Preparing to Relocate – 5 Things you can do to make the move easier
Whether you have made an active choice to move to another country or it is a work necessity, there are still a lot of things you can do to help the process before you even start looking at places to live.
It depends on how much time you have before your move, as to how much you can do. Here are some of the basics I would recommend:
Books are the perfect way to start and I know this sounds a little old fashioned in the digital era, but by choosing a few guide books about your new city can help familiarise yourself with the areas and the culture.
You may also find there are some non–fiction memoirs about moving and living in your new country. These are likely to be entertaining and informative at the same time, however do take them with a pinch of salt as there is likely to be an element of fictionalisation.
Get Online (but take it easy)
The Internet has a wealth of information but you can easily get bogged down in the sheer volume of information and misinformation available. Start looking at basic level websites, for example the main tourist board website, websites from official bodies about moving to the city and search for any blogs written about moving to or living there. This shouldn’t overwhelm you with too much information to start with.
A Positive Mindset From The Start
Start thinking of the move as an adventure even if you are reluctant or apprehensive about it. A positive attitude at the start can really be an asset, especially if you face setbacks or stressful situations associated with the move or at the start of your time there.
Most likely you will have basic or no knowledge of the local language. If you can already speak the language you are well on the way to integrating quickly. Before both our moves to Denmark and Germany I learnt some basic language by using a book and CD in the first instance (it was 2007!) and later online resources. Duolingo is a great starting place. Even if the local people speak excellent English learning the language helps you feel less isolated in everyday life.
Look for Support From The Start
If you are moving to a position with a big company look at what they are offering in the way of support, especially if you are the spouse. In Denmark a lot of larger companies and organisations offer spouse mentoring schemes or newcomers groups. If this is available try and get some contacts early on so you have a seasoned expat to fire questions at, but who also understands how you may be feeling. They will also remember how they felt or what was a mystery to them when they first moved, so are a valuable resource.
Melanie Haynes is originally from the UK and has lived in Copenhagen for ten years. She writes about life in Copenhagen on her blog and after experiencing relocation to Copenhagen and Berlin, she runs a settling-in service aimed at helping expats called . She has written a number of practical ebooks about living in Denmark and her new ebook ‘Moving to Copenhagen – all you need to know’ will be available in the autumn.
Want help relocating, finding accommodation or a job in Denmark? Welcome Group Consulting offers Assistance for English speakers. Click HERE for more details.
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