How to prepare for relocation to a foreign country
Learn about the country you will be visiting.
- Learn about the country you will be visiting. Knowing more about the country will help you to adapt better and feel more at home once you get there, as well as help to avoid any misunderstandings between yourself and the locals. Before making a move, buy some guidebooks and spend some time reading up on your new home.
- Gather as much information as possible concerning the climate, geography, history, and politics of the new country. In addition, it is advisable to find out about local customs and culture so that you can fit in better with everyday life. Make sure that you learn at least some of the language spoken in the country before moving there, especially if you don’t have any friends or family who is already living there.
- Even a rudimentary knowledge of polite phrases will be appreciated by natives and can also be used by your children while they are mastering their new language.
Get your visa, passport, or other necessary documentation.
Get your visa, passport, or other necessary documentation. Obviously, you need a passport if you plan to travel abroad. The validity of your passport depends on the country you’re moving to, so make sure it’s all in order before traveling. Until recently, I had no idea passports expire after five years and needed to be renewed! Do this well before you plan to move abroad and ensure that you have enough pages for entry stamps (many countries require two open pages for every new stamp).
Visas can also be complex to obtain and difficult to navigate without much prior research or help from an immigration specialist. Some visas are easy enough that you can get them in person at an embassy or consulate when entering a country (like Thailand), while others require months of preparation and waiting.
For example, Australia requires many different types of visas depending on the length of stay and purpose of the trip (work visa versus holiday visa). Make sure you have everything you need before departing for your adventure by researching your new home country’s specific requirements!
Pack light, but pack smart.
- Pack light.
If you plan on moving again in the near future, you don’t want your belongings to weigh you down with extra baggage costs. Take a note from seasoned travelers: pack light and practical.
- Pack smart.
Think of what’s essential to have on hand during your travel and when you first arrive at your new destination, then pack those items. For example, if you’re relocating during winter, remember to pack clothes that can be layered and that can be washed and dried in a hotel room or laundromat. Think ahead as much as possible and take care of anything that might cause stress later on.
Inform your bank and other financial institutions that you may need to access your accounts while abroad.
It’s important to make sure that your bank and financial institutions are aware of your travel plans. If you plan to access your account from abroad, whether by withdrawing funds from an ATM in a foreign country or by setting up a bank account in a foreign country, be sure to inform them of this ahead of time.
Consider safety issues when relocating to a foreign country.
Be aware of the safety issues in the areas where you plan to spend most of your time. While you are living in a foreign country, it is likely that its culture and laws will be different from your own. Make sure you know the local laws and customs. Do not do anything stupid while you are there, such as breaking any laws or getting into trouble with authorities.
Make sure you have health insurance that will cover your medical expenses should something happen while you’re abroad.
- Health insurance is not always required by law, but it is always a good idea.
- International health insurance can be more expensive than local health insurance, but it will cover you in any country you are visiting and some plans may offer coverage for your family as well.
- You can find out more about international health insurance plans online or at your local embassy.
- Save money.
- Open a checking and savings account at your current bank. Look into different options for ways to save, such as investing or bonds. Make a budget of how much you will spend each month.
- Consider how much you need to save for your future home, food, travel expenses, and other emergency needs in your new country. Research the cost of living in the country where you are moving to so that you can prepare financially for the move.
Plan your travel in advance.
It’s best to book your flight as early as possible. Not only does this allow you to get a good deal on tickets, but it also gives you time to make plans for your trip.
Travel agents have access to a wealth of deals that the average person doesn’t know about. They can help you find the best place to stay or even the cheapest way to get there! If cost is an issue, consider traveling with friends or family members who live in the country where you will be relocating. This may help offset some of those costs associated with flying alone or staying in expensive hotels by yourself.
Be prepared for travel delays and cancellations due to bad weather conditions (especially during winter months when many people are migrating north). Remember that airlines often operate on limited schedules so don’t be surprised if your flight arrives late at night or even into the next day!
Get your vaccinations.
Prior to your departure, you will need to get a few vaccinations. These include a flu shot, tetanus shot, typhoid shot, hepatitis A and B shots, meningitis shot, rabies shot (if your new country has lots of dogs or bats), and measles and mumps shots. If you have children under the age of one year old who will be accompanying you on your trip, it is especially important that their shots are up to date in order to avoid any problems with entry. Make sure all of these vaccinations are updated at least two weeks prior to departure.
Research housing opportunities where you are going to be living once you arrive in the country you are relocating to.
There are several ways you can go about finding a place to live. The first is the one most people would think of, which is simply to look in the local newspapers for advertisements for apartments for rent. Another option is to check on bulletin boards at universities or other educational institutions, as well as on community centers. And finally, you can always check with real estate agencies in your new area, and they should be able to help you find what you’re looking for.
The second important consideration is how your housing choices will affect your taxes: it’s quite possible that a rental apartment could end up costing more than a hotel room if it turns out that the hotel offers tax-free vouchers while an apartment doesn’t. So when making this decision, make sure to take into account all costs associated with renting an apartment versus staying at a hotel or short-term rental property such as Airbnb.
In addition to these basic things mentioned above there are many other details that need attention when moving abroad for work and living situations vary based on country so don’t forget about researching specific laws relating directly or indirectly impacting expats’ lives overseas!
If you are moving alone, get in touch with others who have either moved there before or who live there. They can give you tips and advice based on experience, which can make things much easier for you when it comes time for your move.
To get a sense of what your new home will be like, you can use a variety of online tools to contact people who have either moved there before or who live there.
- It’s worth taking some time to search Facebook for groups specific to your new home. If you find one relevant to your relocation, ask the moderators if you can join. You might be able to ask for advice about where to live or what local amenities are like. It’s also likely that other members have used movers in their area before, which could be helpful when it comes time for your move.
- If there are local meetups in the area, see if you can attend one in-person or virtually from wherever you currently live so that you’ll have an idea of what locals are like and feel more comfortable asking questions.
- See if there are any relocation-specific forums online that pertain to the area where you’re moving—people often post their experiences and things they wish they had known before going through with their relocation. You’ll likely be able to find valuable information on these sites!
- Browse LinkedIn for people in the area who may have relocated before and send them a message asking about their experience and whether there was anything that could have made it easier on them during their move. People are usually open and willing to share helpful information so just ask!
- Talk with coworkers if possible—they may know people already living abroad who would be glad to help someone new out by giving advice based on experience
You should plan well ahead of time for a big move to a foreign country.
Before you pull up stakes and cross the border, pay attention to these tips.
You should plan well ahead of time for a big move to a foreign country. You want to make sure you have everything in order before you take off—and that you know what’s waiting for you when you arrive.
First, be sure to research your new home thoroughly. You’ll need to find out details about various things: where the nearest grocery store is, which restaurants are good, who your new neighbors will be, and whether or not there is public transportation in the area.
If English is not widely spoken in your new home country, it may also be wise to invest in some language courses beforehand so that communication goes as smoothly as possible once you get settled. These factors will help immensely when it comes time for your arrival day! A lot can go wrong if this isn’t done carefully enough; I think we’ve all had those moments where something has gone horribly awry because we weren’t prepared enough (or at all).