International move planning for the generally risk-averse!
January 20, 2013 2:19 PM Subscribe
How do people decide to do and execute big moves abroad? Is it a dumb idea to move abroad without a job in hand first?
posted by Papagayo to Work & Money (8 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
This is still largely theoretical, since I'm the middle of application processes for a bunch of different programs and grants and will hopefully not have to resort to just up and moving to another country like this, but I'm a big fan of backup plans! I have US citizenship but have quite a bit of experience abroad and would really like to move to either one of a couple of specific countries (note that these are developing nations, so some issues, such as visas, may not be as critical as, say, a move to the EU). How do people execute moves like this? Besides the plane ticket, approximately how many months' rent/food money is reasonable to save up? How hard is it to find work doing something like teaching English, for example (especially in the Middle East and Latin America)? Long-term I'm interested in development work, but in the short term I'm mostly concerned about not ending up homeless or something and I've taught English on a more informal level before, but I'm not certified--would this be a big issue if I applied for jobs?
Is moving abroad 'on a whim' like this universally a dumb idea, or can it work out? I speak two languages fluently and one passably, and am generally cross-culturally competent, but what I'm afraid of is being unable to find a job and completely failing or being in an unsafe situation. If you made a significant move like this, how or when did you know that it was a necessary or just good decision? If it wasn't a good decision, how did you figure out your next step (whether it was returning home or seeking further foreign adventures)?
Sorry if this question is a little vague! I'm not sure what questions to ask myself before attempting this or how to initiate such a plan (see: the budget concerns above).