Articles on international relocation trends, policies and strategies.
This is my favorite time of year. I actually started the Christmas music weeks ago in an effort to prolong a very short holiday season. Between work and a rigorous school program, however, I haven’t really been able to sink into the festivities. For a die-hard holiday fan, this is a bit of a bummer! But, then I think of all the expats abroad who may not have a chance to celebrate with their loved ones and I realize how lucky I am to be close enough to family to enjoy the day. Or even in a country that supports holiday traditions for a variety of beliefs and customs.
Are you relocating employees to Moscow, Tokyo or Luanda, Angola? If so, we feel for you…and them. Apparently, these are the top three most expensive cities for expats and, if they are a part of your global mobility program, then they are likely a top three on the headache list for you.
Mercer recently released their 2013 Cost of Living Survey, which analyzes the cost of living across 214 cities across five continents. They survey compares the prices of more than 200 items in these cities, including real estate, goods and services, to the cost of these items in New York City. Why New York? Well, New York City is the most expensive city in the U.S., so it serves as a good barometer for cost of living comparisons around the globe – especially if your expats are moving from the U.S. to an international destination.
One of the biggest mistakes a company can make regarding relocation is assuming that an international assignment is complete once the employee returns to the home country. In many ways, it is at this exact moment that HR needs to step in with gusto. A repatriation program is a vital step in the process that should not be taken lightly. In fact, one recent study from the University of Iowa notes that up to 38 percent of repatriated employees quit within a year of returning home. When you consider that companies spend millions of dollars on global assignments, this number is shocking…and depressing.
Today’s post is a guest post by Darin Karp, President of Stress Free Corporate Housing, a global provider of temporary housing.
The 2014 FIFA World Cup will be the 20th FIFA World Cup, an international football tournament that is scheduled to take place in Brazil from 12 June to 13 July 2014 in Rio de Janeiro, São Paulo, Belo Horizonte, Porto Alegre, Brasilia, Cuiaba, Curitiba, Fortaleza, Manaus, Natal, Recife, and Salvador. Brazil is expected to receive about 600,000 international visitors and 3 million local tourists for the World Cup.
Kayla, a friend of mine, is currently an expat living in Thailand. When she moved there in October, she was excited about the opportunity, but also a little bummed about missing her favorite American holidays, including the upcoming Thanksgiving. The question comes around here every year, how will the expats celebrate the holidays abroad?
It’s hard to believe that July 4th is right around the corner. We are pretty excited about it here at XONEX Relocation. We tend to be a patriotic bunch, which makes it all the more fun.
But, as I start to make my own plans for next week, I can’t help but think about all of the families who are on international assignments right now. Wholly-American holidays such as July 4th, or Thanksgiving, can be difficult to celebrate in foreign countries – and that can make expatriates feel disconnected and homesick. As such, we do get ask about how to celebrate July 4th abroad, so I thought I’d share some common questions and answers:
Who is excited for the 2012 Summer Olympics in London? Living in Europe myself, I must admit that I am looking forward to all the pomp and circumstance that the Olympics will bring. I think this event will be good for the region, both economically and spiritually, and I am optimistic about London’s ability to host the games, despite some of the noted challenges. I do hope that the Britons and their neighbors enjoy this momentous occasion – even if it’s going to make my job a little more difficult this summer.
When it comes to immigration mishaps I have seen it all. Immigration procedures cause more headaches for employers, assignees and relocation managers than most other parts of the international assignment process. There are a lot of reasons why immigration is challenging, but I have noticed throughout the years that the fault rarely lies with the host country.
Thanksgiving might be my favorite holiday in the history of holidays. Anything that involves food, friends and wine is up my alley, but there is definitely something special about this day – and it’s not just my Mom’s sausage stuffing (although I’m sure people could write songs about it). Thanksgiving is a time to reflect on this great country and give back to the community, while also spending much needed quality time with loved ones. It just doesn’t get better than that for me.