The Expat Cast
Choosing to Move Back with Aurora

Choosing to Move Back with Aurora

April 18, 2019

Season 2, Episode 13. Expats don't always stay expats forever. But what goes into the choice to leave international life behind and return to one's home country? We sit down with Aurora, a Mexican-American living in Germany, to hear what made her decide to move back to the States.

Aurora will move back to the US this summer, but where exactly will she move? Cue: A Very Well Built Excel Spreadsheet! Aurora and her husband, Duncan (our guest in Season 1 for Voting Rights Abroad) systematically identified places they'd liked to live and their top criteria for what matters to them most about a location. Then, they individually ranked their choices, pulled in some publicly available data, and got a data-driven indicator of what city or cities work best for them.

Plus, we chat about why weird subway encounters & Game of Thrones are worth uprooting your life and relocating.

 

DUNCAN & AURORA'S DECISION MAKING SPREADSHEET

You can view the spreadsheet Aurora mentions in the episode here, as a view-only Google Spreadsheet. Feel free to copy/paste the spreadsheet into your own document to put in your own potential locations and criteria!

 

FOLLOW

Instagram @theexpatcast 

Facebook @theexpatcast 

Twitter @theexpatcast 

Pinterest @theexpatcast 

 

SUBSCRIBE

Apple Podcasts

Spotify

Stitcher

Podbean

Podknife

 

COMMUNICATE

Got questions, comments, topic ideas, funny anecdotes? Email us at theexpatcast@gmail.com.

Here & There, Then & Now with Nic

Here & There, Then & Now with Nic

April 11, 2019

Season 2, Episode 12. When Nic moved to Germany from England to be with his girlfriend, he committed himself mentally to the move. It would have taken something really huge and dramatic to make him consider moving back. But how does he manage keeping in touch with family, especially negotiating visits? And how does he still show up for his partner's family?

We use the topic of family as a launching point for a fun conversation about British Christmas, cultural judgement, and way more.

 

FIND NIC

Twitter @40PercentGerman

Blog 40% German

 

FIND VIRTUAL EXPATS

Check out The Virtual Expats, a great podcast run by Steph Fuccio, a fellow American podcasting expat, wherever you get your podcasts.

 

FOLLOW

Instagram @theexpatcast 

Facebook @theexpatcast 

Twitter @theexpatcast 

Pinterest @theexpatcast 

 

SUBSCRIBE

Apple Podcasts

Spotify

Stitcher

Podbean

Podknife

 

COMMUNICATE

Got questions, comments, topic ideas, funny anecdotes? Email us at theexpatcast@gmail.com.

Unemployed in Germany with Jeremy

Unemployed in Germany with Jeremy

April 4, 2019

Season 2, Episode 11. We're swapping stories about unemployment, everyone's favorite topic to discuss openly and honestly! Just kidding; of course, being unemployed is uncomfortable, stressful, and disorienting, no matter when or where it happens. However, even if it's not always the easiest thing to talk about, it's important to discuss.

In this episode, we learn what it's been like for our guest, Jeremy, to be unemployed in Germany. Jeremy moved here for a two- to three-year work contract that recently ended. He tells us how he's been navigating the immigration and unemployment offices, plus, we discuss how the social support he's been given in Germany has altered his approach to the job hunt in general.

 

FOLLOW

Instagram @theexpatcast 

Facebook @theexpatcast 

Twitter @theexpatcast 

Pinterest @theexpatcast 

 

SUBSCRIBE

Apple Podcasts

Spotify

Stitcher

Podbean

Podknife

 

COMMUNICATE

Got questions, comments, topic ideas, funny anecdotes? Email us at theexpatcast@gmail.com.

Clinging to Your Culture with Jenny

Clinging to Your Culture with Jenny

March 28, 2019

Season 2, Episode 10. When you moved abroad, did you find yourself suddenly caring an awful lot about dumb things from your home culture you never bothered with before? Likkkeeeee, I don't know, say, ABC's The Bachelor? 

In fact, getting way too into the latest season of The Bachelor is what inspired this week's episode. It got us thinking about all the weird things we find ourselves interested in, especially those things we previously wanted nothing to do with, like football, touristy clothing, and chain restaurants. 

For the full list of the culture we're clinging on to as well as our armchair psychologist ideas on why we feel this way, dive on into this week's episode.

 

FOLLOW

Instagram @theexpatcast 

Facebook @theexpatcast 

Twitter @theexpatcast 

Pinterest @theexpatcast 

 

SUBSCRIBE

Apple Podcasts

Spotify

Stitcher

Podbean

Podknife

 

COMMUNICATE

Got questions, comments, topic ideas, funny anecdotes? Email us at theexpatcast@gmail.com.

Being Bi-Cultural with Gordon

Being Bi-Cultural with Gordon

March 21, 2019

Season 2, Episode 9. You've heard his name in the thank yous every week. You've heard him mentioned in stories your host, Nicole, shares about her life. You've heard him as a co-host. But now he's a guest!

This week, we get to know more about Gordon, Nicole's partner in life and in podcasting. He's the one that inspired her to move to Germany and thus a huge part in the creation of this podcast, but what's his deal?

