Let’s say that you just moved in to your new place in a new city in a new country, or you are thinking about doing it (in this case you might need a reliable moving service like the ones offered by Removal 24). New experiences like this bring in a wide spectrum of emotions, some unpleasant, but most of them quite exuberating.
This is a short guide of what measures you are supposed to take when you find yourself in such a situation and it aims to save you some stress, trouble, confrontation and quite possibly some money.
1. Read up in advance
It really does pay to be prepared. Quite late to follow through on this step if you are already there, however one can still take the time to acquaint himself with some of the basics of living abroad.
Let’s start with the cultural differences: some nuances of social interactions are often left unmentioned even in integration classes and each culture is bound to have its own quirks unique to it. As a rule of thumb: respect for the nation and its language are universally appreciated. Now not everyone knows the language of the place he is going to (quite prevalent with people originally from English-speaking countries), and the inhabitants of places where foreign languages are common are typically unfazed by cultural differences, still some basic knowledge will go a long way.
If you are planning on staying for long however, developing your language skills as well as an understanding for the specific etiquette are quite imperative. Not everyone can find some open-minded resident to point out the differences for you, however thanks to the readily available information that we have constant access to, you can highlight the differences and act accordingly to prevent any misunderstandings.
2. Settle in
One would be safe in making the assumption that the moment you arrive some place new and exciting you would want to make the most of it immediately. A much wiser alternative (if you are staying for long) is to sort out any domestics things that you can and then take your time with the new experiences. You will both be able to enjoy them more thoroughly and have much less things to worry about later
- You should start by unpacking. You are going to be here for a while so why not make yourself comfortable. Put your clothes away and rearrange a bit. Get used to the new place.
- It is a good idea to make a list of things that you need to get one you are there. Be that appliances, clothing or food, you should know what you are looking for when you get out.
- Get your bearings. Even if you have no idea where you actually are, especially if you have no idea where you are you should get acquainted with your immediate surroundings right away. It will ease up navigating around the place and will let you orientate around town that much more easily in the future.
3. Meet some new people
No matter how much we might resent social interaction, it is bound to happen sooner or later, but most likely immediately on your arrival. This is a good chance to put into practice all of your previous preparations.
- If you have forgotten all you know about the particular culture due to worries or have never simply paid much attention to it, some etiquette rules are pretty much universal. You can almost never go wrong with a handshake, an introduction and a smile. In places where there are slightly more specific types of introduction the native resident should (hopefully) have enough sense help you into them. Genuine good intentions and desire to be liked should be something that everyone can pick up on.
- If the new acquaintances in question are people who you are going to have to see often (think neighbors, colleagues, patrons at the same places you visit) you might want to develop a closer relationship with them. Cultural differences come into play here again, for example German-speaking nations are notorious with being slow to open up, while people from the south of Europe would probably instigate such social interactions themselves (English and French-speaking countries serve as a middle ground). This needs not be forced, as again, genuine friendliness surpasses language and cultural barriers.
- There is a more pragmatic side to such friendships as you can make use of the experience that these people have to offer. They can fill any gaps in your understanding of the culture or serve as a guide to your new living place. After all at some point you will have to familiarize yourself with store and venues that you will have to visit frequently.
4. Map the area
Very soon you will need to go hunting for supplies and your new made friends should be well-equipped to point out any places that might be of interest to you. You should prioritize the stores that you will need to visit in order for you to have an idea where you can find the supplies you need.
- Food and home provisions are likely to be the first thing you go after. It is a good idea to familiarize yourself with two such places – one nearby and one where you can buy in bulk for affordable prices. This way you have a quick alternative and a frugal alternative, and also a place to go if one of them is closed.
- Clothes should be your next bet. Again two shops, this time one that is affordable and one that you actually like. Knowing a good thrift shop is a good idea since you might find yourself in a pinch or needing some disposable clothes.
- Electric appliances and furniture should be your last immediate concern unless however there is something that needs to be replaced as soon as possible. Visiting them can be somewhat problematic as they are often outside of residential areas and at the beginning you are unlikely to have much information about the city.