• The Ultimate Moving Abroad Check List

    Posted by Dannielle Noonan


    Moving overseas. It’s stressful, time-consuming and there are a million and one things to think about. Thankfully, the international health insurance experts at Medibroker speak to soon-to-be expats and those already happily settled into expat life every day, and we’ve put together a comprehensive check list to help you prepare for your move.


    The paperwork

    Find accommodation

    Buy flight tickets & organise transport to your accommodation

    Check everyone's passports are valid

    Leaving your property: find tenants

    Organise visas

    Find out if your driving license is valid in your host country

    Research which medical vaccinations you may need and speak to your doctor

    Create and safely store both virtual and paper copies of important documents

    Get Health Insurance compliant to your expat country

    Create a tax and finance folder with any information which can be claimed back on tax. If you are getting your expenses paid for you, put all receipts in this folder

    Change your address with credit card companies etc

    Tell your bank you are moving abroad

    Set up internet banking to make standing orders/direct debits easier

    Leave a small amount of money with someone at home in case you have forgotten to pay any bills

    Ask utilities companies to disconnect your power if necessary

    Ask your doctors, vet and dentist for copies of yours, your families and your pets’ medical records.

    Sell your car or furniture if this is something you have decided to do

    Research TV, phone and utility companies in your host country

    Cultural preparation

    Research standards of local healthcare facilities

    Make sure you understand the local currency and have enough to get by in the first few days

    Learn basic phrases and the alphabet of the local language so you know how to pronounce words

    Culture: research etiquette and differences. If you're moving for work, our guide to international business etiquette may help

    Research local amenities

    Google map the area and plan your route to the local shop, doctors, school etc

    The personal stuff

    The big announcement

    Say your goodbyes

    Collect contact details & make sure post office knows new address

    Decide whether the entire family will move at the same time or whether one parent will go first 

    Make a repatriation plan

    Have a full medical check


    Find out if any prescription medicine is available in your host country and stock up

    Put all your essential items in your suitcase as your shipment may take a while to arrive

    Household items: choose an international moving company or find suitable storage

    Buy packing materials and bubble wrap etc

    Create a list of everything you will pack/ have packed. Take photos and list estimated value

    Find out about travel restrictions for your host country

    Buy a phone or sim card that works in your new country

    Eat or give away food in the house and defrost the fridge/freezer

    Clean the house

    On the last day at home, take readings of gas meters & lock doors/windows

    Moving abroad with kids

    Inform your children’s school that you will be moving abroad and ask for transfer certificates

    Choose a local or international school for your children. Our guide may help

    Decide which of their toys will accompany you to make the transition easier

    Teach children about their new country with books, games and pictures

    Moving abroad with pets

    Check that your breed of animal is legal in your host country

    Check quarantine rules in your new country

    Do they need vaccinations?

    Make transport arrangements


    Moving abroad on an international assignment

    Evaluate your relocation package. Our guide may be useful.

    Find out if expat spouses are legally able to work in the host country

    Meeting other expats: find local forums and websites

    Read our guide to cultural business etiquette around the world


    Decide on whether this will be a 
    permanent move and if not, when you will return home

    Plan for family emergencies

    Plan for what will happen if your circumstances change. Will you stay?

    What’s your minimum test period?

    It’s wise to start planning at least 90 days in advance to ensure you get everything covered. Most expats benefit from an introductory trip to the host country to see if they like it.

    Why not print this list out and stick it on your fridge while it's still yours?

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