Gordon is half-German, half-American and grew up moving back and forth between both countries. He never stayed anywhere longer than 2 years since he was a little kid. Now, as an adult who is putting down roots of his own, Gordon shares with us how his bi-cultural identity as well has his frequent moving shaped him as a person. He tells us the good, the bad, and the ugly about being that weird German kid whenever he was in America and being that weird American kid whenever he was in Germany.

Note: In the introduction, Nicole mentions "the concept of the third-world kid." She meant to say "third culture kid." More information about what third culture kid means can be found on Wikipedia.

Note about the note: This note was written by a librarian. For purposes like this, Wikipedia gets this librarian's stamp of approval. ;)

 

FOLLOW

Instagram @theexpatcast 

Facebook @theexpatcast 

Twitter @theexpatcast 

Pinterest @theexpatcast 

 

SUBSCRIBE

Apple Podcasts

Spotify

Stitcher

Podbean

Podknife

 

COMMUNICATE

Got questions, comments, topic ideas, funny anecdotes? Email us at theexpatcast@gmail.com.

The Beauty of Community with Berly

The Beauty of Community with Berly

March 14, 2019

Season 2, Episode 8. Today's guest turned an existential crisis in Boston into a thriving non-profit in Nicaragua. How the heck did that happen? Welcome to the fascinating life of Berly. Now living in Freiburg, Germany while she completes her Masters degree in Global Studies, Berly has traveled the globe and lived in a variety of countries.

Through her personal experience as well as her experience in her non-profit, Berly has learned that the most important thing is community. It was only after being inspired by people she'd met that Berly considered traveling the world, and it was thanks to a group of encouraging, like-minded friends that Berly took the leap & started her non-profit, Women's Worth Inc - which hosts soft and hard skill seminars for women in the informal economy in Nicaragua, which, in turn, has inspired a strong community among the women involved in the Women's Worth trainings and programs.

As her story beautifully exemplifies, community can become circular in nature, and it sometimes takes a single person's example to start a wonderful cycle of giving and receiving help and support.

 

FIND BERLY & WOMEN'S WORTH, INC.

Women's Worth, Inc.'s website

Facebook @womensworthinc

Instagram @womensworthinc

YouTube @womensworthinc

Twitter @womensworthinc

 

FOLLOW

Instagram @theexpatcast 

Facebook @theexpatcast 

Twitter @theexpatcast 

Pinterest @theexpatcast 

 

SUBSCRIBE

Apple Podcasts

Spotify

Stitcher

Podbean

Podknife

 

COMMUNICATE

Got questions, comments, topic ideas, funny anecdotes? Email us at theexpatcast@gmail.com.

Affording Iceland with Alex

Affording Iceland with Alex

March 7, 2019

Season 2, Episode 7. Iceland skyrocketed to the top of the Must Visit list of many eager travelers over the last 5 years, but what's it like to actually live there? We chat with American expat Alex Illes about how she ended up with Iceland and what it's taken to make life there work.

As a devoted cat lover, Alex's top priority with an international move was making sure she could bring her two cats. That eliminated some countries entirely and created a hefty expense that she and her husband were not anticipating. Now, half a year into living on a notoriously expensive island, Alex has some great tips for how to engage in the best thing that Iceland has to offer - without breaking the bank.

 

FIND ALEX

Instagram @alex.renee.is.away

 

FOLLOW

Instagram @theexpatcast 

Facebook @theexpatcast 

Twitter @theexpatcast 

Pinterest @theexpatcast 

 

SUBSCRIBE

Apple Podcasts

Spotify

Stitcher

Podbean

Podknife

 

COMMUNICATE

Got questions, comments, topic ideas, funny anecdotes? Email us at theexpatcast@gmail.com.

Relationships with Loved Ones Back Home with Summer

Relationships with Loved Ones Back Home with Summer

February 28, 2019

Season 2, Episode 6. When one moves abroad, a lot gets left behind. Most importantly: people. Managing relationships with loved ones back home can be one of the hardest parts of the expat life. So today, two expats with totally different experiences sit down to chat about how they’ve managed.

Nicole grew up with strong roots, surrounded by friends and family that continue to be relevant to her life today. Summer, on the other hand, doesn’t have a strong “home base,” and her friends and family are spread out from South Carolina to Alaska.

When an ocean and a few thousand miles get thrown into both of those situations, what happens? How does one manage keeping in touch? Who visits whom? And how often? And where? Nicole & Summer exchange their perspectives on the pros and cons of their familial and friendship relationships throughout their time as Americans abroad.

 

FIND SUMMER

Blog at Eat Something Go Somewhere

Twitter @Summer Outside

Instagram @Summer Outside

 

FOLLOW

Instagram @theexpatcast 

Facebook @theexpatcast 

Twitter @theexpatcast 

Pinterest @theexpatcast 

 

SUBSCRIBE

Apple Podcasts

Spotify

Stitcher

Podbean

Podknife

 

COMMUNICATE

Got questions, comments, topic ideas, funny anecdotes? Email us at theexpatcast@gmail.com.

