If you’re reading this, you’re probably moving overseas or at least plan to do so. If you’re not prepared, moving abroad can be quite a frustrating experience. Save yourself some a lot of the hassles of moving with this quick guide.
Step 1: Give yourself at least half a year to prepare
While this isn’t always possible, make sure that you’ve got more than enough time to get all your affairs in order before you move abroad. Any loose ends left hanging can prove to be costly for you in the future, so be sure to make a list of all the things you need to do as early as possible. You will also want to learn everything you can about your host culture, especially with respect to professional practices.
Step 2: Make sure your family members have time to process their own affairs.
Make sure your spouse and children have time to understand and understand the move. If they’re moving with you, make sure to help them organize their resignations, reassignments, farewell parties or whatever they need smoothly transition to life in a different country.
Step 3: Contact your banks and credit card companies
Be sure to call your banks and credit card companies to inform them you will be moving abroad. This way you’’ have access to your funds and credit while you’re overseas. You can also begin closing accounts that you won’t need. Make sure to call them up more than once to ensure that you covered all your bases with each of them.
If you still need to make payments while you’re away, set up direct debits/deposit accounts with your bank. These will be necessary for making mortgage payments, loan repayments, pensions, and savings and other regular payments you need to make while you’re away.
Step 4: Have all your family’s passports, visas, and other documents ready
If you’re family’s moving with you, make sure all their passports and other important documents are prepared and ready before you depart. If you’re moving to a country that requires a visa, make sure to prepare your requirements well in advance. Everything pertaining to properties, medical records, and other important matters should be sorted filed correctly. Copies of important documents should be left in the care of a trusted friend, family member, or attorney
Step 5: Review, cancel, and acquire relevant insurance coverage
If you’re selling your house and leaving for good, you’ll probably want to arrange to cancel any insurance policy you have on the house on the day you leave. The same follows for other types of property that you can’t necessarily take with you. You’ll also want to cancel any health or accident insurance policies that you won’t be able to use abroad. Make sure to get international insurance coverage from a company that specifically focuses on this area, like Now Health International.
Step 6: Confirm your living arrangements well in advance
Whether you will living out of a company-provided house, renting, or booking a room at a hotel, make sure that there is definitely a place waiting for you right when you arrive. Chances are, you can always move somewhere else if it doesn’t suit your needs, but you definitely want to be sure you have a place to stay in the meantime.
Step 7: Get in touch with professional moving and shipping companies
Shipping and moving your stuff to a different country can be a huge source of stress. You definitely don’t want to be arranging this last minute. Check with moving companies for quotes in both your home country and the country you’re moving to well in advance.
Step 8: Have your medical and dental records in order
Having your medical and dental records as those of your family members with you can save you a lot of trouble should you need to seek medical attention in your host country. If you’re bringing pets with you, make sure to bring their medical records as well. You might also want to read up on what names any critical medications go by in your host country.
Step 9: Consider getting an international driver’s license
Chances are your country’s driver’s license will not be accepted in your host country. Having an international driver’s license will make it much easier for you to get around, should you get a car. It will also give you another ID, which can be important, as you don’t always want to be giving your passport to just anyone.
Step 10: Sell or give away everything you don’t need
Hold a garage sale and donate everything unsold to a charity or anyone else willing to take your possessions off your hands. Leave things of particular value that cannot make the move with close friends and family.
Step 11: Pack more clothes than you think you’ll need
There is always a very real chance that the shipping company will be a bit delayed in sending your stuff over. You may be living out of your suitcase for a while, so make sure you have all your essentials with you.
Step 12: Try to enjoy yourself
You are now embarking on a new phase in your life. The red tape will be mildly unpleasant, but you will soon be experiencing things and situations that you never expected before. A positive attitude will help keep you grounded through this often difficult process.