Things to Do Before Moving Across the World

Posted Moving Abroad / September 4, 2023
Madison Rogers

Born and raised in Houston Madison is a content writer who loves traveling. She has lived in different states and is always eager to share her knowledge with others.

Moving across the world is an exhilarating adventure, but it requires careful planning and preparation. Before embarking on this life-changing journey, there are crucial things to do before moving that will ensure a smooth transition to your new destination. From organizing your belongings and handling paperwork to saying farewell to loved ones, our comprehensive guide will help you tackle every essential aspect, making your international move a seamless and unforgettable experience.

So, what are the crucial things to do before relocation? Firstly, research and understand the regulations and requirements for your destination country, including visa and customs procedures. Next, create a detailed relocation checklist to organize tasks like packing, notifying authorities, and handling utilities. Don’t forget to inform relevant parties about your change of address and make arrangements for healthcare and insurance coverage. Additionally, declutter your belongings and consider hiring a reputable international moving company. Lastly, take the time to say goodbye to friends and family, making the transition emotionally smoother.

Research Your Destination

Embarking on an international relocation is like setting sail on a grand adventure to a distant land. To ensure a smooth voyage, it’s crucial to thoroughly research your destination. Dive into the rich tapestry of the country’s culture, traditions, and customs; it will not only make you feel more connected but also help you adapt faster.

Connect with expat communities and forums to gain insights from those who have experienced moving overseas. Plan the relocation meticulously, addressing every detail from visa requirements to housing options. By doing so, you’ll reduce relocation stress and pave the way for a truly unforgettable experience.

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Gather Information About the New Country’s Culture, Customs, and Traditions

Adjusting to a new country brings with it a wealth of possibilities and reasons to relocate and embrace change. Before you venture out into uncharted territory, delve into the country’s culture, customs, and traditions. Understanding the local way of life will help you assimilate better and appreciate the unique aspects of your new home. Embrace the diversity you’ll encounter, and respect the local norms as you navigate through this exciting chapter of your life.

We recommend reading books, watching documentaries, and interacting with locals online to get a sense of the country’s history and traditions. Participate in local events and celebrations to immerse yourself in the culture and forge new connections once you relocate. Be open-minded and receptive to the changes, as each new experience will enrich your life in unexpected ways.

Understand the Local Laws, Regulations, and Visa Requirements

Venturing into a new world requires a firm grasp of the legal landscape. Before you embark on your journey, familiarize yourself with the necessary documents needed to travel abroad. Research the visa requirements and ensure all your paperwork is in order. On top of this, if you’re moving to a big city, familiarize yourself with local laws and regulations to stay informed and safe throughout your stay.

Consult the embassy or consulate of the destination country to clarify visa requirements and obtain necessary permits. Seek legal advice if you encounter any complexities or uncertainties in the immigration process. Research the specific laws of the city or region you’re moving to, especially regarding residency, employment, and property ownership.

Research the Cost of Living, Healthcare System, and Education Options

Moving abroad offers numerous different benefits, but it’s essential to understand the practical aspects, such as the cost of living, healthcare system, and education options. Thoroughly research the expenses associated with your new life and compare them with your budget to make informed decisions.

Consider the availability and quality of healthcare services and explore the educational opportunities for your family members. By assessing these factors, you’ll be better equipped to decide where to live and make the most of your relocation.

Utilize online cost-of-living calculators such as the Numbeo website to estimate expenses accurately and budget accordingly. Seek recommendations from expats or locals about the best healthcare providers and education institutions. Weigh the pros and cons of various neighborhoods and communities to find the ideal location that meets your lifestyle needs and preferences.

Sort and Organize Belongings

When preparing for a relocation, one of the most crucial steps is deciding what to keep when moving internationally. Sorting through your belongings can be both nostalgic and practical. Organize your move by categorizing items into essentials and non-essentials, carefully considering each item’s sentimental and functional value. This process will not only lighten your load but also simplify your relocation journey, making it easier to settle into your new house or apartment.

