Travelling Overseas for Love: Financial Tips for Your Move

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If you’re a spouse currently living in a separate country to your partner, you may now finally be in the situation where you can move to be reunited with them. Maybe they got the visa, citizenship approval or the job they needed, which has made the move possible and if so congratulations!  

As someone with first-hand experience of this, I have seen how a lack of planning, not having the right documents in place and not having a financial plan outlined can destroy a global romance that you’ve worked so hard to maintain overseas. So to help you travel knowing that everything is taken care of and can only go well, here are some financial tips to consider before making the move to your luxurious new destination home:

1.     Get the Right Visa 

The most important thing to sort out whenever you move for love is your visa. In the midst of the excitement, you can often overlook what you need and fail to get the correct documents that will allow you financial security in your new location. It is worth speaking to the country’s immigration body to ensure that you get the right spouse visa that makes you eligible to settle there. In the case where you don’t have what you need, you could face deportation if you try to set up things like a bank over there as you will flag up on the governing system.

2.     Get Your Own Personal Financial Plan

Before you even touch down get a financial plan together that outlines your potential income, expenses and back up fund. If you’re looking for a new job there, don’t be naive. Often first pay checks take some time to come through so make sure you have enough saved to keep you going until it comes through.

3.     Create a Career Plan

If you’re moving for love, chances are you may be putting your career on hold. Depending on where you’re moving to, you may find jobs in your field come at a premium and in some cases that the country’s economy is fragile. You may be able to take a leave of absence from your current position until you are fully settled in your new country, just so you are protected. The job you may have at home, may not exist over there, or it may be classified as something different so make sure you do your research. It is also best to plan your potential jobs before you go, that way you’ll know what to expect.

4.     Get A Financial Agreement in Place

Most countries recognize marriage as a sacred institution, offering the maximum benefits and protection for each party so why not consider getting married before you move?

If you are not married, think about registering as a civil or domestic partnership before leaving home. This might offer you the best possible alternative for financial protection should problems arise overseas.  

More importantly, draw up an agreement that will clearly state the living and financial arrangements you’ve agreed to in your couple. This is often a tricky conversation but one that if not had could cause massive problems down the line. For example, if you are not authorized to work or can’t find employment, is your partner willing to support you financially? Will you have an allowance, or will your partner pay for all expenses in the home and host country, and for how long? What if you split up? Who will pay for the place you may have rented? There’s a lot to consider so have the conversation now!

5.     Seek Professional Advice

Too often do couples get swept up in the romance of the situation and move before figuring out the details. Whilst this is obviously a wonderful thing, you need to keep your feet on the ground until things are sorted out. With so much to do, it is always best to seek help from an immigration service to help you understand the local immigration law, including visas, any work permits you might need and your rights as a foreigner. This information could prove valuable if you fall out of love with your partner, but fall madly in love with your host country and want to stay. 

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