The UK currently has around 5.5 million expatriates (expats) living all over the world. There are many popular countries that they move to that seemingly offer them more than the UK does. An expat is a person living in a country other than their country of birth, often temporarily for work reasons. You may think this sounds like immigration but it is slightly different. Immigration is when a person moves to another country on a permeant basis.
Whilst expatriates move to enjoy the fruits of their labour in other fascinating countries around the world, some challenges do crop up from time to time. So, if you’re thinking about becoming an expatriate then here are some things to be aware of. Here are the top 5 most common challenges faced by UK expatriates.
Moving to another city in the UK can make you feel lonely. So, as you can imagine, relocating to a completely different country is likely to heighten these feelings. Becoming an expat means leaving behind friends and family for long periods as you’ll have little time to come back and visit.
Fortunately, in the digital age we live in, getting in touch with people is now easier than ever. Facetime your friends from abroad or set up a Zoom meeting and invite all the people you are missing. This will help you feel that little bit closer to home which will keep you going.
You’ll need the right lawyers for your expat needs. Legal disputes such as divorce, and child custody are still a prominent issue to expats which is where it can get a bit complicated. With your marriage potentially being completed in your home country, if you look to get divorced in your new country, it may prove a challenge.
There are other legal disputes that expats need help with so ensuring you have a great set of lawyers backing you is vital.
Expats may move to receive a bigger working pay packet. However, what comes with this is usually a higher cost of living so money issues may still arise. Other financial issues that can come into play include access to pensions.
If you have moved abroad to earn money to send back to your family then you won’t be around to support your children growing up. This can be extremely hard for the expat, so ensure it is the right decision for your entire family before you go through with it.
This is perhaps the most stressful part. Searching for homes in another country can be very tough and requires a lot of research. You’ll need to sign for a house/flat without viewing it most likely and you’ll need to make sure it is in a nice neighbourhood, so you feel safe.