Moving to a new country can be exciting, but at the same time, it can be difficult. There are several variables that expats need to wrap their heads around, including where to live, how the banking system works, which schools to send the children to, and what documents they require to start driving. Each year there are hundreds if not thousands of people relocating to countries they have never been to before with their families.
Transitioning to the way of living, culture and the system of a new country can never be easy. For some people it is a never-ending challenge. However, there is a way to confront and even win by being prepared. In this article, we’ll quickly run through a couple of pitfalls that expats face and how to avoid falling into them.
Getting Scammed by Locals
Moving to any big city regardless of where you go in the world means that you’ll attract the attention of scammers. Some scammers gear their entire scam to expats with offers to help, which can be too good to be true. These scams range from trying to find good housing to getting your official documents. Some scams even offer to get you a job or ask you to do some work for them.
As a general rule of thumb, when it comes to avoiding scams is that if it sounds too good to be true avoid it. Also, never entrust your documents, money, family, or anything else of value to people you don’t know in a new city. If in doubt visit the police and speak to them.
Not Finding Appropriate Housing
Many expats complain that finding good housing in often megacities and even developed countries can be a challenge. Not only is it expensive but several security checks have to be passed. Some landlords simply don’t rent out to people who aren’t natives.
While there is no good way around it other than to continue searching for a good place to live, a great way to start is knowing which areas are good. Not all areas in every city are good. So find a reputed realtor and get them to search for a home for you. It might take a while, but it will be worth the wait.
Not Being Able to Speak the Local Language
Many English speaking expats in places like Japan and Mexico etc. have a language problem, so to speak. Their inability to speak the local language makes it hard for them to go about their daily life. Even something as simple as hailing a taxi becomes near impossible.
The best thing to do for expats from English speaking countries to non-English speaking countries is to brush up on their language skills. Numerous apps help people understand and speak commonly used phrases, which should help with getting around much easier.
Hire a Local Guide
If you’ve just moved to a new country, then you might want to hire a local guide. A local guide service can help you with everything from housing to finding a school. They are locals in the city you just moved to which means that for them it is very easy to assist you.