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Exotic Encounters: Embarking on the Ultimate Cultural Adventure in the UK as a Bangladeshi Expat

22 Aug 2023


The diverse culture of the UK only adds to the appeal that the country has for outsiders owing to its robust economy. UK’s culture is also a crucial factor that Bangladeshi migrants consider while planning to come to the UK to earn a living and send money to Bangladesh from UK to offer financial aid to their families back home.

Several factors, such as the UK’s economy, its diverse culture, and its expansive job market, have pulled many Bangladeshis to the UK.
 

A report by The Bangladesh High Commission, London, said that currently, over half a million Bangladeshis are living in the UK for different purposes.

A report by the Arab News, sourcing its data from Bangladesh’s Bureau of Manpower Employment and Training, revealed that over 10 million Bangladeshi migrants are living outside of Bangladesh, primarily to earn a living. These Bangladeshi migrants sent back $21.5 billion in inward remittances to Bangladesh in 2022, according to a report by the World Bank.
 

The Bangladeshi diaspora is making a significant contribution to the country’s economy through the remittances they send back after working hard to earn better in the UK or other foreign countries.

Keeping in view the financial contribution to the country’s economy, the Bangladeshi government is planning to send 1 million more Bangladeshis abroad to diversify and expand its expatriate base and add to the quantum of remittances the Bangladeshi diaspora sends back.

While going to the UK or any other country, for that matter, work or education, you have to steer clear of many challenges. You face many issues while in a foreign country, regardless of the purpose. Do you know what these challenges are? What is the biggest challenge that you have to face and overcome as soon as you set foot on foreign soil?
 

You can think of many reasons, but do you know that the biggest challenge you face is to understand the new culture, its diversity and adjustment to it? Do you wonder about the reason?

Well, how high are the chances for you to get along with people you consider strangers and know nothing about? Or how successful can you be in a society you stay away from in terms of socialising?
 

Do not worry about answering these tricky questions because this blog is already set to answer these questions and explain to you the culture of the UK understanding which will help you excel professionally and prosper financially in your host country.
 

The Diverse and Rich UK Culture – A Detailed Insight

It is not that you earn a living in a foreign land and do not find time to attend to anything else. Or is it so? After you are done with your professional commitments and daily interactions with your family back home, once you send money from UK to Bangladesh, you have to take out time to study the culture of your host country.
 

It is critically important because, as mentioned earlier, it will help you excel professionally and gel with the locals.

But before casting a glance at the UK’s culture, the first challenge you have to deal with is the cultural shock you get at the first step of your journey, dealing with which is critically important. Otherwise, your progress is hampered. 
 

Here’s an insight into the cultural shock and how to deal with it.
 

Let’s delve into the diverse UK culture.
 

British Culture and Society

British cultural and societal norms are explained as follows.
 

Religions and Beliefs

  • The state-sanctioned religion in the UK is the Church of England of Christian Protestant faith. But its influence has decreased over time, and now a majority does not connect to the religion. Other faiths include Islam, Sikhism, Judaism, Buddhism, and Hinduism.

 Major Celebrations

  • Major celebrations in the UK include Christmas Day, Boxing Day, Good Friday, New Year’s Day, Easter Sunday, Queen’s Birthday, May Day, and Spring Bank Holiday.

The Family

  • Earlier, a family would comprise two parents, with the father as the head. But now the trend of a single parent is rising. Divorce has become more acceptable. Same-sex relations are gaining traction, but the commitment of the younger to look after the elderly in a family remains intact.

Social Divisions

  • A class system is at play in the UK, with the elite known as the Upper Class, followed by the Middle Class, who define themselves as hard-working with no claim to privileges.

Gender Roles

  • In the not-too-distant past, few opportunities were available to women as almost all jobs and roles were dominated by men. It posed a challenge to Bangladeshi women expatriates who wished to earn a living in the UK to support their families through an instant online money transfer from UK to Bangladesh. But this has changed now. You will find women rubbing shoulders with men in every field there is!

British Cuisine

  • Since the UK hosts expatriates from all across the world, it has only added to the diversity of its cuisine. You will find almost every delicacy that is unique to a particular country in the UK.

British Etiquette and Social Customs

A glimpse of the UK’s social etiquette and customs is given below.
 

Naming Conventions

  • The first name in the UK is called the Christian name, albeit it has nothing to do with the religion anymore. It is followed by the middle name and then the family name, also known as Surname.

Meeting and Greeting

  • Brits are pretty affable and helpful. They will welcome you as a Bangladeshi migrant, and when they realise that you have come to earn a living to support your family through a money transfer to Bangladesh from UK, they will extend help in every way possible. Greeting etiquette, however, is to shake hands with all those present.

Communication Style

  • Brits have a mixed style of communication. They are fond of conveying a message directly and also can talk to you indirectly too.

Visiting Homes

  • Brits love to entertain their guests at home instead of elsewhere, which is pretty much the norm elsewhere in Europe.

What Not to Do in the UK? The Taboos

Keep the following few points while in the UK and try NOT to do these.

  • Try not to rest your elbows on the table
  • Avoid staring
  • Do not act overly familiar with people you don’t know much about
  • Avoid asking personal questions
  • Avoid speaking loudly
  • Never cut into a conversation

Wrapping Up the Discussion

Having settled and started to earn a living in the UK, the first thing you aim for is to send money online to Bangladesh to offer financial aid to your family through a service provider that charges you a low fee and offers speedy transfers, safety, and live and market-competitive currency exchange rates. Right? 

But worry not! 

Because, for this, your best bet is ACE Money Transfer. Join ACE family and start benefitting from your hard-earned money the most through the lowest transfer costs, competitive exchange rates, and several opportunities to win enticing rewards.

FAQs

Why should I travel to the UK to work as a Bangladeshi migrant?

You should travel to the UK as a Bangladeshi migrant because the UK has a robust economy with a nominal GDP of $3.07 trillion. It has a thriving and expansive job market with several opportunities.

 

How many cultures are there in the UK?

The UK’s culture is evolving, so it is difficult to make an exact estimate. But according to a migration report shared by the House of Commons in 2021, about 9% of the UK’s total population is migrants, which makes it roughly 6 million people representing the cultures they have their roots in.

 

What are the vital cultural values in the UK?

The vital British cultural values include Democracy, which guarantees freedom allowing all to be aware of their duties and responsibilities; individual liberty, allowing everyone the freedom to express their thoughts and opinions; and tolerance and respect, to respect the ideas, values, and beliefs of others.

 

Why is understanding the culture of my host country important for me?

Understanding the culture of your host country, which is the UK in this scenario, is important for you because it helps you connect with the locals better, socialise with them, and also build your network and expand it. All of it is important to excel in a foreign country.

 

How do I adjust to a new culture?

You can adjust to the new culture by doing research, learning the language, building a support system, exploring your surroundings, accepting cultural shock and making gradual adjustments by taking baby steps.

Resources

  • Bangladeshis in the UK

(Bangladesh High Commission, London (bhclondon.org.uk)

  • Bangladeshi diaspora

(Bangladesh sets target to send 1 million workers abroad in 2022 | Arab News)

  • Inward remittances

(Personal remittances, received (current US$) - Bangladesh | Data (worldbank.org)

  • UK’s nominal GDP

(GDP (current US$) - United Kingdom | Data (worldbank.org)


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