1. Learn about the culture and language.

The very first thing you should do, before visiting a new environment is to research and try to learn about that place. You can prepare for your trip by reading books about the culture, travel guidebooks, and popular Web sites or newspapers relevant to the region you are traveling to. If there will be a language barrier, take language classes or seek out a tutor to make your transition period easier. Check out our German Language training programs and schedules if you’re thinking of visiting Germany or other European countries where German is one of the official languages. 

2. Get to know your host family.

To enjoy the most out of your time studying abroad, being an Au pair, Trainee or Intern. Please make an effort to get to know your hosts. If they are mindful of their host’s family lifestyle and mimic it, they’ll have an easy “in” into culture norms, such as rules and customs. Students should also show respect by being open to new experiences, such as family meals and sports events.

Take time to familiarise yourself with your new environment, the kids routine, their beliefs and basically their way of life. This way nothing surprises you or flips you. You will find it easier to adapt when you approach things by understanding their point of view.

3. Stay Close to Home.

Moving to a new country, environment, culture and race can be overwhelming, and for some may be more than they planned for. You tend to get nervous, homesick, lonely, in your feelings, and all the emotions that comes with moving away from home. Remember that, this is only a phase and this too shall pass.Staying connected to friends and family, whether it’s email, phone or social media will keep you close to home and will absolutely feel a sense of community. The feeling of loneliness will soon vanish, as you are expressing your feelings more and more. Additionally, soon enough you will be making friends with others while abroad so it will be good to keep solid connections with loved ones. 

4. Be grateful, friendly, and polite

The first few months in any new place, especially a foreign one, is going to be stressful. The fact is that most people live and die very close to the place they are born. You are experiencing something wonderful and unique – no matter how much it makes you want to cry, scream, or rip your hair out. You’re already here; instead, try to be grateful that you have the opportunity to see the world and experience a different culture. Moving abroad for an adventure is something millions can only dream about. Always bear in mind to be friendly and polite towards new people and new cultures and you will have no problem fitting in and making tons of friends.

5. Make New Friends

It’s not always easy to meet new people, regardless of where you are, but having a social life that you are used to and people you can call on in a time of need are vital to feeling at home in your new country. Joining an expat group, volunteering your time, or becoming a member of clubs that appeal to your interests can all help you develop a network of friends.   

Given that there will be many challenges in your new life, being able to call on people that are either in a similar situation or understand what you are facing, can make overcoming any issues all the easier.

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