5 tips to avoid feeling lonely if you can’t go home for Christmas

Christmas is all about tradition and spending time with friends and family, so for expats living overseas the festive period can be a very difficult time.

Often in a completely different culture, who may not celebrate the holiday at all, Christmas can be an unusual experience for those abroad.

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But experts at expat insurance specialist William Russell has provided some essential advice for those away from home during the festive period:

Here’s the advice on how to avoid feeling homesick and enjoying a merry Christmas.

1. Embrace the local culture

Get stuck into local cultural experiences and take advantage of the different ways people celebrate the holiday period.

Take it all as a learning opportunity and a chance to experience new traditions. Check out what events might be going on around you and get stuck in.

2. Spend the day with other expats

There will no doubt be many other expatriates who may also be feeling a little lonely at the prospect of spending Christmas day alone, so why not organise to spend it together.

This is a great way to keep busy on the day and even make new friends.

3. Do things to remind you of home

While it’s always a good idea to immerse yourself in local culture, there is nothing wrong with continuing your Christmas traditions in a new country. Whether it’s going on a Christmas day walk or cooking Christmas dinner, continue your celebrations to make you feel more at home. Be flexible though and don’t assume you will simply be able to pop out and get everything you want.

4. Buy yourself a gift

Maybe get yourself something you can do on the day and give yourself the time to relax and enjoy the day. Why not even wrap it up and open with your family on facetime so you don’t feel as though you are missing out.

5. Volunteer

Volunteering at a local homeless shelter, care home or even an animal shelter can be a great way to keep busy while giving back to your new community. Check out what’s in your area and if any groups need help.

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