Dreaming of moving abroad from the US? Ready to make that jump but don’t know where to start?
Here are the five most important things to consider when moving abroad from the US, in my opinion.
I know it seems impossible. You know your plan in moving abroad from the US, but how do you choose where to go? With so many options, how the hell are you supposed to narrow it down? We knew we wanted to move to Europe, but we had no idea where. I started with a Google search “best places to live in Europe” This just just leads to a trip down the rabbit hole and four hours later it’s two in the morning and you’re no closer to choosing.
So starting fresh, we made a list of countries that we like. Any countries, it doesn’t matter the reason. If it seems kind of nice, we put it on that list. Once that list was finished, we dug into these five things:
Your well-being is so important and there are countries that really get this right. According to Business Insider Nordic the countries with the best healthcare systems in 2017 are Luxembourg in first place, then Singapore, Switzerland, Japan, Netherlands, Sweden, Hong Kong, Australia, Israel, Germany, Belgium, New Zealand, Norway, France, Qatar, and Canada. This, of course, is just one thing to consider. You probably don’t want to pick a new place to live based on healthcare alone. That brings me to my next thing to consider, schools.
This doesn’t apply to everyone, but if you have children or you plan on furthering your education then the quality of the school system is very important. Every list I have found is different from the last. In my opinion, it’s probably best to research by country. Check out how the school systems work, how they rate, and find out if they are the right fit for you or your family. Another thing I recommend checking into would be international schools. Once you decide on a country you can really dig into the options.
3. Quality of Life
The factors that go into the quality of life rating are things like cost of living, personal happiness, safety, climate, transportation and health. I came across a interesting list here. The importance of each of these will be different for everyone. Coming from Chicago and being completely sick of snow put climate at the top of our list. We wanted somewhere with changing seasons so it wasn’t such a shock (we moved to Texas for a while and missed the fall so much), but we also wanted somewhere a little warmer with less snow, if any. So that put the middle to south of France pretty high on our list.
This one was so important to us. Food is my favorite hobby. Italian pasta put Italy high on our list, and French food helped boost France up top. Of course, that’s based on our taste buds. What kind of food you’re into should come up while searching for your new home. The best part, in Europe everything is so close that we can live in one place and holiday somewhere else, even for a quick weekend trip.
This was the decision-maker for us. When it came down to the top two countries, the French countryside, mountains and beaches made France our number one. The Netherlands was a close second, but we just saw ourselves in France. The location is also perfect for traveling Europe.
The decision was made.
I hope this helps you start your own checklist and I wish you luck in moving abroad from the US. Moving to Europe is our dream and we had taken the first step. It is not a decision to be taken lightly, but also remember that nothing has to be permanent. One of my favorite quotes says “it’s better to look back on life and say ‘I can’t believe I did that’ than to look back and say ‘I wish I did that.” Take that jump. Nothing worth doing ever comes easy.
À la prochaine!