Right, so we all love to travel but what about moving and working abroad? We interview Nina, who has moved to Greece, works in a call centre and is enjoying her new expat life.
Tell us a bit about yourself and your move abroad?
I’m a 36-year-old German citizen who was born and raised in Germany and moved to Greece in 2014. I studied abroad in Canada so moving abroad was not something completely new for me, but this time I actually moved to a country I had never visited before and without knowing the language which has definitely been more challenging than moving to Canada to study.
Why did you decide to move abroad?
I was quite unhappy at my job despite being offered a very good position in my company. I also really felt the effects of the long winters and rainy summers and decided that a society with a more relaxed approach to life would suit me better.
After having lived abroad in Canada, which had been a really eye-opening experience, I really wanted to do something similar again and felt that I shouldn’t wait until it would be “too late” (whatever that may be).
What are the perks to moving abroad?
You can invent yourself all over again. Nobody knows you and since nobody has put you in a box for the past decade, you can be your true self without people acting surprised.
It’s also very interesting to experience a new culture and different ways of handling certain situations. Ultimately, moving abroad will broaden your horizon.
What has been the hardest thing about moving away from home?
This one is very personal, but it was definitely losing my father last year without having been there.
What are some of your best travel moments?
Moving to Greece was exciting because when I was in high school I knew many people who had traveled to Greece on summer vacations. Now that I have moved here, I get to explore some of the Greek islands and, believe it or not, I took my first actual “beach vacation” here in Greece.
How did you adjust to your new life in a different country?
It’s definitely much easier to adjust in some areas than in others. One funny story about that is that after the first summer here in Greece I suddenly found myself needing a long-sleeved cardigan at 22°C because that felt chilly.
Other things are still difficult, such as the unreliability of almost every service you might need here.
What must pack items would you recommend?
I really believe in packing as little as possible, both when traveling, but especially when moving abroad. Often we try to prepare for all possible scenarios, but instead of trying to prepare mentally we want to bring as many material possessions as possible. The big winter coat is not going to help you when you miss your family on New Year’s Eve though. I wrote about packing when moving abroad on my blog if you want to read more.
What advise would you give to others who are moving?
Try not to set your expectations too high, otherwise you will most likely get disappointed. Always remember the good things along with why you left home in the first place.
Greece looks and sounds like such an amazing place to live. Thanks for sharing Nina! Any questions or have you worked abroad too? Share your experience in the comments below!