Expatability Chat

Expatability Chat

Helping expat parents navigate the challenges of moving and living overseas with their children, with Carole Hallett Mobbs: Expat Life Mentor and Consultant


April 12, 2021 30 min

How to help your expat teen cope with moving

A teenager is a young person in a transitional life phase – and you’re adding another transitional life phase on top of all this with the move abroad! This can be 'interesting'! Adolescence can be tricky at the best of times. However, if a teen is moved from their comfort zone and close friends without a lot of preparation and discussion, this stage of development can be more diff...

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For very young children, moving house can be very hard indeed. They have become accustomed to their home, their room, their friends and their routines and to leave all this can throw them into confusion.

Try to see life from a child’s-eye view. Without the benefit of years of life experience, with some extra imagination and knowing YOUR child’s foibles.

The world of a child is unexpectedly complex and the things they worry about are ...

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Moving abroad with children; what to expect, how to prepare them and how to support them.

When I started writing ExpatChild.com back in 2012 there wasn’t much information on moving overseas with kids. As I wanted a kind of guidebook to relocating with children, I decided to write one myself!

This episode will be the start of a kind of series about this very topic: how to help your children have a smooth move into expat life.

We all wa...

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March 1, 2021 29 min

Live and Thrive in These Uncertain Times

Dealing with uncertainty: how to regain a sense of control when everything feels so up in the air. 

Not only are we dealing with ‘unprecedented’ times, we are also dealing with a huge amount of uncertainty on a daily basis. 

Uncertainty about the future is normal; we cannot see what is likely to happen in our lives. These days, however, we are also living with uncertainty about the present, whi...

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February 15, 2021 25 min

Packing Day! It’s the final countdown.

Don’t worry, I’m not singing anywhere in this episode!

Starting from about 3 weeks before Packing Day with advice, hints and tips on what needs doing now. Including a few items to make sure you get now.

Then some experienced tips on how to make Packing Day run smoothly for both you and your packing crew. Plus how to cope with the big day itself.

Once that’s done, the hardest part is over, and you...

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February 1, 2021 24 min

Sorting out Your Paperwork and What to Note During Your In-Home Survey

Two distinct but connected topics as your path towards Packing Day is one way; and it’s coming up soon.

You may be a supremely organised person who deals promptly and efficiently with all your paperwork as soon as you have some. Or you may be like me; stuffing it randomly into a drawer to file another day… most likely, that ‘another day’ is when you next have to m...

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January 18, 2021 29 min

Decluttering Before a Move Overseas

Or just decluttering... you don't need to be moving home to have an occasional clear out of excess 'stuff'.

Decluttering is actually stage one of your preparation to move overseas!

Start as soon as you know you’re moving abroad. Whether that’s two years in advance or two months. Getting started is often the hardest part. 

With tips, tricks and advice from someone who hates decluttering, b...

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January 4, 2021 25 min
Happy New Year!

Well done on making it to 2021 – possibly the most anticipated and longed for year in history.

A brief look back at 2020 and a couple of things I learned about myself. 

Also, an introduction to something I call The Expat Blues, which can hit many of us – expat or not, to be frank, around this time of year. A melancholia about the end of the holiday season. I’ll give you a couple of tips on how to shake off this rather ...

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December 7, 2020 19 min

Well, it’s December. What a year this has been. And there is no denying that it’s been probably the most difficult year most of us have ever experienced. 

Christmas overseas in general is a bit weird if you’ve spent most of your previous Christmases in your home country. And this is often a difficult period for expats, due to expectations from our families in our home country and the pressure we put on ourselves to try to make every...

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November 30, 2020 21 min

Tips for finding your ideal home overseas

Something I’d highly recommend is to move into somewhere temporarily. It’s a great way to trial run the neighbourhood you are considering.

Spend a few weeks or months getting settled into the country and the lay of the land and work out where and how you want to live.

If you’re prepared to live out of boxes for a while, then you can take your time to find the perfect home with some detailed lo...

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November 16, 2020 28 min

Some of the legal aspects of moving and living overseas.

Vital information on what you need to know before you move overseas, from a legal point of view.

Including crucial information about moving overseas with your children. What you need to know before you move abroad with kids, in relation to international law on habitual residence, The Hague Convention, and paperwork needed when travelling with your children.

Taking a look at you...

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November 2, 2020 37 min

An overview of the main types of expat education options available and how to choose the right one for your child.

Tips and advice on what to keep in mind when choosing a school abroad. Do you choose a local school or an international school? Home education or virtual school? How to find a school for your SEN child and more!

Sometimes parents put too much emphasis on trying to find a ‘good’ school. This is very hard to judge as a par...

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Choosing a removal company for your move overseas

How do you find the best international removal companies? How much is a removal company? How do you know you are choosing a reputable firm?

Start looking early! Plan a long way ahead because there is a lot involved.

And don’t go for the cheapest option. There’s more to this big move than price. 

Tips on the extras to look out for, so you’re not taken by surprise later on.

You've got ...

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October 19, 2020 27 min

Why being proactive is important for the accompanying expat partner

Don't live as a shadow in somebody else’s life. Live your own life; one that feels right to you.

As an expat partner, the emphasis is on you being proactive. Why? Because all the people you’re (hopefully) meeting will probably already have established lives. They aren’t waiting for you to slot into their lives, so you must be the proactive one; to go out there an...

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October 12, 2020 26 min

Why being the expat partner makes such a difference and what extra challenges the accompanying expat partner faces.

These challenges can lead to a loss of confidence and a rapidly disappearing self-identity.

To start with, we get labelled as ‘the trailing spouse’… We don’t like that. Our identity is immediately stripped from us and we are given a demeaning and disempowering label. We are so much more than a label.

However, some commu...

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October 5, 2020 26 min

Expats are at double the risk of mental health conditions compared to people who never move abroad. And over half of those who are unhappy living abroad say that not having a personal support network in the host country contributes to their unhappiness.

We have great hopes for our new expat life, but reality often lets us down. We realise that expat life is not the Instaperfect dream we expected and this can hurt. Expat life is an e...

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September 28, 2020 24 min

How to organise your packing and shipments efficiently

An overview of how to organise your possessions into the different transportation options you have for your move overseas.

Tips on what to pack into shipping containers, air freight, luggage and carry-on. Plus information about taking your vehicle overseas. 

  • Plan And Pack For Your Overseas Move: A complete guide to organising your packing ready to move abroad. eBook available here
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    September 21, 2020 18 min

    How to make the most of your look-see trip

    The "Look-See" Trip is an exploratory visit to the country you’re moving to - an exploratory visit or a pre-location visit.

    It is important to make sure that your look-see trip is planned efficiently so you can get as much done as possible on the visit

    There’s a lot to achieve in a relatively small period of time, so I hope this guide will help you to make a fool-proof plan.


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    September 14, 2020 23 min

    Decision, Decisions, Decisions!

    Making the decision to move overseas in the first place is huge; it starts with ‘should we stay or should we go?’ And just spirals from there.

    All this decision-making pressure can become too much, particularly when we are moving overseas and there are so many unknowns to factor in. 

    We make between 1000-5000 decisions every single, normal day. Which is why making extra, life-changing choices on top of ...

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    September 7, 2020 29 min

    How to research effectively

    I expect the first thing you did as soon as you heard you may be moving overseas was to start researching your potential destination.

    Sounds obvious, but you would be surprised at how many people make assumptions about a country and don’t bother to research it.

    People who make the most successful transition abroad are those who are fully prepared and have done their research. 

    You need to work out if a count...

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