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Working abroad

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Revision as of 15:58, 19 April 2008 by 58.9.8.33 (Talk)

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    This article is a travel topic

Does earning money while living in a new and exciting surroundings sound appealing to you? Accepting employment overseas can offer both a cultural experience of living abroad as well as the possibility of new job skills and earning money. More people than ever are working abroad, so if you like the concept of working abroad, consider what options are available to you. я вам пишу, чего же боле?

Prepare

Visas

Always secure the proper visa before you start your journey. Most countries do not allow employment on a tourist visa. In some cases travellers try to skirt this by departing the country and returning every 3 months or so -- an expensive and troublesome option that still leaves you working in illegal status. Unless your work plans are very short term, make sure that your employer can sponsor you for a valid work visa before accepting any job.

Canadians wanting to work overseas

SWAP Working Holidays ( www.swap.ca)is a great and affordable way for young Canadians, between the ages of 18-35, to travel overseas. SWAP makes travelling and working abroad simple by providing participants with all necessary working visas, arrival orientations, arrival accommodation and on-going support services in the destination country. Our hosting centres help participants conduct accommodation and employment searches and have experience assisting participants adjust to life in a different country. SWAP is also an educational experience that looks impressive on a resume! Our participants are self-starters with knowledge about the world beyond the Canadian border.

Americans

American citizens often have to check the visa laws of the country they will be traveling to. If traveling abroad, but being hosted and taken care of by a company in the U.S. most countries won't require an American to obtain a work visa providing that the stay does not exceed 30 - 90 days.

If being hired by a foreign company to travel abroad then a visa is typically required. To obtain will normally require several things to be submitted to an embassy/consulate of the nation you plan on working in -

  • A visa application with passport sized photographs
  • Criminal background report - This can often be obtained by visiting the sheriff's office in your county.
  • A letter from the employer stating that they need your services, have hired you, the salary you will be making, and length of employment period. Occasionally more information is required.
  • Evidence that you will be able to support yourself and/or your family while inside the country.

EU citizens

Citizens of the European Union - Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Cyprus, Finland, Estonia, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, and United Kingdom - normally do not need a visa to work and live in another EU member country. Exceptions to this are with newly admitted Central European and East European countries. Some nations have instituted immigration rules and laws that effectively create quotas for the number of citizens of new EU member nations allowed to emigrate to the country.

Take a look first

If considering a long-term assignment in a country you haven't been to before, especially with family, pay a visit first, on your own dime if necessary. This will give a much better idea of what to expect: you can experience the local lifestyle firsthand, you can meet the people you'll be working with, and you'll have a head start on choosing where to live, what schools look like, etc.

Accommodation

One of the hardest parts of moving abroad is finding and furnishing a place to stay. In some Asian countries like South Korea and Japan, simply renting an apartment can be very difficult due to onerous requirements like finding a Japanese guarantor who agrees to take financial responsibility for you (if you bail, they get stuck with the bill!) or, in Korea, the requirement to deposit over 50% of the purchase price of the apartment for safekeeping with the landlord. Many landlords are also reluctant to rent to foreigners, fearing culture clashes and unpaid bills — or, at the other end of the spectrum, look at foreigners as easily overcharged fools who will pay over the market price.

If your company can arrange accommodations for you, it's usually wise to take them up on the offer, at least until you get settled. Otherwise, look into long-stay accommodation like apartment hotels, which will allow you to get your feet out on the ground and explore in peace before taking the plunge. Sharing apartments with other expats is another common way of reducing hassle and expenses.

The Classifieds section of a local, expat-oriented newspaper or website is usually a great place to look for foreigner-friendly apartments.

Moving

Moving to a new house is a hassle, and moving into a foreign country is double or triply so, because you don't know how things work and there may be a language barrier too.

If you opt to have a professional ship your belongings, you're usually looking at a big bill and wait of several months if you ship by sea, or a huge bill if you ship by air. Unless you're moving "for good", or have the company footing the bill (there and back!), you should aim to bring as little as possible. Importing a car or other motor vehicle anywhere is a major hassle. For furniture, household appliances and electronics it's usually far cheaper to buy new than ship. Books, on the other hand, can usually be shipped through ordinary mail surprisingly cheaply; ask about special rates for printed matter at your post office (in the United States, the key term is the "International M-Bag"). Most international moving companies can assit you on arrival in finding an apartment, getting a driver's license, or getting linked into the local expat community.

If you opt to bring all your worldly belongings with you, remember that airlines usually slap on steep excess freight charges if you exceed 20 kilograms.

A recommended solution would be to bring nothing more than clothing, a pc, and absolutely the bare necessities. Many expats are typically living abroad for no more than four years at a time. Often expats will purchase furniture in their destination and before returning home sell their furniture abroad. This will save you money, because you don't have to deal with the hassle of moving large objects abroad and when returning after selling off the furniture an expatriate returns with extra cash.

Finances

Expect to burn a lot of money in the initial phase as you pay deposits and sort out household appliances, furniture, etc. Bring a solid chunk of cash — several months' salary is wise — and explore whether your company is willing to front you an advance or pay the deposit(s) for you.

Your expenses will depend on the cost of living at your destination. North America, West Europe, Australia, the Middle East and Asia's richer countries (Japan, South Korea, Singapore, Hong Kong) will make a sizable dent in your budget, but poorer Asian, Central European, and East European nations are much more reasonable.

See also: Money

Expat life

Expat life can be dull and lonely at times, but also exciting if one embraces new opportunities.

In countries and regions less connected to the "outside world" than other parts life can be dull and uneventful to cure this many expats often venture into the nearest capital or take a weekend trip to another country.


To cope with living abroad, familiarize yourself with the local customs and culture as much as possible. Try to get out and see more than what you normally would during the commute to and from work. Make new relationships; seek out new friends. In most countries, you'll generally find that the more polite and good natured you are towards the locals, the easier your stay will be, and you might even make some life-long friends in the process. The general idea is to NOT be a shut-in, get out and generate some life experiences for yourself. Remember, people are all made from the same materials, and we all have the same basic feelings. Those in other countries aren't much different from you. If you can wrap your head around that concept, you will have a much easier time acquainting yourself with your new surroundings.





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