The top 10 “I wish I had known before my first expat posting”

stick-famSt. John’s conducted a survey among expats to uncover what people wish they had known before going on their first expat posting. Here is the top 10:

  1. These can be the best years of your life -for you and your family. Enjoy!
  2. It is harder to adjust when you come back than it is when you arrive.
  3. The people in an expat community are more welcoming than any other you will experience!
  4. Make sure to negotiate the circumstances and details of repatriation with your company before you sign and leave for the assignment.
  5. It will be so much better than you can imagine. Dive in when you get there and fear not.
  6. That what school you choose can impact your whole life.
  7. Organize your paperwork.  Have copies of all medical and school reports.
  8. Focus on the children, if they are happy then you will be happy.
  9. The language differences will be a barrier at times but it’s not a big deal.  Do your best to learn the basics and you will get by.
  10. What your children will learn from being part of an International School is priceless, not only in the classroom but learning about diversity, differences, caring, and what it’s like to be different and try new things.

We hope these tips are useful for those planning to become an expat and those who are about to go on their first posting!