Moving abroad can be exciting. You anctipate so many positive things about the life and place you are relocating to. But it is also very complicated and requires extensive planning while considering a range of aspects. Without sufficient homework, you can end up in a lot of hassle. To ensure the experience of your moving abroad goes without hiccups, here is a checklist you need to follow.
1. Consider the living costs
An essential factor to consider is the cost of living. Therefore, one should plan smartly before renting or buying a new house and spending money on other stuff. Apart from the cost of living, you must also consider your kids’ study arrangements, healthcare requirements, etc.
For instance, when moving to Europe from the USA, you might experience a change in the cost of living. The US cities like Fort Lauderdale, Florida, are considered expensive but still more economical than many European cities. For example, the cost of housing in Geneva is almost 50% more than the national average in the US. It means you must save money before moving to get you through the initial days.
2. Contact a moving company
An experienced moving company is well-versed in the rules and regulations of moving across international borders. However, you should consider their prior experience in moving stuff from your current city to the new place. For instance, if you currently reside in Fort Lauderdale and plan to move to Europe, the shortlisted moving company must have handled similar assignments. Moving from Fort Lauderdale to Europe becomes easier and hassle-free if you contact and shortlist the moving company at the start of the planning process. International movers are often very busy. They always have their assignments lined up. Searching for and contacting mover companies at the last minute results in working with a less professional mover, which can be a headache.
3. Check the validity of your passport
When relocating across international borders, ensure all the documents are ready to avoid any problems on arrival in the new country. Ensure you have requested the official copies of the important documents much earlier so you have a few weeks to collect them. If your passport is about to expire soon, apply for a passport renewal as soon as you decide to move. It will help you avoid renewing your passport in a new country right after moving or within a few months. Carefully planning your documents before time saves you from stress at the time of relocation.
4. Apply for the visa and resident permit
Every country has its own visa requirements. Also, the time embassies take to process your visa application varies too. Applying late for a visa can create serious trouble. If you are moving for work, a delay in the visa documents means you cannot report to work on your joining date. And you might land yourself in hot waters with the new employer. Therefore, start the visa process early, so all your documents are ready on time.
5. Arrange your moving documents
Having all the important moving documents is not enough. You must know exactly where they are. So, arranging your moving papers in a folder should be a primary aspect of planning. Having all the documents in place saves a lot of time when looking for them and ensures a joyful transition from your current abode to the next.
6. Collect documents for moving pets
If you are moving with a pet, fulfill all their documentary requirements. The vet should give their consent for your pet moving to a new country. The health certificate issued by the vet must be recent, stating that the pet has cleared all the immunization requirements and is fit to travel.
7. Inform the required organizations about your relocation
You must notify certain organizations and people when moving to a new country. Some of the common ones to consider are:
- Your bank
- The U.S. Postal Service
- Utility companies (Electric, Gas, Solar)
- Insurance providers
- Your employer
- Tax Agencies
- Your landlord/realtor
- Friends and family
8. Plan the relocation cost
Moving abroad can be very expensive. There are costs apart from the initial accommodation at the new place and airfare. You need money for furnishings in the new house, getting your kids admitted to a new school, a deposit or bond on your accommodation, and so on. You must think extensively about all the costs of the moving process to make it stress-free. If you are relocating country to look for work, you should have some money to meet your expenses until you find a job.
9. Organize storage for your belongings
If there is stuff you cannot carry to your new place, consider the options for storage. You can keep your things with friends and relatives, but it will be a temporary solution. Keeping your stuff in a storage facility is much safer and a permanent solution. You can keep your belongings in a storage facility for as long as you want without worrying about theft or damage.
10. Selling and donating your belongings
If you plan to relocate permanently, there is no point in bearing the storage unit cost for keeping stuff. So, selling the extra stuff is much better. You can inform your friends and relatives about your relocation and discuss your plan to sell things. They might be interested in buying your household stuff. If selling is not an option, you can donate your belongings to charities and old homes.
11. Consider your healthcare provision
If you or someone in your family takes regular medication, ensure you have enough stock to last for some time before requiring a refill. Stocking essential medication is important because you may not have access to the prescriptions in the new country. Therefore, it is better to have enough medicine to tide you over.
12. Make travel arrangements
Making travel arrangements goes without saying because you cannot move abroad without a mode of travel. An important aspect is how soon you book train or plane tickets, considering that last-minute bookings are often not very economical. Pick a departure date and compare fares among various options. Pick a mode of departure that is affordable, safe, and, most importantly, comfortable, especially if you are traveling with kids.
When relocating to another country, the best thing you can do is start the process with a checklist. Its absence can spoil and prolong your process. You may forget important tasks and omit important documents. The above article provides you with a possible checklist for moving abroad. It is not exhaustive, but it does mention aspects that must be considered before proceeding with a smooth and comfortable international relocation.