Declutter Your Possessions and Determine What to Sell, Donate, or Discard

Make sure to go through the liberating process of decluttering as you ponder what to get rid of before your adventure. Let go of items that no longer serve a purpose or hold sentimental significance. Consider selling valuable possessions, donating gently used items to charity organizations such as The Salvation Army and Goodwill, and discarding things that are beyond repair. This not only streamlines your move but also offers a chance for someone else to find joy in the belongings you no longer need.

Check out the video for more tips and tricks on how to speed up the decluttering process.

Create an Inventory of Items You Plan to Bring

Before you embark on this epic relocation, it’s time to get creative with your inventory! List down all the relocation essentials you plan to bring, but don’t forget to add a touch of wit and humor. Whether it’s your beloved coffee maker, trusty hiking boots, or even a quirky souvenir collection, creating this list with a playful tone can make the task enjoyable. Having an inventory will help you stay organized throughout the move and ensure you don’t leave behind anything you treasure.

Research Moving Companies That Specialize in International Relocations

Researching international moving companies is a crucial step when planning a global relocation. Begin by seeking recommendations from friends, family, or expat communities. Take advantage of online resources and review platforms to gather insights into various companies’ reputations and customer experiences.

Check if the companies are registered with the relevant authorities and accredited by reputable organizations. The Better Business Bureau website is an excellent resource for verifying a company’s credibility.

When hiring movers for an international relocation, it’s essential to look for those with specialized international moving by sea services. They should have experience in navigating complex customs and shipping regulations, ensuring a smooth and hassle-free overseas transition.

Hire a Professional International Moving Company With a Wide Range of Services

Entrusting your belongings to a professional international moving company with a diverse range of services is a smart move. Opt for movers that offer packing services, as they have the expertise to handle your possessions with care and ensure they are secure for the journey ahead. On top of this, inquire about overseas vehicle shipping services if you plan to take your vehicle abroad.

A reputable moving company experienced in shipping overseas will have the necessary knowledge and network to transport your vehicle safely. With the right professionals by your side, you can embark on your adventure with confidence, knowing that your cherished belongings will reach your new destination intact.

Go Over Financial and Legal Considerations

Start by creating a detailed budget for your relocation, considering expenses such as shipping, visa fees, and initial accommodation costs. If you’re relocating on a low budget, try to diligently save money to relocate and explore cost-effective options for various aspects of the relocation.

Evaluate your current financial situation and ensure you have sufficient funds to cover initial expenses in your new country. Also, review the legal requirements and documentation needed for your relocation, including visas, work permits, and any necessary contracts.

Notify Your Bank and Credit Card Companies About Your Relocation Plans

When relocating internationally, it’s essential to notify your bank and credit card companies about your plans. Inform them of your departure date and new address to ensure smooth financial transactions during and after the relocation.

Some banks may offer international banking services or partnerships with banks in your destination country, which could be advantageous. Additionally, inquire about foreign transaction fees and ATM withdrawal charges to avoid unnecessary expenses while abroad.

Settle Outstanding Bills and Cancel or Transfer Subscriptions and Services

As you move out for the first time, it’s essential to settle any outstanding bills with your current service providers, such as utilities, internet, and phone services. Inform them of your move-out date and request final bills to ensure a smooth disconnection process.

Cancel or transfer subscriptions to services like:

  • Gym membership,
  • Magazines,
  • Streaming platforms.

Be sure to update your contact information with other entities, such as the postal service, insurance companies, and professional associations.

Consult a Financial Advisor to Understand Tax Implications

To gain a clear understanding of your tax obligations, consult a financial advisor with expertise in international taxation. They can provide valuable advice on issues like tax residency, filing requirements, foreign income reporting, and any tax treaties that may apply between the two countries.

It’s essential to be proactive in addressing tax matters to avoid surprises and ensure compliance with the relevant tax laws. A financial advisor can guide you through these complexities, helping you make informed financial decisions and optimizing your tax situation while abroad.

Learning About Healthcare Is One of the Essential Things to Do Before Moving

Prioritizing your health when moving to a new country is of utmost importance. Schedule a comprehensive medical check-up with your healthcare provider to ensure you’re in good health before the journey.

Address any pending treatments or vaccinations recommended for your destination, especially if you are moving to regions with specific climate or health risks. Obtain copies of your medical records and prescriptions for ongoing medications, ensuring you have seamless access to healthcare services once you start living overseas.

