Cinthya Lechat, Brighton

Who are you? My name is Cinthya. I am a 26-year-old French woman and Happiness Coach, who currently lives in Brighton in the UK. Where, when and why did you move abroad? I first moved to Germany in 2014 for an Erasmus exchange programme. I have also been an expat in Australia, where I worked … Read more

How To Open A Bank Account In The UK

Bank notes were first introduced in the UK in around 1661, and the Bank of England was established in 1694. However, the evolution of the banking landscape in the UK, which has made it as it is today, only really gained traction after the First World War. There are currently around 344 banks in the … Read more

Kevin, International Expat

Who are you? My name is Kevin, I’m French, from Paris. I am an International HR Professional and a great travel addict ;)I have completed a few expatriations. Now I am a cruise ship officer, exploring the world. In addition, I am a blogger in my spare time, trying to share my experience and my … Read more

How To Rent Or Buy Property In The UK

The United Kingdom, made up of England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, attracts many expats. It offers great prospects in terms of education and work, and a high quality of living to those who can afford it. If you’re looking to rent or buy property there, then read on to learn about your options. Renting … Read more

How To Apply For A Visa In The United Kingdom

It’s worth mentioning at the beginning of this article that, as you are most likely aware, the UK is in the throes of leaving the European Union (EU). This means that the reciprocal agreements with the EU and European Economic Area (EEA) are subject to change. Whilst the UK have left without a deal as … Read more

How To Find A Job In The UK

Your ability to find employment in the UK will depend to a certain degree on what happens after Brexit. However, the UK and EU governments seem keen to establish a reciprocal relationship that benefits all parties. For example, the UK government has recently announced that it does not intend to deport EU citizens who have … Read more

How Does The Quality Of Healthcare In The UK Compare With The US?

The United Kingdom (UK) and United States (US) healthcare services are ideal representatives of two extremes; the former relies on public funding whilst the latter has the largest private sector funding system in the world.Hospitals in the US are almost exclusively privately owned and most of the population (84%) accesses healthcare via a combination of … Read more

How Will The UK’s New Rules Affect Expat Contractors?

Officially known as the Intermediaries Legislation, the Off-Payroll workers’ rules or IR35 takes its name from the original 1999 press release published by the then Inland Revenue (now HMRC) announcing its creation.Part of the Finance Act, the IR35 ‘working through an intermediary’ involves applying three main principles to determine one’s employment status: • The degree … Read more

Complementary Therapies In The UK And How To Access Them

In the stressful context of 2019, many of us are spending more of our time and resources focusing on our well-being. Spending a little time on self-care is a vital part of surviving the day to day stresses of adulthood. Whether it’s a payday treat to ourselves; a reward for a job well done; or … Read more

New To London: How To Find A Co-Working Space

If you’ve just moved to London and have a remote job, or you’re a freelancer who needs a working space that isn’t your kitchen table, worry not; the British capital is full of excellent co-working spaces nowadays!The hard part is finding the one that is right for you, so here’s a roundup of the best … Read more

Settling Into London: Insider Tips From The Capital City

London is a fantastic city to live in, albeit a rather pricey one! Living cost aside, there’s always so much to do in the big smoke, which is wonderful but can also be, well, a little overwhelming. Moving anywhere new can be taxing, both mentally and physically, let alone moving to a bustling hub such … Read more

How Do The UK’s New Immigration Rules Affect Expats?

With the uncertainty and upheaval that Brexit continues to bring, it is unsurprising that expats in the UK are concerned about their status and any new rules being implemented to immigration. What changes are occurring to the current visa system in the UK, and how will this effect expats already residing there, or those looking … Read more

How To Live Comfortably In London On A Budget

The answer to “How can I live comfortably in the capital on a budget?” might, at first glance, be “Buy a tent!” This is not as far-fetched as it seems, given the numbers of people living alongside the footpaths of Regent’s Canal and elsewhere in the heart of London. We’re going to be looking at … Read more

What Effect Might Brexit Have On American Expats In The UK?

Wherever you come from, this is an unsettling time to be living in the UK. EU nationals resident in Britain are already reporting difficulties with applying for residency. But what if you’re living here and you come from outside the EU?If you’re American living in the UK, the good news is that any effect on … Read more

Chiara Cubeta, London

Who are you? I’m Chiara, I’m Italian and 27 years old. Where, when and why did you move abroad? Travelling is really my great passion in life. This is also why I moved to London almost two years ago, I like the fact that in this city you can live and breathe a multicultural atmosphere.I … Read more

The Best International Schools In London

As part of an expat family with dependent children, one of your primary concerns when relocating is going to be your children’s education. Expat families may choose to send their children to international schools who teach the curriculum of their home country (meaning children can easily pick up where they left off) or a globally … Read more

Networking In London: A Guide For Self-Employed Expats

As any self-employed person will tell you, there are pros and cons to the lifestyle that so many people covet. Whilst many people perceive freelancing as a dream come true and will tell you how lucky you are to work for yourself, do what you love, set your own hours and so on, we all … Read more

Moving To London? There’s An App For That

At one point in the not so distant past, finding your way around required a map, a sense of direction and some navigation skills. Finding a new home involved visiting multiple estate agents, locating a good place to eat was based on trial and error or word of mouth, and figuring out the utterly ridiculous … Read more

How To Navigate London’s Public Transport System

Public transport is more or less the easiest way to get around London due to heavy traffic and congestion charges. London is excellently connected as a result of the public transport reaching all over the city. However, the system can seem complicated to the newly initiated. For example, since some of the underground in London … Read more

Hipster Or Homebody? Find Your London Tribe

Are you a hipster or a homebody? Do you prefer cosy evenings in as opposed to late nights out? Do you revel in quaint, quiet venues and love a good book club? Perhaps you’re an early riser and love a good cup of expertly roasted coffee? Or on the flipside, do you enjoy a good … Read more

Christine Frey, Chester

Who are you? My name is Christine Frey, I am from Germany and now living and working in the UK.I am the co-founder of Live Your Perfect Day. I love networking with people all around the world, learning languages, travelling and spending quality time with my family and friends. Where, when and why did you … Read more

What Might Brexit Mean For Expats Working In London?

