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5 tips for relocating with children

You may have landed the job of your dreams in a far-flung country, or chosen to move for access to a better lifestyle, but making the decision to move your family abroad won’t have been easy.

You may worry about how your child will settle at a new school or adapt to the new lifestyle.

There’s no doubt that moving is stressful. That’s why we’ve put together our five top tips for an easy family move abroad.

1. Visit your new home with your family

If possible, introduce your children to their new home and host country before the big move. A short break will give your kids an idea of the new culture they’ll be part of, what sort of neighbourhood they’ll be living in, activities they will have on their doorstep, and what the local people are like.

2. Consider your cost of living

You’ll have already spent time planning the key expenses of your move: your new house, travel expenses, school fees, shipping costs, and so on. But now is a good time to delve deeper into the everyday expenses and to work out what disposable income you might have.

Think about the sort of lifestyle your children are used to. Will you be able to afford for them to visit the cinema, keep up a current hobby, or buy the latest fashion when you’ve moved? While you may be moving for a higher salary, are costs higher where you’re going? And how does it work out in the end? Considering these costs now will help you to manage your children’s expectations.

3. Pick the right time to move

You may be eager to start your new life, but it’s important that the move works for the whole family. If possible, try to avoid moving mid-term. Friendship groups tend to be established at the start of the year, so starting mid-term may make it difficult for your child to fit in.

If it’s coming up to school holidays, can you time the move so that the kids have a few weeks to be with their friends first? It may help your children to settle into their new life if you allow them time to say goodbye to friends.

4. Choose the right school

If your move is long-term or permanent, sending your children to the nearest school will help them get involved in the local community. However, if you’re only staying in the country for six months or so, consider an international school. The curriculum will probably be similar to what your kids have already been learning, and there won’t be as much of a language barrier.

5. Help your child to settle in

It may take a few weeks for your children to make friends. In the meantime, arrange a few visits to nearby attractions or sports clubs or to meet up with other expat children. Immerse yourselves in community life by visiting the town market together or asking locals about clubs your children can join. Having fun as a family and introducing your children to their new lifestyle will stop them feeling isolated or lonely.

These tips offer you the foundations for a successful family move. All that’s left is to enjoy the adventure.

Preparing for a move to another country with your family can be overwhelming. There’s so much to organise, it’s tempting to focus on the most immediate problems, such as packing and paperwork.

Unfortunately, this can mean that longer-term concerns, such as health care and birth planning, get left to one side. With a little careful research and some professional advice, it’s possible to find out about your health care options before you make the move. Being properly prepared is the best way to ensure your peace of mind – leaving you free to enjoy the excitement of starting family life in your new home. Contact one of our expert sales consultants for information on international private medical insurance to suit you and to help protect your family’s health.

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