Study Abroad BFFs with Chad & Jared from Untranslatable Podcast

Study Abroad BFFs with Chad & Jared from Untranslatable Podcast

February 21, 2019

Season 2, Episode 5. By coincidence, Chad and Jared signed up for the same college study abroad program in Vienna, Austria. Although they knew each other from around campus back in Michigan, it wasn't until they were tossed together into an unfamiliar place that they became close friends.

Now, 7 years later, Chad lives in the Czech Republic and Jared lives in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and they keep their long-distance friendship alive as co-hosts of the Untranslatable Podcast, where they discuss an array of fascinating linguistic topics.

The two come onto The Expat Cast to chat about how their experience in Austria drew them together, what they've done to maintain their German language skills, and why they started their podcast.

 

FIND CHAD & JARED

Untranslatable Podcast

Instagram @UntranslatablePodcast

Twitter @Untranslatable1

 

FOLLOW

Instagram @theexpatcast 

Facebook @theexpatcast 

Twitter @theexpatcast 

Pinterest @theexpatcast 

 

SUBSCRIBE

Apple Podcasts

Spotify

Stitcher

Podbean

Podknife

 

COMMUNICATE

Got questions, comments, topic ideas, funny anecdotes? Email us at theexpatcast@gmail.com.

Long-Distance Relationships with Meg

Long-Distance Relationships with Meg

February 14, 2019

Season 2, Episode 4. It's Valentine's Day! We're celebrating with an episode about long-distance love. Host Nicole dated her boyfriend Gordon for 2 years, while she lived in Chicago and he lived in southern Germany. Guest Meg dated her boyfriend Lucas for 3.5 years, while she lived in Philadelphia and he lived in Zurich.

The gals are old friends from theater camp who bonded over their long-distance relationships with German men, thus prompting a long-distance friendship. Now, both women are living two hours apart with their partners. Reunited after 4 years, the two dish over how they survived long distance, why they stuck it out, and what benefits they found long distance had to offer.

Any Newsies or Lady Gaga fans out there? Check out the mash-up video Nicole and Meg made nearly 10 years ago, that randomly went viral.

 

FOLLOW

Instagram @theexpatcast 

Facebook @theexpatcast 

Twitter @theexpatcast 

Pinterest @theexpatcast 

 

SUBSCRIBE

Apple Podcasts

Spotify

Stitcher

Podbean

Podknife

 

COMMUNICATE

Got questions, comments, topic ideas, funny anecdotes? Email us at theexpatcast@gmail.com.

Book Worms International with Stephanie Fuccio

Book Worms International with Stephanie Fuccio

February 7, 2019

Season 2, Episode 3. Your host Nicole is, as Leslie Knope so eloquently put it, a "punk ass book jockey" by trade, aka a librarian. Now having experienced librarianship in a handful of libraries across America and Germany, she's got a unique perspective on how different communities' reading habits look. Plus, she's a huge book worm herself! (Duh, you get rejected from library school if you aren't) (Just kidding) (But am I?) So it was great fun to have fellow expat book worm Stephanie Fuccio on the podcast to geek out over reading.

The discussion explores our journey as readers and as expats, and we try to figure out how and why our reading habits have changed over time, location, and financial status.  

 

FIND STEPHANIE

All of her projects are gathered on her website

Her podcasts, which are all available wherever you get your podcasts, are called:

Changing Scripts

Expat Rewind

The Virtual Expat

 

FOLLOW

Instagram @theexpatcast 

Facebook @theexpatcast 

Twitter @theexpatcast 

Pinterest @theexpatcast 

 

SUBSCRIBE

Apple Podcasts

Spotify

Stitcher

Podbean

Podknife

 

COMMUNICATE

Got questions, comments, topic ideas, funny anecdotes? Email us at theexpatcast@gmail.com.

Extroverted Entrepreneurial American Expat

Extroverted Entrepreneurial American Expat

January 31, 2019

Season 2, Episode 2. Does your identity as an introvert or an extrovert impact your experience as an expat? Can America be understood as a more extroverted culture and Germany a more introverted one? And if so, what does that mean for foreigners?

This episode, we sit down with Joe, a fellow American in Germany, to discuss how his extroverted, outgoing friendliness has impacted his long-term happiness in Germany. Now in his seventh year living in Germany, Joe is slowly started to experience frustration when trying to interact with Germans, especially strangers in casual social situation.

In America, it's hard to run a simple errand without having smiling small talk with strangers. In Germany, it's rare to find a single interaction like that throughout an entire week. We dive into questioning what that says about the people, the culture, and ourselves.

 

FOLLOW

Instagram @theexpatcast 

Facebook @theexpatcast 

Twitter @theexpatcast 

Pinterest @theexpatcast 

 

SUBSCRIBE

Apple Podcasts

Spotify

Stitcher

Podbean

Podknife

 

COMMUNICATE

Got questions, comments, topic ideas, funny anecdotes? Email us at theexpatcast@gmail.com.

 

Learning German with Jenny

Learning German with Jenny

January 24, 2019

Season 2, Episode 1. It's 2019! Is one of your goals for the new year to learn German? Super, then buckle up and brace yourself for some German-learning resources, tips, & venting. Of course, to learn German, or any language, a course is a great idea. But if you can't take a class due to money, access, or whatever, no fear. Our discussion focuses on free methods that are available to everyone.

