Battling culture shock is difficult, especially if you have moved somewhere on your own but there are many things you can do to make it easier. One of these simplest things to do is get into contact the ex-pat community in your area.

Other ex-pats will also be able to advice about things like opening a bank account, where to locate your favorite’s foods, interesting things to do around town and other organizations that may be of interest to you.

Most of all, we have all suffered through culture shock and will be able to give you tips on how to handle it. It is important however, not to rely completely on ex-pats for your socialization, since part of the reason you bothered to move in the first place was to learn about a new culture.

When you move to a new place, it is also important to be realistic with your expectations. In general, it takes about six months to get completely settled in a new place. Figuring out how things work, establishing a social network and even simple things like finding your favorite brand of dish soap or which kind of toilet paper is best, take a long time.

It is also important that you be active in adopting your new culture, as this will help you feel less like a foreigner. If it is common for most people to go to the market everyday, you should too. Not only will it help you understand the culture better, it will be a place to meet people from your neighborhood.

Moving to a Latin America can be quite overwhelming at times. You’ll laugh and cry like you never have before and meet some lovely people along the way.