How to Start a Life in Another Country

How to Start a Life in Another Country

Embarking on a new life in a different country is both exhilarating and daunting. Ahead of you lies a realm of endless possibilities, but it’s not without its challenges.

With the prospect of your impending adventure firing your imagination and building anticipation, you’re bound to have a plethora of questions.

Here, we’ll provide a comprehensive guide, exploring the key aspects of relocating to another country, from job hunting to obtaining visas, securing accommodation to shipping your possessions, and how to adjust upon arrival.

Preparatory Steps

Starting a new life abroad comes with a significant initial question: “where do I want to relocate?” There are numerous factors to consider when choosing your new home country: visa requirements, cost of living, job opportunities, climate, and even cultural adjustments.

Researching Your New Home

Begin by meticulously researching potential destinations. Think about your motivations for the move. Are you seeking a warmer climate? A career progression opportunity? Or simply to be closer to loved ones? These reasons will help establish your priorities.

Regardless of your motivations, it’s crucial to research:

Visa Requirements

Understanding visa requirements is a crucial step. There are various types of visas, each with different prerequisites.

  • Work Visa: This type permits you to work in the host country, often requiring an employment offer or sponsorship from a company within the host country.

For example, in the USA, the H-1B visa is a non-immigrant visa that allows companies to employ foreign workers in speciality occupations. In Australia, the Temporary Skill Shortage visa (subclass 482) allows employers to sponsor skilled foreign workers to fill temporary skill shortages.

  • Family Visa: If you have close relatives residing in your destination country, you may be eligible for a family visa.

In the USA, immediate relatives of U.S. citizens (such as spouses, unmarried children under 21, and parents) have special immigration priority and do not have to wait in line for a visa number to become available. Australia has a similar family stream migration option that prioritises partners, children, parents, and other family members of Australian citizens or permanent residents.

  • Retirement Visa: Certain countries offer visas for retirees.

Certain countries offer visas for retirees. These allow you to spend your retirement years in a new environment. For example, if you’re considering Australia, visit the Australian Government Department of Home Affairs website, which provides an up-to-date and comprehensive guide on the retirement visa pathway.

Before moving, consult accurate resources such as the Foreign and Commonwealth Office or the immigration department of the host country. Some employers might assist with visa applications if you have a job offer.

Work Opportunities

Employment is a significant factor when starting a new life abroad. Consider the local economy, your skills, and whether your visa permits you to work. It’s advantageous to secure employment before arriving. However, the approach to job hunting can differ based on your field or industry.

Networking and Online Platforms

Networking, both online and offline, can be an effective strategy in many industries. Platforms like LinkedIn, industry-specific job boards, and local job fairs can provide valuable connections and opportunities.

For example, if you’re in tech, consider platforms like Stack Overflow Jobs, GitHub Jobs, or Wellfound. For those in the creative industry, sites like Behance or Dribbble may be useful.

Recruitment Agencies

Recruitment agencies can also be a powerful tool, particularly for fields like healthcare, engineering, finance, and education. These agencies often have a wide array of connections and can help you land a job more efficiently.

Localised Job Search Engines

In addition to general job search engines like Indeed or Glassdoor, look for local job search engines in your new country. These may offer listings not found on international sites.

Employer-Sponsored Visas

Certain industries are particularly likely to offer employer-sponsored visas, which may simplify the relocation process. This is often the case in industries experiencing skill shortages, such as tech, engineering, healthcare, and education.

Freelancing or Remote Work

If you’re a freelancer or have the ability to work remotely, this could provide flexibility in terms of location. Platforms such as Upwork, Fiverr, and Freelancer cater specifically to freelancers and offer a wide variety of roles.

Before moving, ensure you understand the tax implications and any potential visa restrictions associated with freelancing in your new country.

Remember, each field will have its unique job hunting strategies. The key is to be proactive, network widely, and utilise resources at your disposal.

Assessing the Cost of Living

Thoroughly investigate the cost of living in your prospective home, comparing it to your current expenses. Consider housing, food, transport, healthcare, and additional taxes.

Use reliable online tools to compare the cost of living between countries. Remember to factor in currency exchange rates and their potential fluctuations. Establish a provisional budget for the initial months to accommodate unforeseen expenses.

Logistical Considerations

Having secured a visa/work permit, a job, and devised a plan for accommodation, the next step is the physical move. This involves choosing an international removals company to assist with packing, shipping, and organising necessary documents.

