Are you thinking about moving abroad? Then I’ve got you covered! In these living abroad guides, you’ll find everything about moving abroad and expat living.
Moving abroad is an exciting adventure with lots of advantages and learnings along the way – whether you learn a new language, how to be more independent or get to know yourself.
However, it’s important to consider a few things before becoming an expat. If you’re wondering what expat means, it simply means a person who has moved from their home country to a different one.
Many people believe expats are only European elderly or retired people looking to buy a house abroad, but this isn’t the case, you can be an expat at any age and from any nationality.
The following guides include everything you need to know about living abroad – from the pros and cons of moving abroad to specific country guides with insightful tips to help you move to a specific destination.
Living Abroad Guides
✈️ Moving abroad guides sorted by country
- Move to London
- Move to Amsterdam
- Move to Croatia
- Move to Germany
- The cheapest countries to live in Europe
Moving to Spain guides
- Move to Spain from the UK
- Move to Spain from America
- The best cities to live in Spain
- 13 Cheapest Places to Live in Spain
- An Insider’s Guide to Living in Malaga as an Expat
📝 How to plan your moving abroad experience
- Tips to plan your study abroad year
- The ultimate checklist for moving abroad
- The best expats jobs in Europe
📚 Expat living guides and tips
- 18 Top tips for expats moving abroad for the first time
- Benefits of moving abroad
- Challenges of moving abroad
- How to overcome homesickness
- How to make friends abroad
- Moving abroad quotes
So, what things do you need to consider before moving abroad?
- Destination. Do you like warm and tropical or cold places? Do you love city life or the countryside? What activities do you want to find in your new city? These are questions to ask yourself before choosing a destination.
- Budget. Estimate the budget you have to move abroad. Moving abroad isn’t cheap because of flights, moving your own stuff, finding a house, etc. Have a look at Numbeo to have an idea of the cost of living in the destination you want to move to, and then decide if it’s affordable for you.
- Visa and legal documents. Depending on the country you move to, you may have a visa or other legal documents to work and live. Check the legal requirements for the place you want to move to as soon as possible. Remember that bureaucracy can be a slow process.
- Relationships. No relationship should stop you from moving abroad. However, if family and friends are very important to you, it may be more difficult for you to move abroad. Also, if you have children, you need to ensure they’ll have a smooth transition.
- Language. Are you planning to move to somewhere where your mother language isn’t spoken? In this scenario, start learning the basics of the language, take online lessons or attend language exchanges before your move. Even if English is widely spoken, not everyone will know English, and as a future resident, you really need to make an effort with the language to show appreciation.
- Work. Unless you work for yourself or work remotely for a company, you need to look at how employment is in the country you’d like to move in and what type of jobs you can find there.
- Healthcare. Is it paid or public? This can be quite important, especially if you have a pre-existing condition or you’re likely to need access to healthcare.
Tips for first-time expats
- Check your passport expiry date.
- Sort out any bureaucracy you can do online before moving.
- Research the best and worst areas to live in your destination.
- Cancel any subscriptions you may have at home.
- Book your flights in advance.
- Take any necessary medication with you.
- Join expat Facebook groups in your destination.
- Look for language exchanges.
- Learn the basics of the language (if applicable).
- Plan your trip from the airport to your new home.
- Don’t overpack! Sometimes, there are things you can buy for cheaper in your new place.
Best places to move abroad for expats and digital nomads
- Bali. It has become one of the most popular destinations for expats and digital nomads. There’s no doubt why many people choose Bali as their base – great cafes and coworking spots, outstanding nature, friendly locals, beaches and affordable accommodation.
- Costa Rica. Expats looking to immerse themselves in nature and a slow-paced lifestyle move to Costa Rica.
- Croatia. A Mediterranean country that is becoming a popular place for expats is Croatia. The quality of life, safety and culture are some of the highlights of living in Croatia.
- Germany. For those who love travelling, Germany is a great destination to live in. Surrounded by other beautiful European countries, you’ll be able to visit many places. In addition to this, Germany is affordable with the exception of big cities like Munich, there’s a good work-life balance and high-standard healthcare.
- Italy. Who doesn’t dream about the dolce vita? The slower lifestyle, pizza and pasta, variety of landscapes, opportunity to travel to nearby European countries and safety make Italy an excellent place to live in.
- Mexico. The diversity of this country, low cost of living, idyllic beaches, culture and friendly locals are some of the reasons why many expats and digital nomads choose Mexico as their base.
- Portugal. One of the top countries for expats and digital nomads in Europe is Portugal. There are many pros of living in Portugal: sunny weather, cheap cost of living, friendly locals, beautiful landscapes, and the fact that many locals do speak English.
- Spain. The weather, food, culture and lifestyle make Spain a top destination for expats. Unlike big cities like Barcelona and Madrid, other Spanish towns can be pretty affordable.
Insurance for expats
Before moving abroad is recommendable to purchase expat insurance to cover you in different scenarios.
This is important when you move to a place for the first time because you probably don’t know how to deal with certain things or have access to healthcare and other essential services.
Insurance for expats is even more important if you take care of other people that are dependent on you (i.e. children), you have a mortgage, or just if you want to have peace of mind.