275 Questions to Ask Immigrants

Have you ever met someone who’s moved from another country and wondered what their life is like? Asking the right questions can open up a world of stories, struggles, and dreams. 

Get ready to explore some eye-opening questions that help you really understand what immigrants go through. Let’s dive in!

Cultural Background And Heritage

  1. What are some cherished family traditions you grew up with?
  2. How do family gatherings and celebrations differ in your culture compared to here?
  3. How do family roles and dynamics in your culture vary from what you’ve seen here?
  4. Can you describe a traditional meal from your country and its significance?
  5. In what ways have you maintained family traditions since moving here?
  6. Are there any cooking methods unique to your culture that you still use?
  7. What’s a typical weekend like with your family back in your home country?
  8. How does your native language express concepts of family and community?
  9. Are there any unique gestures or body language that are important in your culture?
  10. Do you have a family recipe that has been passed down through generations?
  11. What’s a common misconception about your country’s food you want to clear up?
  12. What forms of traditional music or dance are popular in your culture?
  13. Are there any local crafts or art forms from your region that you find particularly fascinating?
  14. Can you share how religious practices are integrated into daily life in your culture?
  15. Are there specific religious celebrations that hold a special place in your heart?
  16. What’s a piece of historical knowledge from your culture that you think is important for others to know?
  17. How has your country’s history influenced its modern culture and traditions?
  18. How do your family traditions reflect the broader cultural practices of your homeland?
  19. Is there a particular dish that brings back strong memories of home for you?
  20. What’s a saying in your language that you find particularly wise or poignant?
  21. How has your cultural heritage influenced your taste in music, movies, or books?
  22. Are there any historical events that have significantly impacted your family’s life and traditions?
  23. In what ways have your religious beliefs shaped your view of the world?
  24. How do traditional celebrations in your culture bring together food, family, and religious practices?
  25. Can you share a story or legend from your culture that has been passed down in your family?

Legal And Immigration Processes

  1. How did you find the process of applying for visas or residency?
  2. Were there any legal challenges or obstacles you faced during the immigration process?
  3. How did you prepare for the immigration interviews and assessments?
  4. What kind of legal support or advice did you seek, if any, during your immigration process?
  5. How long did the entire immigration process take for you?
  6. What aspects of the immigration laws here were most surprising or challenging?
  7. How have the immigration policies of this country affected your experience or decisions?
  8. How did you decide on the type of visa or immigration category that was best suited for your situation?
  9. Have you had to deal with any changes in immigration policies since your arrival, and how did you manage them?
  10. What were your initial expectations about the legal process, and how did they compare to the reality?
  11. How did you navigate any language barriers or cultural differences during legal proceedings?
  12. Have you had to renew or change your immigration status since arriving, and what was that process like?
  13. Were any resources or organizations particularly helpful in understanding and navigating the legal processes?
  14. How do you stay informed about changes in immigration laws and policies?
  15. What are your plans regarding citizenship or long-term residency in the future?

Experiences And Challenges Of Immigration

Reasons For Immigration

  1. What inspired your decision to move to a new country?
  2. Were there specific opportunities you were seeking when you decided to immigrate?
  3. How did your family feel about the decision to immigrate?
  4. Did a particular event or situation in your home country influence your decision to leave?
  5. Were you looking for educational opportunities abroad? If so, what kind?
  6. How much did the prospect of finding work influence your choice to immigrate?
  7. Did you have friends or relatives already living abroad who influenced your decision?
  8. Was the desire for a different lifestyle a factor in your decision to move?
  9. How important was your home country’s political or social climate in your decision to leave?
  10. Were there any cultural reasons that motivated your move?
  11. Did safety and security concerns play a role in your decision to immigrate?
  12. How much did the healthcare system or other public services influence your choice?
  13. Were you seeking a more supportive environment for a specific personal or family situation?
  14. Did the desire for adventure or a new experience influence your decision?
  15. How did you choose this particular country as your destination?