In another article, we looked at how the UK’s exit from the EU was likely to affect the country as a whole. Numerous studies, including the government’s own, showed that rural and industrial parts of the UK were the areas most likely to suffer. The midlands and northern England could face a 20 percent slowdown … Read more

Moving To The UK? Which Areas Will Be Best (And Worst) Off After Brexit?

Another year has slipped by and many of us are taking on new year’s resolutions with determination and zeal. Smokers are quitting, the gyms are filled with newly energised fitness first-timers, and millions of Brits are shaking off their bad habits in a brighter, more optimistic 2019. Unfortunately, Westminster can’t quit its old habit of … Read more

Benjamin Houy, London

Who are you? I am Benjamin Houy, a 26-year-old Frenchman living in London and founder of French Together, a blog I created to help American and British expats learn French. Where, when and why did you move abroad? I moved to South Korea in 2011 to teach French and English as part of a French … Read more

Staying In The UK Legally After A Relationship Breakup

Tales of international romance sadly don’t tend to end with the happy couple riding into the sunset to enjoy a life of loving, bureaucracy-free bliss. If Cinderella had happened to be a foreign citizen when she fell for her Prince, she would have needed a visa advisor rather than a fairy godmother to reach her … Read more

How To Pass The UK Citizenship Test

The UK Citizenship Test is a challenging hurdle to overcome at the best of times, and uncertainty over Brexit adds a further layer of anxiety to the process – especially when native Brits cheerfully report that they have tried the test and failed.What exactly does the process involve, and how can you maximise your chances … Read more

What Does The EU27 Settlement Scheme Mean For You?

Brexit is currently creating a great many questions in the minds of EU nationals as well as the British themselves, and a new settlement scheme such as the EU27 may well be top of the list of queries. What is it? And what is it likely to entail? What Is The EU27 Settlement Scheme? The … Read more

How To Bring Your Pets Into The UK

Moving from one country to another can be stressful. Therefore, having everything neatly ordered is a must. Between finding a place to call your own in an exciting new country, to getting your belongings packed and ready to be sent to your new home, there are so many steps you must take to make your … Read more

Where To Find The Best Sunday Roasts In London

Some countries are famous for their cuisine. The French have Cordon Bleu, the Italians have a rich heritage of pasta and wine, Singapore sizzles in a fusion recipe of cultural delights. Britain, on the other hand, enjoys a global reputation for stodgy dollops of carbs, tasteless beer and an obsession with gravy. While the rest … Read more

Accessible London: A Guide for Expats Who Use Mobility Aids

London has an alarming reputation for being inaccessible, with many areas retaining the original Victorian architecture. However, in recent years a number of improvements have been made to enable those who use mobility aids to enjoy many areas which had previously been inaccessible. Accommodation Accessible property can be difficult to find in London. To help … Read more

American In London? Here’s Where To Find A Taste Of Home

America is land of the free and home of the brave, according to the song at least. But what happens when Americans pack up their lives, leave the States behind and settle in the land of hope and glory? One estimate puts the number of Americans living in the UK at 197,000. Whilst a large … Read more

A Vegetarian Guide To London

Whether you’re vegetarian, vegan, or just a healthy eater, rest assured that the Big Smoke is a veritable veggie paradise these days. England might not have the best food reputation abroad, but you’ll be delighted to know that this has changed in recent years. Gone are the days of limp lettuce served with rust-coloured tomatoes … Read more

Can You Afford To Live In West London?

There always seems to be a new list doing the rounds, running down the most expensive expat destinations. Locations in which the cost of living will squeeze every penny out of your pocket, leaving precious little to actually enjoy the sights of city.Recent polls are usually topped by the financial titans of the Far East, … Read more

Living In London As A Transgender Expat

The city of London in the United Kingdom has a long history as both a world economic powerhouse and cosmopolitan cultural hub. Its primary airport, Heathrow, is one of the most important waypoints in Europe, its landmarks are recognized the world over, and it once stood at the center of the mind-bogglingly enormous British Empire. … Read more

Chinese Expat In London? How To Settle In And Make Friends

As an expat, the hardest part of moving to a new country can be the ‘settling in’ phase, along with everything that goes with it. This could include any number of things, but expats often have to deal with factors such as culture shock and language barriers. These are on top of all the practical, … Read more

The Best Rural Locations In Britain

The Halifax Rural Areas Quality of Life Survey, which is dedicated to the quality of life within rural areas in the United Kingdom, is out – and the Orkney Islands in Scotland have come out on top. The Halifax survey comes out annually and compares crime rate, employment and units which measure general happiness in … Read more

London – City Of Love: Why The UK Capital Is More Romantic Than Paris

Paris is often referred to as the city of love, and hopeless romantics all around the world have their eyes set on the French capital. Paris is portrayed in a plethora of literature and films as the ultimate romantic getaway, the ‘it destination’ for finding love, and generally the place to be.However, it may surprise … Read more

Ten Signs You’ve Been Living In London For Too Long

Has there ever come a point where you’ve wondered — have I been here too long? As an expat living abroad, you may start exhibiting clear behaviour and signs that are associated with a culture different to your own, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing! In fact, it’s part of the expat journey. Many people … Read more

Jacqui Paterson, Buckinghamshire

Who are you? Jacqui Paterson, journalist, mum of two, and lifestyle blogger. Where, when and why did you move abroad? I left New Zealand in 1998 for several reasons.I was 25 and desperate for a new work/life challenge and I was completely fed up with the weather in ‘Windy Wellington’. Firstly, I moved to Sydney, … Read more

Moving To London? Learn The Unwritten Rules Of Life In The Capital

Moving to London can be a daunting prospect. London is a densely populated city and English people have a reputation for being notoriously hard to read. We’re not an unfriendly bunch, per se, but we’re possibly not the most approachable either! In public situations, particularly with strangers, the uninitiated may often find themselves making a … Read more

Moving To The UK? Get The Paperwork Right!

If you are planning to move to the UK, you may find yourself preoccupied making arrangements for your new job or education course whilst also trying to figure out what to wear in a country where the weather seems to change almost hourly! However, you will need to get your paperwork right as well, otherwise … Read more

The New American Embassy In London – What Expat Services Does It Offer?

