There’s no doubt that moving abroad involves a great deal of planning and preparation. As you plan your relocation and start sorting out different aspects of your new life, you come across many boxes to be ticked, and once you’ve arrived, the list of errands continues.
To help you through the process of relocating abroad, Cigna Global, a specialist in expat health care, has put together this list with the top 7 tips you may want to factor in for ensuring a successful transition.
1. Engage With Your New Community
The best way to immerse yourself in a new culture is to go out and share with the locals. Get inspired about how much you can learn about the culture, attend events, participate in community meetings, try out new sports or local activities; it will all help you to adjust and feel at home in no time.
Getting involved in your new community will bring you opportunities for socialising and making new friends as well, which can be very rewarding.
2. Keep Doing the Things You Love
Trying new things and engaging in activities with your new community is important to adjust to your new environment; but doing the things that gave you great satisfaction back home are equally as important.
Look for ways to keep practicing the sports you love, or navigate online to find out about groups or places to go in order to keep your hobbies alive. Not everything has to change, and there is nothing wrong with keeping up with regular routines that contribute to your mental health and happiness.
One of the greatest things about being an expat is that you can turn any day into an adventure – explore your surroundings to discover what they have to offer. You can always visit new places nearby and find out about new shops, museums, parks, or anything that excites you.
Any location can have things to offer and hidden gems such as landmarks, historic places or unique architecture. You can also work out at the same time you explore, and take advantage of new cycle routes or local hiking paths.
Whether your stay is permanent or temporary, try and make the most of your time. Enjoy your surroundings and seize opportunities to have fun, and you’ll find yourself well on your way to a successful relocation.
4. Ensure You Have a Good Health Cover
No matter where is the world you go, a health cover for you and your family is essential. It’s very important to consider the implications for expatriates in your new location – some countries provide subsidised state healthcare; however, some do not.
Understanding how the healthcare system works in a different country can be complicated. In many cases, expats opt for an international health insurance plan that can ease much of the stress; attend your queries in a familiar language, and ensure you can get the best treatment whenever it’s needed.
Cigna Global offers a wide range of levels of expat medical insurance cover available to protect you in your new homeland, and anywhere else you may be travelling. Find out more about Cigna International health insurance here.
5. Look After Yourself
Moving to a new home can be exhausting, and moving abroad is 10 times worse. With all the complications involved in travelling and sorting your relocation, it can be easy to forget about your health and wellbeing, but try hard not to neglect this essential part of your life.
Looking after yourself will keep you healthy and mentally strong towards the new changes – eat well, exercise and get sufficient sleep; this will all help you to manage your sense of wellbeing as you immerse yourself in your new environment.
6. Keep in Touch
As exciting as expat life can be, it can sometimes get isolating. It’s very common for most expats to miss their social network and find difficult to assimilate that they live far from their loved ones. Staying in contact with your friends and family at home can give you some comfort while away.
In this time an age, however, it’s not so difficult to stay in touch. Make use of the many tools and new technologies that facilitate getting in touch with your friends and family, and try visiting them when possible.
7. Keep an Open Mind
Adjusting to a new culture can take time. You may find that attitudes that are popular in your home country may not be well received in your new location. It’s not a case of right and wrong. A respectful and open-minded approach will help you to understand the cultural differences and embrace the change.
An open mind also allows you to absorb and learn about different aspects of your new country, contributing to a smoother transition. If you don’t speak the local language, try learning some basic words and sentences to facilitate your interaction with the locals.
It can take a bit of time getting used to, but take comfort in the fact that the initial struggles will diminish over time. A sense of humour is important – don’t expect miracles overnight, and enjoy the great phase in your life as an expat.
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