We explain why Tandem partnerships are so effective, advocate for labeling everything in your room/apartment/home/office/life auf Deutsch, vent about akkusative and dativ, and swap our favorite German-language TV shows, podcasts, books, and more.

Reach out to The Expat Cast on social media or via email to share your German learning tips as well as your favorite German-language content!

 

MENTIONED IN THE EPISODE

Online:

Tandem.net for online language exchange

Mango Languages (Americans: check if your local library back home has a subscription to this service! Research this on the library's website.)

DuoLingo

Babbel

Deutsche Welle's Deutsch Lernen

Goethe Institut's Free German Practice

 

Books:

Harry Potter und der Stein der Weisen (featuring the amazing new 20th anniversary edition cover!)

Lustiges Taschenbuch

Jim Knopf

Deutsch Perfekt magazine

Der Spiegel, a very beloved German news magazine

 

Podcasts:

Deutsch - Warum Nicht?

Langsam gesprochene Nachrichten 

Slow German

Coffee Break German 

 

TV Shows:

Türkisch für Anfänger 

 

Ku'damm 56

Babylon Berlin

Dark

Tatort

Der Tatort Reiniger

Stormberg

Pastewka

ZDF's website (If you're in Germany, you already pay for this! Part of your fee covers an online streaming service & live TV via the web.)

German with Jenny on YouTube

 

FOLLOW

Instagram @theexpatcast 

Facebook @theexpatcast 

Twitter @theexpatcast 

Pinterest @theexpatcast 

 

SUBSCRIBE

Apple Podcasts

Spotify

Stitcher

Podbean

Podknife

 

COMMUNICATE

Got questions, comments, topic ideas, funny anecdotes? Email us at theexpatcast@gmail.com.

Season Two - Coming Your Way Starting January 24, 2019!

Season Two - Coming Your Way Starting January 24, 2019!

January 17, 2019

We're BAAAAACK.

Almost.

Starting in one week, on January 25, The Expat Cast will be back in your feeds every Thursday. We'll be bringing you new interviews with expats all over the globe, with a special focus on expats in or from Germany and the German-speaking world. You can look forward to more laughs, more resources, more commiseration, and more verbal eye rolling at whatever cultural difference I find annoying that day.

Prost to Season 2!

 

FOLLOW

Instagram @theexpatcast 

Facebook @theexpatcast 

Twitter @theexpatcast 

Pinterest @theexpatcast 

 

SUBSCRIBE

Apple Podcasts

Spotify

Stitcher

Podbean

Podknife

 

COMMUNICATE

Got questions, comments, topic ideas, funny anecdotes? Email us at theexpatcast@gmail.com.

From Army to Expat with Kris

From Army to Expat with Kris

December 20, 2018

Season 1, Episode 25. "The things that I'm worried about now are more future tense."

Floridian Kris enrolled in the US Army in part because he was eager to travel, and he was happy to find himself stationed in Germany between missions. After two years of getting to know the German culture, Kris decided to learn the language, too, and shortly after his time in the military ended, Kris decided to call Germany his home forever. He shares with us how he came to that decision and what it is about Germany that he loves so much.

Along the way, Kris traveled to Australia and Thailand, where he learned from some digital nomad YouTube experts how best to create a successful YouTube channel. He must have learned from the right people, because within a year, Kris' channel, Soldier of Life, has 12,000 subscribers and an active fan base of Americans and Germans alike. It was an honor to have him on the show & a perfect episode to close out our first season and the wild year that was 2018.

 

FIND KRIS

Check out his YouTube for videos about being a soldier, learning German, being Black in Germany, and more at Soldier of Life

Kris' freshly-launched website

Instagram @solakirus

Twitter @solakirus

 

FOLLOW

Instagram @theexpatcast 

Facebook @theexpatcast 

Twitter @theexpatcast 

Pinterest @theexpatcast 

 

SUBSCRIBE

Apple Podcasts

Spotify

Stitcher

Podbean

Podknife

 

COMMUNICATE

Got questions, comments, topic ideas, funny anecdotes? Email us at theexpatcast@gmail.com.

The Broke Expat with Jenny

The Broke Expat with Jenny

December 13, 2018

Season 1, Episode 24. Not all expats move abroad with the support of a company or solid financial backing. Many move with little savings, which tend to get spent quickly with moving and immigration expenses. Jenny and Nicole are two of the latter; both moved to Germany with some savings and low income expectations, but both were able to create lives they love within monetary confines.

How do they do it? How do they make it work as an expat on a budget?

They share their lists of tips, tricks, and life hacks to make life within a budget feel not so constrained. One such tip? Trash picking! Yup, you read that right. Jenny explains how she was able to find a whole wardrobe, many times over, as well as great furniture and decor - all from the free things left out on the street. Check out The Expat Cast on social media to see some example outfits for every occasion.

 

FOLLOW

Instagram @theexpatcast 

Facebook @theexpatcast 

Twitter @theexpatcast 

Pinterest @theexpatcast 

 

SUBSCRIBE

Apple Podcasts

Spotify

Stitcher

Podbean

Podknife

 

COMMUNICATE

Got questions, comments, topic ideas, funny anecdotes? Email us at theexpatcast@gmail.com.

