Building Home Abroad: A Family’s Expat Journey

Moving to a new country is a grand adventure, a mix of excitement, challenges, and the thrill of the unknown. In this blog post, we delve into the remarkable journey of a global family – Stefano, Chie, and their child – as they share their experiences of becoming expats, hopping continents from Italy, Japan, and New York, finally settling in the heart of Germany, Cologne. Their journey is a testament to the transformative power of embracing change and building a new home in foreign lands.

Embracing the Expat Life

The journey begins with Stefano, originally from Italy, and Chie, hailing from Japan, who met serendipitously in New York. Their international love story set the stage for a life filled with cultural fusion. As their careers took them from the bustling streets of New York to serene landscapes of Sweden, the family honed their skills in adapting to diverse environments.

yellow car running on the street between the building during daytime
photo of brown high-rise building
lighted city buildings near body of water

Cologne: A New Chapter Beckons

The family’s latest adventure brought them to Cologne, Germany, where Stefano secured an exciting position in the biotech sector. The decision to move to Cologne was driven by career opportunities and a fresh start in a vibrant European city. A crucial aspect of their transition was finding suitable accommodation, a challenge that Homelike, a platform specializing in midterm furnished rentals, provided a solution for.

Homelike: Making the Transition Smooth

Relocating to a new country is a logistical feat, especially when it comes to finding the right place to call home. Chie and Stefano mentioned in their interview how Homelike offered them a seamless solution for short-term accommodation upon their arrival in Cologne. The convenience of already furnished apartments, combined with the flexibility of short-term rentals, allowed them to ease into the new environment without the added stress of setting up a new household from scratch.

A Taste of Cologne's Warm Welcome

One of the family’s first observations upon moving to Cologne was the warm and friendly nature of the people. In a city renowned for its sense of community, they found themselves immersed in a culture where random conversations with strangers were not uncommon. The transition to life in Cologne was a pleasant surprise, with a sense of belonging manifesting much sooner than they anticipated.

Overcoming Challenges and Finding Harmony

As with any international move, challenges emerged. Navigating the education system and finding childcare proved to be hurdles in their journey. Chie mentioned in their interview that finding a kindergarten spot for their child was particularly difficult due to the lack of available spaces and the timing of their move. However, the sense of community in Cologne helped them overcome these obstacles, as they found support and guidance from locals and fellow expats alike.

A Comparison of Transitions

Their journey from New York to Sweden and eventually to Cologne revealed contrasting experiences. The move to Sweden was challenging due to the differences in systems and bureaucracy, while the transition to Germany felt smoother and more welcoming. This insight underscores the importance of being open to change and flexible enough to adapt to new surroundings.

red and white train in a train station
black and white car door

What Lies Ahead

When asked about their future plans, Stefano and Chie expressed contentment with their current situation in Cologne. The city’s amenities, efficient transportation network, and proximity to various destinations make it an ideal hub for their international adventures. While they haven’t ruled out the possibility of moving again, they are currently focused on building a life for themselves and their child in their newfound German home.

Conclusion: A Story of Adaptation and Growth

The expat journey of Stefano, Chie, and their child is an inspiring testament to the power of embracing change and building a life in a foreign land. From their diverse origins in Italy, Japan, and New York to their current chapter in Cologne, the family’s experiences highlight the importance of community, resilience, and an open-minded approach to new opportunities. Their story underscores how platforms like Homelike can play a pivotal role in making the transition smoother and more comfortable. As they continue to build their home abroad, their story serves as an inspiration to other families embarking on their own expat adventures.

To explore convenient and comfortable short-term furnished rentals for your expat journey, visit Homelike.

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