Exchange yourself Just Landed other Expat blog meet other expats.
APRIL International will help you with the integration
APRIL International offers insurance solutions specially developed for expats. In addition to extensive insurance cover that you can take out, change and extend flexibly from abroad, the international health insurance from APRIL International also includes extra services that are particularly helpful for expats, such as:
- Help with dealing with authorities
- Translation service
- Legal advice
- Psychological care
- Co-insurance of family members
- Flexible extension
- The insurance can still be taken out even if you are already abroad
- The international health insurance also covers preventive treatments, routine examinations, vaccinations, visual aids, and much more.
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