A Plethora of Resources for Living in Germany with James

A Plethora of Resources for Living in Germany with James

December 6, 2018

Season 1, Episode 23. When host Nicole was preparing to move to Germany, one of the websites she frequented was Live Work Germany. It seems like they've got a resource guide for every bump in the road of moving to Germany, from registering your address to navigating a foreign qualification recognition process - all up-to-date, all in English. As a librarian who loves a good resource, Nicole has long been a huge fan. So it was an honor to sit down with the man behind it all, James!

James moved to Germany from England 12 years ago for a job after studying the language in university. He didn't expect to find a new home to the extent that he did. Lucky for us all, his career evolution led him to launch a website and blog to help other expats and want-to-be expats figure out the practicalities of moving to Germany. He also chats with us about his new service, where users can send in their German correspondence and get, in English, a short run-down of what they need to do.

 

LIVE WORK GERMANY

Check out all of James' incredibly helpful resources at Live Work Germany

Sign up for James' new German Correspondence service

 

WEAREXPATS TWITTER

Nicole will be tweeting @wearexpats from December 10-17.

 

FOLLOW

Instagram @theexpatcast 

Facebook @theexpatcast 

Twitter @theexpatcast 

Pinterest @theexpatcast 

 

SUBSCRIBE

Apple Podcasts

Stitcher

Podbean

Podknife

 

COMMUNICATE

Got questions, comments, topic ideas, funny anecdotes? Email us at theexpatcast@gmail.com.

 
 
Being an Asian Woman in Germany with April

Being an Asian Woman in Germany with April

November 29, 2018

Season 1, Episode 22. What is it like to be an Asian woman in Germany? This week, we hear one woman's perspective. April is from China, and she's lived in Canada, Austria, the United States, and now Germany. Through her time in North America, Europe, and Asia, April has been able to compare people's reactions to her across cultures. 

We discuss if/when it's acceptable to ask someone about their home country's politics, how to differentiate between a different cultural approach to getting to know someone and an offensive affront, and what to do when confronted by an act of racism or a micro-aggression. In our conversation, we share our own experiences, and we do not intend to speak for any group of people.

 

FIND APRIL

April, in addition to being an awesome person, is a talented photographer. You can find her on Instagram @zoethefroggy

 

FOLLOW

Instagram @theexpatcast 

Facebook @theexpatcast 

Twitter @theexpatcast 

Pinterest @theexpatcast 

 

SUBSCRIBE

Apple Podcasts

Stitcher

Podbean

Podknife

 

COMMUNICATE

Got questions, comments, topic ideas, funny anecdotes? Email us at theexpatcast@gmail.com.

Expat Partners with Katharina

Expat Partners with Katharina

November 22, 2018

Season 1, Episode 21. What do you call someone who moves to a new country because the person they're in a relationship with got a job offer abroad? A trailing spouse? Bitte nicht! They're an expat partner.

This nuance is vitally important, says our guest, Katharina, of the Share the Love website and blog. When Katharina agreed to move from Munich to Chicago for her husband's job, she was excited to continue her thriving career in a new country. She was shocked and devastated to realize that getting a job wasn't that easy. Worse still: she was hardly alone. Studies showed that many expats move for their partner's job and end up stripped of their careers. Instead of succumbing to sadness about it, Katharina stood up, shook off the dirt, and decided that she would find a way to not only build the career she wanted but also to help other expat partners do so. 

She interviewed dozens of expat partners, read the research on the topic, and evaluated the statistic. She launched her website and blog to share what she found, and she became a life coach so that she could personally mentor others to regain their confidence in their new life abroad.

 

FIND KATHARINA

Check her out on Instagram to drool over her amazing photography of Chicago and her North American travels.

Visit her website to read her blog posts on expat partnership.

Read her Expat Partner Career Workbook for data, studies, and suggestions on how to make the most of your expat partner life.

 

FOLLOW

Instagram @theexpatcast 

Facebook @theexpatcast 

Twitter @theexpatcast 

Pinterest @theexpatcast 

 

SUBSCRIBE

Apple Podcasts

Stitcher

Podbean

Podknife

 

COMMUNICATE

Got questions, comments, topic ideas, funny anecdotes? Email us at theexpatcast@gmail.com.

Germany, America, & German-American Centers with Friederike

Germany, America, & German-American Centers with Friederike

November 15, 2018

Season 1, Episode 20. It should be no surprise that our conversation with Friederike Schulte, the director of a German-American cultural institution, had us ping-ponging across the Atlantic. Pennsylvania Quakers! Stuttgart! Silicon Valley! Berlin in the '40s! The Midwest Goodbye! The trans-Atlantic dialogue doesn't hold back on geography. We chat over-assimilation, American heroism, and "that whole hanging out concept." (I'm still chuckling about that.) Plus, Friederike tells us what a German-American cultural center actually does, why these places exist, and where you can find them around Germany.

Traveling to Stuttgart anytime soon? Stay tuned until the very end! This week's Zag Zag Zags include some unique travel tips for visitors to the Schwäbisch city.

