Image source: Creative Common/mozzercork
As an expat, when it comes to the world of dating, you are exotic. Whether you are French in the UK, British in the USA or American in Asia, you are all exotic to the local residents of your new home and exotic is usually good—so if you are single and looking to date when abroad, be sure to remember this confidence booster. That’s not to say that you are more attractive than the local residents or better at dating (plus language barriers may work against you) but in case you thought you never had any luck at dating before, remember that you have moved away to start a new life and dating is a great way to meet people.
The subsequent date could end up being what you are used to from back home or becoming a very complicated minefield depending on the country and the person you are out with.
And remember, Brazil is the destination country where most expats surveyed by Expat Explorer in 2013 found love. So, if you’ve yet to pick an expat destination, why not hit the beaches and take to the streets of Rio to see what the Brazilian dating scene has to offer?
In Japan, young people tend to live with their parents until they are married and so when dating, love and marriage may become a topic on the cards much sooner than what you would be used to back home. Also, if you are male—remember that a female normally buys and gives chocolates to a male on Valentine’s Day.
When given a fork and spoon to eat with in Thailand, don’t put the food in your mouth with the fork. That’s what the spoon is for.
Don’t be put off by the burping and slurping when out for dinner, it’s in fact a compliment to the chef and his or her wonderful culinary skills. Also, whatever you do, don’t stick your chopsticks standing up in the rice and leave them there—this symbolises death.
Image source: Creative Common/Eleazar
In Hong Kong, after dating for some time, don’t be surprised if the girl gives the guy her handbag to carry because that’s what good boyfriends do. You’ll often see men on trains, in shops and in bars holding their girlfriend’s handbag.
The French are of course known for their romance and yes it can be intense. The dating process with special regard to the ‘what ifs’ is much shorter. A Frenchman or woman may call you his or her girlfriend or boyfriend before the end of your first date. Plus, daily contact is essential. Expect a phone call if they have not seen you that day.
Countries in the Middle East are much more conservative and can have strict laws around men and woman who are not married. Please be aware of these laws before moving (consult your embassy if need be) to ensure that you do not get in trouble.
UK vs USA
The British are far more reserved than their North American counterparts. Dating in the USA is a way to get to know someone and figure out if you are compatible as a couple. Blind dates are popular in the USA and friends will set you up with someone they think will suit you. In the UK, people will only tend to date if they have already met the person (perhaps through a friend). Dating has increased momentum in the UK with the rise of internet dating and apps but again with internet dating sites, your profile must be rich in content to allow someone to get to know you before actually meeting you.