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Expat Advice: Culture Shock in Tavua, Fiji

What is the name of the city or town that you are reporting on?

Tavua

Did you receive any cross-cultural training for your move abroad? If yes, was it before or after the move?

Before I moved here I visited numerous times to get used to the culture.

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If they speak another language in your new country, do you speak the language? If yes, did you learn the language before you moved or while abroad? If no, are you planning to learn the language?

I am learning it now.

Were you worried or concerned about culture shock before you moved abroad?

YEs especially when you are moving from a basically honest culture to a basically corrupt culture it is very hard.

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How significant was the culture shock you experienced when you moved abroad?

Huge, much harder than I thought.

Expats often talk about going through the "stages of culture shock." Examples include the honeymoon phase, the irritation-to-anger stage, the rejection of the culture stage, and the cultural adjustment phase. Do you feel like you went through these or any other stages as you settled into the new culture?

Definitely honeymoon, disbelief and rejection then acceptance.

What, if any, were some of the changes you noticed in yourself that might have been caused by culture shock? These might include things such as anger, depression, anxiety, increased eating or drinking, frustration, homesickness, etc.

Eating and wanting to drink too much.

What are some things you appreciate most about the new culture?

I just love the kids

What are the most challenging aspects of the new culture?

The dishonesty

Did you "commit" any embarrassing or humorous cultural blunders? If you did and you'd like to share them, please do tell!

Not really

Do you have any advice or thoughts about culture shock you would like to share?

Visit frequently if it is not too far away. And don't put any unrealistic expectations on yourself.

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Comments about this Report

jcaprani
Jan 2, 2014 02:47

It's true. Everyone visiting Fiji says " all the people are so nice". Actually, all the people are so friendly - it's hard to tell the difference, but it is fundamental... Believe half what you see, and nothing that you hear - but don't let that stop you having fun!

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