 

GERMAN-AMERICAN CENTERS (in the order they were mentioned in the episode)

Carl-Schurz-Haus in Freiburg

Amerika Zentrum in Hamburg

American Space in Leipzig

Amerika Haus Nordrhein-Westfalen in Köln

Deutsch-Amerikanisches Institut Saarland in Saarbrücken

Deutsch-Amerikanisches Institut in Nürnberg 

Amerika Haus in München

Deutsch-Amerikanisches Institut in Heidelberg

Deutsch-Amerikanisches Institut in Tübingen

Deutsch-Amerikanisches Zentrum/James-F.-Byrnes-Institut in Stuttgart

Atlantische Akademie Rheinland-Pfalz in Kaiserslautern  

Kennedy Infozentrum/Amerika-Gesellschaft Schleswig-Holstein in Kiel

 

STUTTGART TIPS

Visit Stuttgart's Public Library

Go get a Bretzl at Weible

Check out the bar Imme

Spend hours in The World's Largest Pig Museum

 

FOLLOW

Instagram @theexpatcast 

Facebook @theexpatcast 

Twitter @theexpatcast 

Pinterest @theexpatcast 

 

SUBSCRIBE

Apple Podcasts

Stitcher

Podbean

Podknife

 

COMMUNICATE

Got questions, comments, topic ideas, funny anecdotes? Email us at theexpatcast@gmail.com.

Weltschmerz & Culture Shock with Tanya

Weltschmerz & Culture Shock with Tanya

November 8, 2018

Season 1, Episode 19. "It can be tricky to stand in your power."

Have you ever felt completely fatigued, your energy fully spent, not because of anything in your personal life but rather because of the world at large? Welcome to the feeling of Weltschmerz, one of those wonderfully untranslatable German words, which combines the words Welt, or world, with schmerz, or pain, to create: worldpain.

Many of us, expat or not, have felt this over the last couple of years, and in honor of recent violent attacks in America & the US Midterm Election 2018, The Expat Cast sits down with Tanya Dantus, fellow expat and therapist. We chat about how current events effect us as expats, then dive into learning how turning to psychotherapy can be hugely helpful in dealing with tough situations, political or otherwise. As we head into the holiday season, may this episode's resources and ideas help you prepare for potentially complicated interactions, whether you're traveling home or staying abroad!

 

TANYA'S TIPS

Tip #1:
Don't be afraid to SHOP around for your THERAPIST!
 
A therapist is one of the most intimate professionals one can have: treating your soul, mind, and emotions is not something you want to do with someone you don't feel safe & comfortable with. 
 
The insurance policy in Germany allows you to go check out a couple of therapists for a first session (sometimes even a couple) before deciding on one. Plus, many therapists who don't take insurance also offer a complimentary session. Be sure to take advantage of this & see if it's the right fit both ways. 
 
Tip #2:
Each of the states in Germany have a Kassenärztliche Vereinigung, where the psychotherapists who have licensure are registered (there are other therapists who are non-licensed, and can be good, too, and they won't show up on this registry and you have to really look to what training they have to see their qualifications).
 
Each state's website has a "Arztsuche" function with which you can search for a psychotherapist who speaks English (or another language for that matter) in your city. I found this to be super helpful. The one for Baden-Württemberg is: https://www.arztsuche-bw.de 
 
Google the one for your state and make sure you do the extended/advanced search function to be able to add in preferred language. 
 
Tip #3
There are different kinds of psychological counselors in Germany: Heilpraktiker(in) für Psychotherapie & Approbierte Psychologische Psychotherapeut(in), and coaches.
 
The breakdown in Germany: one can study Psychology & not be a psychotherapist. To become an official psychotherapist, after studying a Masters in Psychology, one must do an Ausbildung (training) in Psychotherapy, with practice hours. It's about 3 more years, with a final test at the end. In California this is different, because the training is built into the Master's program for Counseling Psychology as well as pieces of the practicum or practice hours.
 
As someone with education from outside Germany in Psychotherapy, I have found it extremely difficult to get the equivalency & Approbation, but I am well underway now after 3 years of figuring out how/what to do. I have spoken to numerous other foreign-trained professionals who have always required a lawyer to have a successful outcome. Thus, I don't feel one needs to always disqualify someone for not having full Approbation, especially if they are from outside Germany. Ask. It is very possible they have full licensure in their "home country" and just have not gotten it here yet. I find this worthy to mention, especially to the expat community. 

I have had to get my Heilpraktikerin licensure which is sort of like a natural healer in psychotherapy license, which is a strange figure in German law, but that does allow one to practice Psychotherapy. You will find many of these. There are 2 kinds: ones that practice bodily practices like acupuncture & massage  and another that does psychotherapy. 
 
