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They move away straight after their Leaving Cert; embark on an Erasmus year during college, or pursue their career on foreign shores – whatever the reason, it’s likely that at least a few of your closest mates are currently living in a country that isn’t Ireland.

And, as yet, there's no sign of them returning.

Overall, you can cope with keeping up with most of them on Facebook and having a decent catch-up in the pub at Christmas.

However, there is a particular type of heartache and sorrow that comes with the absence of your BFF.

They announce, through tears, that they’re leaving you. Still, it’s only when they’ve actually departed AND given you their new – foreign – mobile number that you finally accept they’re actually gone.

Not that a true friendship has to fizzle out simply because you live in different countries: life-long buddies transcend time-zones, continents and a lack of daily hugs.

Here, SHEmazing! rounds up the eight signs that your long-distance BFF relationship is the real-deal…


1) You still WhatsApp and SnapChat as often as ever:

Obviously, you spend hours on Skype – you nattering away at 1am; her stuffing a bowl of cereal into her mouth before work. But day-to-day, you still WhatsApp and SnapChat every random musing, every annoyance, and every little thing you spot that you know they’ll love.

Same goes for outfit approval before an event or advice on what to do with a guy: if you’re unsure, they’re still your go-to.

2) You’re a time-zone expert:

You know precisely what time it is in San Diego, Moscow, Nairobi, Hong Kong or Perth. You know their timetable pretty much exactly too – and, more importantly, how your schedule fits into it. In fact, you have your respective free-time slots, lunch-breaks, and weekends rostered to tee.

3) They’re your go-to TBT stable:

Your Debs, Sixth Year holiday, graduation ball or simply a great memory created together: when it comes to #tbt, you’d never consider anyone else.

4) You send each other care-packages:

Sure, technology and social media means you’re rarely out of touch – but there’s something so special about receiving a postcard or parcel through the letterbox. That and you never get anything in the post from anyone else.

For birthdays and special occasions, you put together a mean care package too: a haul of vests and accessories from Penneys, Tayto crisps, their favourite fake tan and teabags.

5) You know you shouldn’t, but you kinda hope they lose their job/their visa isn’t renewed:

You’d obviously never say it out loud, but when they’re stressed about securing a visa for another year, or finding work, you secretly hope they’re unsuccessful and they’ll have to come home after all.

6) You still know all each other’s secrets:

They might be thousands of kilometres away and you may not have seen them in months, but you still know everything about them – and you still share everything with them.

7) When you see them, it’s like they never left:

They’re back at Christmas or for their brother’s wedding, and you’ve both spent weeks and weeks counting down to your reunion. You’re nervous and excited at the same time beforehand – and within ten minutes you’re right back at where you left off.

8) As envious you are of their lifestyle, you know they really miss home:

Another day at the beach; another day-trip to somewhere incredible. Not to mention that their weeks off are spent exploring some incredible neighbouring countries and territories.

In fact, on a miserable Irish January evening, it’s easy to think, “I really wish that was me.” However, much as your life can seem a bit mundane by comparison, you know that when they see you tucking into a proper Sunday roast (as made by mammy) and enjoying cheeky afternoon pints with your mates, they’d love to be there too. 



So many of us have best friends that live abroad, and it can be really hard when that one person who you always talk to isn’t even in the same country as you.

But it’s not all bad! Here are some positive things about having your bestie in another country:

1. Surprise presents
It’s always nice to get a package from somewhere else that has lovely bits and pieces you aren’t used to seeing. Likewise for your friends it’s lovely to get a care package from home with lots of Cadbury’s, packets of Meanies and some Penney’s underwear!

2. Pen-pals
Use your friend living abroad as an excuse to dust off those letter-writing skills. By the time it gets to her you’ll have probably told her everything over Skype anyway but they’ll always make great memories for years to come.

3. Exciting dates
You can be guaranteed serious fun and grand plans when you do actually meet your friend, having been apart for so long. You’d never bother to go for dinner or hit up that posh club if she lived down the road now would you!

4. Free accommodation
Visiting your friend will be easy because all you’ll need is flight money – that’s practically a free holiday!

5. Appreciation
You’ll have a new found appreciation for your BFF when/if you do eventually get to live in the same continent.


It’s no secret that when we go abroad we become more Irish than ever before. Even if you were a raw macrobiotic vegan at home, you will find yourself scouring the internet for Milky Moo’s or begging your mam to send more Lyons tea.

Here are the things you’re most likely to crave:

1. Club Orange/Lemon
Tommy’s favourite.

2. Tayto sandwich
Yes, you can now get Taytos most places but does it taste the same without Brennan’s bread and Kerrygold butter? No, no it doesn’t.

3. Bacon fries
A thousand empty packets scatter the pub’s tables every quiz night.

4. REAL butter
None of this “We can’t believe it’s not butter is it not no it tastes like real butter but it’s not” butter.

5. Barry’s or Lyon’s tea (no fighting please) with Irish bainne. 
We’ve tried to recreate our homely cup of tea and it turns out the secret is in the milk.

6. Floury potatoes
With a load of salt and butter please.