FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
Do you have any questions about Expat Club?
Expat Club is an international social community based in Brussels. We organise tons of events and trips to countless destinations in Belgium, surrounding countries or even farther.
Expat Club was founded in 2013 with the intend to bring international people together. We began with a simple Meetup group that quickly became the largest and most active in Belgium.
Expat Club started as a for-profit in 2013, but mid 2021 a nonprofit entity was established to give shape to the local community and activities.
Not at all. We welcome everyone, as long as they would like to meet other people with an international mind. Over the years people from literally every age between 0 (babies) to 82 years have joined our events. Our guests and members come from all over the world, work in all kinds of sectors and at all kinds of levels. This creates a unique open and friendly atmosphere.
We welcome everyone everyone. Unless you are the ultimate snob, only think about getting drunk and party all the time, or simply hate meeting other people, Expat Club will be a safe harbor for you. That is why so many solo travellers join our events and trips, whether they are actual singles or are in Brussels alone while their partner is in another country (many of our guests live apart temporarily). There are always couples joining our events and trips, including retired couples. And although we do not actively reach out to students and young professionals, they are also more than welcome to join the group.
Absolutely! In fact, probably 5-10% of our guests have a Belgian pasport. Many of them work in an international environment or lived abroad for some time. Logically they feel at home at Expat Club events.
Absolutely! If you live in Brussels or Belgium and would like to bring a friend who doesn’t live here, then you are more than welcome to do. In fact, over the years this happened countless times. People even planned a trip to Belgium coinciding exactly with one of our trips. For instance, many people come in April to join on a trip to the Keukenhof Spring Gardens (obviously the tulips only blossom during a limited period). But we also had people coming over specifically for joining longer trips such as Switzerland and Chernobyl.
Sure you can! In fact, even if you were a regular tourist and feel like joining on one of our trips, you can join Expat Club events and trips. We are just not focusing on incoming tourism, but that should not prevent you from becoming part of our wonderful community of international minds.
We welcome many people who come on their own! But let’s just be clear about one thing… Expat Club is not a single club. This means we are not a place where one can come with the only objective to do something about your “singlehood” in the broad sense of the word 🙂. That being said, many singles join and quite a few met a long-term partner, some got married, and there are even a few Expat Club babies. We believe that the best relationships, whether romantic or not, start in a relaxed, friendly and respectful atmosphere.
Expat Club especially wants to be open for the groups for which meeting like-minded people is not so easy. After all, there are many “expat parties” for students and young professionals, but there is not so much for retired expats. That is why we particularly want to reach out to those who can look back at a long international career but still want to be socially active and meet others. Btw, you would be surprised to learn how many beautiful friendships between younger and older guests developed.
Yes, you can definitely join our events. But we would like to be clear upfront that the majority of our visitors is above 35. We do not specifically reach out to your age group, simply because most are primarily interested in partying and singles events. Still, surely many events and trips are interesting for you as well and we can promise you that you will be part of the group as much as anyone else. To help you cover the costs a bit, we do offer special discounts for students, post-docs and young professionals up to 26 years old.
No! During many events we drink a glass (or two), but do not expect a wild drunken crowd when you join our events or trips. Open drunkenness is not accepted behavior. That being said, we do organise events and trips where alcoholic delights play a central role. Think about our whisky and wine tastings, or our Champagne trip or the trip to the Alsace and Bourgogne. But even then, we enjoy alcohol with moderation and respect for other guests. The same goes for partying, while some events and trips include some level of party (e.g. Oktoberfest, Venice Carnival, socializers in Brussels), we are just not known for being a big party community.
We normally organise at least 2 local events per week and 1 trip, but often this goes up to 4 local events and 2 or even 3 trips per week (e.g. one on Saturday and one on Sunday, with also a weekend trip of 1 or 2 nights).
Expat Club has an internship program for talented and committed students. Competition is generally very high, with less than 10% being accepted, so we only offer positions for the best students in a variety of fields (e.g. business, tourism, communication). A very good command of English is essential since you are expected to work on your own and produce high quality output, such as articles, marketing materials or event descriptions. The minimum period is 3-4 months, depending on what you work on. We accept both bachelor students in the final stages of their studies, as well as Masters. Your school must support the internship and take care of the necessary paperwork and insurance. Expat Club offers a stipend on top of your (Erasmus) scholarship, as well as a local public transportation card. Interns are expected to help preparing and executing local events and are invited to join some trips. Tasks include writing up texts, designing and organizing events and trips, administrative and preparatory work, joining in strategy and brainstorming sessions, and more. Also, interns will have the opportunity to participate in additional business and entrepreneurship education sessions. For more information, please click here.