America has a new home. But don’t panic; there’s no need to go checking maps! The entire United States has not shifted from its traditional spot between the Atlantic and Pacific. Instead, the US embassy in London has re-opened in brand new buildings, leaving its famous Grosvenor Square location.The new embassy has already caused a … Read more

Lena, Cambridge

Who are you? My name is Lena and I moved from Germany to the UK in 2015 together with my husband who is a PhD student at the University of Cambridge.I’m currently working as Content Marketing Specialist in the education industry and I’m blogging about expat life in England on my website. What challenges did … Read more

London At Christmas: A Guide For New Expats

The festive season is now upon us! Christmas is fast approaching, and so we have compiled this Christmas guide for all of you expats who may be spending it in London this year. We’ve explained English Christmas traditions and customs, and given you some great ideas whether you’re alone this year and looking to meet … Read more

Feeling Low In London This Christmas? Samaritans Can Help

As a time when friends and families get together to celebrate the winter season and bring in the next year, the festive period can be a particularly difficult time for expats, especially if you’ve only recently moved abroad.Knowing that your loved ones are far away and you don’t have the option of sharing a traditional … Read more

Language Exchange Meetups In London: A Guide For Expats

Are you an expat living in London looking to practice your language skills? The main issues people experience when learning a new language are usually to do with confidence, and not being able to get enough real life practice. It’s all well and good using a fancy app with voice recognition software to correct your … Read more

Homeware Shopping In London – A Guide For New Expats

You’ve moved into your new home and perhaps it’s a little empty; you want to fill your new space with colour and style, but you’re on a budget after your move. Or it could be that you want to find some unique interior accents or antique pieces to really make your new abode stand out?There … Read more

The Best Places In London To Celebrate Bonfire Night

The 5th of November is a day of historic significance for the people of the UK. More than 400 years ago, back in 1605, 13 conspirators planned to blow up Parliament and kill King James I in what is now known as the Gunpowder Plot. One of the plotters, Guy Fawkes, was arrested by the … Read more

Jordan White, London

Who are you? I’m Jordan White, I am 26 and originally from Northern Ireland.I work freelance in political commentary and writing. Where, when and why did you move abroad? I moved to London in November 2016, I did it for a combination of reasons – I’ve always loved London, it is one of my favourite … Read more

From Small Town Australia To London’s Big City Life

I was born and raised in Australia, in a small town called Thornton just north of Sydney. The Great Southern Land is the envy of many for its warm weather, wide open spaces and abundance of possibility but it has its downsides too, one of those being isolation. Being so far from the rest of … Read more

Maaike, London

Who are you? I’m Maaike, marketing executive in the tourism industry, blogger and freelance writer. I’m an expat in London, UK, from the south of the Netherlands. Where, when and why did you move abroad? The first time I moved abroad was back in 2012.That was to London to do an internship for six months. … Read more

Megan, London

Who are you? I’m Megan, a 27 year old Australian girl who’s been an expat in London and exploring Europe for the past 5 years. Where, when and why did you move abroad? I moved to the UK in 2012, when I was 22 years old.I was always drawn to England, particularly London as my … Read more

An Expat Guide To Finding A Tutor In London

With ever-mounting pressure upon children to achieve good grades, there is a high demand for private tuition. Yet with no independent rating system to judge how qualified a tutor may be, how can parents hope to pick the right person to provide their children with the necessary academic skill set to excel?London is a fast-paced, … Read more

The Latest Brexit News For Expats In The UK

Brexit is the term used to refer to the withdrawal of the UK from the European Union. On 23rd June 2016, a referendum was held in which 51.9% voted for Britain to leave the EU against 48.1%, who voted to remain. More than 30 million people took part in the referendum. Following the vote, former … Read more

Bronnie Mayho, Hertfordshire

Who are you? I am Bronnie Mayho, once Bronwyn Hattaway.Where, when and why did you move abroad? I moved to Britain originally in the 1990’s but moved home and back several times during that decade, finally settling in SW London in 1997. What challenges did you face during the move? Leaving my parents was the … Read more

Summer Holiday Getaways Within The UK: A Guide For Expats

It’s the final few weeks summer and you’re in the mood for a getaway. Why not stay within the shores of the UK and bypass the annoyances of long drives to the airport, delayed flights, and the difficulties of conversing in a foreign language? Going overseas means you will miss out on all that the … Read more

Report: UK Most Expensive Place For Expat Assignments

A yearly survey of 40 financial hubs has revealed that the United Kingdom continues to be the most expensive country for expat assignments. This is the case even considering the fall in the pound’s value following the Brexit referendum. This was something that emerged in the latest MyExpatriate Market Pay Survey by ECA International.When taking … Read more

Things To Do As An Expat In London This Summer

London is an appealing destination for many reasons. It has an iconic skyline, as well as a view that never fails to disappoint with the Houses of Parliament, the London Eye, the Shard and other famous buildings. It is a multicultural hub in which more than 300 different languages are spoken. It is, in fact, … Read more

Ashley Finlay, Edinburgh

Who are you? My name is Ashley and I am originally a Florida girl, but made Washington, DC my home.I moved to Scotland two years ago, due to a thing called love, and started my blog to share my adventures and unique outlook on living and working abroad. Where, when and why did you move … Read more

A Guide To Income Tax For Expats Moving To The UK

While the UK is among the world’s most popular destinations for expat talent to develop their careers, the income tax situation is complicated. There’s no doubt that cross-border taxation can be a complex area in finance and law but it’s something expats will need to deal with. For those expats moving to the UK, there … Read more

What Do Expats In The UK Think About Brexit?

Since the Brexit vote in 2016, there has been much concern and discussion around what will happen to expats when the UK leaves the EU. A main area of concern at the moment is around expats who are worried about the effect Brexit will have on them. How is the United Kingdom’s decision to leave … Read more

Five London Expat Meetup Groups To Attend

Moving to London as an expat is an exciting decision. The big smoke is where many new experiences are to be had and lots of new culture is yet to be discovered. Settling down in London as an expat is easier than many think. There are various ways to make new friends and find someone … Read more

Ten Signs You’re Becoming A Londoner

It’s been a busy few weeks for London. The Big Smoke has been hit by a terrorist attack and suffered a devastating fire, yet still it has dusted itself down and carried on. At times like these a lot gets said about the ‘Blitz Spirit’: the determination, resolution and downright stubbornness that saw the city … Read more

The UK – Recommended Social Media Accounts

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 the UK and some of the social media accounts you should be following if you’re thinking of moving there.Expats living in Surrey UK Facebook … Read more

