Social Media: Keeping in touch with friends and family as an expat

When you live abroad, it can be challenging keeping in touch with friends and family back home. However, thankfully we live in the 21st century in which technology plays an increasingly part of our daily lives. As such, the Internet opens a world of opportunities to stay connected as an expat.

Social Media

Personally, I use Skype and Facebook Messenger for texting and calling friends and family from. They are two easy and reliable programmes to use, which allow direct contact. I know some of my expat friends also use WhatsApp, however, I haven’t really tried that yet as I don’t really need anything but Skype and Facebook to keep in touch.
In this sense, though, social media is priceless to me. It allows me to keep in touch with my beloved ones without actually talking to them. Right now, where I’ve just moved to Amsterdam, started a new job and trying to acquire insight into the culture and build up a social circle, I don’t have much spare time. Therefore, social media sites such as Facebook, Instagram and SnapChat allow me to receive updates from friends and family while at the same time allowing me to send updates as well – without direct interaction. Sometimes, this is the perfect way to keep updated as the time is not always there.

Do you, as an expat, have any other ways to keep updated with friends and family? Any apps or programmes I should try out?

xo P!

 

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15 thoughts on “Social Media: Keeping in touch with friends and family as an expat

  1. China uses WeChat which is somewhat of a mix between facebook (which is blocked) and WhatsApp. You can make phone or video calls via the application on internet to save money. You can also use it to pay for things (in China) and send people money, but I digress. I’ve also talked with some of my closest friends about reverting to postal service correspondence because that 12-14 hour time difference really makes calls difficult or awkward to coordinate at times. The blog is another good way to let everyone know what you are up to (WordPress is also blocked in China), and facetime for iPhone users has been useful as well (though the China phones disabled the audio-only option, urgh).

    Pro-tip for long-term temporary assignments: Since I needed a Chinese number here I ported my US phone number to google voice for a one time $20 fee before we left and now when I return (likely in a few years) I can have the same number back! Even better – people can still call/leave messages/text me on it, though I need a VPN to reply. I have not gotten the “call people and chat” function to work properly though, likely due to the great firewall of China.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. E-mail or SMS to let the family know that we have arrived safely and that all is well.

    We never contact friends – sometime they are with us, and other times they might are also be traveling at the same time. The lack of connection gives us all plenty to talk about over a glass or two on our return.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Can’t say I know what it’s like to be an expat, but I think it’s fantastic that you’ve managed to keep in touch with your family and friends. That is one of the hardest parts of moving and traveling. I may not live in a different country, but I do live in different states from my friends and we’re constantly setting up Skype dates to catch up on the latest news and see what’s been going on. I definitely think it’s great. Though, WhatsApp is fantastic for international friends when you can’t text each other, etc.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. My wife and I have always used Skype when one or the other one of us is traveling – it works great, although sometimes there’s been a huge time difference! It’s great to be able to see someone and have a real conversation when she is traveling in another country – and helps reduce homesickness as well! Susan

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Feel glad t read your Insightful post. As we can see every one use this social media apps. It become life part. Normally we are using whatsapp, tweeter, Facebook etc. That’s app connect with each other.I will be keep this in my mind your well update. Gd thought out.Thanks

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Feel glad t read your Insightful post. As we can see every one use this social media apps. It become life part. Normally we are using whatsapp, tweeter, Facebook etc. That’s app connect with each other.I will be keep this in my mind your well update. Gd thought out.Thanks

    Liked by 1 person

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