Anywhere between 2 and 6 million Americans live as expats abroad at any time during the year. While making a move from Seattle to Vancouver will make you have to learn how identify Canadian bills, moving to Thailand, Argentina, or South Africa will bring much more significant changes to how you live. From new foods on the street to new languages being heard around you to new cultural symbols that will affect how you live, moving to a new country is both an exciting and terrifying prospect all at the same time.
Fortunately, there are many things that one can do to prepare for the inevitable changes and adjustments that will come with living in a new country. In this short article, we offer three important tips for how to get organized and prepared before packing your bags and heading out to the other side of the planet.
Get Your Money Prepared
Having money in your wallet is one way to feel protected and secure, no matter where you are in the world. A dependable access to an ATM machine with one (or several) debit and credit cards in your wallet will let you indulge in those favorite comfort foods when feeling homesick. The first thing you should do before heading abroad is call your banks and credit card companies to let them know that you will be heading abroad. Some banks or credit companies might put a hold on your card when “suspicious” foreign activity is detected. While this is done for security measures, it could put you in a difficult financial situation. Letting the banks know where you will be is a simple measure to help you avoid any potential holds on your cards.
Furthermore, since cryptocurrencies are becoming more widely accepted around the globe, you might want to consider investing in some Bitcoin. One of the main benefits of Bitcoin for world travelers is that you don’t have to worry about changing currencies between countries, which can often be dangerous and difficult. In several countries, and especially in Asia, Bitcoin can be used for everyday purchases, and works as a solid investment at the same time. If you are considering using Bitcoin as a currency while travelling, the first thing you will need to do is to download a wallet to store and use your coins. This massive list of bitcoin wallets will help you find the best wallet for your personal needs.
Get an International Driver´s License
While taking public transportation in different countries is certainly an experience in itself, you might also want to consider getting an international driver´s license. While several countries around the world will allow you to use your U.S. driver´s license for a certain amount of months, if you are planning on staying abroad permanently or for the long term, getting an international driver´s license is a simple step that will allow you to avoid unnecessary problems with the authorities. For an international driver´s license to be valid, you will need to also have on you the license from your home country.
Get Your Paperwork in Order
If you are moving out of the country for the long term, you will want to make sure that you bring with you all of the paperwork that you will need to apply for residency in the country where you are moving to. Most countries will ask for legalized birth documents, immunization records, marriage certificates, and basic financial information. Bringing all of these documents with you will make it much easier to navigate the world of international residency and help you avoid overstaying your visa.
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