Sonja Thomson, Edinburgh

Who are you? I’m Sonja, originally from New Zealand but now based in Scotland, and I write about travel and expat life on my blog, Migrating Miss. I love travelling (obviously), finding unique cafes where I can sample the coffee and cake, and pushing myself out of my comfort zone with adventure activities. I started … Read more

A Guide To Private Banking Services For Expats In The UK

When it comes to private banking services, expats will often be looking for an offering with innovation and value to help juggle work and life commitments at an international level. While this article focuses on private banking services for expats working in the UK, the advice here is useful for British expats working overseas as … Read more

How To Move Your Pet To The UK

Pets have been part of many families for decades now. Many have grown up with pets since their childhood; others have been treated to a pet after wishing for one. Often they are ‘babies’ to people who do not wish to have children. They are dependent on their owners to look out for their well-being … Read more

Speed Dating For Expats In London

Leaving your hometown or country often causes relationships and friendships to break up. Pursuing a move to new destination that has only ever been a dream before is a bittersweet time – you are sad to leave people behind, but there are also many new memories and adventures on the horizon. Settling into a new … Read more

Report: UK Migration Falls In 2017

The United Kingdom, one of the top expat destinations in recent years, appears to have lost some of its appeal among migrants from across the world ever since the Brexit vote. According to a report published by the Office of National Statistics (ONS), immigration to this country has fallen to a two-year low after citizens … Read more

A Guide To Setting Up A Bank Account In The UK

Settling down in a new place takes time, even if you move to a place you really like. However, once you get accustomed to the culture and lifestyle of new home, planning your finances should be one of your top priorities. Anyone who is employed, works as a freelancer or runs a business should open … Read more

Nine Ways To Stay Healthy When You’re Working Long Hours In The City

With many City workers ranking up around 60+ hours every week, they need to undertake exercise and a healthy lifestyle during the working day. However, this article isn’t just aimed at City workers but everyone who spends long periods at their desk. But before moving on to the ways of staying healthy, we should consider … Read more

9 Things Expat Brits Miss About Home

Dorothy was right, there really is no place like home. When she began to miss Kansas, all she had to do was click those ruby slippers together and be whisked magically out of Oz back to Aunty Em and the farm. But here in the real world, it isn’t always that easy to get home … Read more

How To Register With A Doctor In The UK

The National Health Service, or NHS, is the largest and oldest healthcare provider in England. It is known to be one of the leading healthcare systems in the world. Records show that the system caters to over one million patients every 36 hours, and covers everything from routine checks to dealing with long-term illnesses.Although the … Read more

Visa Diaries: The Final Word

by Genevieve Rogis Over the next few months, I will be applying for an unmarried partner visa in the UK. You can start from part one of my Visa Diaries series here.My visa arrived yesterday! I’m now in the throes of packing and sorting, arranging farewell catch ups, and consoling my mother. She’s pleased for … Read more

Report: Number Of EU Citizens Looking For Work In The UK Declines In 2017

The arguments for and against Brexit were complicated, emotive and confusing. Although the public vote stirred strong emotions from all sides, the debate didn’t extend much further than that. Famously, the figures used by Vote Leave promised millions of reclaimed expenses to be committed to the NHS. These numbers were contested and shot full of … Read more

How To Apply For A National Insurance Number In The UK

The United Kingdom is a popular expat destination for many reasons, including its culture, lifestyle, benefits, healthcare, diversity, education, infrastructure, and career opportunities. Outsiders considering a move to this place should not be deterred by its high living costs, unpredictable weather, grey skies and unimaginative cuisine. It is absolutely essential that you get all your … Read more

Do We Do Enough To Make Expats Welcome in the UK?

The UK has a long tradition of immigration. Many argue that the island is a nation of immigrants, its character and culture shaped by successive waves of migrants from pre-Roman times to the modern day. Their contribution to Britain’s history, culture, and landscape cannot be ignored.But the UK also has a long tradition of suspicion … Read more

Visa Diaries: Waiting

by Genevieve Rogis Over the next few months, I will be applying for an unmarried partner visa in the UK. You can start from part one of my Visa Diaries series here. You get a lot of sympathy when you’re separated from your partner, and your home, for any length of time. People ask how … Read more

An Expat Guide To Taxation In The UK

For most people, immigrating to the United Kingdom (UK) means working for a living. As a part of working life there are many expenses that need to be considered, one of which is taxes. There are many types of taxes that apply within the UK, whether it be on everyday items in the form of … Read more

A Taste Of Home: Where To Find Your National Cuisine In London

Leaving a country where you grew up and spent your early life, adapting to the culture you were born into, and then moving to a city that is very set in its British etiquette, there will be times when you miss a little piece of home, including those authentic traditional home-cooked meals.The delightful thing about … Read more

Visa Diaries: The Joy Of Forms

This is part three of Genevieve Rogis’ Visa Diaries series. You can also read part one and part two. The past two weeks have been filled with all kinds of surprises and anxieties. All the evidence has been gathered together. Letters have been signed and dated, text messages received, phone logs and photos compiled and … Read more

How Will Brexit Affect Expat Mortgages?

When a majority of the citizens of the United Kingdom voted for Britain to exit the European Union on June 23, 2016, it created a huge amount of uncertainty around the political and economic landscape of the future, not just across among the member nations and the continent, but all over the world. This was … Read more

American Schools In London: A Guide For Expat Parents

Moving to London can be a daunting task, especially when you consider all the familiar things you’ll be leaving behind. It can also be a stressful process for families with children who are currently in education. The American schooling system differs greatly from the schooling system in London. The classes, grading methods, timetables, uniforms and … Read more

How Is Brexit Affecting Expats In The UK?

