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Expat Advice: Culture Shock in
Jul 19, 2016
Santa An Hill in Guayaquil, Ecuador
An expat living in Guayaquil has found that the people are friendlier than in the United States. He dislikes the high cost of cars and appliances -- and lack of food options.
What is the name of the city or town that you are reporting on?
Did you receive any cross-cultural training for your move abroad? If yes, was it before or after the move?
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Expats in Ecuador may get a free expat health insurance quote from our partner Allianz Care, a leader in international insurance for expatriates. Allianz's plans ensure that you have access to quality healthcare whenever you need it. Their flexible solutions allow you to tailor your cover to meet your needs and budget..
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 do not speak the language here. I have been learning the language, and am able to communicate in Spanish a little bit.
Were you worried or concerned about culture shock before you moved abroad?
How significant was the culture shock you experienced when you moved abroad?
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?
I feel that I am still going through the culture shock phase. I've been in the irritation to anger stage, and the cultural adjustment phase.
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.
Anger, depression, anxiety.
What are some things you appreciate most about the new culture?
People are friendlier than in US.
What are the most challenging aspects of the new culture?
The language. The ridiculously high cost of items such as autos, household items (i.e. blenders, juicers, gas grills, refrigerators, etc.). The lack of food options compared to the US.
Did you "commit" any embarrassing or humorous cultural blunders? If you did and you'd like to share them, please do tell!
Do you have any advice or thoughts about culture shock you would like to share?
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Expats in Guayaquil report a variety of opinions regarding what it's like to live there. It offers a very warm and humid climate for sun lovers, but others find the heat stifling. Similarly, crime is a major concern of some, while others find that it's perfectly acceptable with proper precautions.
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A newcomer to Ecuador offers an honest view of what it's like adjusting to life in Guayaquil. From finding it hard to understand people, because they speak too fast to feeling depressed and thinking about returning home, she is truly in the midst of culture shock.
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