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International Relocation Tips

Aug 18, 2007
International relocation is very different from regional or national relocation because of the extra steps involved. When preparing to move to a foreign country, you will have to allow few months of planning time so you can acquire the proper documentation in order to visit the country you are moving to, make living arrangements, and deciding which personal items to take and which ones to leave.

Depending on the country you are moving to, there may be other considerations to examine before you leave. Ask the HR department to find out as much as you can. You will be responsible for obtaining a passport, visa, and other documentation, but the HR department will be able to give you the correct contact information.

If you don't already have one, you will need to apply for a passport to travel to another country. Since many international travel laws have changed over the years, you should visit the US government website to see which documents you will need when traveling to specific countries.

You will have to make copies of the proof of identification, flight itinerary, and proof of employment. After gathering up all of these items, you will have to send them to a regional passport office so your information can be processed. The passport process can take several months to process because of the increased demand. Plan accordingly so you will have enough time to make your flight.

In some instances, you may need to apply for a work visa in addition to a passport. This is a document from the country stating that you are allowed to work there. Contact the embassy of the country you are planning to move to when looking for this information. You must have a passport in order to apply for a work visa. Work visas can range from a few months to a few years depending on the countries policies and the amount of time you will be staying. Not all countries require work visas, but you should check before moving. Under some circumstances, you will need a temporary visa to just visit the country and a work visa to live in the country.

Depending on which country you are moving to, you may want to apply for an international driver's license. These licenses include the translation of your identification information in a variety of languages. If you are moving to a country where English is not spoken as often, you may want to pay for an international driver's license. An international driver's license is not always necessary and you should find out beforehand if you will need one. Contact your company's HR office to find out if other documents will be needed before you make the move.

On your first visit to another country, you will have much to accomplish. Many times those involved in international relocation will only be able to make one trip because of company policy. Planning your visit is important so you can find a home, learn more about the law, school system, health care system, and answer any other questions you may have.

Even though most people rent homes instead of buying them, you should find a home that is close to the facilities you need, your workplace, and other attractions such as a city. If you meet some of people you will be working with, you can ask them for suggestions about neighborhoods and towns that fit your needs.

Ask your company if they will be providing housing as more and more are no longer doing so. Since your first visit may be your only visit before relocating, learn as much as you can in order to find a home and become more comfortable with the idea of relocation.
About the Author
Craig Chambers is a relocation specialist who enjoys sharing international relocation tips and offers extensive free relocating guides, resources and a relocation handbook on his website www.easyrelocating.com
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