the Job: At work overseas
miscellaneous questions and answers
I wear to my new job?
employer to be sure, but even in very hot weather more
conservative cultures (and Western cultures tend to be
the most liberal) tend to dress up a bit. Dressing
"down" is not usually appropriate - you will be
judged by how you dress. Grooming and appearance are
very important in many cultures.
Should I buy
a car or motorcycle?
do, once I know my job is secure, as it greatly enhances
my ability to get out and see my new country. If you
don't already know how to drive a motorcycle, overseas
may not be the best place to learn. Rules of the road,
in many countries, can at best be termed "flexible."
However, many countries have great public transportation
systems and you often won't need your own wheels.
transport is fine - it's just that it is hard to tell
the bus driver to go back and turn left down that street
where you thought you saw a really cool Buddhist temple.
How do I
know if it is safe where I live?
employer and coworkers. If it is not, ask to be moved.
Living overseas is great fun and a real challenge, but
getting mugged or killed shouldn't be part of the
package. It IS important to ask, don't assume
you know. Cultural and visual/behavioral cues about
crime can differ from our own understanding. It's good
to be sure!
How can I
reduce my initial expenses?
Don't try to
buy everything at once and don't try to solve every
problem by throwing money at it (a Western trait?). I
can't tell you how many times I have bought paper for
the printer, markers for the classroom, even bottled
water for my apartment, only to have it provided free of
charge only a day or two later. Be patient. Your needs
may be very different in your new situation, from what
they were in your home country.
time with spending until you really know what is going