THOUGHT PIECE the carling team

Is Taking A Drink Industry Job Overseas A Good Idea?

departureThe glitz and glamour of working abroad is often too great a temptation for people to be able to resist, but is it always what it’s cracked up to be and what should you do before taking the plunge to make sure it’ll be all you’re hoping for? Here are some of the fundamental things that you should consider.

Global experience and cultural exposure

Working abroad in the drinks industry is a great opportunity to get paid while you enjoy experiencing new places and cultures. However, working abroad is very different from being on holiday. When considering whether or not working abroad is right for you, it’s important to look at all the pros as well as all the cons.

It may well be that you decide to take up a position in a location where you know no one and are not all that familiar with the customs and traditions. Although there is less chance of a cultural shock in Europe or the US, moving towards the Far East and Asia can prove a real challenge for some people.

Loneliness and lack of cultural comfort and understanding can impact not only on your ability to carry out your job as effectively as you would on home ground, but it can ultimately impact on your personal health and wellbeing. The only way to be forearmed for this is to go forewarned and informed. If you are thinking about taking up a position in a country that has a significantly different culture or customs, it’s important to do all you can to go into your adventure with your eyes wide open.


It sounds obvious, but if you are thinking of working overseas in the drinks industry, in a country where English is not the first language, you need to consider fully the practicalities of that potential barrier. No matter how theoretically ‘fluent’ your language may be, on a day-to-day basis are you really going to be able to communicate personally and professionally at a level that will show you in your best light job-wise and fulfill all your personal needs? How long might it take you to get your language skills to a level that will sufficiently enable you to communicate as if you were a native?  Be brutally honest with yourself on this point.


Taking a position in the drinks industry abroad means that you will be away from home, that’s a given. If you are a single person, without close family ties, this mightn’t pose you any huge problem. However, if you have family; either a partner and children or even elderly parents, you need to consider how you will get from A to B to be able to either visit and enjoy family time together, or even more importantly get there in an emergency. Making sure that there are regular and reliable flights and that you always have money set aside for travel is a good starting point.

Getting the ‘package’ right

When you decide to work abroad in the drinks industry (or any other for that matter), it’s important not to be seduced by what, on the face of things might look like a great ‘package’, because the reality is that there is much more to the decision than just salary and benefits.

All of that said, one of the greatest things about an overseas role is that it will demonstrate your ability to adapt and meet challenges to any future employer. As a result, if you do your due diligence and the deal is right, then go for it.