About Their Journey To A New Country

  1. How did you feel when you first got here?
  2. What was the hardest part of the move?
  3. Did you come alone or with your family?
  4. How did you pick this country to move to?
  5. Was it tough to get a visa or paperwork?
  6. What was your first day like?
  7. How did you plan for your move?
  8. What was the biggest surprise when you arrived?
  9. Did you face any problems during your trip?
  10. How was your experience at the airport?
  11. What do you miss most about your old country?
  12. How did you say goodbye to your loved ones?
  13. Did you have a job lined up before you came?
  14. How did you find a place to live?
  15. What were you most excited about?
  16. Was it easy to make friends when you got here?
  17. How long did it take to feel like this was your new home?
  18. Did you face any language barriers?
  19. What advice would you give to someone thinking of immigrating?
  20. How did you pack for the move?
  21. Was it hard to find your way around at first?
  22. Did you have any trouble with the laws or rules here?
  23. How did you manage money during the first few months?
  24. Did you have any help or support from others?
  25. How did you find out about this country before coming?
  26. Did you have to leave anything important behind?
  27. What did your friends and family think about your move?
  28. Was it hard to leave your old life behind?
  29. What’s the biggest difference between here and your old home?
  30. How did you feel on your first night in the new country?

Cultural Adjustments

  1. How different is the food here from back home?
  2. Was it easy to learn the language?
  3. Do you celebrate your cultural holidays here?
  4. Do you wear traditional clothes from your home country?
  5. What cultural norms here were hard to get used to?
  6. Do you listen to music from your home country?
  7. How do you handle different cultural beliefs?
  8. Do you watch movies or TV shows from back home?
  9. Have you taught people here about your culture?
  10. Have you tried local foods, and what did you think?
  11. What customs here did you find strange at first?
  12. How do you stay connected to your own culture?
  13. Have you ever felt out of place?
  14. How did you adapt to different social rules?
  15. Do you go to cultural events or festivals?
  16. Have you made friends with people from your home country?
  17. What’s one cultural habit you had to give up?
  18. Do you visit cultural or religious centers?
  19. How has living here changed your perspective on your own culture?
  20. Have you ever faced discrimination or prejudice?

Challenges And Obstacles

  1. What was the most challenging thing you had to deal with in your first year here?
  2. Have you ever felt like giving up and going back?
  3. Did you face any health issues after moving?
  4. Was it hard to get healthcare in this country?
  5. Have you dealt with any legal issues or challenges?
  6. Have you ever faced discrimination or unfair treatment?
  7. Was it tough to adapt to the local work culture?
  8. Have you had any difficulty finding or keeping a job?
  9. Did you have trouble understanding local accents?
  10. Was it a challenge to get used to the cost of living?
  11. How did you cope with the initial loneliness?
  12. Have you ever been homesick?
  13. Was it hard to build a new routine?
  14. Did you struggle with public transportation?
  15. What kind of financial challenges did you face?
  16. Have you ever been taken advantage of?
  17. Was it difficult to get your credentials recognized?
  18. Did you have to compromise on your career or profession?
  19. Have you struggled with cultural misunderstandings?
  20. Was it hard to make your voice heard in this new setting?
  21. What was your biggest fear when you moved?
  22. Did you face challenges in integrating into the community?
  23. Have you struggled with anxiety or stress due to the move?
  24. Did you have any housing issues?
  25. Were there any surprises about the legal system?
  26. Did you find it hard to ask for help when needed?
  27. How do you manage being away from family during tough times?
  28. Did you struggle with any local customs or manners?
  29. Was the climate or weather a big adjustment?
  30. What’s the most frustrating thing you’ve faced?
  31. Have you ever had a hard time in social situations?
  32. Did you find it challenging to balance work and personal life?
  33. Was it difficult to keep your religious practices?
  34. Have you had any bad experiences with local services?
  35. Was there anything that you found misleading before you moved?
  36. Did you have difficulty making important decisions?
  37. Have you faced any struggles with mental health?
  38. What’s the biggest lesson you’ve learned from these challenges?
  39. Have you ever had trouble accessing social services like unemployment benefits or food assistance?
  40. Have you felt pressured to change your appearance to fit in?

