Packing our things and relocating for a new life abroad is something that most people have at least considered at one time or another. The thought of sun, sea, and sand is enough to tempt anyone. For a lot of us, beginning a new chapter on foreign soil is just the new start we need – whether that’s alone or with our family.
The thought of moving to a new country is very exciting but equally daunting. There are so many factors to consider and stepping into the unknown is a little nerve-racking at any time. Don’t let those concerns become a deterrent. Instead, they should simply serve as confirmation that you should research your decision before making any commitment.
If you’ve come to the conclusion that a life abroad is for you, then the most obvious choice you’ll have to make is where. There are plenty of beautiful destinations across the world, many of which make great holiday destinations. However, don’t confuse a great vacation with the perfect living environment. Research the area and make sure it’s right for you.
It’s not just the climate and local attractions that you need to consider. Think about career prospects, school situations, transport facilities and all the other items you take for granted now. The last thing you want to do is up sticks only to realise the grass wasn’t greener.
Before moving, you need to research the process involved. A lot of countries require a working visa or other documents to gain access on a permanent basis. Some of these procedures can take time too. Look into this early to avoid disappointment and frustration later down the line. In most cases, it’s probably best to speak to an advisor about these issues.
Another major aspect to consider is potential language barriers. Moving to a non-English speaking land should be ruled out but it would be advised to at least learn the basics with a course prior to departure. If you really struggle to grasp this then there’s a good chance you could find it hard once arriving. Believe us, a few months of not being able to talk the lingo will soon make you feel a little alienated.
Depending on the country, you won’t require a comprehensive understanding of the dialect. Nevertheless, being able to at least hold a conversation is a must.
Even if you do feel confident with the language, dealing in a secondary dialect can leave you in a vulnerable position. Where possible, it is always best to carry out major procedures in your mother tongue. If nothing else, it will give you an added peace of mind.
Dealing with an English-speaking company like Caser Expat Insurance to protect your family’s health, car or home is hugely beneficial. It gives you the best chance to tailor cover plans to suit your needs and allows for questions that you might not be able to ask in another language. Moreover, it’s a great opportunity to discuss and gain friendly advice about other issues in the new land.
The chances are that you’ve already got your heart set on a particular location to start your new life. That’s great, but be careful. No matter how much research you’ve done, there is no way to be 100% certain that this is the place you’ll fall in love with for the long haul.
Rather than jumping in at the deep end, it might be worth renting a property for six months to dip your toes in the water. This will give you the option to move around every half year until you find the perfect location. Starting fresh twice a year might not sound too appealing, but it has to be better than committing to the wrong destination. Besides, if the trial period does confirm your initial beliefs then it gives you time to actually access the housing market and find the ideal home rather than just taking the first one that pops into your head.
When it does come to buying a home, it’s essential that you don’t rush it. There are a number of steps to be taken when buying any property, but purchasing abroad for the first time does bring a whole new set of potential problems. Using the internet or other resources for a bit of self-study is a great starting point. However, you should really be looking to speak to the country’s British consultant to ensure you know exactly what you are signing up for. Considering you’ll have already talked about visas or other legal documents, this shouldn’t be any hassle.
Even when you have decided on a permanent place of residency, be prepared to feel alone from time to time. Meeting new people is a great part of travelling and an equally rewarding part of relocating completely. However, these friends won’t replace your family or childhood mates you grew up with. You may get on perfectly, but the cultural references will be different as will tastes in various artistic elements.
For a lot of people, the positives outweigh those negatives. Nonetheless, they do need thorough consideration. Being a fond holiday traveller doesn’t mean you can’t be a homely person. If a love of your home surroundings is at your core then moving away will be a mistake no matter where you go to. Different people have different needs. Be honest with yourself.
If moving is still the ideal solution then you should still consider the difficulty of returning home. Chances are that you’ll still want to visit your family and friends, especially in the early stages. Distance isn’t necessarily the problem here, regularity of flights and genuine ease of travelling back and forth is.
Nevertheless, this shouldn’t be the key to your decision. At the end of the day, you have to do what is right for you. If that means moving upping sticks to a remote area with less advanced communication technology and a lack of transport facilities back home then so be it.
Ultimately, this is one of the biggest decisions you’ll ever make and it has to be about you. Make the right choice and you could unlock a new world of increased happiness.