Moving to another country and living abroad is one of the best things you can do in your life. But it also quite nerve - wracking. Especially for Italians.
Not only you'll have to take in another city, country, language and culture. Also a totally different food. And you know how much Italians love their food.
But don’t worry, thousands of other Italians have already done it and you can do it too if you follow these tips.
1 Steer clear of the other Italians you know
Yes, really. If you are moving to London to learn English, an internship, a job or whatever other reason, you’ll want to fully immerse yourself in the experience instead of living in sort of limbo (like most Italians do in London). Connect with your other colleagues, ignore the Italian facebook groups and join local meetups instead.
2 Don’t ever speak Italian
Force yourself to speak English at all times. Yes, even when your mum phones you.
Even if people don’t understand you or laugh at you. It’s all normal, don’t worry. You aren’t the first and you won’t be the last Italian struggling with English. Believe me – the more you speak, the better you’ll be doing so. At first, you might get the odd person asking you to repeat something, but that will help you build your confidence day by day. Without even you notice it, your English will come more natural day by day.
If you need a little mantra, remember that the Brits are the worst people with regards to speaking another language. 99.9% of them (and Americans in fact) only speak their native language.
3 Find the right place for YOU
Finding the right place to live is crucial if you want to feel at home and fall in love with London. You might have read or met people talking about a specific neighbourhood, but if they liked it or disliked it, it doesn’t mean you will too. You should really follow your instinct after reading these neighbourhood guides.
4 Understand the public transport system
5 Hunt for the best Italian pizzeria and restaurants
There in no secret to the fact that London has some of the best restaurants in the world, however there is a 100% chance that you'll fancy Italian food from time to time. So make sure to get tips and advice. In this case, do ask Italians. Don't take any advice from the Brits as their taste buds are not as sophisticated as ours. (kidding...sort of ?)
6 Hunt for the best Italian ingredients
As you will need to eat out from time to time, you’ll also feel like cooking something at home but with real Italian ingredients. This is a good list to start your London research.
You can also go to a large supermarket of one of the UK chains like Morrisons, Tesco, Asda, and Sainsbury’s. They normally feature aninternational section including Italian ingredients. Brixton Market, Broadway Market, and Borough Market also have Italian stalls selling fresh Italian produce. Mozzarella anyone? ?
7 Go home
Especially at the beginning, you will get homesick. It will be hard to live in a new city by yourself. If possible, book a few flights ahead so that you have something to look forward too. If you book in advance, they are also much cheaper!
8 Fully immerse and enjoy
In order to get the true experience of living in London (or any other country), you will have to go with the flow.
As hard as it might sound, this is the only way to fully immerse in the new culture and take everything it has to offer. Remember that your attitude to the unexpected is what really makes the difference. You can have the best or the worst London experience almost exclusively based on your mindset.
Finally, London isn’t that far from Italy, so going back it will only take a few hours. Do your best to meet as many locals and expats as possible, say yes more than you normally would. Soak it all up and go with the flow!
Read more about London:
- Interview Tips to Help with your Job Search in London
- Things to do in London: 10 Best Secret Places in London
- Expat Diaries: Lessons Learned in My First Year in London
- London's Secret Coffee Shops You Should Know
- Top 8 European Destinations for the Perfect Erasmus Experience
- How to Find a Job in London as a Foreigner