Home » Annegret Bertsch, Beijing, China

Annegret Bertsch, Beijing, China

Who are you?

My name is Annegret Bertsch and I just recently repatriated back to my home country, Germany, after spending the last few years in China and America. During my time abroad I realized how challenging the expat experience can be and I decided to become an ICF accredited expat coach. I am now supporting expats, accompanying spouses and third culture kids during and also after their time abroad, so that they don´t have any regrets and can make the most of their time abroad. 

Where, when and why did you move abroad?

Our expat adventure started 11 years ago when my husband got the opportunity to work abroad for his company.

What challenges did you face during the move?

Moving to the USA was not really a problem especially since I have family who were living there, and I was already familiar with most traditions and customs, but moving to China was a different story. I experienced culture shock and I had to learn to adjust and to find my place in this new country. I really struggled with the bad air and people always said: You knew about that before you left. But knowing about something and experiencing it are two different things, right? 


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How did you find somewhere to live?

We were very fortunate because my husband’s company supported us by finding a place to live which made everything so much easier.

Are there many other expats in your area?

We used to live in Beijing and yes, there are many expats especially in the area where we lived. It was really fascinating to meet people from all over the world and to get to know them and their traditions. A truly rewarding experience.

What is your relationship like with the locals?

In America we could fit right in because we are able to speak the language and we found a great community, many local friends that we are still in close contact with. In China, due to the language barrier, it was almost impossible to connect with the local people.

What is the biggest cultural difference you have experienced between your new country and life back home?

In America you get the feeling that everything is possible. Everyone is very optimistic, and they tend to focus on what goes well and not so much on what could go wrong. The downside is that people are not as open to improve the status quo. I often heard the phrase “We have always done it like that” and usually that was the end of the conversation. I have to add that we used to live in the South and the mentality is different than let´s say in San Francisco. 

What advice would you give to anyone following in your footsteps?

As hard as it is, you need to figure out how you want to use this time in the best possible way. What do you want to look back on once you are on a plane leaving this place for good? What do you want to focus on? What is important to you? But in general, I would say, be open, curious, enjoy the adventure while it lasts and don´t take anything for granted. 

What are your plans for the future?

I guess this is an area where I changed. Before my expat adventure I would have had a plan, but now I am just open to what is next. But one thing is for sure, I started to work with expats as an expat coach while living abroad because I saw the need and I would love to continue to support expats in their own endeavor of living internationally. 

You can find more information on Annegret’s expat coaching through her website and follow her on Instagram and LinkedIn.


Latest Videos

In this short video, we dive into the significant health care updates and changes happening globally in 2024. From Germany's insurance cost adjustments to Cyprus's renewed COVID-19 precautions, we cover the essential news you need to know.  Germany's Health Insurance Update:  Starting in 2024, residents in Germany will see a slight increase in their health insurance costs, with a 0.1% rise to a maximum of 1.7%. This adjustment aims to expand coverage for medical care not currently included in statutory health insurance, such as select dental treatments, IVF, and early cancer screenings.  COVID-19 Measures Reintroduced in Cyprus:  With over 3000 new COVID-19 cases, Cyprus is stepping up its game by reintroducing health measures. Requirements now include proof of a negative COVID-19 test for entry into various facilities, emphasizing the importance of vaccination, especially for the elderly, to combat the evolving virus strains.  Free Health Trials in Trieste, Italy:  Trieste launches an initiative for free health screenings, including echocardiograms and blood tests, focusing on preventive care against non-communicable diseases. This move underscores the city's commitment to improving public health through early detection and prevention.  Spain's New Health Advice App:  Madrid introduces a groundbreaking app offering reliable health advice to counteract the widespread misinformation online. This app, part of the 'Madrid Te Cuida' initiative, will guide users to accurate information, from diet tips to medical queries, ensuring the advice is vetted by health professionals.  Expat Satisfaction with Healthcare in Mexico:  A study reveals that expat retirees in Mexico are largely content with the healthcare quality and costs, with many citing significant savings compared to the United States without compromising on care quality. This insight sheds light on the growing trend of healthcare tourism and relocation for medical reasons.  Stay tuned as we unpack these updates, providing you with the insights and implications of these healthcare changes. Whether it's the impact on your wallet or the quality of care you can expect, we've got you covered in this comprehensive overview of health care in 2024. Don't forget to like, share, and subscribe for more health news around the globe!

In this short video, we dive into the significant health care updates and changes happening globally in 2024. From Germany's insurance cost adjustments to Cyprus's renewed COVID-19 precautions, we cover the essential news you need to know.

Germany's Health Insurance Update:

Starting in 2024, residents in Germany will see a slight increase in their health insurance costs, with a 0.1% rise to a maximum of 1.7%. This adjustment aims to expand coverage for medical care not currently included in statutory health insurance, such as select dental treatments, IVF, and early cancer screenings.

COVID-19 Measures Reintroduced in Cyprus:

With over 3000 new COVID-19 cases, Cyprus is stepping up its game by reintroducing health measures. Requirements now include proof of a negative COVID-19 test for entry into various facilities, emphasizing the importance of vaccination, especially for the elderly, to combat the evolving virus strains.

Free Health Trials in Trieste, Italy:

Trieste launches an initiative for free health screenings, including echocardiograms and blood tests, focusing on preventive care against non-communicable diseases. This move underscores the city's commitment to improving public health through early detection and prevention.

Spain's New Health Advice App:

Madrid introduces a groundbreaking app offering reliable health advice to counteract the widespread misinformation online. This app, part of the 'Madrid Te Cuida' initiative, will guide users to accurate information, from diet tips to medical queries, ensuring the advice is vetted by health professionals.

Expat Satisfaction with Healthcare in Mexico:

A study reveals that expat retirees in Mexico are largely content with the healthcare quality and costs, with many citing significant savings compared to the United States without compromising on care quality. This insight sheds light on the growing trend of healthcare tourism and relocation for medical reasons.

Stay tuned as we unpack these updates, providing you with the insights and implications of these healthcare changes. Whether it's the impact on your wallet or the quality of care you can expect, we've got you covered in this comprehensive overview of health care in 2024. Don't forget to like, share, and subscribe for more health news around the globe!

YouTube Video UCB21b-C4O2aXm7H18_GsXMQ_nC_Fs6gU22U

Expat Focus International Healthcare Update January 2024

Expat Focus 31 January 2024 10:36 am

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