Personal And Professional Development

About Work And Career

  1. How did you find your first job in this country?
  2. Did you have to change your career path after moving?
  3. Are you satisfied with your current job?
  4. Do you have a mentor or role model in your field?
  5. What’s your daily work routine like?
  6. Do you have to travel a lot for work?
  7. How do you handle work-related stress?
  8. Have you faced any barriers to career advancement?
  9. What was your first impression of the work culture here?
  10. Do you attend work-related conferences or events?
  11. Have you done any job-specific training or courses?
  12. Do you work with a diverse group of people?
  13. What are your work responsibilities?
  14. Do you work more or fewer hours compared to your home country?
  15. Have you received any work awards or recognition?
  16. How do you manage work-life balance?
  17. Do you have any side hustles or part-time jobs?
  18. Are there any workplace customs that surprised you?
  19. How do you continue to grow professionally?
  20. Are you part of any work-related social groups or organizations?
  21. How do you build relationships with your colleagues?
  22. What challenges have you overcome in your career?
  23. Have you ever had to negotiate your salary?
  24. Do you feel supported by your employers?
  25. Have you had to adapt your work style?
  26. How do you stay updated with industry trends?
  27. What’s your dream job?
  28. Have you considered going back to school for career reasons?
  29. Do you feel secure in your current job?
  30. Have you ever turned down a job offer, and why?

About Education And Learning

  1. Did you continue your education after moving?
  2. How do the education systems differ between your home country and here?
  3. Have you taken any language courses?
  4. Did you face any challenges in getting your educational credentials recognized?
  5. Are your kids adapting well to the school system here?
  6. Do you have plans to go back to school or university?
  7. Have you taken any vocational or skill-based courses?
  8. How do you keep your skills updated?
  9. Are you part of any educational clubs or groups?
  10. What’s your opinion on the quality of education here?
  11. Do you like to read academic or research papers?
  12. Do you attend educational events or lectures?
  13. What’s the most challenging thing you’ve had to learn?
  14. Have you ever been a part of a study group?
  15. How do you tackle complex learning challenges?
  16. Have you learned any new software or technologies?
  17. How do you take notes or keep track of what you learn?
  18. Have you used any educational apps or tools?
  19. What’s your go-to source for reliable information?
  20. How do you motivate yourself to learn new things?
  21. Do you have any academic role models?
  22. Have you ever been involved in academic research?
  23. Do you have any learning goals for this year?
  24. Did you find the education system challenging for your kids?
  25. What challenges did you face in education or learning?

Integration And Community Involvement

  1. How have you found the process of adapting to the local community here?
  2. What activities or groups have helped you feel more connected to this community?
  3. Have you faced any challenges in understanding or adapting to local customs, and if so, how did you overcome them?
  4. Are there aspects of your new community that reminded you of home when you first arrived?
  5. How do you balance preserving your own culture and integrating into the new one?
  6. What has been your most rewarding experience in engaging with your new community?
  7. Have you been involved in any local events or causes since arriving here?
  8. How do you share your own culture with people in your new community?
  9. In what ways have you seen your new community change or adapt to include immigrants?
  10. What kind of support, if any, have you received from local organizations or community groups?
  11. How do you make new friendships and connections in a different cultural setting?
  12. Have you found any particular local customs or practices challenging to adapt to?
  13. What advice would you give someone from your home country about integrating into this new community?
  14. How do you think your presence and participation have influenced the local community?
  15. What aspects of the local culture do you find most fascinating or enjoyable?

About Relationships And Friendships

  1. How did you make your first friend in this new country?
  2. How do you maintain long-distance friendships with people back home?
  3. Have you dated someone from this country?
  4. What social networks or apps do you use to stay connected?
  5. Have you joined any clubs or social groups?
  6. What’s your favorite way to spend time with friends?
  7. How do you make friends at work or school?
  8. What do you look for in a friend?
  9. Have you ever felt lonely since moving?
  10. Do you think friendships are different here than in your home country?
  11. How do you handle disagreements with friends here?
  12. How do you celebrate your friends’ birthdays or special events?
  13. Have you had any misunderstandings due to cultural differences?
  14. Do you have a best friend in this country?
  15. Do you hang out with people from your home country?
  16. Have you made friends with your neighbors?
  17. What local social customs did you find odd at first?
  18. How do you introduce yourself to new people?
  19. How do you feel about socializing in large groups?
  20. What’s the most fun you’ve had with friends here?
  21. Do you go to any regular social events or gatherings?
  22. How do you manage your time between work and social life?
  23. Have you traveled with friends you made here?
  24. How do you support friends who are going through tough times?
  25. Do you have any friends who are also immigrants?
  26. Have you introduced any of your new friends to your family?
  27. Do you share hobbies or interests with your friends?
  28. How do you handle different political views among friends?
  29. What’s the biggest lesson you’ve learned about friendships since moving?
  30. Do you keep in touch with friends who have moved to other countries?

