Heading off into the sunset, leaving your old life behind is undoubtedly an appealing idea. Everyone loves a fresh start, so if you are looking for the ultimate in new beginnings, emigrating is the ultimate choice. Whether you are counting the days until your retirement so that you can head abroad for a life in the sun, or you are longing for a change of scenery, there are many reasons why people move abroad to start a new life as an expat.
While emigrating is a life-long dream for many, making this dream a reality can be a challenge. If you are considering turning your dreams of an expat lifestyle into action, you should find these tips a helpful starting point for beginning your preparations:
Do Your Research
Deciding on the best places to live abroad is a difficult decision to make, as there are just so many options available. If you are undecided on the country, or the region that you would like to move to, it is useful to investigate all the options available to you to help you to decide.
Thorough research is crucial when you are deciding on something as important as where to live. Making a new base for yourself in a different country is an exciting prospect, but taking your time over your decision of where to live is well worth it. It is better to take a while longer to find somewhere that you love than to rush in and discover that the place is not as great as you thought after you have lived there just a few months.
To be able to make an informed decision on an area to settle yourself in, it is a good idea to rent a home before rushing into buying one. Renting a property gives you the option of moving on and trying a new area if you find it is not for you. It is worth keeping in mind that some countries have housing markets that move extremely slowly with properties taking years to sell in some cases. Therefore, if you go ahead and buy a property right away, and then discover that you don’t like it, you may find that you are tied to it for a long time before you manage to sell it.
At least if you have lived in the area for a while in a rented property, you will have a clearer idea of whether it is the right place for you, and you can then buy a home with confidence when you are ready.
A Place for Every Season
Are you emigrating in search of some sunshine? If you are longing for balmy evenings sat on the terrace relaxing, and sun-soaked strolls on the beach, then it is wise to do your research into the local climate. Even if you have visited a destination many times on vacation, the weather could be entirely different at other times of the year. Some areas in Europe have incredibly mild summers, but freezing winters, so the temperature differs entirely depending on the season.
Before you commit to moving to a new country, it is a good idea to visit several times during different seasons. This is a useful way of deciding whether the climate suits you or not.
If you don’t already speak the native language, then now is the time to learn. Learning a new language is always a useful skill, but if you are planning to move abroad, it is essential. Taking language lessons either in person or via an online course is an exciting first step toward your new life. Mastering the language will make life far easier for you when you do move, and will enable you to handle much more of the process yourself rather than relying on interpreters, or simply guessing.
Arming yourself with all the knowledge that you can to prepare yourself for your move abroad is vital. Researching the practicalities of the move, such as information on finances and logistics, is crucial, but not easy to find. Using a service such as Expatra will provide you with the information you need to help your move go smoothly.
Emigrating is a fantastic opportunity to step out of your comfort zone and try lots of new exciting things. Moving abroad is one of the biggest changes that you can make to your life, so preparing for it thoroughly is the best way to make the most of this opportunity.
Bonnie is always on the road with some amazing adventures ahead. Her favorite continent is South America and she’s passionate about culture-focused traveling and ethical and sustainable tourism. During her time in university as a research assistant for a sociology professor, she realized she can’t fully understand cultures from a safe distance. She quit her job to become a full-time “voluntourist,” which brings her to places where she can immerse in local communities and support their causes. On top of writing, one of Bonnie’s priorities is offering women advice on how to stay safe while solo backpacking.