Thinking of Becoming an Expat_ How to Prepare for this Lifestyle Change

A lot of people would love the opportunity to move overseas. It’s perhaps not that they dislike their current country, but they may simply want the opportunity to explore a new country and experience new cultures. Being an expat is an excellent way to immerse yourself in a new culture and it can be a lot of fun, and even financially rewarding, but it’s important to be prepared before you jet off. 

Research property prices and living costs

People generally don’t become expats if they’re going to have a worse standard of living. They want to know that when they move overseas, they can have a nice, comfortable life. You should take a look at the sort of properties you might want to rent or buy. For example, take a look at luxury villas for sale in Samui for an idea of the cost and the sort of property you might get for your budget. Also, take some time to look at your expenses such as living costs and bills. This will help you decide whether a move is right for your family.

Think about your long-term job prospects

You may be thinking of taking the plunge for a big job opportunity, but some expats find that making a move overseas may slow their career progress in the long-term. While it’s possible to boost your career while working remotely or in an overseas office, it’s not always the best choice at this moment. If you’ve got a strict five-year plan, think about how it might be affected.  

Children will need to adapt to the change

Children are often assumed to be more adaptable than adults, but that doesn’t mean they won’t need help and support to settle. If you’re becoming an expat with kids, you should think about:

  • Finding a good school – international schools often ease the transition to a new country and are perfect for expat kids, as everyone is in the same boat
  • Finding activities they’ll enjoy – if your child is a sports star or has an activity they love, you should look for local teams or groups
  • Expat social clubs can be an excellent way to meet other families with children of a similar age

If your children are feeling a little upset about going, then putting things in place for them can keep them happy and mean they settle much more quickly.

Visas are often an issue

One of the biggest barriers to your expat lifestyle will be getting a visa, but luckily, there are usually lots of different options available. For example, if you’re going to be employed, you may be able to be sponsored. Thailand offers smart visas for expats who are entrepreneurs or investors, which is worth considering if you’ve got the resources. 

The expat lifestyle isn’t for everyone. It takes some planning to put everything in place, and you have to be proactive and consider all the things above before you move. But if you are determined and willing to put in the work, it could be a great lifestyle change.