How many times have you thought about moving abroad, but you were too afraid or confused to really make it happen?

Or maybe you just don’t know how to start?

I want to give you some advice, a kind of checklist to move abroad that  you can use for planning the move.

Of course there are 2 possible scenarios:

  1. You know where you want to move
  2. You know you want to move abroad but not sure where to go

The list is then slightly different until a certain point.

Scenario number 1 – you know where to move to

Yeah! Having a clear idea of where you want to go is the best start, it will spare you a lot of research and headache!
In this case, what you have to do is look for the basic info and a job (most probably).

First of all, give yourself a deadline, don’t wait for the perfect moment, it will never arrive!

Start to check for connections in the city where you want to go, normally the social media are full of pages for ¨Expats in…¨ where you can already get some info about lifestyle, cost of living and how to find a place to stay.

If you can, go there for a week (or at least a longer period than a week-end), and book an apartment so you would deal with grocery and could explore better the areas, realising already some of the reality

Registration and Health insurance are the most important documents you need since, without them, very often you cannot work (registration goes together with working permission, a kind of ID which guarantees you to work in that country) and anyway there is always a certain amount of time within which you must have your paperworks completed.

For this kind of needs, check the official website of the city you are moving to. I also share some videos on YouTube with the top tips to move to a different Country, you might find yours already (make sure you also check the description for the links to the city halls etc… you need to contact anyway)

Find a job. Here there are various scenarios too, and they depend on your experience and, sometimes, the knowledge of the language of the Country where you are moving to, or your experience in a specific role/field or maybe, you want to change your career.

In any case I would say, go online, research the companies that might need your role, see if they have an open position or they accept spontaneous applications (it might bring you to at least talk to somebody), and at the same time go on Linkedin and connect with the HR employees of those companies. On Linkedin you can also look for a job using some filters (city, level, language etc…) and many more headhunters too.

If you are not yet a professional in a specific role/field, you might need to wait a bit longer to find the job you like, but don’t give up and send some cv´s also for other job types,, they might not be the dream ones but will allow you to get till the end of the month and look for a better position.

Another alternative, would also be to use online platforms to teach your language to foreigners until you don’t find a job.

There are some for which you don’t need to have a business identity, they take care of the paperwork and you are legally allowed to do your job and get some money.

I have used Preply and Italki in the past.

Last but not least, start studying the language asap.

As said earlier, the knowledge of the language can be tricky for your career finding or growth, also it shows to you future employer you are committed to stay and learn. And, speaking the language or the place where you go, will always be a plus for an expat in terms of paperworks, social life and cultural understanding.

Scenario number 2 – You know you want to move abroad but not sure where to go

It happens that people have this strong need to have a massive change in life, but are not yet sure of where to go. I would assume they still have at least 2 or 3 alternatives in mind due to lifestyle for example or, climate (i.e. such was for Sally that moved from Manchester to Sicily).

In this case I would suggest first, to make a list of ¨must have¨ and then put them in order of importance. To make an example, you can put on your list that you want to stay within 4hours flights from your homeland, or that you don’t want to live in a too warm or too old country, and so on… the list will help you delete some Countries and add some others maybe.

Once you got these 2 lists (the 1 with your prio and the 1 with the Countries), you can go deep in details: do you already know what kind of job you want to do? What are then the opportunities for that job in the different countries you have selected? How well is it paid and how high is the cost of living?

To consider the cost of living you can check online on websites and ask people that are working there already (have a look at scenario 1), and first docs on the apartment costs and availability. I see a lot of people texting in the FB groups asking for a roo or apartments in Rotterdam for prices that just don’t exist here, and finding themselves in trouble because they weren’t aware when they moved.

Take the knowledge of the language in consideration. If you move somewhere where you already speak the language, you might have more opportunities to succeed earlier.

Don’t limit your research to a single city, but explore and, as per scenario 1, get in touch with headhunters to understand what they are really looking for and start applying for some interviews here and there. I believe that having interviews in different countries, with different approaches and needs can really help you out.

In both cases

make sure you have saved enough money to be independent for a few months without a fixed income. Start to read online magazines regardings different countries and ask questions to anybody, it will be helpful and there is nothing wrong with it.

There are also some professionals that can help you. A way abroad is one of them. Kat is a full energy expat woman with a lot of ideas and experience. You might want to chat with her soon.

What else do you think is needed to know to move the first steps in the project of moving abroad?

Let me know in the comments or contact me via Instagram or email.

Good luck