Leaving the familiarity of your home country to move abroad is a big decision. While moving houses is hard enough, going to another country brings with it its own set of challenges. You not only have to say goodbye to your friends and relatives but also a lot of stuff you are used to.
You can’t pack up your entire house when moving abroad, so you have to adjust to letting that go as well. You have the option to ship your furniture and belongings, but it’s easier and cheaper to buy new ones. Best case scenario, you get to carry your favorite clothes and maybe books and jewelry as long as they don’t go over the baggage weight.
However, moving to Australia, whether it’s for work, cultural experience, or happy retirement, can be quite a fulfilling experience. The quality of life, warm weather, and dynamic culture will win you over in no time. While you can’t avoid the pain that comes with leaving what is familiar behind, these tips can help make moving easier to some degree.
1. Plan ahead
Experts say that you should give yourself three months to plan for a local move. If you are moving abroad, it’s only wise that you double or triple that to give yourself time to get your house in order. Shifting to another country requires significant arrangements from visa attainment, planning for accommodation and work in the new country, and taking care of the things and the people you leave behind. For instance, if you are moving with your entire family, you need to dispose of your house and everything in it before you board the plane.
2. Do your research
Have you ever visited a country and felt lost because you couldn’t understand what they were saying? Even worse, imagine landing in a conservative country dressed in tights and a tank top. Familiarizing yourself with the country’s culture and language is vital before you land there. Even if you speak English, you will be surprised at how different yours is from theirs. Take some time to learn their slang, understand their culture and hand signals, and also the geography of the place. You can join expatriates forums and learn what to expect from fellow expatriates.
3. Budget for the move
Another reason you should start planning early for your move abroad is the amount of money needed to move. Moving to a country that uses different currency can throw you off for a while. You need to ensure you have enough cash to survive until you get paid, or your primary source of income comes through.
Other financial concerns you should take care of include opening a bank account, paying taxes, and credit cards. Search online or talk to an expert to find out about income taxes and everything in between. Make sure you pay off your old credit cards before relocating so you can start on a clean slate without bad credit.
4. Move over the holidays
If you have school going kids, the best time to relocate is during the school holiday. This way, you will have time to look for schools and settle down before they reopen. As far as job search is concerned, giving yourself one or two months to look for work is also prudent. The airfare may be too costly if you choose to travel in December, so October/November is the best time for you and the kids to move. Since most companies fill positions when the year starts, being there before January gives you a better chance to find work and schools.
5. Take care of accommodation and work beforehand
Many people move abroad for work purposes, so the employer takes care of their accommodation. If you are not one of these lucky few, you must make arrangements of where you will stay when you land and, most importantly, where you will work even if you are a student. There are plenty of agencies to help you find work even as you peruse through online pages to see who is hiring.
Fortunately, you can do all these online a few months before you relocate. To begin with, look for modest flats or share with other people to save on costs if you don’t have a job already. If you have relatives or friends living there, they can help you find a suitable place that’s not expensive.
Relocating to another country doesn’t have to be so painful. If you consider all the benefits you will enjoy in that new state, leaving your own home won’t seem so bad. For instance, moving to Australia comes with fantastic career opportunities, fresh air, serene views, and an unbeatable culture. Be sure to pack a carry bag on your travel day with all your documents, some toiletries, a cell phone, and a few days’ changes of clothes.
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