Austria – Five Recommended Expat Blogs


Articles - Austria

At Expat Focus, we like to be on the lookout for resources around the web that could help prospective expats adjust to their new countries. Today, we’re taking a look at Austria and some of the bloggers who write about living there.   more ...

  Slow Living As An Expat


Michelle Garrett
Columnists - Michelle Garrett

I know that title seems an obvious statement to some people who have preconceived ideas about the relaxed ‘G&T on a veranda’ lifestyle of expats. But as most of us know, it’s not exactly like that.

For me, the expat life is a bit more frantic than it might have been at home. I have lived overseas for over half my life now and I have worked hard to create a bubble of security in the absence of my family and familiar culture. I have created my own family, I have created a home, I have worked and settled in nicely and embraced my host culture as my own. But I still always feel like I need to work a bit harder to maintain control over this tiny corner of the world, just to be a bit more secure.
I've been away recently, body boarding and cliff walking in Croyde, Devon. And thinking.   more ...

  5 Places you Might Want To Move To In France But Have Probably Never Heard Of


Articles - France

Living in France is probably like a dream come true for many Expats because of the quality and pace of life. This country is the number one destination for expats of all nationalities and ages.

There are several places in France that expats from the US and UK would like to move to, such as Paris, Marseille, Nice and Lyon. However, many parts of this country are still unexplored by foreigners. Here is a list of 5 places in France that you may love moving to, but have probably never heard of.

La Gacilly in Brittany

The French village of La Gacilly has a population of less than 2,500 people. The small commune hugs the banks of Brittany’s Aff River. The cosmetic company Yves Rocher is based in La Gacilly.   more ...

  Going Clubbing


Judi Lembke
Columnists - Judi Lembke

Like most of us in the expat world I have joined, for a variety of reasons, many a club over the years – usually when the summer holidays come to a sad end, life gets back on a normal schedule and the kids are no longer underfoot. Women’s clubs, expat clubs, professional clubs, book clubs – I’ve joined them all. While I’ve enjoyed most of my clubbing experiences I’ve been looking around for a club that offers something a little different as we prepare to leave the all too short Swedish summer behind.   more ...

  10 Iconic Things To Do & See In Nice


Kim Defforge
Columnists - Kim Defforge

1. Museums

Follow in the footsteps of Chagall, Matisse, Renoir, and Picasso, among many other artists, with a visit to the numerous historical and fine arts museums. Discover how the light of the French Riviera inspired and captivated artists, beautifully reflected in their works of art. For added value, the new “Côte d’Azur Card” is a prepaid electronic passport that provides access to over 110 activities in the region - from the coast to the mountains, museums, nature parks, water sports activities, excursions, and tours.   more ...

  Do Expats Ever Stop Comparing?


Barry O’Leary
Columnists - Barry O'Leary

Is it normal for expats to continuously compare everything to their home country? If so, does it ever stop? I’ve been an expat in Seville, Spain for nine years and still find myself wondering whether certain things would happen differently back in England. It’s funny, but even though I’ve lived in Ecuador, Brazil, Australia and Thailand, I still bypass those memories and compare aspects to good old Blighty.

I used to compare an immense amount more than now. Especially in those first couple of years when the learning curve was steeper than the hills in the Andalucían countryside. I used to wake up and think “I’m living in Spain.   more ...

  South Africa Diaries: Part 1 - Why It Took 25 Years To Get To South Africa


James King
Columnists - James King

Shattered dreams

When I heard the news, on 11th November 1965, that Rhodesia (now Zimbabwe) had declared UDI I was devastated. I had just been selected to represent the combined British tobacco companies in a party of cricketers to tour Rhodesia for six weeks. We were to be the guests of the Rhodesian tobacco farmers and would have, by all accounts, been royally accommodated and entertained. In addition the scheduled cricket matches would have been of a generally higher standard than our regular weekend encounters at club level. All expenses including an allocation of ‘fun’ money for personal use were to be provided by the British tobacco companies and our salaries would continue to be paid as though we were still making ‘cigarettes’.   more ...

  “That’s Just Who I Am” – Assimilate Or Be Yourself?


Toni Hargis
Columnists - Toni Hargis

Taking my inspiration from Bravo TV’s The Ladies of London this month. It’s a reality show starring two British women and five Americans, living the high life in London. A bit like the Real Housewives but without the face-slapping and table turnovers,- so far. LOL has sucked me in because of the US versus UK cultural differences and how the Americans are dealing with them, or not. One American (Juliet) is fairly new to the London scene and is portrayed as the “typical” American; constantly in trouble for being too loud and blunt. She can be heard almost every week announcing “That’s just who I am”.

And it got me a-thinking.   more ...

  Tales from a Spanish Village: Two Old Fools and Cats


Victoria Twead
Columnists - Victoria Twead

Until the Spanish begin to neuter their cats, there will always be a huge feral population. When we moved to El Hoyo in 2004, we were surprised at how many cats roamed the village, but I guess we're used to it now. Although not domesticated, they all seem healthy and manage to exist on a diet of lizards, birds and anything else they can catch or scrounge.

As the years roll by, it's been interesting to watch the feline politics, and to trace the cat family trees. At any given time there is a ruling tomcat, and the latest wave of kittens always reflect this cat's virility and success with the ladies. Back in 2004, the ruling tom was a huge battle-scarred Siamese mix and the first cat to claim our garden was his daughter, Thief-Cat.   more ...

  Dealing With Culture Shock In Bangalore – Some Advice For New Expats


Articles - India

Experiencing a culture shock is an inevitable part of moving to India, especially if you are traveling to the country for the first time. Bangalore, the “Silicon Valley of India” is a dynamic city with deep religious roots. In spite of being young, tech-driven, and urban the culture in Bangalore is rather different from that in the average Western country, and therefore most expats from the US and the UK need some time to adjust.

Eventually, you may love living in Bangalore, but initially the sounds, sights, smells and colors or this city may assault your senses. You need to be willing to adjust to a new way of life while the culture shock wears off. Of course, the best way of dealing with a culture shock is to learn as much as you can about Bangalore and its people. Here is some advice for new expats to deal with culture shock in Bangalore.   more ...

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