Smart Online Tools for Immigrants

Moving abroad is incredibly exciting, and seeing as you’ll most likely want to move somewhere that you like, it normally means that you get to improve your whole way of living and situate yourself in a place that feels more like home than even your actual home.

That’s all good and well though, but once you get out there you will still find that this is something of a challenge. Even the nicest location in the world is going to present challenges for immigrants who won’t be able to speak the language, who will miss their family and friends, and who will find themselves without the creature comforts that they are used to from home. Everything down to the taste of the chocolate can feel alien and strange and this can be disconcerting for even the bravest traveller.

But fear not – this is the digital age and you have access to the internet! That means a ton of useful online tools that can make moving to another country much easier and much more fun. Read on and we’ll look at how you can go about moving abroad and using the web to feel a lot more at home in your new country…

Music and Television

One of the things that you’ll often find you miss early on when moving to a new country is your own TV and radio. You’ll feel as though you’re out of the loop and you’ll have little idea of what’s going on back home, so by looking for online television and radio you can get back in touch with your local news and entertainment and also enjoy some company in your own language. Even if you can’t find a television channel that streams content online, you can turn to podcasts and Netflix (podcasts are also a great way to learn a foreign language!).


My Grandma moved from Germany to England for a while and didn’t entirely enjoy the experience. In particular, she found that it was frustrating not being able to get some of the foods that she liked from Germany – such as a delicious sausage spread.

The good news? Once we got her set up with a computer, she quickly found that she could order all the foods she missed online with no trouble. She was able to eat the food she was used to, and as such she quickly found herself enjoying England a lot more.

You can use the web in a similar way when you’re abroad to buy yourself sausages if you like, or you can just use it to buy books and other things you need – so find a website that delivers to where you are but sells the kinds of things you need.

Also useful is to shop online in your own country. This way you can remember yourself to your friends and family back home by surprising them with a delivery of flowers or a present. This is a great way to keep in touch even though you’re a long way away, and it will feel like even more of a surprise as a result.


Of course the web is incredibly useful for staying in touch with people back home as well as communicating with people who you need to get in touch with in that country. But don’t just stick to the obvious forms of communication – you can also communicate through social networking, through VoIP services like Vonage, or even through computer games on Xbox Live.


Perhaps the single most useful tool that any immigrant should get to grips with is Google. Google Search will save your life countless times when you’re living in another country whether you want to use it to look up the time difference, to calculate price differences and to find good places to eat.

Furthermore, you can also use Google as a very handy tool when you need to get advice on living abroad – whether that means getting help on finding accommodation, or whether it means looking for an immigration lawyer because you’re confused about the laws.

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Osho is Tech blogger. He contributes to the Blogging, Gadgets, Social Media and Tech News section on TecheHow.