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Moving to the Netherlands: Will your neighbours welcome you in the neighbourhood?

februari 04, 2014

Moving to the Netherlands: Will your neighbours welcome you in the neighbourhood?

You move into your new home in the Netherlands. Will your neighbours pass by with home made cookies or a cake to welcome you to the neighbourhood?

Probably not. The Dutch are sensitive about invading your privacy. They have seen you moving in and they assume that you are far too busy to be bothered talking to them. They will leave you on your own and they will not introduce themselves to you.

What they expect however, is that you will introduce yourselves to them when you are settled in. You are the newcomer in the neighbourhood and according to the Dutch you should introduce yourselves to them or even invite them for a drink to get acquainted. So this is definitely why a lot of expats don’t have contact with their neighbours. Your neighbours are waiting for you to introduce yourselves and they are waiting for an invitation( to drink a cup of coffee or tea) to get acquainted but unfortunately you didn’t know this. As you see expectations can get in the way of having a good neighbour!

A Dutch proverb states:It is better to have a good neigbour than a far friend( Beter een goede buur dan een verre vriend) Hope you can have that good neighbour!

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In order to feel at home in a new country and being able to communicate with the new people you meet there, you have to be able to speak their language and understand their culture, values and habits. We organize trainings that help you adjust to your new lives abroad and make sure that you can communicate with the locals.

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