Maybe it’s for a job. Maybe it’s for adventure. Maybe it’s because you’ve always wanted to live in a country where they drive on the other side of the road.
Whatever the reason, it doesn’t matter why you want to move overseas. What matters is that you get all your ducks in a row before bidding adieu to the United States.
We’ve assembled a list of the basic stuff. An international move is a complicated affair. Consider these five tips as places to start your research.
Of course, you’re going to need a job. But depending on where you move, that pursuit of gainful employment could be quite different from what you’re used to in the States.
You’ll need work visas or permits, knowledge of the job market, an understanding of the city you’re moving to and—hopefully—a few connections to make the hunt a little less arduous.
Try networking before you move and see if you have any friends of friends who could offer some support in your new city.
2. Bank accounts
Before moving, investigate financial institutions in your future destination. Here are some good questions to ask upfront:
- Can you set up an account beforehand?
- How easy is to close the account if you decide the international move is not for you?
- What kind of fees are associated with the account?
You don’t want to fly into your new country with a bunch of cash in your wallet and hope that you don’t get mugged. Do as much research as possible before you go.
If you thought paying Uncle Sam was complicated, just wait until you try to figure out your tax obligation overseas.
For that reason and many more, consult with an accountant before you leave the country. A finance professional will be able to help you come with a plan to stay organized when you move overseas.
4. Health insurance
What’s worse than being in the hospital with appendicitis? Knowing that you’re insurance might not cover overseas doctors.
Before leaving, check with your health care provider to ensure that you (and your family) are covered in case if injury or illness. This also should be discussed with a potential employer before you commit to the job and a move overseas.
If you’re moving with young kids or teens, you’ll want to investigate the educational possibilities. Here are some starter questions:
- Are your children fluent in the country’s native language?
- Do they need a school that specializes in teaching American citizens?
Check out the State Department’s Office of Overseas Schools for more information on the best education opportunities for your children when you move overseas.