Sandy is a Scottish IT professional and is currently on his first time expat experience. While he is enjoying his experience, he is finding the lack of work-life balance in Libya challenging.
For more on life in the country, check out our Expat Arrivals Libya country guide.
Q: Where are you originally from?
Q: Where are you living now?
A: Tripoli, Dahra, city center
Q: How long you have you lived in Libya?
A: Nine months
Q: Did you move with a spouse/children?
Q: Why did you move; what do you do?
A: Moved for work, IT for the Oil and Gas sector.
Q: What do you enjoy most about Tripoli, how’s the quality of life?
A: The weather and the people, very good quality of life.
Q: Any negatives? What do you miss most about home?
A: Bars and decent eateries.
Q: Is Tripoli safe?
A: Relatively, bag snatching and burglaries aside.
About living in Libya
Q: Which are the best places/suburbs to live in Tripoli as an expat?
A: Janzour, it offers the best value for money.
Q: How do you rate the standard of accommodation?
A: Mine is good, but for my colleagues in Regatta it is not so good.
Q: What’s the cost of living compared to home? What is cheap or expensive in particular?
A: Petrol and bread are very cheap, the rest just slightly cheaper than the UK, but the quality of fresh produce here is much better.
Q: What are the locals like; do you mix mainly with other expats?
A: Locals to me as a man are great, I socialise with both expats and locals.
Q: Was it easy meeting people and making friends?
A: Very easy.
About working in Libya
Q: Did you have a problem getting a work visa/permit?
A: Took a long time, but my company did it for me.
Q: What’s the economic climate like in Tripoli, is there plenty of work?
A: Difficult to judge, lots of illegal immigrants who are unemployed.
Q: How does the work culture differ from home?
A: It is much slower-paced.
Q: Did a relocation company help you with your move?
Family and children
Q: Did your spouse or partner have problems adjusting to their new home?
A: Not at all, she adjusted easier than I did.
Q: How would you rate the healthcare?
A: Not great, any major illness and you are going to have to go back home to get it dealt with, even a broken bone.
Q: Is there any other advice you like to offer new expat arrivals?
A: Have patience out here, nothing happens quickly, apart from the driving.
~ Interviewed August 2010