>> Oct 23, 2015
You’re considering a big move, one that you have never undertaken before. Specifically, this potential move will take you abroad, far from your family and your familiar surroundings. Before you make any move abroad, you should keep in mind the following points.
You need to secure a visa. You possess a passport, but that doesn’t give you a right to stay in a country beyond a certain amount of weeks, perhaps months. If you intend to stay there for the long term, including permanently, then securing a visa is critically important. Some countries are fairly generous in handing out visas, while others restrict them to certain types of people, particularly those in skilled occupations in demand. Your best chance of moving abroad may have you relocating to a remote area where demand for your skills are high.
Your health costs may be high. For people who live in the United States, we’re very familiar with the high cost of maintaining health. That cost may be greater in some countries, requiring you to obtain your own health insurance. Its a cost that may be bearable for the person who has a good paying job lined up, but too costly otherwise for everyone else.
Taxes can be surprisingly consuming. Earn a dollar where you live and about 25 cents may go to pay various taxes. In some countries, the “take rate” is much lower, while in other countries you may find yourself forfeiting as much as 70 cents on the dollar. Your move abroad decision shouldn’t be regretted simply because you weren’t careful enough to determine your costs.
Other living expenses can vary too. In many countries, food is quite expensive, especially in locales where the bulk of the food has to be brought in. On the other hand, if you locate to a warm climate and locally produced food is plentiful and low-cost, then you may enjoy the savings. There will be other trade offs too, including the availability of public transportation, education opportunities, entertainment options, housing costs and utilities. Even in “like” countries you may find strong differences between communities, a cost discrepancy you may find entirely surprising.
Consider foreign exchange fees. For older Americans moving abroad, pensions and other retirements accounts can make living in those countries inviting. However, you’ll still have to reckon with a cost that many people tend to overlook, namely foreign exchange fees. Unless you get paid in local currency, you’ll have to exchange what you earn in American dollars to local funds. That means paying forex fees, what can diminish the value of your income.
Getting back home. Moving far away means you’ll want to get back home. At least occasionally. That means taking into consideration the cost of flying home and your accessibility to airports. A good practice here is to look at airfare costs now as well as for different times of the year. Then, expect fares to adjust from time to time, depending on global fuel prices, flight availability and taxes.
Moving Abroad Considerations
There are a few more things to consider before packing your bags to move abroad. These are points that are often overlooked during the excitement of planning for such a move.
For one, you should contact the moving companies to find out which ones serve your intended country advises Allied Moving Companies. For another, never underestimate the emotional impact such a move can have on friends and family. It may seem that they understand, but the reality is that both time and distance will separate you from your loved ones, making it difficult if not impossible to stay connected.