People choose to work abroad for many reasons. Some enjoy travel opportunities, others want professional experience, while others will move because of the limited job opportunities in their home countries.
Taking the major step of moving abroad to work can be daunting, but there can also be great rewards to follow the risk. Alongside the oft-cited improvements to their lifestyle and friendlier climates, there is often a strong financial incentive to move abroad for work.
Those looking to advance their careers and earn more money have become increasingly drawn to the Middle East, with three-quarters of expats in full-time employment and 70% of those believing they’re earning more than they would be at home.
Asia is also home to many of the high-flying expats, with a significant proportion of expats picking up six figure salaries. Almost a quarter of expats in China are earning more than $300,000 per year, and it has become a hotspot for Australian expats looking to earn more money in recent times.
While the allure of a bigger pay check and a better lifestyle is there, actually preparing for the move can be a little daunting. If you’re unsure what steps you need to take before you go, this infographic about moving abroad and the tips below should help point you in the right direction.
If you are simply moving to another country for a short-term contract and plan to be back to your previous home soon, it likely won’t have any significant bearing. For someone to go on a longer-term trip, the first thing you have to do is to decide what you should do with your property and finances.
Will you sell your home or rent it out while you’re overseas? Will you take your car or leave it behind? Are your financial assets susceptible to the tax system in your new country? These are all major considerations ahead of the move.
Plan your packing
Keep in mind that most airlines now limit travelers (even those on whole deal flights around the world) to a bag that is around 50 lb (20 kg) or less. That is not much. Most people will choose to hire an international removal company to transfer the majority of their possessions, which can be expensive but saves much hassle.
Again this will depend on how long you’re actually going to be out there and what your living arrangements will be. If your employer is providing accommodation and you’ll be returning home to visit regularly then you might be able to get away with just taking the essentials at first.
Try to sort out with your bank
You must tell your bank and credit organisations of your approaching move, and the sooner the better. Make a point to sign up for paperless billing if possible and check that the bank has lifted every global confinement on the use of credit cards and ATM use abroad.
If you’ve ever tried to take out money on holiday without clearing it with your bank you’ve probably had the shock of the overseas transaction fees or worse – more than a few have had their card swallowed by a merciless overseas ATM!
Plan for the first couple of days abroad
The first week abroad will typically be the most troublesome. You’ll be moving into your new home, getting your telephone and other utilities set up and finding your way around. Try to read up on the local area ahead of time to find conveniences like supermarkets, and make sure you know where your local medical centers will be.
Sites like Yelp are your friend when it comes to finding decent places to eat, and most major expat communities will have a website or forum where you’ll be able to ask questions and get advice.
Get your documents together
Moving to another country typically requires a lot of paperwork. Alongside the basics like your passport, you may need to apply for a visa or other residency status. This will vary from place to place, so once again it’s vital that you find out what you need to take with you.
You’ll also need to make copies of your bank statements, marriage certificate, birth certificate, driving license and other relevant international documents in most places. Try to arrange this well in advance, as it’s easy to lose paperwork during the packing process.
Moving to a new country is daunting, but it can be incredibly exciting and rewarding. Just make sure you stay organised and your trip will be far less stressful!