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Welcome to another year of Expat Focus podcasts. We’re kicking off 2023 with an episode about life and career change, which tends to go hand-in-hand with a decision to move abroad. It’s certainly true for me. Actually, this year marks 10 years since I decided to quit my job and life in Australia, to move to the UK to see what else I was capable of.…
 
Hey there, it’s Carlie with the Expat Focus Podcast. It’s another festive themed episode! We’re discussing Christmastime in South Korea and Spain with American expat and English teacher, Jesse Sweed. We talk about festive activities in the classroom, the perils of the Secret Santa gift, Spain’s Three Kings Day and how Jesse’s experience of the holi…
 
Did you know that fried chicken is a Christmas tradition in Japan? And that the festive season is more about romance and gift giving between couples than arranging presents for the kids? Former expat and current Japanese tour company founder Nicki has lots of other fun facts to share from her 10 years' living in the country. So, whether you are an …
 
When American Sara Dyson moved to Croatia in 2012, she couldn’t find any local resources in English to help her. So as she figured things out - like residency and healthcare, Croatian culture and learning the language, she posted about it on her website, expatincroatia.com, to help other foreigners. Close to a decade later, Expat in Croatia is a fu…
 
The continent of Africa is our destination today. We’re going to be talking about living and working in Rwanda with Italian expat, Giulia, who decided to take a leap away from her life in Europe to follow a job opportunity. Giulia talks about her first impressions of the city of Kigali, and why it’s known as the ‘Switzerland’ of Africa. We also tal…
 
Have you ever visited a city in a foreign country, and just felt immediately at home? That was Laurel Wright’s experience whilst on a solo European holiday from the USA. Wanting to escape the hustle culture of LA, she decided to pack up her life, and move to Berlin. We recorded this chat a couple of months back, and talk about what Berlin is like i…
 
Do you have your eye on a rundown old property in the French countryside? Are you planning to leave your big city life behind for a simpler one? Do you really know what to expect? Best-selling Author and Editor Janine Marsh gave up her city life in London and made the move to a neglected farmhouse in Northern France more than a decade ago. Find out…
 
Today’s guest is an accidental social media influencer. American, Kacie Rose Burns has amassed a community of over one million people across TikTok and Instagram. And it all started with a little video she posted on her way to her new life in Italy. When I told a friend I was going to interview Kacie, she said “I just want to meet her in Italy and …
 
Joining me today is award-winning podcaster and Business Strategist, Christine Job. She has spent the past five years living in Valencia in Spain, and her podcast, Flourish in the Foreign, celebrates the voices and stories of black women, and women of colour, who are - just like her - living and thriving internationally. We talk about Christine’s o…
 
Breathwork Academy Creator Artur Paulins first left Latvia to study in Denmark knowing zero Danish. He later moved on to London with no connections or contacts. And then after a good 10 years abroad, a gut-feeling told him it was time to move home. We chat in this episode about his repatriation process, feeling like a stranger in the country he gre…
 
Whether you’re doing it solo or as a family, a lot of energy goes into planning an international move and getting settled in a new location. And it can take a toll, both physically and mentally. So, what can you do to help keep your overall health in check? I’m chatting to an expert from one of our health partners - Cigna - in this episode, to get …
 
Recently on the show, we heard from a couple who made the decision to move to Oman, and were off within a matter of weeks. Today’s guest has been planning his family’s move abroad for many years. In the summer of this year, 2022, Max Lee, his wife and their two young kids will leave the USA for Taipei in Taiwan. In the lead up to their much-anticip…
 
My guest today moved to Sweden from the UK, for love. But she felt a connection to the country long before meeting her partner. Katy Hetherington has quickly accumulated loads of first-hand experience in how to navigate different aspects of Swedish life - everything from getting set up, to getting a job, becoming a citizen, having a baby and even b…
 
Are you dreaming of just packing up your life for an adventure abroad? In this episode, you’ll hear from a couple that did just that. They made the decision to move from the UK to Oman, and in just a few weeks, they were off. Teacher Sheri Lennon and Author Matt Jardine will explain how they navigated getting the right visas, adhering to the local …
 
Before the pandemic hit, American Jake Doherty was running two very successful tour guide services in Bavaria. When Covid-19 completely decimated the travel industry, he had to find another way to put food on the table. In this chat, find out what motivated Jake to become a tour guide and settle in southern Germany, and why he set up his interactiv…
 
Is it ok to travel for pleasure during a global pandemic? How do you weigh up the “risk” versus “reward”? And as the world currently deals with the Omicron wave of COVID, what measures can you take to make your travel as safe and as responsible as possible? American, Crissy Whalin is my guest to chat through these questions. In 2018, she started tr…
 