There has been a lot of talk about ‘Brexit’, a term that is used for the United Kingdom departing from the European Union. It has already had a major impact on the country. Many expats have moved to the United Kingdom and started to settle into what was supposed to be their happily ever after, … Read more

What Expats Heading To The UK Need To Know About Health Insurance

As one of the world’s most popular expat destinations, the UK offers great opportunities and though it has one of the best healthcare services in the world there is still a need for international health insurance. There are two issues to appreciate for all expats moving to the UK and the first one is for … Read more

Visa Diaries: On Teamwork

by Genevieve Rogis Over the next few months, I will be applying for an unmarried partner visa in the UK. You can find part one of my Visa Diaries series here. I am now well into month two of my exile abroad. I’ve been keeping busy, catching up with friends, bonding with my niece over … Read more

An Expat Guide To Making Friends In The UK

If you are moving to the United Kingdom (UK) in the near future, congratulations! You’re on the move to a great place. Whilst you may be excited about your new adventures ahead, there are many emotions that come with moving. Understandably you are leaving your friends, family, home and memories behind. Luckily, there is social … Read more

A Guide To The Cost Of Living In London

People often call London a mini New York. It is the British version of the city of dreams and it truly does make those big dreams become a reality. This is one of the reasons many Londoners love this wonderful, diverse and fresh city. If anything new or innovative is going to happen, London is … Read more

Ten Classic British Traditions All Expats Should Experience

Where to begin with an offering of the ten classic British traditions all expats should experience? 1. The pub Let’s start in the pub – the best times often do. Expats who have just moved to the UK may be surprised at how popular the pub is to their British colleagues but it’s a good … Read more

Report: UK Citizenship System Reform After Brexit

The Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR) says that reform of the UK’s citizenship system will help prevent harm to the economy. The Home Office has revealed a 14% increase in the past 12 months in the number of EU nationals applying for British citizenship – which, the IPPR says, illustrates the level of uncertainty … Read more

Is Now The Time For British Expats To Buy UK Property?

One of the reasons why many people are currently thinking of investing in UK property is that the pound is trading at historic lows against most of the world’s leading currencies, which makes property in the UK much cheaper for foreigners and expats to buy.Indeed, many property experts are claiming this is a good time … Read more

Visa Diaries: Packed for Exile

by Genevieve Rogis Over the next few months, I will be applying for an unmarried partner visa in the UK. I am an Australian citizen, and I have lived in the UK for six years, and lived with my partner, Andy, for nearly three. I started on a Tier 5 working holiday visa, before moving … Read more

UK – Recommended Blogs

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 the UK and some of the blogs that might be useful for expats there.Oh, the places we will go! American Selena confesses to … Read more

A Guide To Celebrating Burns Night For Expats In Scotland

If you’re new to Scotland, then you’re probably wondering what Burns night is and what all the fuss is about. Burns night or Burns supper is a tradition that celebrates the life of popular 18th century Scottish poet and lyricist, Robert Burns. This tradition has been carrying on since 1801 when a few of his … Read more

An Expat Guide To Renting Property In London

England’s capital is undoubtedly one of the most dynamic, lively and fast-paced cities in the world. In addition to being the financial hub of Great Britain, London is at the pulse of Europe’s of fashion, art, entertainment and commercial scenes. You can see the city almost buzzing with an urban energy at any time of … Read more

Brexit: What it may mean to your state pension

There are two pension issues (state pensions rather than occupational pensions) that I come across frequently when talking to people living in the EU about the implications that Brexit may have. The first is Pensioner Rights for working people, and the second is the potential ‘freezing’ of the UK state pension.Pensioner Rights With most EU … Read more

Report: London – The Most Magnetic City For Entrepreneurs

The capital and financial hub of England has always been one of the most popular expat destinations in the world. Some of the factors that make London a great place to live in include its living standards, rich culture, diversity, benefits, education, career prospects and healthcare, to name a few. There is plenty to see … Read more

A Guide To The NHS For New Expats In The UK

When talking about the United Kingdom, some of us will be immediately reminded of grey skies, glum weather, bland food and high costs of living. Yet, there is of course much more to the country than this. Immigrants of all ages from around the world are drawn to this diverse European destination for a number … Read more

A Bookworm’s Tour Of London Bookshops

“What really knocks me out is a book that, when you’re all done reading it, you wish the author that wrote it was a terrific friend of yours and you could call him up on the phone whenever you felt like it. That doesn’t happen much, though.” ― J.D. Salinger, The Catcher in the RyeHolden … Read more

Emma Creese, London

Who are you? As a travel-addicted dreamer – although it’s hard to tell from my developing English accent – I originate from New Zealand, also known as Aoteoroa, Middle Earth, Hobbitland or Land of the Long White Cloud. As a country, we are known as ‘Kiwis’; not necessarily the small furry-skinned brown fruit, but named … Read more

Studying In the UK: A Guide To Universities And Colleges In London

Getting a degree from a recognized university in London is like a dream come true for almost any student. Educational standards across the UK are known to be among the best in the world, and moreover, the degrees that are validated by recognized accreditation bodies in the UK are accepted in almost every country around … Read more

London For Free – Museums That Won’t Cost A Penny

Take advantage of free entry to a wide variety of London’s iconic museums and explore the famous city’s rich culture and history on a shoestring budget. Here are ten of the best museums in London that you can check out even if you’ve left your wallet at home.British Museum Situated in the Bloomsbury area of … Read more

Escaping London: Ten Great Walks In The Country

Despite the grey weather, London has always been an attractive destination for expats. The city is home to some spectacular architecture, wide parks and places of art and culture. It is a multicultural, modern city with a bustling population that is always on the move; and as enjoyable as this may be, it’s also precisely … Read more

Moving Back To The UK? Here’s What Will Happen To Your Pension

According to The Times, around 72,000 expats over the last two years have left Spain and another 7,000 have left Italy. Around 300,000 Brits remain in Spain and another 65,000 are living in Italy, though not all of these are retired.With the Brexit vote to leave the European Union, many financial experts are predicting that … Read more

How To Open A Bank Account In The UK – A Guide For Expats

When it comes to opening a bank account it’s a straightforward process and much easier than it used to be. As with British expats moving overseas, the easiest way to open a UK bank account is to do so in the expat’s own country as the process is easy and safe. It also means there’s … Read more

Recently Moved To London? Here’s How To Get Around The City

London is a highly populated, multi-cultural city with an effective public transportation system that helps people get around the capital. Expats may be looking to enjoy a thriving theatre and concert scene, art galleries, large inner-city parks, impressive architecture and other world-class tourist attractions in addition to travelling across the city for work.While London’s public … Read more

Indian Coming To The UK? Here’s What You Need To Know About Visas

The United Kingdom has always been one of the top destinations for Indians who are interested in emigrating. This country offers them a good quality of life, great career prospects and excellent educational opportunities. When it comes to migrating to the UK, things aren’t as easy for Indian citizens as they are for Americans or … Read more

