Well I've joined every group I can find, from real time meet up groups, there's a British expat community right here where I live in South Africa and then a worldwide expat group that meets locally once a month. I've signed up, logged into expat forums, groups, professionals online on face book, twitter, through google+, in fact you name it, I'm in/on it.
But I don't use any of them anymore. One group lured me in with invites of get togethers to then ask for a monthly fee to access the invites, another group that I met with once and once only and never to be repeated was horrendous, these women (yes they were all women) had no bloody idea about life abroad, they lived in a British community, husbands company had sorted the whole thing, they were here for 2 years only and small children enrolled in British schools and no need to interview or find a maid as one came with the rental property who was also au pair qualified.
The online groups had so many rules and regulations to obey, sign up here, post x amount of comments on other peoples posts, display their badge on your blog, take part in x amount of forum discussions and then you can post a question to ask.
I find the advice offered is too generalised, it also bears little relevance unless it's a advice aimed at Brits moving to South Africa, because there are different processes, procedures to follow depending on where you're from and where you're going to. I prefer the personal touch, I wanted to hear about what went wrong and how it was resolved. I want to hear that it's just as complicated to rent a house, open bank accounts, set up utilities, buy a car, wherever you are in the world and how frustrating it is for everyone else.
I don't want to hear 'oh darling, have a G&T, we're expats. let someone else sort it it for you'
We're currently relocating from South Africa to Dubai. It's not straight forward. Dubai seem to assume we're in the UK and this is this process and when we ask for support moving from South Africa, there is an assumption we are South African.
So if anyone can point me in the direction of a blog, individual or company who have moved British Expats from South Africa to Dubai, I'd be really grateful to hear from them.