Finding your tribe, family, community, whatever you like to call it, is so important when you move to a new place. Expats Angelina and Bonny know this first hand, having moved to the UK from Poland and France. They started their business, International School of Life, to connect expat women globally, helping them to boost their confidence, unlock t…
 
Following Brexit and amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, is living and working in the United Kingdom as attractive as it used to be? In the past two years, we’ve seen a mass exodus of many expats from the countries they were calling home. The number of visas granted to Aussies to live and work in the UK reportedly dropped 74% in 2020. That same yea…
 
If you live in the UK or in the EU, you’ve no doubt noticed an unwelcome trend in added fees and charges when receiving parcels from online shopping. Even parcels sent from family and friends abroad are turning up with added fees to pay. There’s a lot of confusion about what these fees are for, when they should be applied, and why they’ve even come…
 
Do you know if there’s a pension agreement between your home country, and the one you’re living in now? Do you know what you’ll be entitled to come retirement age, if you decide to stay living abroad? The lack of an agreement and what that means is what I’m discussing today with fellow Aussies Judy and Peter, a writer and a lawyer behind the group …
 
My guest today is Alex, a language coach with a YouTube channel called ‘French In Plain Sight’. Now, as the name suggests, he coaches French learners, and I'm one of those, but a lot about his approach is relevant to learning pretty much any language. What I find unique about Alex is that he's not native, and his coaching method is really derived f…
 
Today’s guest is sharing her experience of applying for Dutch citizenship. For Akanksha Pathania, it was a big decision, not least because becoming a citizen of the Netherlands required her to renounce her Indian citizenship. Find out what the process entailed, how you can best prepare for the exams, and why for Akanksha, becoming Dutch has been wo…
 
This past year has really put our health and wellbeing in the spotlight – whether it’s been dealing with a Covid-19 diagnosis ourselves, supporting loved ones, or dealing with the mental and physical health impacts of long-term lockdown and significant lifestyle change. Health service providers have played a key role during the pandemic, and my gue…
 
We are chatting to one of our regular columnists today, Ben Zabulis, who I’ve interviewed in the past about his decision to retire to Hong Kong. Now, lots has been happening in the world since our last chat, so I’m really keen to check in with him and hear his perspective, and also find out how he and his partner keep themselves well and healthy as…
 
So many workplaces have had to make drastic changes over the past year, which has affected how we do our jobs and, in some cases, if we even still have one. Whether you’re already abroad or looking to move internationally for work, it’s a daunting time to be searching for that next opportunity. How has the pandemic affected your industry? Are there…
 
You’ve no doubt heard about the devastating second wave of Covid-19 that India’s currently experiencing, and how it has overwhelmed the local health system. Many foreigners have decided to leave while they still can, as countries put bans on flights to try to prevent the spread of India’s Covid mutation. One foreigner who is staying put in the coun…
 
Our listener Susan recently got in touch and asked if we could do an episode on deafness and hearing loss, and the challenges these conditions can present when you’re abroad. So Liam O'Dell, deaf freelance journalist and campaigner, is joining us today to speak about the subject and his own experiences.…
 
Tax expert Oliver Heslop from Global Expatriate Tax Services is back today, and he’s going to give us an update on UK and EU pension rights after Brexit. It’s very good news for the million plus Brits living in EU countries and the more than 3 million EU citizens who call the UK home. Oliver is also going to touch on what you should keep in mind th…
 
Today's guest is Rebecca Grappo, the founder of RNG International Educational Consultants. Rebecca has been working with expat families for decades, and I wanted to get her perspective on the Covid-19 pandemic, how it has affected international students – in particular, over the past 12 months – and what expat families can do to continue to help an…
 
Deciding to pack up your life abroad and head back to your home country can be difficult enough, but doing it during the Covid-19 pandemic brings all kinds of extra challenges. Australian journalist, Denee Savoia, recently returned home after four years living and working in Turkey. However, getting herself home certainly hasn’t been straightforwar…
 
Recent updates and changes to the United Arab Emirates’ legal system are set to benefit the millions of expats that call the country home. Law reforms announced in November cover divorce, wills, and local rules around the consumption of alcohol and unmarried couples living together. Alexandra Tribe, lawyer and owner of Expatriate Law, joins me in t…
 
The end of 2020 marks the end of the Brexit transition period, and one of the big changes for UK nationals is how long they can spend at second homes in the EU. Up until now, British nationals have been able to spend up to six months a year at another property on mainland Europe without running into any issues around residency. But that all changes…
 
The dreaded C-word has really dominated the year, but now we’re reaching the end of 2020, and it’s the B-word that a lot of British expats in particular are worried about, as they rush to secure a base in mainland Europe. Oliver Heslop from GETS – Global Expatriate Tax Services – is back on the show today to talk through where things stand when it …
 