Why 90% Of London City Workers Want To Move Abroad

Recruitment firm Astbury Marsden says that 90% of senior City staff say they are keen to move overseas, a rise from the 77% recorded the previous year. The main reason for this growth in numbers is apparently down to the European Union’s cap on bankers’ bonuses which restricts banks from paying more than a year’s … Read more

Enjoy The Summer! Ten Outdoor Events In London

London is an expat hotspot for many reasons. It is a city filled with opportunities and in spite of the predominantly cold, wet weather, expats continue to flock to its shores either for personal or professional purposes. The city, with its rich and long historical tradition, has a multicultural society that makes it easy to … Read more

Report: Social Market Foundation Predicts A 58% Drop In Expats Moving To The UK

For many decades now, the United Kingdom has been drawing expats of all ages from around the world to work in a multitude of industries. This is mainly because of the lifestyle it offers, which includes factors such as good living standards, education, healthcare, infrastructure, career opportunities and other similar benefits, to name just a … Read more

Alessandra, London

Who are you? My name is Alessandra and I am a positive and fun loving person who loves writing, photography and travel. Where, when and why did you move abroad? Originally from Brazil, I decided to move overseas almost 10 years ago. My first destination was Melbourne, Australia, then I moved to California in the … Read more

Relocating To The UK? Consider One Of These Top Rural Locations

The United Kingdom is renowned for several factors such as its cultural diversity, employment opportunities, infrastructure, healthcare facilities, education, social tolerance, benefits and high standards of living, just to name a few. Foreigners moving to the UK are often drawn to London or some of the other urban areas such as Birmingham, Leeds, Glasgow, Sheffield, … Read more

Ten Scots Expressions For Expats Moving To Scotland

Scotland: a historic land where kilted clans roam the windswept glens and bagpipe music fills the air. Or something like that. This proud nation is actually a little more diverse than just haggis, Rabbie Burns and Braveheart. Although it does celebrate its cultural heritages, Scotland is also a destination for modern culture, with the annual … Read more

Estelle Van De Velde, London

Who are you? My name is Estelle Van de Velde. I am a Belgian writer and book blogger, expat in London. I’ve been public relations manager for a football club before daring to move to another country. Then I did a Creative Writing MA at Brunel University London and worked for three months as a … Read more

Just Moved To London? Here Are Ten Ways To Make New Friends

London has the third highest population in Europe, after Istanbul and Moscow, with an estimated 8 million people calling the Big Smoke home. With so many people, it’s surely easy to make a friend in the capital? Sadly not: London has incredibly high rates of loneliness, with over 30% of the city’s population reporting that … Read more

Amanda, London

Who are you? I’m an American transplant in England. I’m originally from New Mexico, specifically from Albuquerque (of “Breaking Bad” fame). I trained as an actress and freelance any way I can. My most passionate hobby is my blog, Rhyme & Ribbons. Where, when and why did you move abroad? I fell in love with … Read more

London – Recommended Blogs

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 London and some of the blogs that might be useful for expats there.Candids By Jo First the gorgeous images catch the eye, then her … Read more

How Much Do EU Migrants Really Use The UK’s Welfare System?

Anyone with half an ear pointed toward the UK will hear the hue and cry of intense political debate. In the halls of power, over the airwaves and on the streets of towns across the nation, Brits are loudly voicing their opinions and critiquing those of their neighbours, arguing furiously.Until recently, the reserved Brit would … Read more

EU Citizens Are Relocating To The UK – Here’s Why

The United Kingdom has long been known for its vast cultural diversity; each year people from all around the world move to this country for work, business, study, or to join their family members. Over the last 20 years, the number of foreigners living in the country has more than doubled, from two million in … Read more

An Expat Guide To London Boroughs – Part Three

Talk to a Londoner and you could come away believing that the city is not just the capital of the UK, but of the entire universe. They’ll praise its busy, bustling streets, its world-class art gallery and its place at the forefront of fashion. The Big Smoke attracts visitors, expats and Brits to its heaving, … Read more

An Expat Guide To England’s Home Counties

The ‘green and pleasant land’ of rolling hills and picturesque rural perfection, England is often celebrated and romanticised for its countryside and village life. Not that this is reflected in guidebooks and business papers. For most of the working work, England, and indeed the entire UK, appears to exist solely within the M25. London’s reputation … Read more

An Expat Guide To London Boroughs – Part 2

Read part one here. They say that “when you’re tired of London, you’re tired of life.” The massive metropolis is the ultimate destination for cosmopolitan culture, fine fashion and booming business. But London isn’t one homogenous soup, it’s a fine and varied platter offering visitors a choice in the delicacies they enjoy.Head East to sip … Read more

A Guide to Golfing In Scotland For New Arrivals

Scotland is universally acknowledged as the home of golf – the game that is now played around the world began here in the 15th century. There are written records of the word ‘golf’ as early as March 1457 in an act of Scots Parliament. James II banned both football and golf because his troops spent … Read more

A Taste of Home: Ten Authentic Restaurants For Expats In London

Few things can transport you across time and space as quickly and easily as food can. The taste – and often the mere smell – of a familiar, beloved dish can instantly take you back to a time when you were much younger or to a place in another country, thousands of miles away. A … Read more

An Expat Guide To London Boroughs – Part 1

London is a mighty city. The largest in England, the UK and indeed the EU, the Big Smoke is a massive, multicultural megalopolis. A shopping pilgrimage, a cultural capital, educational epicentre and financial behemoth, the English capital fulfils many roles and dominates the country. Home to an estimated population of nearly 10 million people, this … Read more

Ten Secret Cocktail Bars In London That You Need To Visit

Samuel Johnson once said, “when a man is tired of London, he’s tired of life.” Britain’s capital is a thriving metropolis of business and pleasure; anyone who can’t find something to be excited by in The Big Smoke is a sad soul indeed. The city boasts world famous art galleries and museums, a thriving cultural … Read more

Interview With Andrew Wigford, Managing Director, TIC Recruitment

Andrew, you're Managing Director at TIC Recruitment. Tell us a bit about your background and what brought you to this role. I was a teacher in the UK for several years before moving overseas to work at Mohne School in Germany, which was part of the Service Children’s Education Authority. I was then offered a … Read more

