Emieflor S. is an Expat from the Philippines who relocated to Montana, USA with her family over a year ago to work in the healthcare industry. While Emieflor and her family found the first few months in the United States to be difficult, they have enjoyed many great experiences in the their new country. Read more as she shares her experience becoming an Expat, and read the tips and advice she has for new Expats.
Q. DID YOU RELOCATE WITH FAMILY? CHILDREN? HOW ARE THEY ADJUSTING TO RELOCATING? WHAT DO THEY ENJOY MOST ABOUT THEIR NEW COUNTRY?
A. I and my family started our new year since we arrived December of last year, it was tough though especially for my children, one is school age and an infant, then 6 month old. It’s easier for [the] first few days but realization of the whole transition process sink in as months go by, we need to send my eldest to school, got them medically insured, have a car, which is a necessity in this place, and a home to live in. My children enjoyed the cold weather, building snowman for the first time, and seeing great and historic places that can be seen in books, eat marvelous and huge burgers and fries. Surely they loved it.
Q. HOW WOULD YOU DESCRIBE YOUR FIRST FEW MONTHS IN YOUR NEW LOCATION? ANY CHALLENGES? IF SO, HOW DID YOU RESOLVE THEM?
A. First few months is can be considered, they are putting you from earth to the moon, everything and anything is different and strange, I used to ask myself, what have I done to myself? I cried a bucket. But prayer, tough determination and hard work were my fuel to [stand] by and be still. Never give up.
Q. NOW THAT YOU ARE SETTLING IN, IS THERE A BIG CHANGE IN CULTURE? DID YOU FIND ANY HELPFUL RESOURCES FOR EXPATS?
A. My agency [taught] us of culture here in America, from hand shaking and being able to express your opinion, being straight forward, and driving. It’s a short transition but it helps greatly. They introduce us to IAS for us to purchase vehicle even [though] we don’t have credit history in the US. Everything around here is all about having good credit for you to move accordingly. Mutual trust is their principle probably, relocation is a lot more easier because the vehicle arrived as soon as you needed it. A great help indeed.
Q. ARE THERE ANY TIPS YOU WOULD GIVE TO A FRIEND OR FELLOW EXPAT THAT YOU WISH SOMEONE SHARED WITH YOU BEFORE YOU BEGAN YOUR FOREIGN ASSIGNMENT/RELOCATION?
A. You have to be 100% sure that you are ready of all the changes, consider that of your loved ones too, with great help of whoever petitioned you it could be agency/ employer, surely you will surpass such enormous challenges, consider to have new friends as well:)