Magazine topic: 
Life around the world

The wonderful experience of living abroad

by : 
Emma Douty

Have you ever travelled abroad for a short holiday and said to yourself: ‘I could really see myself living here someday’? Or ever read about a foreign culture and thought: ‘I belong in a place like that’? Millions of people around the world have taken that big step and are living in a different country to the one that they grew up in. They have jobs, they study, and they even have their own families there. So, what made them take the leap and move abroad?

One of the most significant reasons is that a foreign culture may be more suitable to your personality, attitude, and beliefs than your native one. Many people are attracted to another country because they like the way they do things, their social codes and traditions, for example. It could be to do with the way in which people interact with one another, or the music, the festivals and celebrations, the history, the art, and not forgetting the food! It is wonderful to go and live abroad in order to be immersed in a culture that is extraordinary to you, where you can experience things that wouldn’t be on offer at home.

Another motivation for the move is for work or study opportunities. Your perfect job or degree may just be waiting for you over there, in need of your skills, knowledge and ambition. Speaking another language will more than double your chances of such an opportunity, as more and more employers are looking for bilingual people to send over to their offices abroad. If you are reading this, then you are well on your way to making this dream a reality, as speaking English will open many doors and could mean the path to a life in the UK, USA, Australia, and many other countries.

Moreover, living abroad is an enriching experience because it forces you to adapt to things that are unfamiliar and unusual to you. You become independent and open to new, exciting, or terrifying challenges that you would never have encountered in your home country. And that is the most rewarding of all: the opportunity to learn and develop as a person, because you will discover things about yourself that you may not have known before; your beliefs, your passions, your character. Through interacting within a foreign society, your eyes will be open to all sorts of aspects of life that would be difficult to learn in your native country.

These are just a couple of the many reasons why people choose to buy that one-way ticket and establish themselves in a foreign country. It may be temporary, it may be forever, but one thing that is guaranteed is that you’ll never look back.

Discussion

Do you agree with Emma? Would you like to live abroad one day?