Last Updated on January 18, 2021 by Camilla Gill
If you’re feeling scared to move abroad alone, you’re not the only one. Deciding to move abroad alone to a foreign country is a big decision, so it’s normal to feel nervous!
It’s OK to be scared but it’s not OK to allow fear to rule our lives. Let’s get you ready for your big adventure!
Problems and situations do arise in life. It’s how life was designed.
The trick is to accept that problems will happen and go with the flow, working things out as they happen. Below is a list of the 5 main fears (with solutions) that people have when they are moving alone to another country.
5 Fears When Moving Abroad Alone (And How To Get Over Them)
1. What If You Don’t Make Any Friends?
Making friends is something everyone thinks they know how to do. . . until you find yourself moving abroad alone to a new country where you don’t speak language.
The important thing to remember is that there are lots of people in your situation as well.
Join a few clubs, the local gym and be consistent in your attendance!
Even if you are shy and not very chatty, if you keep turning up somewhere, you will eventually get to know the same faces and the less shy people will end up chatting to you.
The best tip for making friends is to become a YES person. Every invitation you receive, no matter how obscure, make sure you say yes and attend!
You will find all sorts of fun things start happening when you become receptive to new people and experiences.
Eventually, you’ll build a little group of friends. It won’t happen overnight. Be persistent and patient. Keep on smiling and be nice to everyone.
Surely, but slowly, you’ll start to find your own little social circle.
2. What If You Get Homesick?
Homesickness is a horrible feeling and can really bring you down. But what we don’t want is for this feeling to completely overwhelm you and ruin your experience of moving abroad to a new country. This is meant to be an adventure!
Try and speak to a close friend who is also has also moved abroad alone and can relate to how you feel. It’s so important to talk about your feelings and when you realize that you are not alone in your homesickness, it can make the feeling easier to bear.
Schedule regular chats with your family and friends back home to keep up to date with everything that’s happening. Arrange to have virtual dinner dates or a share a glass of wine with your bestie over a video chat.
When it comes down to it though, homesickness is a natural feeling for someone who is living alone in a new country. The important thing is to accept that on occasion you will feel homesick.
Don’t fight the feeling. Take some personal time just for you and be kind to yourself. Trust that the feeling will pass. Schedule some fun things to do with your new friends to remind yourself of the amazing new life you have from moving abroad alone.
3. What If I Can’t Learn The New Language?
Moving abroad alone to a country where you don’t know the language can be a big fear, it’s an intimidating thought to have to learn a whole new language.
And once you arrive in your destination, you’ll soon find out that English is not as widely spoken as you used to think. This can mean that doing normal tasks like food shopping or going to the doctors become a mission in themselves.
Therefore, the best advice is to try and learn as much as you can of the new language before you move abroad. Even if you just learn the basics, that’s better than nothing and will help you feel slightly more prepared.
3 Top Tips On How To Learn A New Language
- Download Duolingo on your phone and get practising.
- Listen to music in your new language and set the subtitles when watching Netflix.
- Try and immerse yourself in the language as much as possible.
One of the most useful things to remember about learning new languages is that you only need to learn 1000 words to be able to speak the language competently. Therefore how to learn a new language is just by learning 10-15 words a day, and you will be away in no time, impressing your new friends with your language skils.
4. What If You Struggle Financially?
Being stuck in a new country without any money is a very scary idea! Running out of money is probably near the top of most people’s fears when moving abroad alone for the first time.
But instead of letting that fear rule you, let the fear push you to work harder to make your new life a success. If you can, before you make the big move, try and get some savings together.
Work out how much you would need to live in the new country for two months without any income and then add 20% extra. Also, make sure you always have an emergency bank account that has enough money in it to buy a return ticket home just in case.
This may all seem extreme, but saving the extra money means you will have peace of mind and less to worry about while you are building your new life abroad and living alone.
Also, you could think about working online to supplement or replace your income. I’ve been freelancing online for two years now and I’m not someone who is lucky enough to have a typical freelancing skill like graphic design or web development.
Nowadays, working remotely is a possibility for everyone who has a laptop and decent internet connection.
5. What if your new life abroad is a failure?
Most people who are brave enough to start a new life abroad are often are scared of it being a massive failure. And that’s completely normal It’s normal to be worried about having to return home after a couple of months, with new job, no new friends and no money.
This is an understandable fear, but what if you have the BEST time abroad? What if you meet the love of your life? What if you make some incredible new friends? What if you land your dream job?
If you don’t leap and take the risk, if you don’t move abroad, then you will never know what could have been.
If things don’t go your way, don’t feel ashamed about asking for help or advice from your new friends or your parents. Above all, if you decide to move home after a few months, don’t worry about it.
Moving abroad alone isn’t for everyone and there’s no shame in that. You gave it a try and you learned a lot from the experience.
Life is for trying new things, but there is no point in making yourself unhappy just because you don’t want to give up.