Ways for Expats to Feel More at Home After COVID Travel Restrictions
Moving far away from home has always had its difficulties, even for the most adventurous people. But before March 2020, it was hard to imagine getting stuck in another country due to global lockdowns caused by a virus. When the pandemic took the world by storm, COVID travel restrictions were put in place and presented a whole new series of challenges for expats.
Learning to live in a socially distanced world is psychologically challenging for everyone, but especially for those who got stuck in a country far from home when the pandemic struck. COVID travel restrictions have made it impossible for many expats to get home and be with their families and friends, or to for them to come for a visit.
Whether you waited too long and got stuck abroad, decided to stay for beneficial reasons, or couldn’t afford to return home before travel restrictions were enacted, and are now feeling isolated, it’s hard to be an expat during COVID times. We’ve compiled a helpful list of ways for expats to overcome that homesickness and feel more at home.
The Best Ways to Get Over Feeling Homesick
It isn’t easy being an expat even when everything in the world is running normally. COVID travel restrictions have brought most of the world to a stand-still, and living abroad is no longer the exotic adventure that it once was. Expats who got stuck abroad after the pandemic struck can take advantage of these practical ways to get over the feeling during these uncertain times.
Get Into a Routine
No matter where in the world you are, when you find yourself stuck in a rut, one of the best things you can do is get into a routine. Developing a routine is especially important for people who work from home as it will help create boundaries between work time and personal time. When you don’t establish and stick to a routine, you leave yourself vulnerable to burnout and anxiety.
Even if you’re not going out or meeting anyone, set an alarm. Wake up on time. Get some exercise, get dressed, eat a good breakfast, and start your day. Plan time for meals, socializing, exercise, and work. When you have something to look forward to and you’re keeping yourself busy, the daily drag will seem more meaningful.
Create New Traditions
Getting stuck in a different country presents an opportunity for you to learn more about the culture’s traditions. Spend some extra time reading up on the country’s history and learning more about the holidays people celebrate there. If you haven’t already, learn to cook some of the most popular dishes from your region.
Decorating for the holidays according to cultural tradition and sharing pictures of the country’s dishes you cook can spark up a conversation between neighbors and yourself or your family and friends back home. The excitement and joy of celebrating holidays and traditions are contagious no matter where in the world you are.
Stay in Touch with Family and Friends
Although it’s challenging to be stuck so far away from your family and friends due to COVID travel restrictions, you can always be grateful for the technology that’s available today. For the first time in history, it’s super convenient to keep in touch with family and friends worldwide with a simple handheld device.
Talk to your closest family members and friends and decide on a day and time each week to have a video call. Making that time to spend together each week will give you something to look forward to and help you feel closer to home. In-between the weekly video sessions, start chat groups or get active on social media. Find out which platforms are favorites among your friends and family, and follow their profiles so that you all can see what’s going on in each other’s lives.
Enjoy the Things That Remind You of Home
One of the best ways to connect with where you’re from is to watch some of your favorite movies and TV shows that are popular back home. If you’re a sports fan, you won’t want to miss your favorite team playing their season. Keeping up with the latest shows, sports, and movies will give you something to talk with friends and family about as well.
Netflix and other region-specific content viewing platforms can be frustrating when they don’t contain the titles you want to see. A reputable VPN can solve all your problems. Connecting to a Virtual Private Network allows you to connect to a server from a country of your choice. When you download a VPN, you can choose your country’s connection, and voila! You’ll get access to all your favorite viewing content from home.
Follow the tips above to make the most of your time as an expat. Someday, you’ll make it home. You’ll feel so much better about your experience if you use the time to focus on your health and learn more about the country’s culture where you live.