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Updated 17 Jan 2011
Today, maintaining an expat blog is everything from popular past-time to coping expat arrivals elite blog awardmechanism to dear diary. More and more foreigners are reflecting on their personal experiences abroad by leaving their own unique digital legacy. As these expat blogs occupy a larger cross-section of the infinitely expanding blogosphere there comes a need to reward those that manage to provide meaningful material in a captivating way.

Welcome to the 2011 Expat Arrivals Expat Blog Awards designed to acknowledge the hard work and dedication of those exceptional expat bloggers.

What makes a good expat blog?

►Content is King. A good expat blog provides unique information in the context of personal experience. It illuminates the ins and outs of a specific process, it gives detail where none is otherwise available, and it uses narrative to fill in the gaps and grey areas that standard sources fail to address.

Content is carefully focused, and posts can be taken as small vignettes indicative of a greater story of expat life.

Topics are unique and relevant, not regurgitated, and leave audiences more prepared to pack their boxes or settle into their new city at the end of the post than at the beginning.

Carefully constructed. A good expat blog is well-written and pieced together in a way that reflects thought, planning and concerted effort. As Merlin Mann of "43 Folders" so artfully explains, "Good posts are written, not defecated."

They show evidence of both style and voice; key components that add value and make even the most mundane topics memorable.

The three fates of journalism, spelling, grammar and syntax, are respected and though not necessarily worshipped, nonetheless upheld.

Well-designed, or more simply, a good expat blog is as pretty as it is telling.While informative, individual posts aren't text heavy. Interactive media in the form of pictures, video and even the odd finger paint are used to not only supplement content, but to enhance overall quality.

Good blogs are organised. Lists, bullet points and charts make the odd cameo appearance and make posts more readable and appropriately cater to the fruit-fly attention span common among online audiences.

Good expat blogs cover the bases. All the bits and bobs are present and accounted for: an Archive, a Blogroll, a Profile, an aspiring page rank, and a rising traffic count. Posts are up-to-date and regular, and we all know how important it is to be regular.

Bloggers respond to comments and cultivate discussion. They maintain a well-groomed marketplace. Spam is deleted and moderation made when called for.

Expat Arrivals 2011 Elite Bloggers

(Listed in alphabetical order)
qatar expat blog winner

4 Kids, 20 Suitcases and a Beagle

With a propensity for turning isolated experiences into informed commentary on some of life's great questions, above all else, this blog will leave you laughing. Learn about Qatar through the eyes of an Australian mother.

kenya expat blog
Africa Expat Wives Club
Kenya with a grain of salt. She sheds some much-needed light on what expat life's really like in "deepest, darkest".


Diary of a White Indian Housewife
This white Indian housewife has a way with words that will make instant converts out of even the most fickle audience. The intricacies of life in India come alive with the colour and flavour of the nation itself.


israeli expat blogHow to be Israeli
A guide good enough to make even a goy understand the life of an expat in Israel. Full of simple and specific explanations about essential information.


libya expat blogKhadija Teri
Personal and unabashedly opinionated, Khadija Teri gives us an inside glimpse into life in Libya. Her accounts provide up-to-date information when very little is otherwise available.

florence expat blogLiving in Florence
With an Amelie-like appreciation for all the small things, Living in Florence introduces us to language, familiarizes us with piazzas and eateries and frames this historic city in a well-captured expat lens.


switzerland expat blogOne Big Yodel
A sort of sardonic patriotism makes posts incredibly endearing and all the more memorable. The quirky humour makes even grocery shopping as an American in Switzerland an adventure.


vienna expat blog
No Austrian idiosyncrasy escapes the watchful eye of Op-Expat. Read about one expat's observations in Vienna.


japan expat blogSurviving in Japan: Without Much Japanese
This blog leaves no "How to" unturned in its pursuit to establish the ultimate survival guide to making Japan home. Read about everything from finding Tylenol to tips to trump the rainy season.


egypt expat blogWhazzup Egypt!!!
A blog of many talents, from photo essays to charismatic conversation,  life in Egypt has never been so lucid. Learn everything from bringing your pet abroad to the art of street cart eating.

Expat Arrivals 2011 Top and Great Bloggers

Though not selected as elite bloggers this year, these oustanding expats were on our shortlist and were certainly responsible for some of the finer rantings and ravings we read in 2010.

Expat Top Bloggers


Expat Great Bloggers

La Tortuga Viajera (Spain)   Globe Trotting Geologist (Angola)
Moving to Portugal   Rachel's Rantings in Rio
Orange Polka Dot (Barcelona)   The Little White Donkey (Cyprus)
Mums Gone to Aus   An American Mom in Paris
Cheese Web (Belgium)   On the Other Side of the Curtain (Hungary)
An Englishman in Dubai   Our Delhi Struggle
Sandcat (Dubai)   Aliyah by Accident (Israel)
Adventures of a Gringa in Brazil   Amsterdamp (the Netherlands)
Don't Call me Gringa (Chile)   Adventures in Expat Land
Polka on the Island (the UK)   Melinda Roos
From Gaijin to Goy (Israel)   Christa Dyson
An American in Rome    
24 09 N 120 40 E (Taiwan)    
Expat Forever (USA)    
Clogs and Tulips (the Netherlands)    
Here is Havana (Cuba)    


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