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Your Ultimate Moving Abroad Guide

Moving Abroad


Are you planning to move abroad soon?

Moving abroad comes with its share of challenges and excitement. You are effectively leaving everything you know and embarking on a different journey where you will meet different people, cultures, and ways of life.




If you are familiar with change, then you understand that anything can happen when you move. As such, it helps to be prepared and to land in a new country feeling well equipped with the survival skills needed to thrive in your new environment.

So what exactly do you need to make your move abroad smooth and effortless?

Get Your Documents Ready

Your documents are one of the most important things you need to move abroad. You’d rather leave everything else behind but have your documents in order. These documents are not just meant to give you entry into whatever country you want to get into, they are also meant to make your life easier.

Most countries you move to will need you to have:

  • A valid passport. Some countries will require that your passport be valid for at least 6 months before your last travel date.
  • Appropriate Visas. Whether you are moving to study, work, or live there, make sure your visa reflects the same.
  • A driver’s license if you plan to start driving immediately. According to SC Vehicle’s Peter Mann, make sure that its expiration date is at least six months after you settle in the country.
  • A birth certificate.
  • Copies of your college and high school transcripts. Some countries will require them as proof especially if you’re moving for education purposes.


Find Out About Custom Fees

Are you planning to move with some of your items? Maybe your favorite couch?

Find out whether your country of destination charges custom fees for these items or you might be in trouble. It won’t matter what form of transport you use or whether your items are used or not.

Learn what your country of destination says about custom fees for furniture, vehicles, and other personal belongings. The easiest way to find this information is through the national website if they have one. You can also loo through different forums and see what people who moved there before have to say about the same.


Sort Out Your Work Plan Early

If you plan to move to a different country for work purposes, sorting out your work requirements early makes it easy for you to start earning as soon as possible. If possible, start sending your applications early so that you can hit the ground running.

Find out how long you will be required to start work after landing and how many hours you are expected to work. It helps to find out how much money you will be making because some economies might require you to work multiple jobs to make ends meet before you can fully get a hang of it. Also, make sure that you have the required documents to work in said country.


Get Your Finances in Order

Moving is expensive.

You are not just getting into a plane and going abroad. On the contrary, moving involves uprooting your life from one place and planting it in another. You will need money to get your documents in order, to move your personal items or dispose of them, to move, to find accommodation in a new country, look for work, travel around the country, and so much more.

In most cases, having a well-thought-out financial plan when moving makes it easier for you to transition.


Learn About the Tax System

There’s likely not a single country in this world that does not require you to pay taxes, including the one you are traveling to. Different countries have different tax systems. For example, in the US, there are different levels of taxes that need to be paid by citizens. Therefore, moving there might require you to learn these different taxes.

It also helps to find out whether your country of residence has a double taxation treaty with your native country. Take your time and learn everything you need to know about the reporting requirements. Also, find out whether your resident country will tax you on worldwide income.


Learn About the Cost of Living

You are likely to incur a high cost of living regardless of what country you move to during the first few months of moving there. This is especially the case if it is your first time being in the country and you haven’t learned the survival tactics.

That said, you need to understand the cost of living with regards to necessities such as rent, food, clothes, utilities, and so on. Even if you are moving to a smaller country, it helps to learn how much people spend. This plays two roles, it allows you to evaluate your living condition and decide where you want to live comfortably. It also prevents you from being overcharged on items simply because you are a foreigner.


Learn More about Public Transportation

Unless you plan to drive as soon as you touch down, it helps to learn more about public transportation.

Public transport varies across different countries. Find out how people pay for public transport in your residence country, what they use for public transport and the culture around it.

You might be surprised to find out that your resident’s country public transport is more efficient or less efficient than what you are used to. It also helps to learn about accessibility to public transports. For example, if you have a disability find out how easy it is to access taxis or busses.


Get Health Insurance

Health insurance is another important factor to consider when moving to a different country. Most functioning countries have some form of health insurance. If it helps use travel insurance until you are legally settled in the country. Find out whether there is some form of insurance cover for residents and learn how it operates. This includes learning the costs, incudes, and entails.



Settling in and thriving abroad is going to take time. However, it can turn out to be a rewarding experience if you find your stride. Don’t shy away from the Do not be afraid to chase those opportunities. After all, the only thing between you and success abroad is you.