8 Things to Know Before Moving Across the World

Posted Country Guides / February 18, 2020
Anastasia Hill

Apart from being the next fashion icon, Anastasia is also a freelance writer and expert on moving (and packing clothes).

Whether you got a perfect job offer, decided to move for love, or simply crave a foreign adventure, moving across the world can (and probably will) be one of the most complicated things you’ll ever do, for many reasons. So stay with us to find out what are the eight things to know about if you want to accomplish this life-changing decision as smoothly as possible.

#1 You Really Need a Checklist

Let’s begin with a 101 in every relocation, interstate or international – you’re going to need a checklist. It’s the best way to organize your move and to be sure that none of the crucial steps will be forgotten or overlooked. You wouldn’t wish to find out the night before your flight to a new home that your passport is just about to expire. Or worse, at the airport. Divide your tasks between days, and you’ll be able to cope with any moving stress that may occur before the big day.

Book a Flight Well Before You Plan to Travel to Your New Home

Among the first things on a checklist, besides contacting international movers, should be booking the tickets for the trip. It will provide you with a clear timeline and allow you to make a schedule that best suits your needs.

#2 What You’ll Need When Moving Across the World the Most – Money and Documents

Collecting the essential documents needed to travel abroad can be a drag, true, but there’s no way around it. You’ll certainly need a valid passport to enter another country. Some countries require that a passport is valid for at least six months after the travel date. For some of them, you’ll need a visa, too. You should get as much international travel info as you can and research relevant policies of your destination country.

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Moving Across the World? Save Enough Money If You Don’t Have a Job

It would be best if you already found work in a new country before you move there. That would ease your life in several ways, both financially and in terms of making friends and adjusting to a new country. If that’s not the case, make sure to have enough funds on your savings account. It is recommended to save up enough money to sustain yourself for at least the first six months.

#3 Health Preparations

There aren’t many things more important than health. So do your homework in that regard, too. Check up whether your insurance will cover you after you move out of the US. If you use prescription medication, learn if it can be legally bought in the state you’re moving to, and have a solid supply with you if it can’t. Also, make sure that you’re adequately immunized against all diseases that may await overseas.

#4 Learn More About the Destination Country

When moving overseas, you should be prepared to experience culture shock. Folks outside of the States most certainly do stuff differently. Learning in advance about their life, culture, habits, customs, and what is and what isn’t socially acceptable, will get you settled in much quicker and will help you befriend locals.

Learn About the Costs That Await You

Another point of research should be the cost of living in your future country. With at least some knowledge of local prices, you can create better financial plans, especially if you don’t have a job from day one.

Get in Touch With Other Expats

It would be very useful to take some time and connect with American expats who already live at your future destination. It shouldn’t be so hard to find their online groups on social media or other internet sites. They will gladly share their experiences with you and give you a better grasp of what life looks like, whether you’re going to Chile, Japan, or anywhere in between.

#5 Decide What to Do With Your Belongings

Moving overseas is an excellent opportunity to sort through your stuff and get rid of the unnecessary items. Sure enough, take with you what you hold dear, but be aware that international shipping, whether by sea or by air, is not cheap. That ancient couch certainly isn’t worth the expenses. You can give it to parents or a friend for safekeeping until you return if that’s the plan. Or it can go to storage. The same goes for cars. You may opt for overseas vehicle shipping, but before you do, do your research on driving regulations at the destination and public transport options.

Tips on What to Pack

When it comes to packing for an overseas move, the golden rule is to pack as little as you can possibly live with. Not only that shipping is expensive, but you can buy mostly everything when you arrive at the final destination. But as with any rule, there are certain exceptions. Some people are ready to pay whatever it takes to ship a collection of bones to the other side of the world, or an old piano they don’t want to part with.

From home, you should take basic stuff, which should depend on the region you’re moving to. Be mindful of local conditions. You won’t be taking the same clothes to Egypt as you would to Nepal, for example. In any case, you can always ask your moving company for advice as well as for packing services.

#6 It’s a Test For Every Relationship

Moving overseas will add one more layer to the overall experience, in the form of testing the endurance of your relationship. If you moved to be together with your significant other, you’d most likely be spending more time together than ever before, all of sudden. That and all the tiny glitches and issues that seemed insignificant before the move might make an explosive compound. Still, as always, honest talk and willingness to compromise will do miracles. Having to share ups and downs of every moment may yet strengthen your bond to an even higher degree.

On the other hand, if you moved away from your partner, you’d have to figure out a way to keep in touch and keep your romance alive. In spite of the thousands of miles that stand between you.

#7 Say Goodbye to People and Places

One of the hardest parts of every relocation is saying goodbye to people you love. Spend time with your family as much as you can. Throw a farewell party for friends. Visit all the special places you hold dear. Down a pint at the local pub, eat at the local diner, walk around the neighborhood. You’ll miss it all, make no mistake. Still, nobody can take away memories.

#8 Relocation Overseas Isn’t Easy, But It’s Highly Rewarding

One thing is certain – it won’t be easy, and you should be ready for that. It won’t all be an imagined fantasy tale, and there’ll be troubles and hardships along the way. Yet, you’re in for the experience of a lifetime. And as the pieces of the puzzle are coming into place, you’ll learn to love your new life while at the same time appreciate where you came from even more.

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