British Expat in Dominican Republic - Interview With Lindsay

Published: 21 Mar at 9 AM
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Filed: Interviews,Dominican Republic
Lindsay arrived in the Dominican Republic 11 years ago as a scuba diving instructor on a 6 month contract. She is still there, married to a Dominican and working as a writer, translator and marketing consultant. She is a keen observer of Dominicans and their lifestyles and culture, and could not imagine living anywhere else. She lives in the middle of nowhere with her husband, 4 dogs and 7 cats - at the last count. Lindsay's expat blog is called What about your saucepans? (see listing here). Lindsay not only has her first book out on Amazon, but also finds the time to write for our Local Expert Series too.

Meet Lindsay - British expat in Dominican Republic
Meet Lindsay - British expat in Dominican Republic

Here's the interview with Lindsay...

Where are you originally from?

In which country and city are you living now?
Dominican Republic, in the middle of nowhere

How long have you lived here and how long are you planning to stay?
I have lived in the DR for 11 years, and will stay until they carry me out
in a box.

Why did you move and what do you do?
I left the UK to travel the world as a scuba diving instructor and decided to come to the DR on a 6 month contract to work as an instructor, and learn Spanish. I fell in love with the country and the people and just stayed. I now am a writer, translator and marketing consultant.

Did you bring family with you?

Dominican Barrio
Dominican Barrio
How did you find the transition to living in a foreign country?
I found it easy as I have travelled all of my life, starting when I moved to Singapore with my family when I was 8. Following that I lived in many different countries for shorter lengths of time and visited many countries on holiday. I have always loved being abroad, meeting different people, eating different foods and experiencing different cultures.

Was it easy making friends and meeting people; do you mainly socialise with other expats?
Yes it was easy. At first I mixed with other expats and dive instructors as well as the tourists I was teaching to dive. Then, over time, as I learned Spanish I made more and more Dominican friends.

The coast of Barahona
The coast of Barahona
What are the best things to do in the area; anything to recommend to future expats?
The DR is a very large country, so one day you can be on a glorious beach and the next day in the mountains. There are so many different places to go and things to see. One of my favourite places is Barahona, in the south west of the country, where the mountains and rivers meet the Caribbean ocean. You can sit by the side of the river, yet on the beach, watching the ocean, eating fresh fish and drinking a cold beer.

What do you enjoy most about living here?
The optimism of the people and the culture of sharing and friendliness. Of course the weather is usually glorious too.

How does the cost of living compare to home?
If you live like a Dominican it is much cheaper than England. However, if you want all of the comforts of home, such as air conditioning, imported food, then it is probably not that much cheaper.

Top of Pico Duarte, highest mountain in the Caribbean
Top of Pico Duarte, highest mountain in the Caribbean
What negatives, if any, are there to living here?
Lack of electricity - we have 12 hours a day with none, so you need a back up supply. The corruption is also endemic.

If you could pick one piece of advice to anyone moving here, what would it be?
Learn Spanish. It is the language of the country and it is hard to get by without it.

What has been the hardest aspect to your expat experience so far?
I was shot through the throat during a burglary a few years ago, which put an end to my scuba diving career, and also made it hard for me to speak properly.

When you finally return home, how do you think you'll cope with repatriation?
I don't think I could cope - hence I will stay here!

Lindsay's book is now out on Amazon!
Lindsay's book is now out on Amazon!
What are your top 5 expat tips for anyone following in your footsteps?
  1. Learn Spanish.
  2. Don't get shot.
  3. Don't stress over lack of basic resources.
  4. Don't be too trusting.
  5. Try and immerse yourself in the local culture.

Tell us a bit about your own expat blog.
My blog, is about daily life here in the DR, living in a barrio. It is both amusing in parts but can also be quite hard hitting and sad when you look at the reality for many of the people who live in poverty here.

How can you be contacted for further advice to future expats coming to your area?
Via the blog or Twitter @lindsaydefeliz.

Lindsay blogs at which we recommend a quick visit to if you haven't been already. What about your saucepans? has an listing here so add a review if you like! Her book is now available on Amazon too! If you appreciated this interview with Lindsay, please also drop her a quick comment below.
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