How much do you keep up with the news and issues back in your ‘home’ country? Where do you go for updates on subjects that affect you, like new law proposals and policy changes? American Citizens Abroad is an apolitical organisation, on a mission to educate and advocate for US citizens living and working overseas, from expat voting rights to citize…
 
Today we’re exploring some of the need-to-knows if you’re planning a move to Vietnam. My guest is Creighton Wong, an American who owns a digital marketing agency. In more normal times, he would be based not just in Vietnam but in other parts of the world too, as a digital nomad. Creighton’s going to share his opinion and experiences with visas, Vie…
 
The current pandemic has left a lot of people around the world in limbo, and Christina Sinn is one of them. A German expat, Christina ‘should’ be in Australia right now, where she’s been based for the past few years, after living in China and the UK. But she and her partner happened to be visiting Germany when COVID-19 hit its first peak and intern…
 
Australia is known for its incredible natural beauty, great quality of life and multicultural society. If you’re planning a move ‘down under’ (for sometime after the pandemic, when borders are open again), blogger and teacher Courtney Alkek has some excellent advice to share. She and her husband moved to Australia from the USA. They’ve had two kids…
 
There’s been a bit of debate online about whether we’ll see a baby boom from the coronavirus lockdown. Is all this forced time at home the perfect opportunity to get pregnant, or, is a pandemic pregnancy the last thing on your mind? If you are planning to start - or add to - your family, you might want to give some thought to teaching your child a …
 
Poland has been rising up the rankings as one of the best countries for expats to live and work in, and we’re going to chat to one such expat today. Blogger Anda Alexandra relocated from Romania to Poland, for work. And, almost a decade later she’s still there, married with a child and she’s going to talk through some moving essentials: from findin…
 
There’s not a huge amount of moving about the world going on at the moment, but that doesn’t mean you can’t research and plan. And if you’ve got a move to Malaysia on your mind, we have the perfect guest to give you some insider knowledge. Writer Kirsten Raccuia and her husband Mark moved from the USA to Penang seven years ago. In this episode, she…
 
When you’re planning a move to a new country, there’s a lot to get your head around, and understanding how things work locally is key to quickly landing on your feet. Today’s guest is Emma Pearson, Editor of The Local France, a website covering French news, culture and practical tips on everyday life in the country. Emma’s going to walk us through …
 
Just as the world was coming to grips with the seriousness of COVID-19 and countries were locking down, parts of China were getting over the worst of the pandemic and life was beginning to return to normal. This was the case when we recorded this interview with Mauricio ‘Momo’ Estrella, an Ecuadorian digital designer based in Shanghai with his wife…
 
Where are you spending your coronavirus lockdown? Are you in a densely populated city? A smaller town, where social distancing is made that bit easier? Are you spending this time away from where you’d normally call home? Maybe you’re on your own property in the countryside, with not a soul in sight… Danish expat Christian Graugart and his young fam…
 
The property market - like so many sectors right now - has slowed down as the world grapples with the COVID-19 pandemic. Tenants, landlords and homeowners are all feeling the pressure. Governments are being looked to for bailout packages, while people in the process of buying or selling are now working to completely unknown timelines. We arranged t…
 
Government-mandated isolation has become the new normal for so many of us, as the world fights the COVID-19 pandemic. I’m in lockdown here in France where only essential shops remain open, and we need to carry a permission form when we leave the house which can only be for specific reasons like, going to the supermarket, the pharmacy or doing some …
 
You might be feeling a bit paralysed by the news at the moment as the Coronavirus pandemic worsens across the world, and governments update their guidance every day. But amid the chaos, are people trying to do some good. Volunteers in many countries are sewing masks for local hospital staff facing shortages. GoFundMe pages have been set up so we ca…
 
Today we’re exploring the foreigner’s experience of working in Asia, with a man who has written a book on the subject; Steve McGinnes. Originally from England, Steve has lived and worked across the Asian continent for fifteen years, and his book combines practical advice with first-hand stories and experiences of professionals, covering topics incl…
 
The Coronavirus pandemic is forcing cities across the world into lockdown, and in Italy, American business owners Linda and Steve have had to close their Rome hostel, The Beehive, for the first time in 21 years. In this episode, the couple share what the past few weeks have been like as the impact of COVID-19 set in, what support Italy is providing…
 
Mario Cacciottolo's move from the UK to Malta was very much a homecoming. He spent the first 12 years of his life in the country, and its booming economy, 300 days of sunshine a year and a desire to close some local ‘knowledge gaps’ were big motivators for him to return. In this chat, he’s going to shed some light on what it’s like to live on this …
 
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