5 Ways to Prepare for a Move Overseas

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Moving to another country is an exciting experience. You will learn about new cultures, meet new people and try new things. However, the organization involved in moving to a different country is immense and can be overwhelming. It should be done with meticulous attention to detail. The better your preparation and organizational process, the smoother your move will be. To give you a head start, here are 5 ways to prepare for a move overseas.

Financing Your Move

The financial cost of moving to somewhere close at hand can be huge, so imagine how much it will set you back to set up home in another part of the world. If you are lucky enough to be moving for work, your new employer may foot the bill for the costs incurred when moving your furniture and may pay for a period of accommodation in a rental property or hotel for you.

If you are funding the whole move yourself, you will need to have a large pot of money on hand to cover costs.  First of all, you will need to pay for paperwork such as visa applications, passport renewal if required, plane tickets, bus and taxi fares, medicals, shipping of your belongings, accommodation, and some leftover for emergencies.  Seasoned travelers and experts have suggested that you should have savings that should cover all of your living expenses for a minimum of 6 months.  You should look at the exchange rate of the country you are moving to and ensure you save as much contingency money as possible.

Completing the Paperwork

Having the correct paperwork in place before you move is essential.  You and any family members moving overseas with you should have a valid passport that will not expire within six months of you arriving in your new country of residence.  You need to have a valid passport before you can apply for a visa. 

Different countries have different visa requirements, so do some intensive research. If you are moving for work, your new employer will advise you on what visas you will need. If you wish to set up a business and invest money in Australia, for example, you can apply for a Business Talent or Business Innovation and Investment visa. If you are able to self-fund and wish to retire to Australia, you will need to apply for an Investor Retirement visa.

Obtaining medical insurance is imperative when traveling to another country. You can ask your doctor if you will be required to obtain any vaccinations before you move and whether or not you can get any current medication you are taking in your new country of residence. It is advisable to take a few month’s medication supplies to last you until you are settled and registered with a GP. Arrange medical insurance with a reputable company such as

Cigna International Health Insurance so that you will be covered should anything happen to you or your family during your journey to the new place or in the time before you join a local medical scheme.

Packing Your Possessions

Packing your worldly belongings can be a daunting task. It makes sense only to take the things that mean something to you to your new home. Pack photographs, books, and any pieces of furniture or mementos that hold a special place in your heart. Any non-essential items can be sold on eBay, Gumtree, or in your local newspaper. To make extra money to fund your move, you could consider holding a yard sale to get rid of the items you do not want to take with you.

You may want to pack your belongings yourself or hire a company to do it for you. If you are doing it yourself, ensure you acquire strong, waterproof boxes if your possessions are being sent by ship. You can hire a shipping container to hold your goods. A 20-foot container will cost around $7000 to ship to Australia from New York, for example.

Be sensible when packing your belongings and utilize as much spare space as possible. Wrap breakables in towels, bubble wrap, pillows, and cushions, so they are as well protected as possible. Disassemble anything that can be to save space and pack heavy stuff in the bottom of boxes and light things on top. Ensure containers are robust and closed securely.

Traveling to Your New Home

Another thing on your to-do list will be to organize transport to your new home.  If you are moving overseas, you will need to either travel by boat or airplane. If you have a very long journey to the other side of the world, you will need to decide whether you want to complete the trip in one go or have a few stopovers.  Long-haul flights can be grueling, so it can help to stop for a few nights at a location halfway through your journey. On the stopover, you can freshen up and get some quality rest and sleep.  Book flights as far in advance as possible so that you can get a good choice of seat in a part of the plane with extra legroom or at a window or aisle seat.

Finding Accommodation

Before you book any flights, you will need to find a suitable place to live in your new country. You may want to book into a motel or hotel for a few days or arrange rental accommodation.  Do plenty of research about your residence – find out which areas are suitable for families or which are good for young, single people, or retirees.  Ensure you find a place in a safe location away from districts of high crime and choose a furnished property that will provide you with everything you need until your furniture arrives or you buy some new stuff.  If you rent for a substantial period of time, you can get to know your new environment and know which areas you like and those you may want to consider buying a house further down the line.

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