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25 August, 2016
So you’ve left your home country and made the move overseas. It can be overwhelming, and often a little scary, making a new start in a foreign country. Luckily, developments in technology have allowed expats to stay connected with the familiar in many different ways. Technology can also help you get settled in your new area by helping you make new friends or navigate and learn your way around.
However, there are a few technological mistakes commonly made by expats when they first make the move to another country. Though most are only small-scale faux pas, they can really set you back and are a huge annoyance, especially if you’re still trying to settle in.
Let’s take a look at three of these cardinal technology faux pas and how expats can avoid them.
1. Forgetting adapters for your chargers.
In the rush and scramble of packing and arranging an overseas move, it’s easy to forget things. One of the first things you’re likely to forget is that voltage and power sockets will likely be different in the country you’re moving to. Yep, that’s right – you’ve made it all the way to your new home country, only to not have access to your various gadgets!
A lot of your possessions will need a power source of some kind – from your phone, computer and tablet to your personal items like hair straighteners and electric razors. Unless you’re considering purchasing all-new items once you arrive (which will likely cost you a lot), you’ll need to have at least a couple of adapters with you. Do some research on your new home country and find out what sort of adapter you’ll need to be able to use your technological and electrical items.
2. Not having access to your favourite websites.
Sometimes, when settling into your new home, all you want to do is take five to relax with some music or a TV show. You open up Netflix or Pandora – only to discover that the site is restricted in your new country, or that your old account doesn’t work with that country’s version of the site!
In order to access all your favourite sites with your accounts from back home, you might need to look into obtaining a VPN. A Virtual Private Network connection allows you to access the internet via remote servers, effectively blocking your real IP address and location. The secure connection created by a VPN will enable you to access sites like Netflix and Pandora as easily as you once did back home.
3. Assuming cyber safety in your new environment.
This one has the potential to be a much more serious concern. The last thing you want is to leave yourself vulnerable in a foreign country – and unfortunately, that’s just what can happen if you’re not adequately protected against cyber attacks.
As an expat, you should remember that your internet browsing might not be as safe and secure in your new country as it was in your old one. That’s where a VPN can come in handy again.
As we mentioned above, a VPN creates a completely secure and anonymous connection through which you can safely use the internet. By masking your real IP address, a VPN hides your location and online identity, basically making your browsing a lot safer. It’s especially important to use one whenever you’re connected to a public network, like the wifi at your new favourite café or library.
Now that you know the top tech faux pas expats are likely to make, you’ll be able to avoid them yourself in your new home country!
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