Interview With Derek Knight, Expat Author

Derek, you're an author, blogger and columnist for ExpatFocus. Tell us a bit about yourself: What was it that first prompted you to start writing? Well, I always wanted to write, which probably came from being an avid reader when I was young. I loved the way a story could carry me away from where … Read more

Interview With Sarah-Jane Butler, Founder, Parental Choice

Sarah-Jane, you're the Founder of Parental Choice, which provides specialist childcare services. Tell us a bit about the company, and what drove you to start it. Parental Choice provides all-encompassing childcare and admin services for parents who wish to spend the little time they have with their children rather than sorting out their childcare. We … Read more

The Best Coffee Shops To Work From In London

London is a lively, dynamic city home to booming business and the cutting edge of creativity. Bright young things are moving into every industry, shaking things up with new ideas and founding their own companies. Brits are particularly keen to shake off the 9 to 5 straitjacket and work to their own rules. Freelancing is … Read more

Ten UK Cities To Move To That Aren’t London

London is the centre of the universe. At least that’s the impression you could get from watching British TV shows, movies or news programs. Rather than being the capital of a diverse and vibrant country, London sometimes seems to be shown as the last surviving city after the rest of the UK got sucked into … Read more

Living In London This Christmas? Here Are Ten Things You Should Do

Being away from family can be very difficult for expats at Christmas. More than most other celebrations, Christmas, for most people who celebrate it, is all about sharing with extended family and close friends. Spending Christmas away from all of them can make you pretty miserable if you let it. Nonetheless, if you enjoy Christmas … Read more

A Guide To The People You’ll Find Riding The Tube Lines Of London

Samuel Johnson may have said, “when you’re tired of London, you’re tired of life”, but the man neglected to mention that it is the city’s people that keep it an ever-changing medley of cultures, faiths, nationalities, music, art, fashion, languages and attitudes. There are over 300 languages spoken in the capital and 36% of the … Read more

A Guide To The Islands Of The UK

The United Kingdom is complicated beast, a dysfunctional family of nations muddling through their differences and staying together through thick and thin. This land of hope and glory is not just a hodge-podge of political and historical alliances seemingly created just to confuse tourists, but a glorious landscape of green and pleasant vistas. Floating proudly … Read more

Tudor Stanescu, Colchester

Who are you? Before moving to England the first time, I was a recent university graduate, working as a Data Analyst for a one of the largest grocery retailers in Canada. As a Commerce graduate which specialized in Marketing, as you can imagine I was not very fond of my position as a Data Analyst, … Read more

Lonely In London? You’re Not Alone.

Moving abroad is a brilliant way to immerse yourself in a new culture and give your life a makeover. Many expats decide to make the move for reasons related to their careers, perhaps being relocated by their companies, or to set up their own business in a place where the overheads are lower than they … Read more

Julie Falconer, London

Who are you? I am a London-based travel blogger and speaker. I’m originally from San Francisco, and moved to London after leaving a career in finance. I started writing my blog, A Lady in London, when I moved to the UK. Originally it was a way to keep in touch with people back home and … Read more

London – Recommended Blogs

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 London, UK and some of the blogs that might be useful for expats there. Girl Gone London The blog of an expat who moved … Read more

Finding Your First Expat Home In London: A Brief Guide

Househunting is a challenging task wherever you are. From the first time you fly the nest, to the first time you buy a house, and all the renting and flatsharing in between, finding a place to live is rarely straightforward. For many expats, England’s capital city is a dream destination. A multicultural city filled with … Read more

Rami Kremesti, Manchester

Who are you? My name is Rami Kremesti, I am a water treatment specialist and power station chemist. Where, when and why did you move abroad? I moved to the UK in February 2015. What challenges did you face during the move?Finding accommodation and setting up a bank account. How did you find somewhere to … Read more

Should You Buy Or Build A House In the UK?

When you move to a different country, you are faced with the option of either buying a home or building your own from scratch. These are two different paths that come with their own sets of benefits and challenges. BuyingThe main advantage of buying an existing home is that you can complete the deal and … Read more

The Ten Most Surprising Things About Moving To London As An Expat

There are few cities in the world – perhaps no other city – that can offer you the kind of experience that London can. The architecture, the iconic locations and sights, the infrastructure, the constant buzz, the vibrant business and cultural scenes, the incredible mix of people you will encounter – it’s difficult to be … Read more

Moving To the UK – What To Expect As A New Expat

There are many good reasons to move to the UK. Despite being such a small island, it has one of the largest economies in the world, which continues to witness steady economic growth, translating into lucrative employment and business opportunities. Some of most highly regarded universities are located in the UK, such as Oxford and … Read more

The Expat’s Guide To (Affordable) Renting In London

London: the home of cockney rhyming slang, jellied eel pies and world-famous football clubs. Whether it’s for the promise of increased job opportunities or the brilliantly multicultural feel, London draws in thousands of new residents every year from across the world, keen to get stuck into the world of employment, as well as give back … Read more

A Guide To Tipping In London: Who, How Much, When And Where?

Tipping is one of those minor but important customs that is different everywhere you go and is rather tricky to figure out. For expats, it’s among the bigger of the small challenges. Should you or shouldn’t you tip? How much should you tip? What’s a good way to tip? Going against tipping etiquette can be … Read more

Why Moving To London Will (Probably) Make You Happier

London is considered to be among the world’s most desirable cities for overseas workers. In a 2014 survey, London topped the list of popular cities beating other major international cities like New York, Paris, Sydney, Berlin and Rome. London is also a beautiful destination with fascinating architecture, a thriving music scene and great art and … Read more

5 Things You Should Know Before Moving To London

As the capital city of the UK and England, London seldom fails to live up to expectations. London seems to have it all, from tranquil parks and towering buildings to some of the best restaurants in the world and a chic but colourful nightlife. As an expat, the change can sometimes be overwhelming, so it … Read more

Cost Of Living Facts For Expats Moving To London

It’s a known fact that living in London can be expensive. But it’s also true that wages in the capital city are higher than they are in other parts of the country. Expats moving to London can keep their costs in check by selecting their accommodation wisely as city center areas tend to be more … Read more

Dealing With Landlords In London – What Expats Need To Know Before Renting

Expats can choose to rent an apartment in London either through a letting agent or privately. Letting agencies usually take care of the framing of the tenancy contract and deposit. The Association of Residential Letting Agents must regulate agents and you can find listings on the association’s website. Those who choose to rent privately need … Read more

