Moving abroad to pastures new can open so many opportunities to you and be a decision that could change your life going forward. Becoming an expat isn’t a decision to be taken lightly and jumping into something you are ill-prepared for is never a good idea. Especially if it means moving to live in a different country. This is especially important if you are moving your family, as you want to make sure you have all the legalities in place before uprooting your life and growing roots in a new country.
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Know How Much it Will Cost You
Relocating is not going to be a cheap experience. Factor in finding somewhere to live along with any costs to transport your belongings plus travel, taxes, healthcare, visa applications etc. Start saving money early and make sure you have enough to cover your move, loss of earnings during the move and then money to fall back for those unexpected hiccups. It is suggested you have around six months of savings to fall back on.
Apply for a Visa
The earlier you start this process, the more prepared you will be when the time arrives to make the move. Don’t be tempted to leave things until the last minute. Have an up to date passport ready for travel and make sure you have plenty of time left on it. Depending on your circumstances you could apply for an indefinite leave to remain to allow you to become settled in the country of your choice. The process can be different depending on the country you are relocating to so be prepared for and know exactly what you need to support your visa applications so as not to delay the process.
Do Your Research
Moving to a new country can be a massive culture shock. Make sure to do your research thoroughly to prepare yourself for the move. You want to focus on housing, transport links, local schools, healthcare and also local traditions. What may be acceptable in your home country could mean something totally different in other cultures. So get the lay of the land before you move so you can help yourself and your family to integrate easier knowing local customs. If you are moving to a country that speaks a different language to your native tongue, taking lessons for teaching yourself the language will help you to get ahead faster and remove some language barriers too.
Take your Time
Moving to a new country to live is vastly different than simply holidaying abroad. you are looking at putting down roots and making a new life for yourself. Things will no doubt be hugely different and you shouldn’t expect everything to be idyllic from the moment you arrive. Even the best preparation in the world cannot prepare you for the settling in period that will inevitably come. Homesickness, missing family and friends, getting to grips with the oral language and culture can and will take some time. so don’t berate yourself for not fitting in immediately. Allow yourself time to settle into your new surroundings and acclimatise.