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Deciding whether to move abroad is a big decision and one not to be taken lightly, but thousands leave their home country for a new adventure abroad each year, so how hard can it be right? Well, the answer to this question really depends on the kind of person you are, how you deal with challenges and how motivated you are to make life in a new country succeed.
The profile of an ideal expat
Here are ten character traits which mean you can handle expat life. If you fit this profile, then you should definitely take the plunge.
- You crave a new adventure and find life at home boring and limited
- You love to meet new people and make friends, and are excited about the idea of starting again
- You are flexible and dynamic and not afraid of a challenge
- You want to learn a new language and understand a different culture and you are flexible to adapting to a new way of doing things
- You like different foods and enjoy trying new experiences
- You are skilled in a trade, work in real estate, or are entrepreneurial and want to start your own business
- You don’t mind taking a pay cut to achieve your dream of living abroad
- You have some money behind you to set up a new life and wait to find the right job, or you can work from anywhere with your current job
- You never want to come home when you’re on holiday and love the warm weather
- You understand that starting a new life will be hard, but you know it will be worth it to have a new life in the sunshine and enjoy the adventure
If this sounds like you, then you would make an ideal expat, so the next step is to choose the right destination for your expat adventure.
Why the Costa del Sol is a great expat destination
Those of us who have made our home here on the Costa del Sol love the life and opportunities we have and couldn’t imagine going back. The Costa del Sol works particularly well for expats for the following reasons –
- There is a large expat population – This means there are services and facilities tailored to your needs, such as English speaking private medical cover, international schools, translators and fixers who can sort things out for you. It is easy to make new friends as there are loads of groups you can join and it’s a really welcoming place.
- The weather and lifestyle is amazing – It really makes a difference when you wake up to sunny skies and can be outside to do sports, walk, eat and just enjoy. The Spanish way of life is relaxed and social, based around eating, drinking and having fun and it’s a lovely way to live.
- The cost of living is relatively low – Although salaries are lower, so is the cost of living in general. Rents are significantly lower, eating and drinking out is cheaper and fresh fish and fruit and veg is cheaper too. Being outside, going for a walk, heading to the park or beach are all essential parts of life and totally free, so money goes a lot further.
For more reasons to make the move read our 5 reasons to live on the Costa del Sol
People who struggle as an expat
We want to be honest with you that expat life doesn’t suit everyone. Here are a few things that make moving away hard.
- If you are very close to your family, love to be surrounded by old friends and couldn’t imagine being away from them.
- If you hate change and fear making a new life for yourself you will find it hard, you really need to be ready to throw yourself in to the experience and take on the challenges.
- If you want to live the dream – Many people who head home quickly are expecting the same experience as being on holiday all year round and have this idealised vision of how their life will be. When you have to work, send the kids to school and manage your home then it won’t all be roses, but those of us who have lived here for years much prefer to do these things under sunny skies!
- If you aren’t open to learn the language and don’t have the money to use professional translators, have private medical cover, or send your kids to private schools. You don’t need to speak Spanish to thrive here on the Costa del Sol, but you do need money behind you to choose English speaking alternatives, rather than go through the state system.
Take the plunge
If you fit our ideal expat profile and don’t identify with the persona we’ve described above then expat life is for you and now’s the time to take the plunge. There really is no time like the present!
Come over and rent long-term for a few months to see how the life here suits you and whether it will work in the long run. We have some excellent Costa del Sol long-term rentals which start from 400€ per month, so you can live very affordably while you job hunt and get settled. Please contact us for advice or support with finding a place to live, we’re here to help start off your expat adventure!