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Moving Abroad

While moving abroad can be exciting, it is also a stressful process. Research your destination and start planning now for a smooth removal!

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Check out expat blogs and discover all the tips and tricks for a hassle-free move abroad.

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Use our relocation services to ensure that you have everything planned before you move abroad.

Gather the Documents Required to Move Abroad

The first thing that should be on your list if you’re set on moving abroad should be preparing your documents. Unless you intend to move to another British territory or within the Common Travel Area, meaning to Ireland, you’ll need to do some paperwork before you can start your new life abroad.

Research Your Destination Country

Before you move or retire abroad, it’s important to research the culture, language, and lifestyle of your new home. Understanding the country you are moving to can help make the transition much smoother. While it might be a lot less fun, researching the country’s visa requirements, healthcare system and tax laws is also crucial.

Obtain the Necessary Visas and Permits

Different countries have different requirements so make sure you are aware of the specific criteria for the country you are moving to. We advise you to check with your destination country’s embassy website to obtain information on what documents you may be required to bring and how to apply to move abroad.

Notify the UK Government

Before moving abroad, you will need to inform the UK government that you are leaving the country. Depending on your specific situation, there be different forms and documents you will need to fill out in order for them to process your departure.

  • Inform your council – as you’ll no longer be using your local council’s services. If you need the contact information for your local council, you can use this local council finder.
  • Benefits – if you’re currently claiming any benefits, you’ll need to inform the relevant office to see if you can continue to claim benefits after moving abroad from the UK.
  • Pensions – If you’re retiring abroad, you’ll need to notify your pension provider of your plans. You may need to arrange for your pension to be paid into an international bank account.
  • Voting – lastly, and possibly most important from a civic duty perspective, if you wish to have a say in the policies that affect Lady Britannia, then be sure to register as an overseas voter.

On the official government website, you can find information on the relevant government offices that you must inform before your relocation.

Document Checklist

For now, here is a list of the documents you’d be wise to prepare as part of your moving abroad checklist:

  • Visa and work permit if applicable.
  • Passport– Don’t forget to make sure it’s up to date!
  • Birth certificates
  • Marriage certificate
  • School reports
  • Work references
  • Degrees and qualifications
  • Medical and dental records
  • Immunization records – make sure you have all the vaccinations you need.
  • Driving licence – Make sure you have the right to drive in your target country! Sometimes a British driver’s license can be exchanged for a local license, or you may need International Driving Permit. It varies by country, so be sure to check!

Plan Your Move Abroad from the UK

With your documents at the ready and your visa application being processed, it’s time to start planning the next steps of moving abroad from the UK. This will be a time of transition, and it’s important to remember that transitions don’t always go smoothly. Thus, we recommend that you give yourself a 3-month planning window.

Sort Out Your Finances

Having a financial plan is crucial moving abroad to another country. This is to ensure that you have enough funds to support yourself upon your arrival in the new place. Consider exploring available job opportunities and evaluate your savings and investments to ensure financial stability while living abroad.

In addition to organizing your budget, managing your finances abroad may involve opening bank accounts in your new country, transferring money from the UK, and being knowledgeable about tax regulations.

Need help with your move abroad? Check out our relocation service directory and find the professional to assist you!

✍🏼Nothing can be more worrisome than trying to move abroad from the UK on pennies. Thus, in preparation for your move, we also recommend that you start saving and budgeting since moving overseas doesn’t come cheap.

Book Your Flight, Train, or Ferry

An important cost to factor into you moving abroad from the UK budget is the price of your ticket. If you happen to be plan far enough in advance you can get a pretty good deal on your travel costs. It’s important to send yourself abroad, not just your belongings.

Sell or Store, Rent or Buy

If you’re moving abroad from the UK, it’s likely that you’ll need somewhere to call home. So, before making the leap abroad, you’ll need to start your research and search for accommodation in your destination country, be it rented or bought. Just start early as it can be a time-consuming process.

Naturally, when it comes to organizing your new digs, you’ll also have to spare a thought for your current accommodation. That can either be informing your landlord, as per the rental contract, that you’ll be moving out or putting your house on the market unless you intend to return.

✍🏼When you decide to move abroad, it is also important to consider what items you will bring with you and whether or not it is better to sell or store any possessions.

Move Abroad with a Removal Company

Moving abroad from the UK won’t be easy as you’ll have to figure out customs and international container shipping logistics. If you want to make your move overseas as easy and as stress-free as possible, we advise you to compare between the different shipping companies and choose the best one for you. How? By filling in Sirelo’s 3-step form, receive up to 5 free international moving quotes. Save money and time!

