Whether you’re moving overseas for a new job, or perhaps for a change in lifestyle, there are quite a few things to keep in mind before making the trip and uprooting everything you’ve built.
If you’re thinking about moving overseas, please have a look at the following list of basic tips we’ve assembled to help make the relocation a little less painful and whole lot less stressful.
1. Where are you going to work?
Unless you’re retired, or a millionaire, you’re obviously going to need a job. Pursuing employment in a new country is quite a bit different than what you’ve experienced in the United States.
You’ll need permits or Visas and a good knowledge of the job market in the city you’ll be moving to, and with any luck, you’ll have a few professional connections to help make the search a bit easier.
Our advice is to network as much as you can before you move. This will surely help get things started in the right direction. There are also many online job boards that you can use to search for openings in your area of expertise.
2. Where do you keep your money now?
You’ll definitely need to do some research on financial organizations. Banks and other financial organizations typically operate the same as banks in the US, but their rules, rates and regulations are far different. Here are some key questions to ask your banking prospects.
- Do you need to be there in person to set up the account or can you set it up before you move?
- If you decide you don’t like the international lifestyle, find out how easy (or hard) it is to close your account.
- Fees are going to be different so definitely ask your new banker what kind of fees you can expect with your new account.
We do not endorse traveling with large amounts of cash, but if push comes to shove, travelers checks are a much better option.
3. No more IRS. So, how do taxes work in your new country?
Tax obligations overseas are way more complicated than what you’ve gotten used to paying Uncle Sam. Unless you are a financial professional (CPA, Accountant, etc), you’re going to want to contact someone who specializes in overseas transactions, or talk with someone who has lived in the Country your relocating to for some solid advice on what you can expect.
4. Health Care….
If you already have a health care plan, it can usually travel with you to any location in the world, however, some health care plans do not cover certain things that you wouldn’t expect them not to cover. Typically it’s just emergencies that are covered in the international disclosure documents of your insurance plan.
Before making your move, contact your health care provider to get all the details. You’ll want to ask if you’re covered for injury, illness and emergencies. Basically, you want to find out if your health care plan provides the same coverage where you’re moving to as it does in the United States.
You should also discuss your health care options with your new overseas employer.
5. Children’s Education
If you’re moving with young kids or teens, you’ll want to investigate the educational possibilities. Here are some starter questions:
- If you have a family moving with you overseas, you’ll want to research the educational options in the city you’re moving to. Most relocation providers can help you find school and institutions, but you’ll want to ask a couple preliminary questions so your children don’t experience any problems moving into a new curriculum.
- If your children are not fluent in the native language of the country you’re moving to, do they offer assistance with this? (English speaking teachers, language teachers)
- Does the school specialize in teaching American Citizens.
Follow this link to visit the US State Department’s Office of Overseas Schools. They provide valuable information on the opportunities for educating your children when moving overseas.