is the expatriate social life like overseas?
Will I be lonely
life can vary greatly. When investigating countries
where you might like to work - ask about it!
Part of it
depends on you:
Are you social and friendly?
Or do you
depend on others to approach you?
Is your spouse or a
partner going with you?
It's up to
poker parties in Saudi Arabia? Yes!
nights in Bangkok? Yes!
experienced both - though they are polar opposites and
not at all what you would expect in either place.
extremes are possible. The old axiom is, "To make a
friend, be a friend." If you don't know anyone -
volunteer at a local program, join ToastMasters, the
Rotary or Lions Clubs, or other local organizations. If
appropriate for you, join a local religious
organization. You will find that if you make the first
move - most countries and people are very welcoming.
Most expatriates recall what is was like when they first
moved overseas and will reach out to help you adjust.
in small towns with vibrant foreigner social circles and
in large cities where he knew very few foreigners, and at
times, had exactly the opposite social life of what you
people of your new country can be very welcoming - you
will be happily surprised. But know also, that
many cultures are much more "nosey" and will ask many
more personal questions about your life, and may offer
much more "advice" than you are used to. In many
countries it would not be unusual to have someone tell
you that you are very fat (if you are) or that you
should be married by now (if you aren't) or ask about
how much you earn per month or other financial questions
that you would not ask others in your home country.
Take it all with a grain of salt. It is just how
that your host country neighbors and coworkers may well
have seen many expatriates come and go and may wait to
see how long you will stay before they attempt to
establish a relationship with you.
as a strange minority, the foreigner's world is a small
one. Your neighbors will pay more attention to you and
talk about it. Keep your bad habits, if you have
them, out of sight.
has been fortunate to make many great friends while
living overseas and we
still keep in touch. Be open to these opportunities and
to people who are different from you and you will be
surprised what comes up! You may also find your
friends finding or offering you jobs in other countries
after they move on.
A friend of
the author found him a GREAT job in Korea one time and
he was able to return the favor several years later in