My blog name is New Girl in New York and I am from the UK, but now I live in Manhattan, New York.
1. Why did you move abroad?
My husband was relocated here by his company.
2. How do you make a living?
I am not working at the moment, but I volunteer at an after-school program two days a week and volunteer with New York Cares on a regular basis. I have also just started writing for an online newspaper, the New York Daily Sun and am a 'local expert' on the 'Romio' website.
3. How often do you communicate with home and how?
I communicate with my family almost every day via email, texts and 'Whatsapp'. We Skype at least once a week if not more. I keep in touch with friends via email, texts and 'Whatsapp' on a regular basis.
4. What's your favorite thing about being an expat in New York City?
Enjoying everything this city has to offer! Since moving here I have had so many amazing opportunities and experiences, I never quite know what the day will bring and that is something I love. I have also enjoyed the proximity to other parts of the US, I get to see much more of the country than I would from the UK.
5. What’s the worst thing about being an expat in New York City?
It's so crowded and dirty. Living with so many other people can be difficult sometimes and the city is always busy. I also live in much small accommodation and hate having such a tiny bathroom. I know it's a small thing, but I miss having a washing machine more than I ever imagined!
6. What do you miss most?
Family, friends, space, fresh air, British TV, Waitrose (it's a supermarket) and chips!
7. What did you do to meet people and integrate in your new home?
I made many of my friends through volunteering, I found many people in a similar situation to me and we can relate to each other's situations. Immersing yourself in local community is a great way to meet people and learn the lay of the land. I have also made some great friends through my gym and husband's workplace. I also go to as many social events as I can, you never know who you might meet.
8. What custom/ habits do you find most strange about your adopted culture?
From my experience, the Americans are very interactive when watching shows and movies. They are very vocal and often cheer and whoop when watching something at a theatre. I sometimes find it off-putting, but am getting used to it!
9. What is a myth about your adopted country?
That everything is better here. Although the US is a fantastic place to live, it isn't always better than the UK.
10. Is the cost of living higher or lower than the last country you lived in and how has that made a difference in your life?
It is about the same. Certain things are much cheaper than in the UK but insurance is a killer, it costs us a small fortune making sure we are covered. Rent in New York is ridiculous and I was surprised that it is actually cheaper in London. However, public transport, clothes and food are much cheaper, so it's about even.
11. What advice would you give other expats?
Give it time. It can be so overwhelming when your first arrive in a new country as everything and everyone you know is far away. However, after a few months you will have made friends, know your local area and begin to get a grip go how things work in your new neighbourhood.
12. When and why did you start your blog?
I started my blog a few months after I arrived as I was learning how the city worked and discovering all sorts of things that helped me settle into New York life. I wanted to share these tips and experiences with other expats. Basically, it is all the things I wish someone had told me when I first arrived in NYC.
Blog, New Girl in New York