Travelling as investment
Some consider travel an investment in themselves, their education, or cultural exploration. Saving money in order to see the world -learn, examine, and enjoy- these are forms of investment, a different sort albeit. For some traveling isn’t enough. They reach a destination, then comes the epiphany. They fall in love with the people, the culture/lifestyle, and the scenery -it all seems so exotic or relaxing and/or exciting in comparison. Rather than just visit for a short time, they decide they’d like to make their vacation spot their new home. It sounds easy enough, right? Only a few steps-sell or give stuff away, pack a suitcase or two, and buy a one-way plane ticket; the previous life washes away as the new one slowly trickles in. That’s all there is to it. Wrong; the truth is that a transfer of this caliber is tough. Little do these traveling investors know the journey they must embark upon in order to live abroad. If it were that easy, more people would pick up and leave, perhaps for good.
Let’s talk about investing in your future
First things first. To live in another country one must have funds. This means that the person either has a large savings or needs to find employment; perhaps, both. For both instances, one should seek professional advice in anticipation to avoid making mistakes or taking drastic measures.
Living on savings, without having a steady income, can be tricky. One must be aware of the standard of living and how far savings will take him/her. Also, knowing the conversion rate is vital. Avoid moving to places where the home country’s money doesn’t double or triple; otherwise the savings will dwindle away without much effort. Seek financial advice for an expert opinion.
Finding employment can be a lengthy process. Working in another country requires a visa. Not only that, but each country has a demand for a specific type of worker. Please, verify this before moving. Plan accordingly. Finding employment prior to moving is the safe, responsible choice. It will save heartache and frustration that can happen to many who arrive to their dream destination without a safety net.
Understanding the hiring process is helpful, too. For some it’s easier than others. Remember, many existing jobs might offer transfers to other countries, like an L1 visa for example. Inquire at your place of employment or ask friends or family members if their companies might have openings abroad. Be sure to seek sources that support such a process. An immigrant lawyer or a company like Joorney are great places to start. They offer advice and services that alleviate the stress of going through the process alone.
Investing in yourself
Second is lifestyle. Perhaps living abroad is appealing for language and/or culture exchange. In this event, a specific visa, like a B1/2 will be required. Much like a work visa, study visas demand a list of documents. Seek advice from an immigrant lawyer or a visa assistance service like Joorney in order to create a strong application.
Another lifestyle choice is entrepreneurship. Some might see the value of starting a business in a new country. Again, like all other avenues for living abroad, business investments require a visa. Do not underestimate the help of visa services like Joorney or immigrant lawyers. They are here to make such endeavors more manageable. They are the experts, therefore use their services when needed.
Investment doesn’t always mean money
The primary concern for anyone wishing to live abroad is the visa process. For most, if not all, long-term stays entail a visa. Invest in visa support services. Invest in minimizing anxiety for an arduous process.
Remember that there are many forms of investment. Investing in oneself, aka living abroad, leads to a more fulfilling life, but be sure to take steps that reduce tension.
Don’t rush the process, look at it with a calm, cool head, weigh the pros and cons, and most importantly seek the counsel of those who have already lived abroad and experts in the field. Visas do not have to be complicated. And investment isn’t always something tangible.
6 thoughts on “Investing In Yourself Living Abroad”
I’ve just never had the travel bug. I don’t grok the desire.
Financial Velociraptor recently posted…Buy Eaton Vance Floating-Rate Income Trust (EFT)
That’s cool to each his own of course. I for one love to travel and desire to see a lot more going forward. Travel is the one thing I’ll freely spend on as I am buying experiences that I recount over and over and it just fuels my desire for further travel. Thank you for commenting.
How did you sneak into my house and steal my dairy? This is exactly what my life goals are. I was planning on slugging through 14-20 more years of OT and DGI, and then go “teach” in asia. I need better locks…
Ha! I think your “teach in Asia” goal is more common than you think. It’s all about living “light” and free of things which can enable a life abroad with reasonable comfort and far away from the daily grind. Thank you for stopping by and commenting.
My wife and I lived abroad in the UK for a year and we found it quite easy actually. England is quite easy for residents of the old colonies (e.g. Aus, NZ) to move to though so that’s probably not surprising.
We didn’t find any challenges getting good jobs, but that was admittedly just before the GFC began. Thankfully we held onto our jobs though, but if we hadn’t then that would have changed things for sure.
While moving abroad can be challenging, we will definitely encourage our kids to take the plunge. It was a life-changing experience for us and we are sure that it will be for them also. The broadening of perspective is something that you just can’t get staying at home.
I have written a series of posts on Our London Adventure (check out the first one here: http://insideraccountant.com/2015/06/20/our-london-adventure-part-1/) that gives an overview of it all, and the fifth and final post is scheduled to publish shortly.
Thanks for posting on this topic – I think investing in yourself by living abroad is a great way to live life to the fullest and I would encourage more people to do it!
Thank you for sharing your personal account of living abroad. I agree that the reward for taking that plunge is huge in terms of experience and personal growth you achieve by stepping outside your own comfort zone. As you stated, there are “degrees of moves” and going from Aus, NZ to the UK might be easier than say moving to Botswana or Mongolia. But still, the rewards are huge for those willing to take the risk of establishing themselves in a foreign land. Thank you for stopping by and commenting.