Top 10 Questions to Ask Before You Move Abroad
As with any big change, you need to make sure that you are ready to move abroad before you actually get on the plane or on the boat. This isn't a small decision and it's certainly not one that can be taken lightly. You are uprooting yourself as well as your family and friends that will need to learn how to communicate with you, though you're farther away. To do justice to everyone, you will want to ask yourself the following questions:
1. Am I financially prepared? Are you ready for the financial costs of moving your life across the ocean? Have you taken the time to plan for these costs and how you're going to manage them?
2. Do I know the cost of living? Not taking the time to find out what you will need to earn or live on once you've moved is a costly error - not just financially, but mentally as well.
3. Have I determined my health care coverage? When you move, your health care insurance may not move with you. You will want to check with you plan and find supplemental coverage to help with any gaps.
4. Where are my children going to school? If you have children, you need to find good schools before you start packing up the boxes. Their future depends on their education and how they will learn once they are away from what they already know.
5. What is my job situation? If you have a job that allows you to telecommute, do they know your new location and how it might affect your work times? You will want to work out any problems or changes in your schedule before you leave.
6. How will I keep in touch? When you move away, you will want to set up a system of keeping in touch with relatives and friends - email and web cameras are a good way to do so.
7. What is my long term plan? You will want to realize what your plans for living abroad really are. Are you looking for a short term living situation or a long term one? Many decisions will be based on knowing this.
8. Do I have an emergency system in place? Should anything happen to you or your family, do you have a reliable system in place to take care of your home as well as notify your relatives?
9. Where are the local hospitals? Again, your health is the most important thing that you have with you, but many take it for granted. Learn about the local hospitals, doctors, and practices before you land.
10. Are you ready? This seems like the vaguest question of the bunch, but in reality, you will know if you are ready to move or not. Are you feeling excited or sick about moving so far? Abroad isn't the best choice for everyone, but it can be the right choice for someone who knows what they're getting into.