Manage Documentation and Paperwork

Managing paperwork and documentation efficiently is crucial when relocating abroad. Create a comprehensive folder or digital system to organize essential documents, including your passport, visa, birth certificate, marriage certificate (if applicable), and any necessary permits or licenses for your destination country.

Keep physical and digital copies of these documents and store them securely to avoid any misplacement during the relocation. Also, maintain a file for important financial records, employment documents, and academic certificates.

Inform Important Contacts

Before embarking on your international journey, it’s essential to inform important contacts about your relocation plans. Notify your employer and colleagues of your departure, discuss any work-related arrangements, and ensure a smooth handover of responsibilities. Inform friends and family about your relocation, sharing your new contact details and address.

For a memorable farewell, consider organizing a moving away party to bid a heartfelt goodbye to your loved ones. This gathering will not only strengthen your bonds but also leave you with cherished memories as you embark on this exciting new chapter in your life.

Follow Our Tips and You’ll Be Ready to Thrive Abroad

From researching your destination to organizing your belongings, managing paperwork, and prioritizing your health, each step is vital to ensure a smooth and successful relocation. Remember to schedule a medical check-up, obtain copies of medical records and prescriptions, and address pending treatments or vaccinations.

With Sunset International Shipping as your trusted overseas moving company, you can rest assured that your possessions will be in capable hands during this transformative adventure. For a seamless and stress-free relocation experience, contact us and let our overseas shipping company guide you toward a bright and promising future in your new home. Bon voyage!


How Far in Advance Should I Start Planning for an International Move?

Ideally, you should start planning at least six to twelve months before. This time frame allows you to research your destination, understand visa requirements, and gather necessary documents. It also provides sufficient time to sort through your belongings, decide what to bring, and make arrangements for selling, donating, or discarding items you won’t be taking with you.

How Do I Choose a Reliable International Moving Company?

Choosing a reliable international moving company is crucial to ensuring a smooth and secure relocation. Start by researching companies that specialize in international moves and have a proven track record of successful relocations.

Check their credentials, certifications, and affiliations with reputable industry organizations. Read customer reviews and testimonials to gauge their reliability and professionalism. Request detailed quotes from multiple companies, comparing their services, pricing, and insurance coverage. It’s also important to verify if they have experience navigating customs regulations and handling overseas shipping logistics.

What Should I Consider When Deciding What to Bring and What to Leave Behind?

First, assess the practicality and cost-effectiveness of transporting certain items. Consider the size, weight, and value of each item, as well as the shipping costs associated with it. Evaluate whether similar items can be easily purchased in your new country.

Also, consider the climate and lifestyle of your destination. Items suitable for a different climate or not compatible with local infrastructure may be better left behind. Take sentimental value into account, but be selective to avoid excessive shipping costs or cluttering your new home.

How Do I Prepare Emotionally for Such a Big Move?

Start by acknowledging and accepting that it’s natural to feel a mix of emotions, including excitement, anticipation, and even some anxiety or sadness. Stay connected with loved ones and share your feelings with them. Research and learn about your new destination to build excitement and familiarity.

Stay organized by creating to-do lists and breaking down tasks into smaller, manageable steps. Maintain a support network and seek out fellow ex-pats or locals who can offer advice and guidance. Lastly, take time for self-care and engage in activities that bring you joy and relaxation.

How Can I Stay Connected With Friends and Family Back Home After the Move?

Staying connected with friends and family back home is crucial to maintaining strong relationships despite the distance. Fortunately, technology provides numerous ways to bridge the gap. Stay in touch through video calls, instant messaging apps, and social media platforms. Set regular communication schedules to catch up and share updates. Plan virtual gatherings or game nights to engage in shared activities. Send physical letters, postcards, or care packages to show you’re thinking of them.

What Are Some Strategies for Adapting to a New Culture and Building a Social Network in a New Country?

Embrace the unfamiliar with curiosity and an open mind, ready to learn and respect local customs and traditions. Investing time in language classes and cultural workshops can foster meaningful connections and enhance communication with locals. Engaging in local activities and events provides exposure to the community and opportunities to make new friends who share mutual interests.

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