You can book a ticket(s) on the specific information pages for individual events or trips. You can see an overview of all these pages on our full event calendar, where you can further select between various types of events and trips. Once you arrive at a specific event or trip there is either a simple RSVP button or a button that leads you to the ticketing system. For local events and daytrips the booking process is quick and easy. For our longer trips we require a bit more information from your end, such as your hotel room choice, whether you would like to join specific dinners or guided tours, or for our ski trips we really need to know whether you would like to rent ski materials and what sizes. Understandably, we need this to ensure you can precisely prepare the trip that you are expecting, so you can relax and enjoy a well-deserved outing.
Expat Club offers various safe payment methods, including Bancontact, iDeal, Sofort Banking, Master Card, Visa Card, American Express, and bank transfers. Note that not all methods are available for each event. For some events we also offer on-the-spot payment with a point-of-sales card system.
There are various discounts available, but not always and not for all events. Possible discounts include child discounts (<18 year), young adult discount (<26 years), and bachelor / master / PhD student and post-doc discounts. For newly announced trips we may offer first-bookers discounts, whereas all trips generally have an early-bird discount. For instance, for daytrips the early-bird discount is available until 1 or 2 weeks before departure, and for weekend trips that may be 4-6 weeks before departure. If you are coming with a group of 4 or more we may also offer special discounts. In these cases you can contact us and we will try to make you an appropriate offer. Please do not contact us to ask for a discount unless you are a student, small group, family or in other special circumstance. We cannot offer discounts to “regular” travellers, because that would mean we have to offer it to everyone.
Our main bus departure point is Place Schuman, the big roundabout in the European district. There is a bus stop next to the KBC Bank. Depending on our trip destination, we may also stop at other places in Brussels and from time to time also in other cities. You can check all potential other departure points here. If you are registered for one of the trips, we always send more practical information to all participants 3-7 days before departure so you know exactly where you are expected and at what time.
If we take the train, we virtually always start at Midi Station. Depending on the direction, you can also get on board at other stations. For instance, if we go to Oostende, we only depart from Midi. But if we go kayaking near Dinant, you can also join us at Central, Nord, Schuman or Luxembourg. Whatever is most convenient for you. And logically we communicate well where we are sitting on the train.
At Brussels Airport we normally always meet at the long table in front of Starbucks in the main Departures / Check-in Terminal. You cannot miss it, since it is right in front of the big board with all departing flights and the check-in desks. Depending on the flight you will be handed over your boarding pass here (or you get it beforehand by email) and possibly some other things (e.g. an individual audio guide system).
A large touringcar / bus / coach is the most eco-friendly and safe way of traveling. Expat Club only works with Belgium’s top companies that have only top quality material and experienced professional drivers. You can be sure that your bus is continuously maintained and checked, while the bus itself is equipped with modern safety features (both inside and outside), the latest air-condition and purification systems, and the drivers are strictly adhering to Belgian and European driving regulations.
All requests for editing or shifting must be made by email to email@example.com. An edit to your reservation may be a change in the number of people traveling, adding or deleting certain additional items like lunch or museum visit. Shifting a reservation is in principle a cancelation of the original booking, followed by a new booking. The consequences for the reservation will be dealt with on a case-by-case basis. For instance, if we travel to the Keukenhof twice or more and you are on the first trip, shifting from the first to the second or third trip is not always possible (for free). Just like multiple flights from Brussels to London, shifting to a later flight (or earlier) flight may mean your original seat becomes available again while you may take one of the last spots that could be sold to a last-minute traveler as well.
All cancelations must be sent via email to firstname.lastname@example.org. We cannot accept cancelations by phone, text, whatsapp, Facebook or any other means, even if we understand you would like to cancel. The reason is that we simply want to prevent any misunderstandings and that we both can always trace back any correspondence. Note that a cancellation is only confirmed once Expat Club responds to your requests. Although rare, emails still disappear or end up in spam. Cancelations will made in line with the terms and conditions.
It is highly appreciated if you can inform us at email@example.com or send a text to the number mentioned in the email you receive 3-7 days before the trip. That way we will not wait for you unnecessarily and possibly wake you up early in the morning (we don’t want to leave without you, so always make an extra call if you’re not there by the final meeting time).
First, if you are not happy about anything during an event or trip, you are kindly requested to inform your host immediately so we can take immediate action to resolve the situation. Logically, after the event or trip there is nothing we can do anymore, so giving us the chance to do something about it is highly appreciated. But even if we are home already, you can always contact us by email at firstname.lastname@example.org and we’ll do our best to find a solution. The same goes for general remarks, comments, suggestions or complaints.