Sunday with an Expater in Hiroshima

Most tourists to Japan don’t visit Hiroshima. Or at least they don’t visit the real Hiroshima. If they do bother to stop by, they’ll generally look in on the Peace Memorial Museum, munch on some sushi and take the bullet train back to Tokyo. However, if you’re reading this then most likely you’re keen to see a different side. As…
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10 tips for never-ending cash on holiday (or at least a card that …

‘Dear J, I’m sorry not to have written before, I didn’t have money for a stamp…’  This is how I wrote to a friend on my first trip abroad as a teenage expat. I’d just moved to Osnabrück, Germany, to study for a couple of semesters and the bad news was that none of my bank cards were working. The…
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Frequent travel can damage your cornea and other life updates

Recently I went to a routine contact lens check up. Expecting to get the all clear, I was rummaging around nonchalantly for my lipgloss when the optician told me my cornea was badly swollen. Anything to do with eyes freaks me out a little. Eyes are more fragile than say, bones or limbs to me and eyeballs belong in Halloween…
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Swiss culture: Don’t cut your salad and other top tips

I lived in Switzerland for one glorious year. If you’re new to the country you may question my affection for my Helvetic friend. Your neighbours don’t like you, you get told off for mowing your lawn and your work colleagues stare at you when you eat. While it may seem like any other Schengen country, and while it feels European…
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Vodka deodorant and other packing tips

I’ve been travelling a lot lately and with that comes the hell of packing. After a lovely stewardess gave me some of her own tips, I decided to put down more of my own in a blog post too. Unlike Marie Kondo, I don’t enjoy packing as such, but I have got better at it over the years. Here are…
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A Guide to Renting in London

The single thing that Expater friends ask me most is where to rent. Especially those moving to London. Which are the best areas? Is London safe? How much will it cost? Is it possible to avoid the hour long underground commute wedged under someone’s armpit? Of course, the answers to all of the above are, ‘it depends’. Are you a…
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10 surprising truths about Moscow

I just got back from a fabulous week in Moscow. We were there for my brother’s wedding and quite a few things surprised me about the city and Muscovites in general. Here are some of them. Muscovites are incredibly friendly. OK so they may greet you with a icy stare, but crack through the chilly veneer with a joke or…
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A Flight Attendant’s Top Ten Packing Tips

I thought I travelled a lot. Then, on a recent trip back from Moscow I spoke to the flight crew at Lufthansa. How they don’t collapse from jet lag exhaustion is beyond me. Unsurprisingly they know one or two things about how to pack a suitcase too. Here one of their Chief Flight Attendants, Barbara Kuechler shares her top tips. Never, ever…
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Antwerp: Top tips for newbie expats

Moving around a lot at the time of my first son’s birth, I was relieved to found out we’d be moving to Antwerp. Having lived previously in Brussels, I was happy to be returning to Belgium, to a European city, to somewhere comfortingly familiar. Antwerp, I soon found out is very different however. Sure it’s Belgian and sure the weather…
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An insider’s guide to the best restaurants in London

Street food galore, hipster diners, Michelin star fine dining. London is a foodie’s heaven. But not for everyone. As an Expater, you don’t have time to research the best restaurants in town, and besides there are so many new places that you just can’t agree among friends. In any case, the reservation waiting list is six months long and you’ll…
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