Support And Resources

  1. What support services have you found most helpful since arriving in this country?
  2. Are there any community organizations or groups that have significantly aided your transition here?
  3. How accessible have you found information and resources related to immigration and settlement?
  4. What kind of assistance, if any, did you receive in finding housing and employment?
  5. Are there specific resources or programs you wish were more available to immigrants?
  6. How did you navigate the legal and administrative processes associated with immigration?
  7. What challenges have you faced in accessing healthcare, and how did you address them?
  8. How supportive have local educational institutions been for you or your family members?
  9. What resources have you used to improve your language skills in the new country?
  10. Have you participated in any cultural integration programs or workshops?
  11. In what ways could local communities enhance their support of new immigrants?
  12. What advice would you give to new immigrants about seeking help and resources?
  13. Have you found any online platforms or social media groups helpful in your settlement process?
  14. What kind of support network have you built here, and how did you establish it?
  15. How do you think support services for immigrants could be enhanced based on your experience?

Aspirations And Future Plans

  1. What are your long-term goals or aspirations in this new country?
  2. How do you envision your career or professional life developing here?
  3. Are there specific achievements or milestones you hope to reach in the next few years?
  4. How do your aspirations here differ from what they might have been in your home country?
  5. What kind of legacy or impact do you hope to leave in your new community?
  6. Do you plan to pursue further education or training in the future?
  7. How do you see your family’s future unfolding in this new environment?
  8. Are there any particular causes or community projects you want to get involved in?
  9. What steps are you taking to ensure the realization of your dreams and goals?
  10. How do you balance your aspirations with maintaining connections to your cultural roots?
  11. Do you see yourself eventually returning to your home country, or is your move permanent?
  12. What does success look like to you in the context of living in a new country?
  13. Are there new hobbies or interests you plan to explore?
  14. How do you plan to navigate any potential challenges or obstacles to your future plans?
  15. What kind of support or resources do you think would help you achieve your future goals?

Frequently Asked Questions

Why is it important to understand the immigrant experience?

Understanding the immigrant experience promotes empathy and cultural diversity. It helps dispel myths and misconceptions, reduces discrimination, and encourages mutual respect and cooperation among individuals from diverse backgrounds.

Why do people immigrate?

People immigrate for different reasons. Here are some common ones:

  1. Jobs: Looking for better work opportunities.
  2. Education: Wanting to study in better schools.
  3. Family: Joining family members already living in the new country.
  4. Safety: Escaping dangers like war or natural disasters.

What is the process involved in immigration?

The immigration process can vary depending on the country and the type of visa. Generally, it often involves an application process, screening, interviews, and many legal procedures. It’s recommended to seek advice from an immigration lawyer or expert to understand the detailed process.

What challenges do immigrants face?

Immigrants can face tough situations, like:

  • Language barrier: Not knowing the local language.
  • Discrimination: Being unfairly treated because they are from another country.
  • Legal issues: Dealing with complex rules to stay in the country.


Remember, asking questions isn’t just about being curious; it’s about building bridges and understanding the people around us better. So, next time you meet someone from a different corner of the world, you’ll know just what to ask. Happy chatting!

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Robby is a multimedia editor at UpJourney with a journalism and communications background.

When she's not working, Robby transforms into an introverted art lover who indulges in her love for sports, learning new things, and sipping her favorite soda. She also enjoys unwinding with feel-good movies, books, and video games. She's also a proud pet parent to her beloved dog, Dustin.