What is the relative size of the expatriate community? How would you describe overall morale among expatriates?

There's a decent expat community, but it's much smaller than I expected. There are neighborhoods in Beirut and in nearby cities where there are tons of bars that naturally attract lots of expats. The embassy's location outside of the city and the movement restrictions make it hard to make friendships outside of the compound. - May 2019


Small, no comment on morale. - Jul 2016


The size is quite large. The morale is generally positive, though it depends on the security and political situation and does become negative at times. - Feb 2015


According to a recent survey, morale at post is generally abysmal with a few notable exceptions. With the events in Syria and closure of the Embassy in Damascus, every section in the Embassy has absorbed a tremendous amount of work. Due to the limited size of the compound, it is impossible to add positions; as a result, most sections are woefully understaffed. In general, expect to work 12-16 hour days, plus a day a weekend without the commensurate benefits of an AIP post. In theory you are afforded four Rest and Recuperation trips in the course of your 2-year tour, but with the workloads and staffing gaps, these are increasingly hard to schedule. The security restrictions add another dimension to the stress as planning a move takes a lot of time and effort, another reason why it is so disappointing when they are cancelled. Living and working together in such close quarters breeds antipathy beyond what one imagines they are capable of and creates awkward social situations (that colleague you just had an exchange with will invariably be on your grocery move that same night). - Nov 2014


On compound, morale is horrible. People get close to the end of their tour and are counting down the days Because it is 100 or so people living and working in a small environment with several different layers, it has all of the worst aspects of high school. The gossip flourishes, the lack of leadership abounds, the backbiting is neverending, the cattiness, the backstabbing, on and on It's 18 acres of Peyton Place and as the demographic age gets younger, the similarity to high school gets stronger. - Apr 2014


Decent size. Many expats are journalists or university students. I'd say the morale is mixed. Some people love Beirut and others find it quite challenging. I think it depends on where you are coming from and what your expectations are. Lack of greenspace/parks, etc seemed to be troublesome for many. - Jan 2014


Large. - Apr 2012


Huge, including most of the Lebanese population in Beirut who hold a second passport. - Sep 2010


There is a significant expat population working in NGOs or affiliated with U.S. educational institutions. There are also plenty of Lebanese who have come back after extended expat experiences in other regions. - Jul 2010


Large. - Jun 2009


Pretty large. - Jun 2008


Not very big. - Mar 2008


New book from Talesmag! Honest and courageous stories of life abroad with special needs.

Read More