7 Tips for settling in to your new home overseas
It is very likely that you are excited about moving into your new home overseas and looking forward to a new lifestyle. However, you may find that some aspects of living in a foreign country are more challenging than you anticipated, so we have prepared some tips to help you overcome any problems you have with settling in.
Make your new home overseas your very own
When you move into the property take time to make it really feel like your place, where you will feel as comfortable as you did in your previous home. In your new home overseas, surround yourself with the things from your previous life, such as photos of family and friends, paintings and decorations that reflect your personality.
Get to know the neighbourhood
Get exploring. Discover where the supermarkets are, the fresh fruit and vegetable shops, butchers, fishmongers and hairdressers. Go out for breakfast and morning coffee and rather than settle for one café, try several until you know the one you like best. These are also places where you can try out the language if you’re just learning it; it’s a good idea to look up words in advance so that when you are in the shop, you can refer to your list without trying to remember the word.
Do some sightseeing
Now that you are settled in to your new home overseas, remember you aren’t a tourist. However, one way to get to know the vicinity is to do some of the things that tourists do. You’ll also meet more people and find out what others see as being special about your new hometown or city.
Join a club
In the countries, and the regions of those countries, where you find significant numbers of expat residents, you will probably find that there are plenty of organisations and clubs catering for the overseas communities. Bridge clubs, Rotary clubs, yoga classes, the golf club all present ways of meeting new friends.
Take a class
Joining a language class is one of the most obvious ways to help you integrate more quickly into a new culture, and make friends with others who have just moved. Look for cookery classes, art classes and book clubs as well. They are all excellent ways of creating a lifestyle that suits you.
Do charity work
Even though you are in a foreign country there are always opportunities for volunteering to help with a charity. Many fundraisers and charity shops are run by expats who want to put something back into the local community.
Join an expat community
Some expat communities in certain countries have their own clubs and joining one is certainly a way to feel more at home, because you will be able to mix with people who speak your language. However, relying on this kind of club for a social life can isolate you from the local community as well as other expats. The answer is not necessarily to avoid them altogether, but to make sure that they aren’t your only source of company and entertainment.