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Expat Exchange - 10 Things to Know Before Moving to Martinique
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10 Things to Know Before Moving to Martinique

By Betsy Burlingame

William Russell
William Russell

Summary: If you're planning a move to Martinique, here are 10 things expats living there wish they had known before moving to Martinique.

Are you considering a move to the beautiful island of Martinique? This French Caribbean island is a paradise for those who love the sun, sea, and a laid-back lifestyle. However, before you pack your bags, there are a few things you should know. Here are the top 10 things to know before moving to Martinique.

1. Understanding the French Influence in Martinique

Martinique is an overseas department of France, which means it's essentially a part of France in the Caribbean. This means that the official language is French, and the island follows French laws and customs. If you're moving from a non-French speaking country, it would be beneficial to learn some basic French phrases to help you navigate daily life. Additionally, the currency used is the Euro, so be prepared for that as well.

2. Embrace the Island's Rich Culture

Martinique has a rich and diverse culture that is a blend of French, African, and Indian influences. This is reflected in the island's music, dance, food, and festivals. The annual Carnival in February is a major cultural event that is not to be missed. It's a vibrant celebration of Martinican culture with parades, music, and dance.

3. The Climate in Martinique

Martinique enjoys a tropical climate with warm temperatures year-round. However, the island is also prone to hurricanes, with the hurricane season running from June to November. It's important to be prepared and have a plan in place in case of a hurricane. On the bright side, the constant warm weather makes it perfect for enjoying the island's beautiful beaches and outdoor activities.

4. The Cost of Living in Martinique

While Martinique is a beautiful place to live, it's important to note that the cost of living can be high. This is particularly true for housing and imported goods. However, local produce and seafood are relatively affordable. It's a good idea to budget carefully and consider the cost of living when planning your move.

5. Healthcare in Martinique

As an overseas department of France, Martinique has a high standard of healthcare. The island has several hospitals and clinics, and most doctors and medical staff speak English. However, it's important to note that healthcare is not free, and you will need to have health insurance.

6. The Importance of Respect for Nature

Martinique is home to a diverse range of flora and fauna, including many species that are unique to the island. The Martinicans have a deep respect for nature and there are strict laws in place to protect the environment. As a newcomer, it's important to respect these laws and the island's natural beauty.

7. The Delicious Martinican Cuisine

One of the joys of living in Martinique is the delicious local cuisine. Influenced by French, African, and Indian cuisines, Martinican food is a feast for the senses. Don't miss out on trying local dishes like accras (cod fritters), colombo (a curry-like dish), and the island's famous rum.

8. The Importance of Family and Community

In Martinique, family and community are very important. It's common for families to live close to each other and for communities to come together for celebrations and events. As a newcomer, being open to making connections and becoming part of the community can greatly enhance your experience of living in Martinique.

9. The Slow Pace of Life

Life in Martinique moves at a slower pace than in many other countries. This is part of the island's charm, but it can also be a challenge for newcomers. It's important to be patient and to adapt to the island's laid-back lifestyle.

10. The Beauty of the Island

Last but not least, one of the best things about living in Martinique is the island's stunning natural beauty. From the lush rainforests to the pristine beaches, there's always something beautiful to see. Whether you're a nature lover, a beach bum, or an adventure seeker, you'll find plenty to love about Martinique.

Moving to a new country is always a big step, but with these tips in mind, you'll be well-prepared for your move to Martinique. Bon voyage!

About the Author

Betsy Burlingame Betsy Burlingame is the Founder and President of Expat Exchange and is one of the Founders of Digital Nomad Exchange. She launched Expat Exchange in 1997 as her Master's thesis project at NYU. Prior to Expat Exchange, Betsy worked at AT&T in International and Mass Market Marketing. She graduated from Ohio Wesleyan University with a BA in International Business and German.

Some of Betsy's articles include 12 Best Places to Live in Portugal, 7 Best Places to Live in Panama and 12 Things to Know Before Moving to the Dominican Republic. Betsy loves to travel and spend time with her family. Connect with Betsy on LinkedIn.


William Russell
William Russell

William Russell
William Russell

SJB Global
SJB Global

SJB Global is a top-rated financial advisory firm specializing in expat financial advice worldwide, offering retirement planning & tax-efficient solutions with a regressive fee model.
Learn More

SJB GlobalSJB Global

SJB Global is a top-rated financial advisory firm specializing in expat financial advice worldwide, offering retirement planning & tax-efficient solutions with a regressive fee model.
Learn More

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William Russell
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