When you move to the other side of the world and leave your friends and family, it can be a tough and scary time.
Today reminded me of how easy it is to stay in touch thanks to the powers of the internet, and more specifically the power of skype. For those of you who arent familiar it is a programme that is free to download and allows you to make calls for free to other users on their PC, it also allows you to make calls using video (via webcams). All you need is a good quality mic and speakers (which most laptops already have built in) and if you want to use the video calling you need a webcam too. All of which can be purchased very reasonably from any local computer store. There are also applications you can download to some smart phones that allow you to use it on the move too, though not sure if its always free that way.
Since moving here skype has been a god send, and has helped us stay in touch with friends and family back home, as well as with new friends we have made since moving here. Also just thinking of all the hours we have used skype instead of our landline soon adds up, as international calling isnt cheap. Although saying that there is a skype service that allows you to call landlines and cell phones at a reduced rate too.
Last Christmas was nice as we got to skype with all family members during the day, and used the video calling so it was great to be able to be part of their day, and also them part of our day. It soon makes you forget you are thousands of miles away from them.
Also means you arent stuck with the family all day christmas day too!! (not that we wouldnt love to be with you guys if we were there :) )
We dont have kids, but I imagine having kids and moving so far away can be very tough on them, and using the video calling is a great way for them to update relatives on how they are feeling and all the exciting things they have been upto. Setting up a regular time to call family each week is another good way to stay in touch and dedicate some time to spending with them.
So anyone reading this who is planning a big move, or even if you arent, you should go and download skype and you will be amazed at how easy it is to use and stay in touch with loved ones. It can also be use to send messages like msn messenger/yahoo messenger. If anyone doesnt have me on their skype list and would love to stay in touch please message me and Ill let you have my account details.
Just go here to download the programme for free and have fun staying in touch :)