Being an expat is an exciting and thrilling experience, but it can also be overwhelming. Even under normal circumstances, leaving your friends and family behind to move abroad is certainly a brave decision. But there’s nothing normal in a world plagued by a deadly, airborne pathogen such as the coronavirus. Countries have instituted stay-at-home orders, sealed their borders, and all but grounded international flights, bringing global travel to a standstill. 

Curfews, cessation of movement, social distancing, and other covid-19 restrictions have made life extremely difficult for expats stuck in their host countries. The Covid-19 pandemic has exacerbated homesickness, culture shock, and other common challenges faced by expats abroad. In this article, we’ll cover a few tips to help expats manage the adverse situations they might be facing when stuck abroad due to Covid-19. 

Stay In Touch With Friends and Family

Keeping in touch with people you care for can help you overcome overwhelming feelings of homesickness when living abroad during the pandemic. And thanks to advancements in technology, keeping in touch with loved ones when we are thousands of miles apart has never been easier. Take advantage of video calling apps like FaceTime, Skype, Zoom, and WhatsApp to have face-to-face conversations with friends and family. 

Look After Yourself

The Covid-19 pandemic has left millions of expatriates stuck overseas. Many are dealing with strict Covid-19 lockdowns, homesickness, culture shock, and other situations that elicit strong emotions. Looking after yourself can go a long way towards helping you cope with stressful situations. Work out, eat well, and make sure that you are getting enough sleep. You will feel better and self-confident when you look after yourself.  

Connect With Your Loved Ones through Local Sports and TV Shows  

Viewing local entertainment content such as movies and sports together is an excellent way to connect with loved ones when quarantining abroad. The challenge is finding local films, TV shows, and sports to watch with your friends and family in your host country. Streaming services such as Disney Plus, Prime Video, and Netflix usually have different catalogues in each country. 

However, there’s a way to get around these restrictions when streaming content online. This involves the use of a Virtual Private Network (VPN). A VPN allows you to mask your current location and get unlimited access to movies, TV series, and sports from all over the world. All you have to do is download a VPN app on your device, use the app to connect to the internet, and you can enjoy local video content from abroad. 

Join the Expat Community

Maintaining contact with the people you care about through technology can be really helpful. However, you still need a local support network when you need to talk to someone in a similar situation as you. Dealing with isolation, homesickness, culture shock, etc., is much less scary when you have social support from peers, colleagues, and friends to reach out to when things seem out of control.  The period following the onset of the pandemic and the subsequent lockdowns hasn’t been easy for anyone. The lockdowns, interruption of global travel, and isolation have been particularly hard on expats. But with recent developments in the vaccine stage, this crisis will soon be behind us. International travel will resume, and you’ll be able to jet home to see your loved ones whenever you want. We hope these survival tips can help you hang in there for now.