Moving abroad is different from simply moving home. There are extra levels of stress and preparation that comes into the count. However, by following some easy tips you can significantly reduce the stress levels of the move.
1. Make a plan
The very first thing to do is to create a plan. Think about where you are moving to. What kind of country is it? What will you need when you are there? How long are you planning to move for, or is this for good? Is your passport up-to-date? Will you need additional documentation to live or work there? All these elements must be considered well in advance of your move so that you have enough time to apply for documentation that might be necessary as well as making other arrangements, including the regular moving elements such as cancelling phones, gym memberships, saying good bye to family and friends and setting up bank accounts in the new country. The last thing on this list is important to consider. When moving, it is normal to spend quite a bit of extra money while getting settled. If you cannot arrange for a bank account in your new country until you have a registered address, you might want to make special arrangements with your current bank to avoid expensive overdrafts or charges for using your card abroad.
2. Decide on what to bring and what to leave
The difficult part of moving abroad is that you might have to leave a lot of your belongings. It is important to be critical as to what you will need once moved. If you are moving to a country where the weather is warmer all year around you can significantly reduce your moving load by selling or placing winter items in storage. By sorting these things into two separate piles ‘keep’ and ‘sell/store’ before you go out to buy your moving supplies you avoid spending money on boxes you will not need and too many meters of bubble wrap.
3. Get supplies
Moving abroad often means that you are covering a larger travel distance on your moving day than a regular move. Therefore your boxes should be stronger, your items should be wrapped in more tissue or bubble wrap and your electronics are put at more risk of breaking. It is therefore very important that you get the right supplies before you move. A moving company can often help you with finding the best supplies for your items, and some will even go out and acquire it for you.
It can be easy to forget that you are packing for a move, and just pack the regular supplies that you bring for a holiday. Book an appointment with your doctor. This will help you make sure that you have all your prescriptions, and the doctor can often advice on what you should bring with you and what will be available where you are moving to. Ask your doctor to write a letter about any existing medical condition and health that you can take with you to your new doctor. This will help pass on medical information that might not be in your records.
5. Bring a piece of home
When moving abroad you will experience homesickness at some point. It happens to everyone, no matter how nice your new home and life is. At these times it is nice to have a piece of home with you. This can be something edible, something you like to wear that represents your home country or perhaps photographs or music. Having these things with you can make your new house or apartment a home away from home, and you will not feel as far away from your family and friends.
Ingunn is a Norwegian living in the UK and has experience with moving homes as well as moving abroad both on her own and with the help of removal companies.