Moving Abroad: Tips To Prepare Your Family

Waypoint sign between home and abroad

Moving Abroad: How to ensure your family is properly prepared


Depending on your circumstances for moving abroad, it can be an exhilarating time for you. The ability to bring your loved ones with you can make it that extra bit special. It gives you the opportunity to explore different surroundings you may not have been used to, and in general just taking in a different way of living. It really can be a fantastic prospect for adults and children of all ages.

Bear in mind though that maybe not all parts of the family will be as eager and thrilled about the move as you may be. Your children may be really settled in their education with close friends, and now they’d have to start all over again when they move. There will be many adjustments that all members of the family will have to get used to. Not to mention the stress of preparing your most essential documents beforehand which can be extremely stressful.

If you are unsure about how to best prepare your family, here are some easy tips you can consider before you start preparing to move abroad.

Take a short visit as a holiday

The best way you would know whether you would get used to your new surroundings is to live it for real. If you can take a trip to the new destination, it gives you the chance to feel what it is going to be like when you finally move. It is likely that it will be a completely different experience when you move there permanently, but it will give you an idea. See it as an educational trip as well as a vacation. Take note of the general conditions of the place and the area you will be living in, by having regular conversations with the local people. That is if you are fluent in the local language. However, if your communication skills are not yet up to par, this is a great training course.

Prepare all your legal documentation beforehand

When moving to a new country, the last thing you will want is a surprise issue to deal with. Research way before you make the eventual trip what documents every member of the family, as well as yourself, need in order for you all to stay there legally. For example, if you are moving to the UK from a different country, you will need to apply for British Citizenship if you are looking to stay there long term. Similarly, in the US if you are looking to work, you will need to apply for a Green Card.

Research the living destination in detail

Doing your research ahead of time is an essential first step in deciding whether you plan to move, as it will likely make the decision for you. Perhaps make notes on pros and cons of living there and see which comes out on top. Research everything you need to know about it from healthcare and education to cuisines and lifestyle. Not sure where to look? Hop down to your local library and rent out some books or jump on to your laptop and hit the web.

Learn the lingo

If you are fortunate enough to be moving to a country where the primary language is also your native tongue, then this probably doesn’t concern you much. However, for those who are not so fortunate, it will be worth considering this. You can prepare before you go and then continue your learning when you get there. There’s bound to be lessons that are available in the school for your children, and you can get a private tutor. Alternatively, invest in language courses and DVD’s so you can learn at home. Even if you are not fluent before you reach your destination, at least aim at having the basics down, so you can communicate enough to navigate through your basic needs.

Calculate your finances to deem whether it’s manageable

What would be the main purpose of your reason to move? Is it for a better lifestyle for your family or due to work? It’s common for many people to move because they feel there are better career prospects abroad than at home. They think that with their skillset they can earn more or have a better standard of living on a similar wage in a different country. Just consider whether in doing so this is actually possible and you are still able to save while having a manageable cost of living.

It is a big step to move away from home, so before you do, help yourself by being prepared and consider these useful tips. You do not want a lack of planning to be the reason you do not enjoy your move when in reality it might have been a great opportunity.

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