I am toying with the idea of relocating to a new country. As such I will have maybe a lot of questions not closely related to "travel" but more on the target country (setting myself up, living, creating network, etc.). From the discussion in this thread about what's off-topic I couldn't decide whether this board is the right place.

Any advice would be appreciated.

  • 3
    The closer you can keep the questions to actual travel the better. They will get marked as off topic if you drift far off as it sounds like some of your questions will surely be. Commented Jul 4, 2011 at 22:42

3 Answers 3


Expat questions are different enough from travel questions that they have their own proposal: Immigration. The on topic questions there appear to be more oriented towards moving and settling in, and those would be considered off topic here.

That proposal is already in the Commitment phase, so go commit to it and help make it happen!

Update: The Immigration proposal has been closed. There's, however, another proposal (in Definition phase): Expatriates.

  • I always thought expats were the ones that didn't immigrate but just hung around forever living like foreigners with other foreigners. It does sound like Mike wants to immigrate though. Commented Jul 5, 2011 at 9:08
  • 5
    indeed - the typical pattern for an expat is to be called by his/her company to a different country for a limited period of time - which brings along some specific challenges that travelers and immmigrants don't face.
    – MikeD
    Commented Jul 5, 2011 at 12:17
  • 1
    Thanks for pointing that proposal out @Dori, I'm not sure how I missed that one!
    – Tim Post
    Commented Jul 7, 2011 at 5:49
  • @Tim I don't blame you; "Immigration" is tricky to find. I accidentally created an "Expatriation" proposal because I thought I was the first one on the scene!
    – user82
    Commented Jul 15, 2011 at 12:28
  • 1
    note that Immigration now appears to be closed.
    – Shep
    Commented Sep 7, 2012 at 14:00
  • There's now an Expat proposal, however.
    – Mark Mayo
    Commented Sep 8, 2012 at 23:21

Expats are often simply medium-term travelers; thus expat questions are on-topic here.

Moreover, expats are likely to be very knowledgeable about the issues faced by travelers and short-term residents of many cities. Thus, making this site useful to expats is likely to also make it more useful to tourists.

  • 9
    +1. If expats are not considered travelers what are travelers? What about those around the world travelers that work to fund their travel?
    – user141
    Commented Jul 13, 2011 at 6:45
  • Other expats just stay in one spot not integrating like the British used to do a lot in India and now lots of Canadians and Americans do in Mexico. Thailand also has a huge expat scene. In such places you will find bars and other services catering specifically to the expats. Commented Jul 20, 2011 at 7:26
  • 2
    regardless of the definition of 'travelers' vs 'expats', I think the information created via 'expat' questions could potentially be useful to 'travelers'
    – Shep
    Commented Sep 7, 2012 at 14:02

I thought about asking this question on meta awhile back, but I figured that expat-specific questions will be considered "off topic" on this site.

Consider the top 5 on-topic questions for the Immigration proposal:

  • What do I need to open a bank account in [country] and what is the best way to transfer money to it?
  • Is my UK driving licence valid in [country]?
  • What is a typical salary for a [trade/profession] in [country]?
  • Can I work legally in Argentina without being a citizen?
  • What are the legal options in order to immigrate to [country]?

I don't think a single one of those questions would be considered on-topic on the Travel SE (maybe the driving license question, depending on how it was worded).

The two sites will undoubtedly be complementary, but they will have their own exclusive domains.

  • With drivers licences, the requirements will be different for visitors and residents. This is case just between states in Australia for instance. Commented Jul 14, 2011 at 12:08
  • Expat Q's would need to allow for "What should I do with my flat back home: rent/sell?" ... not related to travel, not related to immigration (in its strict sense) .... between the chairs :-(( that's my dilemma, but thanks to the good discussion here
    – MikeD
    Commented Jul 14, 2011 at 12:42
  • If the immigration proposal goes forward, we could decide to then send expat questions over there. But right now there is no immigration site, so why not ask expat questions here?
    – nibot
    Commented Jul 20, 2011 at 1:12
  • @nibot because they're off-topic for a travel site. Any expat questions allowed on the travel site would dilute the focus of the site, and we'd risk derailing the travel site before the expat site even gets off the ground.
    – user82
    Commented Jul 20, 2011 at 12:55

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