There is still one more figure worth mentioning and that is coaching. My favorite couples counselor in Freiburg is a coach. I practice coaching alongside my psychotherapy practice. While I was waiting to get the permit to practice psychotherapy, I had to call myself a "coach" to see people. You can find well-trained, amazing coaches, & then you can also find terrible ones just out to make a quick buck. One must be discerning, but the figure of "coach" is one that is becoming increasingly common because it is not regulated per state, that is, I can practice coaching in Italy, USA, Germany and not worry whether I have the "license" from that state. Again - that can be super bad, or amazing for someone who has a formation and just wants to travel. Get to know the person, see what their qualifications are. They may have a MFT licensure AND be a coach, too. US State laws, for example, do not allow a MFT from California to practice via Skype with someone living in another state. However, "coaching" is allowed. It allows for flexibility. Check out which is the best fit for you and keep an open yet discerning mind! :)  

 

FIND TANYA

Her Website

Instagram @TanyaDantus

Facebook @TanyaDantus

 

FOLLOW

Instagram @theexpatcast 

Facebook @theexpatcast 

Twitter @theexpatcast 

Pinterest @theexpatcast 

 

SUBSCRIBE

Apple Podcasts

Stitcher

Podbean

Podknife

 

COMMUNICATE

Got questions, comments, topic ideas, funny anecdotes? Email us at theexpatcast@gmail.com.

Culture Shock: USA v. Germany with Christin

Culture Shock: USA v. Germany with Christin

November 1, 2018

Season 1, Episode 18. Christin decided to take a break from her life in Germany to do a study abroad year in Charleston, South Carolina, in the hopes of improving her English. Little did she know, she'd meet the love of her life on her first day of classes, launching a whirlwind couple of years, including an engagement, a long-distance relationship, a wedding, and a permanent move to America. Now, she's settled into her life in US and joins The Expat Cast host Nicole to swap impressions about her new home. The two share which aspects of daily life give them culture shock, from ice cubes to air conditioning to banking to garbage to cars.

 

Leave a review for The Expat Cast on your podcast app of choice! We'd love it if you could take a moment to give us some stars (like, I don't know, maybe five??) and some feedback, so we can help reach more listeners like you & build our expat community even further.

 

FIND CHRISTIN

Christin blogs at This German American Life

You can follow her on Instagram @ThisGermanAmericanLife

 

FOLLOW

Instagram @theexpatcast 

Facebook @theexpatcast 

Twitter @theexpatcast 

Pinterest @theexpatcast 

 

SUBSCRIBE

Apple Podcasts

Stitcher

Podbean

Podknife

 

COMMUNICATE

Got questions, comments, topic ideas, funny anecdotes? Email us at theexpatcast@gmail.com.

Prepping for a Job Hunt in Germany with Nicole

Prepping for a Job Hunt in Germany with Nicole

October 25, 2018

Season 1, Episode 17. Nicole talks listeners through four key items she needed as a foreigner in order to secure a permanent, full-time job in her field in Germany: a Lebenslauf, originals and translations of her academic transcripts, a Bewertung/recognition of her degree, and a visa. With the help of Gordon, who steps in as co-host and resident German, we discuss what these things are, why they are necessary, how to obtain them, associated costs, and tips for getting it all accomplished. Plus, we moan and groan about dealing with bureaucracy, including our personal secret to getting what you need in the face of being told no (Spoiler: it involves a lot of shouting in your angriest-sounding German). 

 

RESOURCES

1. Lebenslauf:

Welcome to Germerica's guide to writing a Lebenslauf

Immigrant Spirit's guide to the perfect German CV

The Local DE's article, "A CV will get thrown out if not in German style"

2. Transcripts:

Search "beglaubigte kopie + [name of your city]" to find places near you that offer the certified copy service.

To find a translator, try the following databases:

Justiz Dolmetscher official database of sworn translators

Bundesverband professioneller Doltmetscher und Übersetzer database of BDÜ translators, including both certified and non-certified translators 

OR

Use my translator, Herr Zipp! He's a certified professional who makes high-quality translations swiftly and precisely, plus he's an absolute pleasure to work with. 10/10, would recommend. You can contact him at translation@georgzipp.com. 

3. Anerkennung/Bewertung/Recognition:

Zentralstelle für ausländisches Bildungswesen, website also available in English 

Anabin, the ZAB database to research information about recognition based on country of origin and field

Recognition in Germany information portal from the German government

LifeWorkGermany's resource guide to the recognition process

4. Visa:

Search "auslaenderbehoerde + [name of your city]" to find your immigration office, and consult with an agent there.

 

FOLLOW

Instagram @theexpatcast 

Facebook @theexpatcast 

Twitter @theexpatcast 

Pinterest @theexpatcast 

 

SUBSCRIBE

Apple Podcasts

Stitcher

Podbean

Podknife

 

COMMUNICATE

Got questions, comments, topic ideas, funny anecdotes? Email us at theexpatcast@gmail.com.

House Hunting & House Hunters with Shanon

House Hunting & House Hunters with Shanon

October 18, 2018

Season 1, Episode 16. Fellow Freiburger Shanon Turner joins us to exchange stories of apartment hunting. Shanon, who has lived in Freiburg for 3 years, has lived in a series of WGs, or Wohngemeinschaft/shared apartment, as well as two private apartments. From getting the mayor to write her a letter of recommendation for an apartment application to sitting down to Kaffee & Kuchen, or coffee & cake, with potential landlords, Shanon has experienced it all.

