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It's fantastic news, your husband or wife has just told you that they have a new job overseas. The value of expat friendshipsThe job is a great opportunity, good  salary, medical insurance, car, housing and school fees are also included. Plus one flight per year back home for the whole family paid for by the company. It's too good to be true!!! Although taking the decision to work abroad is without doubt a grand adventure and moving to the Middle East can also be quite a shock.

On arrival, you stare with disbelief at the huge size of the villa you will be living in. You could fit your old home in the entrance hallway of your new property. You have a maid so no more vacuuming or dusting - even better no ironing! After a couple of days your partner has gone to work and you laze around the pool in 40 degrees of sunshine in Bahrain, reading your book and just can't get over how relaxed you are.

Then you suddenly realise that you are bored out of your mind, you don't know anybody except your partner who is away all day working, now It’s time to take action.

Take look to the following tips giving by expats to help you make new friends:

  • If you can drive then get a hire car, it will give you independence and freedom of travel.
  • If you don't drive then hire a driver or call a cab and get out and about.
  • Join an expat club and go during the day and chat to other people there, for example the Dilmun Club in Saar; The Rugby Club in Saar; The British Club in Umm Al Hassan and The Yacht Club in Sitra. Attend some of the many group meetings and introduce yourself – you will be made welcome.
  • Join a gym or exercise classes.
  • Strike up a conversation and you’ll find expats happy to pass the time of day with you.
  • There are so many things to do, especially during the cooler months: Horse racing, car racing, opera, pop music, judo, yoga, dancing, sport (satellite TV everywhere).
  • You can find out a lot from a number of useful websites such as Expat Blog or Mums in Bahrain (which is really unisex) where you can learn about what and where things are happening.
  • - Buy the local daily newspaper there are dozens of activities to join in with.

Go to dinner with your new friends and take your partners too. Everyone suddenly has new people to talk to and work isn't discussed 24/7 for the men.

Friendships are vital and very important when you have moved to a new country. They can turn the whole experience around. You will be shocked at how quickly friendships are made, how quickly they become strong and solid. Don't be afraid of the new move, embrace it - you will love it guaranteed.

About the author

Joanna Murphy

I moved around the UK more times than I can remember. I moved to Bahrain in 2012 and found out everything I could about the country, the culture, the schooling and wrote to Crown asking if my services were required - In July 2013 I was accepted as Relocation Consultant for Crown Bahrain and has never looked back. I love my job and really enjoy helping people settle in.

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