It’s a common misconception that ‘life is a holiday’ for all expats. Yes, the sun-drenched glitz of Dubai, the bustling streets of Hong Kong and the gorgeous beaches of the Cayman Islands are all considered brilliant tourist destinations. Yet, for the foreigners who live in these expat hubs, the sheen has worn off. Similarly, if you’ve moved your life to the UK, that doesn’t mean you don’t want to get away occasionally. While you may not get tropical weather when based in the UK, the advantage of being there is the proximity to so many other nations and cultures.
So, if you’re an expat in the UK looking to plan your next getaway, consider the following holiday options:
Follow the locals
If you’re looking for a short break destination, forget guidebooks and just ask the locals. Speak to your colleagues, neighbours and friends to find out where the locals go on ‘staycations’ in their own country. Whether it’s a trip to the seaside, a brilliant city break or an escape to the mountains, you can usually trust the advice of those who’ve lived there their whole lives. If you’re based in the south-east, why not head to the Scottish Highlands and islands for a complete change of pace? Stunning all year round, a drive through Perthshire, a trip to the Black Isle or a holiday in Skye are just a few options in Scotland. Alternatively, for those living in the north, a change of scenery can be found in Cornwall; where you can find a taste of the Riviera without leaving the country. Indulge in cream teas or try your hand at surfing.
Working and living in a foreign country - particularly for those who struggle to speak the local language - can come with its share of stress. You may not realise it, but the amount of energy you put into learning new customs and figuring out logistics can really take it out of you. For the most stress-free holiday option, hop on a cruise. Sit back and relax while these incredible floating hotels take you from one exotic destination to the next. What’s more, being an island nation means that there is probably a departure point near you – from Southampton in the south to the likes of Liverpool and Newcastle further north, luxury liners are waiting to take you to Scandinavia, the Mediterranean or any one of hundreds of other destinations. You can even just hop over to France and Belgium for a couple of nights and a glimpse of European culture.
Visit your former home
Of course, nothing beats visiting friends and family back home. Travelling to your home country while living abroad is a great opportunity to reconnect with those who mean so much to you. It also allows you to get a different perspective on the place you once called home. See what it’s like to be a tourist in your home country by exploring museums, visiting landmarks and dining out at the top restaurants.
So, even if you live in a tourist hotspot, it’s natural to crave a holiday a few times a year. Continuing your travels, even as an expat, is also an important part of achieving the perfect work/life balance.
This post has been submitted by Jessica Cooper in collaboration with Dealchecker, the online resource to compare holiday prices. Jessica is originally from England but has lived in several locations around the world including France and the USA.