5 Essential Tips for Expats Moving to Antigua and Barbuda

The Caribbean is home to a country that has gained popularity for its natural beauty and straightforward citizenship by investment program: Antigua and Barbuda.

Situated 39 miles apart, these two islands are nestled at the bosom of the North Atlantic Ocean and the Caribbean Sea, with numerous daily direct international flights and a brand new airport making it a great place for travelers to settle into. And, with its visa-free travel benefit for its citizens, this Caribbean nation offers dual citizenship for foreigners who are looking to enjoy a tropical lifestyle while feeding their wanderlust.

If you’re among those who are lucky enough to become economic citizens of Antigua and Barbuda, you might also need to learn about how to make the most of your new island home. To help you out, here are five important things you must do as an expat about to live life in Antigua and Barbuda:

1.   Learn the Language

As home to 100,000 English-speaking natives, Antigua and Barbuda has proven to be the best country to get a second passport from for many British, Americans, Canadians, and other foreigners who speak the language.

However, you might notice that some natives speak a variant of the language that seems much quicker, and with an accent that you haven’t heard before. That’s because residents use a broken English dialect called Antiguan Creole English.

As part of the rich culture of the country, Creole English is one of the most important things you need to learn when you move to Antigua. This dialect is composed of English words that are arranged in colorful phrases and spoken in an unusual accent which you can learn only after speaking to the natives themselves.

Here’s a tip: Start by learning how the island’s name is pronounced. Rather than saying Anti-gwa or Anti-guah, say “Anti-ga.”

2.   Know Your Currencies

Citizenship by investment programs in Antigua don’t require an applicant to live in the country before getting their second passport or indeed afterwards, so it isn’t surprising if you get confused with the currency situation in the country. Unlike other nations, Antigua and Barbuda use both American dollars (USD) and East Caribbean dollars (XCD).

Although the US dollar is widely used in the country, local markets, gasoline stations, and restaurants outside hotels use XCD so while they will accept USD, they will give you your change in XCD. Luckily, the USD is pegged to the XCD at 1 = 2.7 XCD, so it’s pretty easy to switch between the two. Most shops only use “$” to indicate the prices. So you might have to ask which dollar it stands for to accurately compute the amount you need to pay.

3.   Don’t Do the Move By Yourself

While not all economic citizens in Antigua and Barbuda actually decide to live there long-term, the lure of the pristine beaches and private island life can be strong. That said, you might want to consider hiring international movers if you decide to relocate to this part of the Caribbean paradise.

One of the top benefits of getting professionals to help in your relocation is the ensured safety and secure handling of your belongings. They can also make your move more cost-efficient and, ultimately, reduce the time and money you spend on the move especially when it comes to navigating the difficult and confusing customs and port duties, and the procedures for importing belongings to Antigua.

4.   Prepare for the Climate

The islands of Antigua and Barbuda enjoy abundant amounts of sunshine because of the tropical climate. The heat can be much more intense compared to other places in the world, so make sure you prepare the right kinds of clothes and a sufficient supply of sunscreen. Having a collection of hats and sunglasses will also work to your advantage.

5.   Stock Your Fridge

City life is quite different from living on an island. If you’re used to buying only what you need, when you need it, you might want to start stockpiling once you start living in Antigua and Barbuda.

While there are large supermarkets that supply groceries in the country, there’s no guarantee that everything you need will be available the moment you need them. Stocking up will also help you manage your budget and supplies more efficiently.

Living as an Expat

Life as an expat requires a significant adjustment from what you’re used to, no matter where you’re from and what country you’re moving to. Knowledge is your greatest asset, and this article can serve as a valuable guide when relocating and starting a new life in Antigua and Barbuda.

AUTHOR BIO

Kal Kennard is a Partner at Citizens International, a white-glove specialist firm offering private client services necessary for citizenship investment into the Caribbean. Based in the Caribbean for the past 15 years, she is an experienced consultant who works directly with many professional partners and advises clients worldwide.

Event Production Services: 5 Reasons To Prioritize AV

As an event planner, you know there are many things to consider when planning an event. From event marketing and vendor management to venue sourcing, there are many event production services to juggle. And while all of these things are important, the audiovisual element should not be overlooked.

