Tips For Survival
I have put together a list of tips below which are my own view on what is important to do if you have decided to move to Norway. If you disagree with these, or have anything important to add to the list then feel free to contact me. Remember they are just my personal view of what I think you will need to do if you want to emigrate to Norway.
Learn The Language
1 – You MUST learn the language in order to survive, to get a good job, to enjoy social occasions and understand the environment around you. Everything relies on you understanding Norwegian. However, this does take time, but try and learn as much Norwegian as you can before you go, then you will pick it up easier as you live with the language all around you. Once you are over in Norway, you can take Norwegian lessons there.
Go For The Right Reasons
2 – Please don’t decide to move to Norway because you can just “claim state benefit”. Go there because you want to live in Norway and live life as a “Norwegian“. If you have chosen Norway because it “sounds nice” and all you know about the country is from promotional material then you might be making a mistake. Try and visit the country first, for a holiday to get a feel of the country. If you are making a rash decision to move there, it could be a disaster, so make sure you have spent a long time thinking about it, do your research and understand how it will be like living there.
Embrace The Norwegian Way
3 – Immerse yourself into the Norwegian culture and don’t compare it to yours, as otherwise you will see “faults” in something which is just a difference between the peoples. If you move to Norway and try and force your ways on people then you will fail and wont be accepted. You need to embrace the way the Norwegians live, their customs and culture and adapt to that yourself.
Give It Time
4 – They say that the first two months after moving to a new country will make you decide whether to stay there or not. It will take years before you feel truly comfortable. Give it time if you can. You will need time to learn the language, adapt to the climate, the culture, the food. Everything will be different to what you currently know and are used to, so you need to take things slow, as otherwise you could crack and will be booking a flight home.
5 – Experience as much as possible during your time there. Don’t just sit indoors watching tv as you never know when the experience might come to an end and then its over. There is so much to do in Norway, to experience and even if not all of my experiences were positive, they are all part of the adventure. Experiencing nature is a major part of living in Norway, so go on walks, trips to the mountains, Winter sports, travel North to see the Northern lights and Midnight sun, there is so much to see and do.
Emigrate During The Summer
6 – It’s best to move during the Summer months as moving during the Winter will be more difficult due to the climate. Also, the cold Winter months could affect your mood in a negative way. Moving during the Winter will still be possible, but hard because of the snow and cold weather and for that to be your first experience of the country could be a negative one.
Get A Job
7 – Make sure to find work, not only for monetary reasons but also to help make friends and learn more about the country, people and customs. Be prepared to do any work you are offered (within reason). Try and get a job before you move to Norway as then your new employer will help you find somewhere to live and help you with other aspects of emigrating to Norway.
Live In The Right Area
8 – Do your homework about the area you want to live in. Living in the wrong area could bring you down and drive you away sooner than you may have wanted. Just like any country there are rough areas to live in and if you have a picture in your mind of something different before you arrive there, you will be very dissapointed and this could affect your mood and desicion to stay. Also you need to live in an area which will accomodate your travel as if you don’t have a car you will need to live near to either a bus or train station in order to get around.
9 – Having a positive attitude towards the move and the country as a whole is extremely important. Be enthusiastic about this new change of lifestyle and experience to come. It is an adventure after all and should be seen as such and the things you will experience will stay with you for the rest of your life, both positive and of course some negative. If you arrive in Norway with a passion to learn the language and integrate into Norwegian society then that will drive your experience and be a great start.
Make It Work
10 – Give it 100% of your own effort and don’t rely on others to make it work for you as otherwise you will fail. However, try to have a plan B, if things don’t turn out like you had hoped. I didn’t have a plan B and when my experience failed I had to just pack everything in boxes and move back to the UK, as I didnt know what to do now I was alone. If you do your research before going and plan as much as possible then you will be fine and I will be envious of you!