Crossing Borders Made Simple: A Guide to International Moving

Being an expat can make for some difficult decisions. Are you going to bring all your belongings with you, or are you going to purchase every new at your new place?

If you do decide to move internationally, is going to explain how to best approach the international move, how to choose a moving company, and much more.

Let’s get started.

How to Move Internationally

1. Decide where you’re going to move

Planning on moving to your student accommodation abroad? Here’s what you need to keep in mind. The first step in an international move is knowing where you’re going. With such a big planet and places to go, it’s a good idea to visit the place you’re considering moving to before you make the big move.

Visiting a country is much different than actually living in it, so it’s a good idea to speak with some locals or even some expats who live in that location. You may not think about every aspect of the move until it’s brought to your attention, and locals can help with that.

Not every country is easy to move to either, as some countries don’t allow foreigners to live in their country long term. There are plenty of places to consider moving though, like Hong Kong or Costa Rica and even Dubai if you’re looking for a place to live without paying taxes.

2. Find a suitable living arrangement

Finding a place to live is also a good idea before you make your move. You don’t want to get to your destination and realize there are no homes available for rent that are suitable. Spend a few months before planning.

If possible, visit the place before you decide to put any money down. Consider that pictures never do the place justice, and it’s better to avoid being stuck in a lease with an apartment that you don’t like.

You can always keep your items in storage when you move internationally, and it’s best to find the best international movers that can help you keep your items in storage while you find a suitable place to live.

3. Get your visa

Getting a visa can be complicated depending on where you are from and the place you are considering moving to. It’s always best to apply for the visa ahead of time to avoid any heartbreaks.

Do not under any circumstances buy any plane tickets, moving services, or rentals until you know the status of your visa. Never make any assumptions on how it will go as you can be denied for any reason.

4. Consider insurance

Insurance is important for expats, not only health insurance, but moving insurance as well. While most movers have insurance, it’s important to pay a little extra to get full-value insurance so it covers the value of your belongings rather than a small fee per pound.

5. Decide what you’re going to keep with you

Before you move, you’re going to need to get rid of some of your belongings. Make three piles, one to donate, one to keep, and one to throw away. Donate as much as you can, and then throw away whatever else is left.

It’s best to pack light, as international shipping can add up quickly if you’re moving with a lot of furniture. It may be worth it to sell off your biggest items and repurchase them in your new location.

expat moving services

6. Be patient

The best tip for international moving or in life, in general, is to be patient. Moving internationally can be a hellish experience if you are not prepared, and even if you are prepared, there will be unforeseen tasks that you’ll need to take care of.

It’s always best to plan these big life-changing decisions well in advance, so do not wait until the last minute to start planning.


Alright, let’s wrap up the lowdown from on making your international move a breeze! So, you’re eyeing the expat life, huh? Here’s the breakdown: First off, nail down where you want to go. Take a trip, chat with locals or fellow expats—get the real scoop. Not every place is a walk in the park, but spots like Hong Kong, Costa Rica, or tax-friendly Dubai might catch your eye.

Next up, sort out your living situation. Don’t wait until you’re there to find a place. Spend some time beforehand, and if possible, check it out in person. Trust me, pictures can be deceiving. Oh, and here’s a pro tip: consider storing your stuff while you’re on the house-hunting grind. Now, the visa game. Get that sorted early.

No booking flights or movers until you’ve got that golden ticket in your hand. No assumptions here—visas can be a tricky business. Don’t forget the insurance game. Health insurance is a no-brainer, but don’t skip out on moving insurance.

Go for the full-value deal—it covers your stuff, not just a weight-based fee. Time to downsize like a pro. Before you jet off, declutter! Make three piles: donate, keep, toss. Lighter packing means cheaper shipping. Think about selling the big stuff and picking up new gear at your new digs.

David Tompkins
Author: David Tompkins