Nicole and Shanon also run through common apartment terms, like defining what warm/warm and kalt/cold means, explaining how Germans count rooms in an apartment listing, and what unexpected aspects to look out for (does "kitchen" mean room for you to bring your own kitchen, or a fully equipped kitchen?).

Nicole shares her own apartment hunting story, which involved going on a reality TV show called House Hunters International. She explains how she got on, what the experience was like, and how she feels about her apartment now.

 

RESOURCES

Relevant blog posts:

Expat Focus's resource guide 

Live Work Germany's resource guide 

From Cherry to Kirsche's blog post

 

Websites to search:

WG Gesucht 

Immobilien Scout 24 

eBay Kleinanzeigen 

Immonet 

Immowelt 

Wohnungsboerse

Null-Provision 

Search Facebook for "wohnung + [name of your city/town]" to find Facebook groups for apartments and WGs.

 

FOLLOW

Instagram @theexpatcast 

Facebook @theexpatcast 

Twitter @theexpatcast 

Pinterest @theexpatcast 

 

SUBSCRIBE

Apple Podcasts

Stitcher

Podbean

Podknife

 

COMMUNICATE

Got questions, comments, topic ideas, funny anecdotes? Email us at theexpatcast@gmail.com.

Voting Rights Abroad with Duncan

Voting Rights Abroad with Duncan

October 11, 2018

Season 1, Episode 15. Did you know that American citizens, no matter where they are in the world, are eligible to vote? With the upcoming November 6 election in the United States in mind, The Expat Cast sits down with Duncan Gromko, an American voting rights enthusiast in Freiburg, Germany. Host Nicole talks with Duncan about how to register, request a ballot, and vote from wherever you are in the world. With congress's recent appointment of Brett Kavanaugh to the United States Supreme Court despite Dr. Christine Blasey Ford's allegations of sexual assault against him, Americans on both sides of the aisle are seeing in real-time the importance of voting, even in non-Presidential election years, like 2018. Americans can check out the links in the show notes to find out how to register and vote in the upcoming midterm election for the Senate, House of Representatives, and local matters. Historically, only 4% of the estimated 9 million Americans living abroad vote in midterm elections. Let's do better this time, fellow American expats!

Starting at  22:20, Duncan talks about the non-profit Wahlkreis 100%, which advocates for non-EU citizens' right to vote in local elections in Germany. Duncan shares why he's involved with this group and believes in their mission, how others can get involved, and what impact a non-EU citizen vote would have on local matters. We touch on common pros and cons relevant to the debate, and discuss what stipulations might be needed for voting rights to be granted.

 

RESOURCES

Vote from Abroad, a website that helps Americans living abroad register to vote and request a ballot https://www.votefromabroad.org/vote/home.htm

Voter registration deadlines for all 50 states, from Vox https://www.vox.com/policy-and-politics/2018/10/7/17947768/voter-registration-deadline-verify-2018-midterms and from the New York Times, as referenced in the episode https://www.nytimes.com/2018/10/06/us/politics/state-voter-registration-deadlines.html?smtyp=cur&smid=tw-nytimes

Freiburger Wahlkreis 100%, the non-profit Duncan works with regarding non-EU citizen's voting rights http://wahlkreis100.de/sites/home.htm

U.S. Midterm Election Night Party hosted by the Carl-Schurz-Haus, for those in and around Freiburg http://www.carl-schurz-haus.de/veranstaltungen/einzelansicht.html?tx_tdcalendar_pi1%5Byear%5D=2018&tx_tdcalendar_pi1%5Bmonth%5D=11&tx_tdcalendar_pi1%5Bday%5D=06&tx_tdcalendar_pi1%5Bevent%5D=596&cHash=557fe94f8d197ed2729f2f96c21df84a

U.S. Post Midterm Election Breakfast hosted by the Carl-Schurz-Haus, for those in and around Freiburg (who prefer sleeping to watching the results spill in but still want to discuss things) http://www.carl-schurz-haus.de/veranstaltungen/einzelansicht.html?tx_tdcalendar_pi1%5Byear%5D=2018&tx_tdcalendar_pi1%5Bmonth%5D=11&tx_tdcalendar_pi1%5Bday%5D=07&tx_tdcalendar_pi1%5Bevent%5D=597&cHash=28b5342fdee0481e24286756460dec1e

For those not in Freiburg, there may be similar non-profits and events in your area. If you know of any you'd like The Expat Cast to help publicize, tag us on social media and we'll repost it.

 

FOLLOW

Instagram @theexpatcast https://www.instagram.com/theexpatcast/

Facebook @theexpatcast https://www.facebook.com/TheExpatCast/

Twitter @theexpatcast https://twitter.com/TheExpatCast

Pinterest @theexpatcast https://www.pinterest.de/theexpatcast/

 

SUBSCRIBE

Apple Podcastshttps://itunes.apple.com/de/podcast/the-expat-cast/id1412547847?mt=2&i=1000417067981

Stitcherhttps://www.stitcher.com/podcast/the-expat-cast?refid=stpr

Podbeanhttps://theexpatcast.podbean.com/

Podknifehttps://podknife.com/podcasts/9168

 

COMMUNICATE

Got questions, comments, funny anecdotes? Email us at theexpatcast@gmail.com.