I was wondering how many folks here join "expat" communities and hang out with others from their homelands?
When I originally moved from Canada to London in 2008, I intentionally avoided most anything that was "expat" Canadian (save for Canada Day at the Maple Leaf in Covent Garden). I figured I didn't move all the way across the ocean just to hang out with Canadians. I figured I would try and make friends with either the English people here, or international (non-Canadian) immigrants to England like me.
I still don't hang out much with other expat Canadians, though did enjoy a few recent trips down to a pub owned by a Canadian to watch our Olympic Ice Hockey Team in action.
However, I am finding myself back on the job hunt, and thinking about joining up with a Canadian networking group to try and extend the reach of my network.
This got me thinking about expat communities. Is the fact that my move was a deliberate choice (rather than being a "forced" move) part of the reason I have shunned expat groups to now? Will a continued presence abroad change the way I feel about expat groups?
Are you a member of an expat community with other people from your home country? If so, why did you choose to join? What benefits do you get from joining the group? Is there a downside that you see?
For those that haven't joined an expat community - what is your reasoning?