By Vance Stevens
Special to Relocation.com
Moving abroad can be an exhilarating and educational experience; however, it can also be stressful and overwhelming. Here are a few questions to ask yourself before making the leap to move abroad.
What will I need for my move?
Packing for an overseas move can be a stressful process. Of course, you will be limited to the amount of processions you can bring along. Do your best to limit yourself to only the bare necessities. Consider selling the things you no longer need, or are impractical to bring with you. This is not only the perfect way to free up room, but it is also a good way to earn a few extra dollars for your trip. Ask family or friends if they could use any of your larger procession, or suggest they hold them for you if you have plans on returning. Donating is another great way to rid yourself of the excess.
Where will I live?
Before you hire an international moving company, think about where you will live. Even if you have not secured permanent residence, it is important to setup temporarily housing from the day you land in your new home. Whether it is a hostel, a friend’s house, hotel or newly rented apartment, have a place you feel comfortable heading once you have arrived. Search online listings for potential roommates, and be sure to research the area to insure it fits your living standards.
What will I do for work?
Find out what documentation will be need for your international employment before you head off. There are many laws and regulations concerning employment for foreigners. Be sure to familiarize yourself with the particular country’s requirements; the last thing you want is to arrive at your new home, unable to earn a living. Often, a work visa will be necessary before you will be allowed into the country for residence. Utilize government websites, and do not be afraid to reach out to anyone you know who may have experience with living and working overseas.
Once you have secured a work visa, begin your job before heading overseas. By doing this you will not only help expedite the hiring process, it will also help you understand the current job climate of the area.
What will I miss most when I’m gone?
Homesickness isn’t limited to college freshman. Moving internationally can quickly become a cause for stress—if you let it. Prepare yourself for the change. Make sure you understand the commitment you are making and talk with people who have experience living abroad. If you don’t know anyone who has lived overseas, check out one of the many blogs or forums that offer opinions on foreign living situations. In addition, you will want to consider the impact the move will have on your established relationships. Will you be able to keep in touch with those most important to you? Are you independent enough to be separated from friends and loved ones?
How will I meet new people?
It is always good to know people who have established themselves in the place you have decide to live; and the best way to meet new people is to utilize these connections. Of course, this isn’t always the case, and you may find yourself alone the day you arrive. If this is the case, you should consider how you are going to meet new people. If you have a job, that will be the perfect opportunity to meet locals and make new connections. However, if work isn’t on your immediate agenda, finding opportunities to make new friends could be a challenge. Think of places you could visit, clubs you could join and social events that will have people with interest similar to yours.
Do I know the laws?
In addition to employment laws, there are countless other laws—large and small—that you will want to make yourself aware of before arriving in a new country. Many of these laws can be found by visiting government websites; however, don’t assume you have it everything covered after one Google search.