Hing Kong and NYC have a couple of things in common – they are both urban, crowded, expensive, and fun. However, they also differ in many things. And, because of that fact, leaving Hong Kong for NYC is not going to be easy. Yes, you will say goodbye to your loved ones, you will pack and relocate, you will find your new place, etc. But, will you be able to get used to the life in Big Apple? That is, will you be able to handle culture shock?

When leaving Hong Kong for NYC, it is normal to experience culture shock. After all, you are moving to an entirely different continent – a continent where people look different, speak differently and act differently. But, don’t let that scare you – everybody is (uniquely) different in NYC. If you want to fit in, you will be able to. And, if you don’t, that is also okay. The most important thing is to find a way to deal with culture shock. And, we will show you how.

Don’t Suppress Your Feelings No Matter What

Leaving Hong Kong for NYC is a big deal! Don’t let anybody tell you otherwise. You are moving to an entirely different continent. So, allow yourself to be scared. Be sad, be excited, and be whatever you want to be. And, no matter what you do – don’t suppress your feelings. Tell yourself about them. Tell the new roommate you found in NYC about them. Or even better, tell your friends and family members about them. Trust us, this will help you deal with your culture shock.

Moreover, if your culture shock turn starts interfering with your life – for instance, if you develop feelings of fear, anxiety, depression, etc., don’t hesitate to look for professional help. Find a therapist in NYC with whom you can talk about everything that troubles you.

Two women talking about leaving Hong Kong for NYC.
Leaving Hong Kong for NYC can result in a serious culture shock – to overcome it, talk about it.

Learn About Your New State, City, and Neighborhood

When moving from Asia to the USA, that is, when moving from Hong Kong to NYC, culture shock is inevitable. It is inevitable because all the rules, laws, and customs are quite different. So, to quickly overcome culture shock, try to learn about life in NYC as much as possible. Do that even before you find reliable professionals to help you pack your bags and prepare for your international relocation.

For instance, ‘google’ things ex-pats should know about living in NYC. Then, do thorough research on the boroughs and neighborhoods. You should also look into how New Yorkers behave, what they like and dislike, what is their go-to place for going out, how is one supposed to act both in a 5-star restaurant and NYC’s bodega, etc. Knowing all these things (as well as many more) will help you fit in and make you a true New Yorker one day.

Find a Suitable Neighborhood for Yourself

Before leaving Hong Kong for NYC, you will, of course, have to find your new home. After all, you can’t just move to NYC and keep your items in a storage unit until you find a suitable home. Well, you can, but that will cost you a fortune. So, just like previously mentioned, do some research and try to pick the best borough for yourself. For instance, if you are a businessman or a man that likes to be in the center of all the happenings, choose Manhattan. Or, if you are a family man, an elderly man, or a man that likes peace and quiet, choose Staten Island.

And, why is this important? It is important because being surrounded by an appropriate community and people like yourself, your culture shock will not be as harsh. Thus, if you have a dog, for instance, try to look for dog-friendly neighborhoods in NYC. There is where you will feel welcomed. And, there is where your culture shock will disappear in just a couple of days.

Friends sitting on the grass in a park and a little dog with them.
Surround yourself with same-minded people and you will not feel culture shock when moving from Hong Kong to NYC.

Meet Your New Neighbors and Your New Neighborhood

Once professional movers such as those from relosmart.asia have taken care of your international relocation and once you are done unpacking, go outside. Knock on your neighbor’s door and introduce yourself. Who knows – maybe your neighbor becomes your best friend or your partner, or maybe he just helps you unpack. In all instances, you win. Then, talk to people at your work and talk to people that work in your local grocery store, bakery, or flower shop. The more you surround yourself with people the less culture shock will have an impact on you.

Moreover, if you become friends with someone soon, you can ask him (or her) to show you the neighborhood and the city. If nobody is in the mood for that – no worries, just go alone. Put on your walking shoes, turn on Google Maps on your phone, and hit the road. Imagine you are traveling somewhere and start exploring. There is nothing bad about being a tourist in your new city. Quite the contrary – being a tourist will make you feel like you are on a vacation. And, nobody can worry about culture shock when on vacation.

Two people taking a picture of Brooklyn Bridge.
Don’t worry about being a tourist in NYC! It will turn out to be an amazing experience that will help you overcome your culture shock.

Talk to Your Loved Ones Often

When leaving Hong Kong for NYC, one of the most difficult things you will have to do is say goodbye to your loved ones. Your friends, family members, neighbors, and colleagues were all a part of your comfort zone. They made you feel loved and safe. But, now, you are going away from them, you are going somewhere unknown. This will worsen your culture shock! Of course, you shouldn’t go back. But, what you can do is schedule weekly meetings with your loved ones. For example, every Sunday, make a cup of coffee and ‘ring’ your mother or your best friend. Talk to them about everything – from renting an apartment in NYC to how bossy your employer is. You will see that this will work as ‘therapy’. And, you will see that your culture shock will not be as serious when you know that you are still surrounded by loved ones.

As you have seen, there are many ways you can deal with culture shock when leaving Hong Kong for NYC. We mentioned just a few of them, but, be sure to keep on researching. Who knows what might work for you?