How to Keep in Touch after Moving Abroad
Are you moving abroad as part of a new chapter in your life? No matter how much you enjoy your time abroad, you will want to ensure that you stay in contact with people back home while you are away.
There are many ways that you can do this, and here are a few of the best options.
Go old school and write a letter
Writing a letter seems old fashioned now, and it is takes longer than sending an email or updating your social media accounts. But letters still have a certain charm, and they are still the most personal way to communicate.
Everyone likes receiving a letter – especially one that has lots of exotic foreign stamps on the front – so consider writing some to people back home.
Not Shakespeare and hate writing with a passion? Send postcards home to friends and family with a few simple lines of what you did recently. The photo side will most likely be shown on your parents’ fridge anyway.
Video calling is one of the technologies that has changed the lifestyle of expats more than anything else. Once Skype became popular, it really took on for anyone who wanted to contact people living in other countries.
Skype is the original and still the most popular, but now you also have Google Hangouts, FaceTime (which is only for Apple devices, sorry everyone else), and Viber, which is a good Skype alternative.
You can use all of these on your desktop or the app versions on your phone or tablet. Isn’t technology wonderful?!
Since it arrived on the scene, WhatsApp has become a favourite for expats all over the world. Download the app to your smartphone and you can instantly send messages to or call people anywhere for free over WiFi or your data plan.
It has completely taken over text messaging because you don't have to pay to send messages. You can also send images, videos, and audio messages, and you can either send messages to individuals or to groups, making it a great way to stay in the loop with your friends.
If you’re moving to the UK, keep in mind that is currently still legal to use this and similar services, despite press regarding a potential ban in July.
Facebook is another popular option for expats. It's a great way to keep up to date with all the latest goings on with friends and family all over the world.
You can join in with chats, upload photos, follow events from back home and avoid missing out on all the news – once you set your privacy settings and news feed preferences up properly.
Set up your own website
Many expats start up a blog to track their experiences abroad. If you do this, you could use it as a way to share information with your family and friends en masse – and not have to worry about sharing the same story twenty times.
If you have a large friend group or family, we highly recommend doing this when you move abroad. They could leave comments for you on your blog posts, or you could set up a private area to show photos and videos.
Blogspot and WordPress have user friendly templates and manuals to help you out.
Large scale image sharing
There are many sites and apps dedicated to sharing images with a select group of people and the general online audience. Flickr is the king of the image websites, and it now has a huge amount of storage space; 1,000GB should be more than enough for your first few months abroad.
Ever heard of Instagram? Yeah, you have. It is the biggest social media app based around sharing – and editing – images, making it a great way to share your photos with people from home. Get on it.
Sharing videos poses a few more problems because the larger files make them difficult to send via email.
One of the best options is to open a Dropbox account. Simply upload your videos to your Dropbox folder to sync them, and you can then share the folder with your friends and family so they can download the videos to their own computers.
Another option is to upload your videos to YouTube. Set the videos to private and then invite the people you want to watch them and create playlists for each of your adventures.
Keep in touch with ease while abroad
Wherever you move to abroad, you will find it easy to stay in touch with friends and family from back home.
Whether you mainly communicate via social media or you prefer to send letters, take your pick from the above options and keep in touch with people back home during your time overseas.
Thinking of moving abroad soon? Check out the cost of shipping your things internationally.