Relocating can be exciting and stressful! As you progress through the various stages of your relocation, your needs will change. It is important to establish routines in your new location early on. The sooner you get everyone back on track, the easier the settling-in process will be. Utilise the below techniques from our Global Lead Researcher, Peg Kirkpatrick, to start to feel at home in your new country faster!
1) Master public transit.
If you can buy a discounted option, like a weekly or monthly pass, do that. Take as many rides as you can as soon as you can. Explore your new city using buses. As you ride along, note the addresses of shops that look interesting, restaurants where you might want to eat, historical buildings you might want to visit, etc. It won’t be long before others are asking you where things are – you will feel like a local when you can help them.
2) If you will depend on taxis instead of metro or bus services, learn from a local what a typical fare is to get home from various locations.
You may need to negotiate before you take a ride or make sure the taxi driver knows that you are aware of the usual far to be spared the “tourist” or “foreigner” fare. If being able to do this motivates you to learn a few words in the new language, that is all the better.
3) Learn what is available in your neighborhood.
Unless you move to a new suburb far from a city center, you will find that locals do not need cars to shop. Taking your baby for a walk (or a run) in the stroller may be a perfect opportunity to check out your neighborhood. Why take a long trip out to IKEA when you can buy a tablecloth or curtain rods around the corner?
4) Broaden your knowledge of something you already love by learning the local take on it.
This can be any subject you already know something about – architecture, food, horseback riding, exotic pets, UFOs, a favorite sport, or the Middle Ages. Finding local outlets for your interest or hobby can also provide an opportunity to meet people with shared interests.
5) Join a language exchange group.
These groups are set up specifically for people to talk to each other, and they are a wonderful way to acquire local knowledge.
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