You’ve nabbed a job or an internship (PAID WE HOPE!) but it means upping sticks and going to a new city. Alone. We spoke to Paul Fabretti, who has moved because of a job before (and currently works for Telefónica), for some top tips on coping when you’re moving…
Make sure it’s the right decision!
If you’ve been offered something in an area that’s renowned for your dream career then it’s probably a good idea to take it. But you’ve got to weigh up everything else, too. “There are clearly areas of the country with strong reputations for a certain type of industry. If it’s the dream job and you recognise that, strategically, it’s the right place for you to be then see if you can take that £18k job and find somewhere to live,” says Paul. Do your research, see how feasible it’s going to be to live there, and be prepared to make sacrifices for the greater good of your career – financially, that is. Not actual human sacrifices.
Attack social media
Don’t think you know anyone in Woking? You’d be surprised. Reach out to your Facebook friends, put out some tweets to check if your long lost friend hasn’t recently moved near there, then start joining and company Facebook groups. “Social media channels are a brilliant way to connect people around common interests, once you’ve friended a colleague, you’ll see friends recommended to you who work in the same place,” says Paul. “There is no excuse for going somewhere where you know nobody – within a few weeks, and a few tweets, you could have started some real friendships.
Make your new room look as ‘you’ as possible
Immediately. So when you come home those first few weeks, it doesn’t feel as strange and unfamiliar as the rest of the city. “Reorganise yourself in a way that fits your new life. Have all the creature comforts – TV, playstation, decor, it’s all about making it as comfortable and positive as you can,” advises Paul. “Life is made up of phases, and your old life is one phase, but this room signifies another phase.”
Scope out transport before you arrive
There’s nothing more alienating than not knowing how to get from A to B. For example, Manchester has a really confusing tram service if you’re not used to trams. And don’t get me started on the London Underground. “Even now when I go to London, it’s like an alien network for my family. How do you get an oyster card? Where do you get it from? How does the tube work?” Paul says. “Reach out to people with a knowledge of the area, and get some advice on the best ways to get around.” So much better than getting stranded on your first day.
Be prepared for little changes
Paul found, when he moved, that it’s the little things that’ll trip you up. Such as supermarket shopping. “Round in Manchester near where my family home is, there’s a Waitrose and a Sainsbury’s that’s just a part of my routine. Down here though, there’s an Asda so I’m always thinking ‘is that the same brand?’ and it can take ages,” he remembers. “You don’t know where the takeaways are! Everyone knows Dominos, but there no Dominos near me. There’s a Papa Johns. I dont know Papa Johns! I don’t know what to order!” Maybe it’s a good idea to have a scope on Google Maps before arriving so you know, when you’re too stressed out to cook, what you can order in. And also, the sort of places you can do your food shopping because nobody wants to be surprised by an Asda.
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