Compare International Shipping Companies
Request up to five free moving quotes to do so!

Declutter and Pack on Time

No moving abroad checklist would be complete without a call to throw away your junk and start packing. Packing is time-intensive, and you don’t need to waste time and space packing junk for your removal. It only adds to the volume of your move and space is money when you move!

💲If you’re looking to move abroad on a budget, try decluttering your belongings. Sell or donate items you no longer use or wear to save money on international shipping costs.

If you’ve never packed before, let alone an entire house, then you might want to consult our guide on packing to move house. It’ll save you time and it’s filled with great tips and tricks for packing.

Plan Your Taxes

Now, time for everyone’s favourite topic – tax. You’ll need to contact HMRC and check whether you will be taxed while you live abroad. You may also want to fill out your p85 form. In addition, if you are moving abroad for work, it’s important to look into relevant taxes that will apply to you, such as income tax, social security tax, property tax etc.

If you will continue to receive interest income from savings based in the UK, it’s essential that you complete am R105 from HMRC and pass it onto the institutions where your money is stored.

Organize Your Banking

Sometimes opening a new bank account can be easier said than done- in some cases, you need a bank account to rent a new home, but also an address to open a bank account…we’ll let you battle with that one.

However, constantly having to convert money into a different currency is time-consuming and expensive. We, therefore, recommend that you set up a local bank account in your destination country as soon as possible. In the meantime, it’s worth looking into money transfer companies that can help you transfer funds while you set up in your new home.

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Organize Utilities, Subscriptions and Mail

Whether you’re moving abroad from the UK for work or retiring abroad, you’ll no longer be using water, gas, telecoms, or electricity in your old house, so it’s best to cancel them. Just ensure you coordinate it to the date that you’ll be moving out.

As for subscriptions, you’ll often be able to continue using them, you might just need to update the billing address or payment method. If you receive any magazines, just be sure to check if they can deliver to your new home!

And let’s not forget about mail when moving abroad from the UK. It could be that you miss an important letter from the bank, or an old acquaintance sends a letter to your old address, either way you don’t want to miss it. In that case, you can use the Royal Mail’s mail redirection service to save you some trouble!

Insure Your Move Abroad

Moving overseas can be a risky business, on multiple fronts. Therefore, the next thing to do when leaving the UK is to insure just about everything. We list a few types of insurances to star you off with, but it’s by no means a bad idea to go the extra mile and insure other aspects of your move too.

  • Travel insurance
  • Removals insurance
  • Life insurance
  • Home insurance
  • Health insurance

We know that more paperwork and more expenses are not what you want, but trust us, you won’t regret it if something happens to your new sofa in transit.

Sort Out Your Healthcare

Whether you’re moving or retiring abroad, you’ll need to organize healthcare in your destination country. Research the healthcare system and find out what you need to do to access healthcare services.

If you move overseas, you will no longer be covered by the NHS, nor will you be entitled to use your European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) in Europe. If you have private healthcare in the UK, make sure to speak with them to see what your options are, otherwise, it may be wise to look into new healthcare options.

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Pacific Prime
Allianz Care
International Citizens Insurance

✍🏼Remember to contact your current your current GP and dentist to inform them you’re moving abroad from the UK and obtain your medical records. It might also be wise to stock up on prescriptions before you move, just in case!

Moving Your Pets Abroad

We know that leaving a pet behind is simply not an option. If that’s the case, make sure you get the following steps ticked off your moving abroad checklist. For almost all countries, there are import requirements for pets, so check the specific rules of your destination country. However, in most cases you can assume that you will need to:

  • Get your pet micro-chipped
  • Have your pet immunized against rabies
  • Seek practical advice on how to transport your pet
  • Make sure your pet has a valid passport
  • Contact your airline

✍🏼If you have an appetite for more knowledge, you can always read our page on moving abroad with pets.

Shipping Your Car Overseas

Much like your pet, the specific import requirements on vehicles depend on your destination country; make sure you’ve read up on shipping a car overseas. The following steps on our moving abroad checklist are suggestions for moving your car that are generally considered good practice wherever you are moving:

  • Find a trustworthy international shipper
  • Fill out all the necessary paperwork
  • Purchase shipping insurance
  • Wash and empty the vehicle
  • Perform a final inspection

Let’s Get Your Move Abroad Going!

Congratulations! You have made it through our moving abroad checklist. Now you know what to do when leaving the UK , so you can sit back, relax and enjoy your move! Feeling tired just from reading this? A little overwhelmed? Don’t worry, that’s only natural. Just make sure to remember that moving abroad is something to be excited about; trust the magic of new beginnings!