Moving Abroad: 10 Things You Need to Prepare in 2020

Last updated: January 22, 2020

Moving abroad is a big step – and one that is normally expensive and stressful. To make your move easier, we have put together the ultimate guide to moving abroad so that you can prepare for your move overseas. If you’re relocating within the UK, take a look at our moving house checklist.

Measure the volume of your move

If you are planning on moving furniture abroad, movers will need to know how much volume is needed to transport it to your new destination. Use our furniture volume calculator to save you time when requesting quotes from moving companies. It is important to decide how much you want to take with you and what you would like to keep in storage. If you have big objects such as cars, it is important to check well in advance how to ship this, as it may take weeks to arrive. See our page on container shipping costs for more information.

Compare removal quotes

The earlier you book your move, the cheaper it will be. Different movers will quote you different prices, so, it is important to compare several removal quotes and read international removals reviews to make sure you choose the right moving company. If you are interested in getting a price for your move, you can fill out our form to get up to 5 free quotes and save up to 40%. We recommend that you start requesting moving quotes at least six weeks before your move to save on your international moving costs.

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Gather important documents together

A lot of administration is required for an international move. Make sure you have the following documents stored in a safe and easily accessible location:

✔️ Passport – Don’t forget to make sure it is up to date!

✔️ Visa and work permits (if applicable)

✔️Plane tickets

✔️Birth certificates

✔️Wedding certificate

✔️School reports

✔️Work references

✔️Medical reports

✔️Driving licence – Make sure you have the right to drive in your target country!

It is also a good idea to check the government website of your target country to see if there are any specific documents you need for entry, as well as any customs regulations you should be aware of.

Make preparations for your family

If you are moving abroad to work and are bringing your family with you, it is important to consider the following:

  • Investigate schools in your new location
  • Inform your children’s school so you can request school reports
  • Research work opportunities for your partner
  • Start learning the target language
  • Look into temporary accommodation for when you first arrive
  • Decide what to do with your current housing – will you rent, end the lease or sell?
  • Don’t forget your pet! Do you need a pet passport, vaccinations, a microchip? Check out our guide on moving your pet abroad for more information.


Packing your household for a move abroad

Notify others about your move

This doesn’t just mean your friends and family! Firstly, you will need to let your doctor and dentist know that you will no longer be a patient at their practice – make sure to remember to get new ones in your destination country! You should also at this point ask for important medical records to take with you. You must also speak to your bank to see whether they have an overseas branch or if you need to setup a new bank account. In addition, you will need to notify the post office, your pension fund and your local government.

Tax and health matters

Besides contacting your pension fund and your bank branch, you should also 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 is important to look into relevant taxes will apply to you, such as income tax, social security tax, property tax, etc.

You should also look into whether you need health insurance in your new country. If you move abroad, 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 the healthcare options in your new country.

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Stop or transfer your subscriptions

You must give enough notice to your providers (gas, electricity, internet, etc.) about ending your contract with them. Be sure to check what your contracts say – some require you to be locked in for a year or to pay a heavy penalty. You may also want to cancel your insurance policies.

Prepare for your move

Once you have booked your move, you must also remember to insure the move itself as well as your property! Furthermore, you should check with your solicitor about signing the contract for your new house and finalising a moving date. It’s also important to start gathering packing boxes and selling or storing things you can’t take with you. Don’t forget to also obtain cash in the currency needed for your trip.

moving abroad options for transport

Begin packing

One or two weeks before your move, you should contact your mover to ensure that everything is in place. Make sure to ask them whether you or they should pack or not – sometimes this is a requirement! Start making a list of belongings to be moved and keep track of which boxes your items are going into – it can be advised to take photos to remember as well as to prove the quality of your items before your move! You may also want to start cleaning your house before the big moving day.

Moving day!

On the day itself, make sure to follow these steps:

  • Clean your property
  • Make sure someone is home the whole day and that the pets are out
  • Mark high priority/fragile moving boxes
  • Finish packing boxes and throw away items
  • Keep personal items for the journey
  • Transfer the gas and electricity
  • Make photocopies of energy and water meter
  • Check the inventory and new address with mover
  • Check every cupboard before the mover leaves
  • Leave a forwarding address
  • Write a review of your experience with your removal company on their profile.

What next?

Moving abroad can be stressful, but the more prepared you are, the better. If you would like more information and advice, you may be interested in these pages on Sirelo:

We wish you the best of luck with your move!