How to move abroad: Important things to consider

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Moving abroad offers you a wealth of new opportunities and cultural changes, allowing you to experience something completely new. Like any house move, relocating to another country can be a stressful time full of anxiety, but this needn’t be the case.

Planning well in advance can make the process go a lot smoother, helping you to stay organised and cover all bases. Here are some of the most important things to remember before you make your big move.

How to move abroad from the UK

How much does it cost to move abroad?

Nobody wants to find themselves stuck in another country without enough funds to get them by, especially if you haven’t secured a job.

Set a budget based on research well in advance, including things like your maximum monthly spend for rent/bills, food shopping, luxuries, transportation and anything else you regularly spend on. Research the general cost of living in the area you’re moving to in order to ensure this is accurate and do so with plenty of time to spare.

The initial cost of moving abroad consists of things like accommodation, visa applications, shipping your belongings and plane tickets. Having an emergency fund is a good idea too, just in case something should go wrong and you need a backup plan.

Check your passport and apply for a Visa

What could be worse than sending your visa over, breathing that sigh of relief and then realising your passport is well out of date? Don’t leave it to chance even if your passport seems in date, as some countries require that your passport is valid for at least six months past your date of travel. Checking and renewing this essential form of ID is one of the first things you should do when moving abroad.

Once you’ve ensured your passport is up to standard, you can apply for your visa. The documents you need to do so will largely depend on the country you’re moving to as well as the type of visa you’re applying for.  You can find all the information you need on the official Government or Embassy of the website you’re moving to, including what you need to provide to apply and how to do so.

Consider healthcare

Healthcare systems vary country by country, so it’s vital that you check out the situation regarding this before making any big decisions. Check with your current healthcare provider as well as official government websites to find out more information, such as if you need private insurance or if there is a free system in place. If there is free healthcare, you’ll also have to check if you’re suitable to use it as someone who has moved from abroad.

As well as checking how their systems work, you should check with your current doctor and find out if you need to get any vaccinations. You’ll also have to ask about any current prescriptions you take as they may not be readily available or as easily accessible once you move. Doing so will allow you to stock up in advance should this be the case or come up with alternative treatment if you’re required to.

Your belongings

It’s highly unlikely that you’ll be able to bring every single item you own when making the move – at least not at first. Your new home may already be furnished, or you simply can’t afford to move every piece all in one go, as this is costly. Take your time and don’t rush into throwing anything away, especially if this isn’t a permanent move.

Instead, put anything you can’t bring with you straight away into a secure storage unit. This way you can access your belongings when you return or get it sent over in smaller amounts to make it more affordable. Reacting too fast and throwing things away is a bad idea, as you may realise you need them down the road. By putting it into storage, you can get a friend or family member to access it while you’re away or check up on it when visiting your hometown.

Tell your bank and other companies

You’ll most likely have to change providers of your phone, bank and other bills when moving, as your current plan may not be in place in another country. Let them know well in advance so you can sort out a new contract that works once you’ve moved or find another provider if you have to cancel your current policy. 

Once you’ve sorted out the practical side, you can enjoy a big send-off with all of your loved ones. If you decide to use storage when moving abroad from the UK, Ready Steady Store allows you to nominate friends or family members to check up on your belongings. With tough security systems and easy access, you won’t have to worry while you’re living away from your home country.