First Time Living Abroad? 6 Safety Tips
Moving to a new country is an exciting part of your life, and experiencing new cultures and lifestyles will enrich life. However, it is essential to remember that no matter how exciting moving into a new country is, there is always the risk for danger, especially for foreigners.
It is wise to consider ways to stay safe while living abroad, mainly if you are living alone. Prevention is the key to preventing dangers, and you can take some simple steps to ensure your safety.
Always keep the doors and windows locked
Whatever country you are staying in, there will always be burglars. It is important to keep the place where you are currently living secured and safe. Install a padlock or lock system to avoid any intruders from coming into your space. Always lock all entryways before sleeping and when you are going outside.
If you own a business, hire a professional commercial locksmith to secure your property. Aside from that, you can install security cameras or alarm systems for added protection. Get to know your neighbours and make friends with people who are living in the same area as you. Familiarize yourself with the surroundings and know where to go when there are emergencies.
Check the political weather
Before moving into a new place, it is vital to check for the political condition and its stability because any instability is fragile for expatriates or tourists. Take time to do thorough research and understand the situation on the ground.
Being informed can help you make life-saving decisions in case of dangers. Know where the nearest embassy is and gather important phone numbers that can help you during an emergency.
It is important to note that some countries are more prone to terrorism threats than others, so pay extra attention to this safety issue if you have to travel and stay in these specific countries.
Understand local culture
Many tourists or expatriates do not bother to do basic research on the culture, laws, and traditions of the people they are going to live with. Making an effort to understand the people can prevent a lot of misunderstandings and not put you or anyone else in uncomfortable situations.
For example, some countries do not allow women to mingle with male strangers, or there are certain dress codes when you enter their place of worship. Others find it rude if you hug them, while others are more accepting. There are plenty of resources you can find online, and asking around friends who are familiar with the place can help you adjust comfortably and be safe.
Check the local transportation system
If you are moving abroad for work, it is essential that you get a grasp of the local transportation system. Looking at the map can be overwhelming, and the best way to understand the transportation system is actually to ask a local.
Knowing about the local transport will help you travel to work and return home safely. This also includes knowing what neighbourhood is unsafe for an expatriate like you so you’ll avoid going to the area on your own. If you have friends, get their help so you’ll know the details of the transportation system.
Secure you insurance
If you have an insurance policy, check for your insurance coverage. Travel insurance is good for those who will be traveling, but this may not cover those staying in the country for some time.
Aside from travel insurance, there is international health insurance for expatriates, which is perfect for those who are planning to live aboard. Make sure to check on the details of the policy to know the coverage. Getting insurance is another way to stay safe and will definitely give you peace of mind while living aboard.
Standing out as a foreigner can attract unnecessary risks. As much as possible, try to blend in with the community. Be a part of them. Immerse with their lifestyle, which includes the way they dress, act, and eat. This will be a good way to camouflage unwanted individuals. Moreover, this is a way to show respect to their culture and way of living.
Blending in also means not attracting unnecessary attention to yourself. Examples are tourists who attract attention by being drunk or loud—wearing too much jewelry or clothing that does not conform with the locals.
Every place has its risks, but these are preventable when there is proper preparation on your part. Being proactive is necessary to ensure your safety, especially if you are living alone.
Secure your living space, blend it with the locals, avail necessary insurance, familiarize yourself with the local transportation and make an effort to understand the local cultures, traditions, and laws are some of the things you can do to stay safe in a foreign land.