When it comes to holding a successful event, few elements are as important or as crucial as the event’s audiovisual aspect.

A smooth audiovisual execution can result in not only a successful event but also one that can become a memorable occasion remembered for years to come. Similarly, poor execution will also remain in attendees’ memories, but for all the wrong reasons.

After all, corporate events are a one-shot deal. First impressions matter when it comes to event planning. While that puts a lot of pressure on the event planner, working with the right audio video production company will ensure great results.

Still unconvinced of the importance of audiovisual? Here are five reasons why the audiovisual element will have a significant impact on the success of your next event.

Reason #1: Stand out from the competition

Few marketing initiatives are as critical to a company’s success as a live event. According to a study done by the Content Marketing Institute, 56% of marketing respondents viewed events as an effective marketing tactic. Events are considered to be a more effective marketing tool than digital advertising.

Because of this trend, more and more companies are using events to generate brand recognition, product activations, and foster new client relationships. However, with so many different companies vying for customer attention, it may be difficult to cut through the noise and clutter.

The right AV solutions for your event can be the differentiator factor. The right mix of sound, lighting, and visual systems can set a memorable tone for your event. Audiovisual equipment can engage your audience and provide a high-quality event experience that creates excitement and encourages participation.

Reason #2: Improve audience engagement

A keynote speaker, presenter, or a master of ceremonies can only do so much to engage your audience. AV systems can be used in virtually all aspects of the event experience, from bringing presentations to life to highlighting specific products, to better communicate your message.

Advances in audiovisual technology enable companies to further interact with their audience. Event gamification and 3D projection mapping are two examples of how the latest AV solutions can transform a traditional event experience into a dynamic, vibrant environment.

These cutting-edge event technologies can add spectacular effects to your event. They can inspire and compel audiences to act in a way that a keynote speaker may not be able to.

Reason #3: Enhances event interactivity

Modern electronic displays do more than simply offer wayfinding and signage solutions. Electronic displays today are fully immersive and can be deployed as a tool to enhance interactive experiences. Interactive displays allow audiences to get more information about the event, from speakers to venue layouts.

To fully maximize the effectiveness of interactive displays, they must be strategically placed throughout the event space, particularly around check-in areas and meeting points.

Companies can also use interactive technology to convey changes to the event’s ambiance through mobile devices and tablets. Not only that, companies also have instant access to AV specialists through their mobile devices to request support.

Reason #4: Delivers a whole new world of color

While event lighting may not be new, as it’s a mainstay of the event experience, there are novel approaches to companies looking to get creative with lighting systems.

Imaginative AV solutions include holographic content, fully customizable LED lights, and projected GOBO lighting. These creative décor solutions are a visual treat for your audience, holding their attention in a powerful way.

Reason #5: Let’s you budget accurately

There are many costs to consider in planning an event. Costs may vary according to the event objectives, and typically include:

Venue costs

Food and catering

Third party vendors expenses

Onsite expenses

Production costs

Marketing/registration costs

Administrative expenses

Entertainment

Audiovisual costs

By prioritizing AV elements, you gain a better grasp of the event requirements. AV planning allows you to plan for equipment, services, and the necessary technical staff. Knowing what your event production company can deliver will allow your event management team to manage other costs.

For example, if your AV solutions provider is well-stocked with your event needs, you can scale back on the in-house AV tools that a venue may provide. Your event production partner may also have a network of third-party vendors you can use for your event.

This allows you to reduce additional costs or avoid them altogether.

Ready to engage?

As any seasoned event planner knows, a well-planned audiovisual setup is invaluable. Having the right AV solutions provider to support your event will ensure there are contingency plans in place even if technical difficulties do occur.

By dedicating time to source the right AV solutions at the beginning of event planning, your event will deliver the desired outcome.

AUTHOR BIO

Mahmoud Majed is the Managing Director at Level Production in Dubai. Prior to his role at Level, Mahmoud was the Regional Marketing Director for Jeetek holding group for 8 years, handling accounts such as Virgin Megastore and Man’oushe Street. He was also Division Manager for high-end luxury at Al Tayer Group.

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