Moving to London? Learn What Makes It Such A Great Expat Destination

London is a major international banking and financial hub, has the highest concentration of universities in Europe and is one of the most visited cities in the world. There are so many reasons that make the city such a great expat destination. Here are some of them. A diverse society Londoners come from different nationalities, … Read more

10 Websites Expats Need To Visit Before Moving To London

The experience of moving to a new city is made much easier when you have access to the right information. Dynamic and diverse London also happens to be Europe’s biggest city, and easy availability of information and useful resources on where to live, how to travel and even how to pay your taxes, can be … Read more

Meghan Fenn, Brighton

Who are you? Meghan Fenn, American mother of 3, director of White Ochre Design Ltd, expat parent blogger and author. I’ve lived in England with my British husband for about 15 years now. Where, when and why did you move abroad? I moved abroad in 1994 to work as an English teacher in Prague, Czech … Read more

Jaime, North London

Who are you? Hi! I’m Jaime. I’m originally from the Puget Sound area in Washington State and I’ve lived in the UK for over seven years now. I work in book publishing and currently reside in North London with my husband, who’s British. Where, when and why did you move abroad? I first came to … Read more

Brittney Strange, Somerset

Who are you? I’m Brittney Strange and I blog over at Life of an Expat Parent. I write mostly about parenting and relationships with a dash of expat living. I’m an Ohio girl and an unlikely expat living in England. I’m married to a Briton and have two little dual citizens, The Duchess (2 years … Read more

UK – Five Recommended Expat Blogs

Moving to a new country is daunting at the best of times, and the initial thought of leaving the comforts of your home and moving somewhere completely different can seem overwhelming. But if you’ve got your heart set on moving abroad, there are plenty of resources available to help ease your transition. We’ve spent some … Read more

Moving To London? Read Our Expat Guide To Travelling On The Tube

“The Tube” is London’s underground rail network, a highly efficient mode of travel to and from a large part of Greater London and some parts of Buckinghamshire, Hertfordshire and Essex. The Tube plays an important role in the life of anyone visiting or living in London. Here is our simple guide to travelling on the … Read more

Daniel Thompson, Exeter

Who are you? I’m a 49-year-old former RN (Registered Nurse) from the United States. I’m now a writer and sculptor, living and working in Exeter, UK. Where, when and why did you move abroad? I had been working as a nurse in California for four years before moving to the UK in 2010 to marry … Read more

Teodora Totorean, Tiverton, Devon

Who are you? My name is Teodora Totorean and I am a Romanian woman living and working in the UK. I am self-employed, working from home as a freelance writer while trying to establish myself as an artist. I am also a Cultural Champion, occasionally going to schools in Devon, talking about Romanian culture through … Read more

Catarina Bras, Luton

Who are you? My name is Catarina Bras, I am 26 years old. I was born in Portugal and lived majority of my life in Queluz with my family. I studied Communication and Technology back in Portugal. When I moved to England, I enrolled on a Web Design course, where I obtained an ABC Level … Read more

Best Employment Opportunities Outside London and the M25

As global connectivity increases, and the U.K. falls prone to the same decentralization affecting the rest of the world’s major population centers, there seem to be an increasing number of reasons for even the most well-heeled professionals to live outside of the M25 (for non-U.K. residents, the motorway ring that forms a kind of informal … Read more

A Newcomers’ Guide to UK Accents

The English language, given its unparalleled distribution throughout the world, has become such a complex and syncretic beast that we can sometimes wonder if it might be better to classify some of its most esoteric variants as different languages altogether. From the intentionally un-grammatical constructions of Internet message boards to the Rasta argot of Jamaica … Read more

Best Parts of the UK for Expat Family Life

The cities, towns and villages differ greatly in the UK and those moving to the area have a large, personal decision to make based on their preferences, employment opportunities and the landscapes they prefer. The UK, on the whole, has it all on offer, from valleys and lakes to bustling cosmopolitan life. Employment The highest … Read more

Does London Provide a True Reflection of British Culture?

Among Brits, there exists a divide between London and the rest of Britain, possibly heightened by the recent Olympic Games and the media branding of ‘Planet London.’ The divide is not one of animosity, but simply of location, size and opportunity. Britain is well-known for being a diverse nation. For this reason, London tends not … Read more

Expat Socializing and Networking in London

With over fifteen million citizens residing in the London metro area, and with the second largest immigrant population behind New York City also residing here, it would seem that London is far better served for expatriate socializing opportunities than most cities in the world. Indeed, its non-indigenous population comprises some 50 different ethnic enclaves, and … Read more

The French Who Move To Britain

Over 400 000 French people live in London alone. Just as the British flocked to France to find peace and tranquillity and a slower pace of life, so the French, for the large part young professionals, flock to the UK to find opportunities, career openings and freedom from French bureaucracy. In Britain they may change … Read more

Ariana, Bury St. Edmunds

My name is Ariana, and I am an American expat that is living in England– but this is not my first overseas rodeo. My parents became missionaries and moved with their seven kids to the Philippines when I was just eight years old. I grew up on the island of Mindanao, speaking the local dialect … Read more

Melissa Buckler Smith, North West England

I’m Melissa Buckler Smith, from Maryland, US. I met my husband on-line. After almost 5 years of a long distance relationship, I was granted a Visa to marry him in January 2011. I moved to the North West of England in February and we were married in May. I was able to come for six … Read more

Carmen Jones, London

I’m a 30-something southern belle expat from the US. I’ve spent the last year adapting to all things British including Victorian plumbing, the value of wellies and a new found acceptance of full fat dairy products. After deciding I needed to shake things up a bit in my life, I moved here in May 2009.What … Read more

Kym Hamer, Kingston Upon Thames

I am a 41yr old Aussie girl from Melbourne who has loved living in the UK for the last 7 (almost) years. I love reading, cooking, eating, music, travelling, watching tv talent shows – oh, and blogging! I left my settled and comfortable life in Melbourne and arrived at Heathrow Airport in January 2004. The … Read more

CK, London

I’m CK. That’s the initials to my name and after awhile, people around me just call me that. I suspect they’ve forgotten about what my actual name is and I’m not about to remind them. Moved to London in the summer of 2007 with my wife. Well, there was an opportunity and it was then … Read more