When selecting a removals company, consider their reputation, the services they provide, and their handling of customs paperwork. An excellent removals company is one that ensures a smooth transition, providing a stress-free experience.

Get a free quote here to find out more information and costs for our faster, safer & smarter removals services from the UK.

Additionally, consider the following:

  • Insurance arrangements in your new country
  • Informing utility companies, banks, and other institutions about your move
  • Other potential logistics that may otherwise be overlooked

Check our our comprehensive moving checklist to ensure you don’t miss anything out.

Adjusting to Life in Your New Country

Once you’ve arrived and started to establish yourself in your new home, the real journey begins. It’s natural to face challenges in this new environment, but there are strategies to overcome them and make the transition smoother.

Navigating Language Barriers

Mastering a new language can be challenging, but there are numerous resources at your disposal. Consider language classes or online learning platforms like Duolingo or Rosetta Stone. Many communities also offer language exchange meetups, where you can practise with native speakers and other learners. Remember, practice is key: don’t be afraid to make mistakes.

Overcoming Cultural Differences

Each country has its unique customs and traditions. Understanding these will not only help you assimilate but also enrich your experience. Read about your new country’s history and culture, watch local films and television, try local cuisine, and participate in cultural festivities.

Coping with Homesickness

Homesickness is a common feeling when moving to a new country. It’s essential to stay connected with your loved ones back home through calls and video chats. Create a routine in your new country to provide a sense of familiarity and comfort. Joining clubs and groups with similar interests can help you form new friendships and make your new environment feel like home.

Joining Local Communities

Getting involved in local events, trips, tours, and sports clubs can accelerate your integration into the community. Websites such as Meetup and Internations offer a plethora of activities and communities to join. Such interactions offer opportunities to learn more about the local culture and make new friends.

Remember, adjusting to a new life in a different country is a monumental task, but with careful planning and the right mindset, it can be a truly rewarding experience. Don’t fear making mistakes – embrace them as part of the learning process. Your experience in a new country will be enriched by interacting with both locals and fellow expats.

Settling into Your New Life

Once you’ve arranged housing, obtained a visa, started your job, and begun learning the language, it’s time to immerse yourself in the local community. One of the best ways to integrate is to join local events, trips, and tours.

Websites such as Meetup and Internations offer a plethora of activities and communities to join. Sports clubs are also a great way to mingle, offering an avenue to stay fit while socialising.

Don’t fear making mistakes! Embrace them as part of the learning process. Your experience in a new country will be enriched by interacting with both locals and fellow expats.

As we’ve discussed, embarking on a new life in a different country is an exciting and monumental journey, filled with diverse opportunities and challenges. The decision to uproot your life and start afresh demands careful preparation and deliberation. We’ve explored the various aspects that come into play, from understanding visa requirements and hunting for job opportunities, to assessing the cost of living and successfully adapting to the new culture.

Yet, amidst all the exciting preparations, the logistical task of actually moving your possessions overseas mustn’t be overlooked. This process can be stress-inducing, but it doesn’t have to be. That’s where 1st Move International comes in.

As an experienced international removals company, we at 1st Move International understand the complexities of moving overseas. We specialise in providing a faster, safer, and smarter removal service from the UK, ensuring that your transition is as smooth and hassle-free as possible. Our experienced team will handle your belongings with the utmost care, prioritising secure packing and efficient shipping, to make your move seamless and stress-free.

Whether you’re venturing out for career opportunities, retirement, or simply seeking a change of pace, we’re here to make the move with you.

Start your journey with us today. Get a free quote and find out more about our faster, safer & smarter international removals services from the UK. You’re not just moving your possessions; you’re starting a new chapter in your life. Let us help you make it a successful one.

About 1st Move International

1st Move International are a specialist international moving and shipping company offering packing, shipping and insurance for shipping household goods and personal effects overseas. We have a global reach covering over 80 countries and 6500 worldwide destinations. You can get an international removals quote here or find more information on our international moving services here.

Avatar for Mike Harvey
As the Managing Director of 1st Move International, Mike Harvey brings more than two decades of logistics expertise and three years of specialised experience in international relocations to his role. His comprehensive knowledge spans the intricacies of overseas shipping, secondary yet crucial areas such as visa application processes and immigration requirements, and the wider topic of moving abroad including topics such as comparative analyses of cost of living, healthcare and educational systems worldwide. This expertise allows 1st Move International to equip people with the information they need to not just move overseas, but to make informed decisions about whether, and where, to relocate.