I am a Pinay expat in Europe for almost 8 years now. Imagine the distance between my home country, Philippines and Germany? That is thousands of miles away. Thanks to the different mediums in internet like video calling, chat, blogs, emails, video conferencing and social networks where I can have contacts to all important persons in my life especially my family, friends, relatives and former classmates.
Whether you find yourself away from friends and family just for a brief vacation or because you’ll be studying abroad or going away for a longer period of time, it’s important to keep in touch with the people that are close to you. In the past this could be a challenge, but with the internet and today’s technology there are many good ways to stay in touch with others.
1) Social Networking
There are several social media in the internet today where we can take hold and have contacts anywhere around the world. Social networking websites like MySpace and Facebook allow you to stay in contact with many of the people that you know. You can just give them a brief update about what you’re up to, say a quick hello, or put up pictures to view. This way you’ll feel like you’re still in contact with lots of your friends and family at once.
I am very glad that I joined these social networking sites like Facebook and Friendster. I am always updated with current news about my family and friends. Not only that, I can also see their pictures.
2) Webcam/Video Calling
With a number of video conference calling options available, such as Skype, video calling sites like Conference Genie, and a host of other live streaming sites, the potential is huge. If you have an iPhone, you can also use Wi-Fi to access your FaceTime setting within the phone. Having interaction via video link is one of the best ways to keep in touch, as you can utilise both sight and sound which is crucial to good communication. You can also use video calling to show off where you are such as landmarks and monuments, and even capture live parades, art exhibitions and other experiences.
The easiest way to stay in touch with one specific individual is by sending them an email. This is the same as what you might do if you were to write a letter or send a postcard, but the person will receive it instantly. It’s easy, doesn’t take too long to send a quick email, and it also doesn’t cost a thing. You can also attach images when sending mails.
Since there is a time difference between Philippines and Germany, I cannot always catch my family online. I send them emails instead. Thanks to Yahoo for the free email services. I am a very contented yahoo user for a decade now.
4) Photo hosting websites
One of the best ways to make people from home feel like they are traveling with you is by showing them pictures of the places you’ve been. There are several websites that let you upload your pictures and put them into an online album view. Then you can send the album to others and they can look at all of the pictures you’ve taken and all the places you’ve been on your journey.
You can also share any pictures for whatever activities you are doing. Whether attending a friend’s birthday party, graduation, wedding or simply snapshots of your garden,
5) Start a blog
I am very happy being a part of the blogosphere. As a blogger, I can share my ideas, thoughts, opinions and personal experiences to the world. Whether I go for a trip, cook something, do gardening, shopping, visit a doctor, I can share everything in my blogs.
If you travel a lot or might be gone for a long period of time, you can start a blog to keep others informed about what you’re up to. You can post as often as you like and write about what you’ve been doing and things that you’ve seen. You can also put pictures on your blog. Then anyone you give the address to will be able to read it and comment on it.
You can also earn money through blogging. If you want to promote your site, you can hire experts to grow your business online.