Admittedly, the forever in the title might be a bit of an exaggeration.
The point is that there’s a lot of information out there about chucking your job in, selling all your possessions and travelling the world. Usually this ends up being a long trip, with a return home at the end.
I can definitely advocate the freedom of making this decision, because travelling changes your life and it’s easier to circulate the globe hopping from country to country than by taking smaller holidays and doubling back home all the time. Unfortunately, this approach isn’t a reality for many people. Things get in the way, sometimes “things” being you. Or the time it would take the save the money and make that leap just doesn’t happen.
The key to travelling long-term might lie in a different approach.
Why do you have to go back home?
Why not make that new place on the other side of the world your home? Why not get a new job there? Why not use it as your new travel base, while really experiencing another culture in-depth? Long-term travel is expensive, but you already fund your current life, and you can do the same somewhere else.
Why not be a long-term traveller, by living in another country?
It can be a big step, and sometimes it takes a lot of organisation, but working overseas is an option that doesn’t get enough coverage when it comes to advice on how to travel the world.
But how do you just move countries?
You decide to do it and you find out how. A little hard work but it’s worth it.
Table of Contents
Step One: Choose a country to live in
This one can be tough, there are a lot of choices and it’s a personal decision. There are also the visa practicalities to consider! So much that I’ve written a whole post on choosing a country to move to.
Step Two: Find work in a different country
You don’t need to have a concrete job before you go, but you do need a plan. Will you look for work you already have experience in? Can you register with a temping agency that will help you find work? Is there seasonal or expat work that is common, like working at a ski resort, or teaching english.
Step Three: Save to travel
This should probably be step one! How much money do you need to move countries?
It depends on your choice of country, what work you intend to do and how you want to live.
Google is your best friend for standard living costs of the country and the magic number seems to be 3 months worth, although I wouldn’t make that a hard rule. It might take you a bit to get settled and you want some money for the all important travel you can do while you’re there. How much to save before moving countries and what not to do when you first get to a new country is where I have definitely learned from experience. The more the better obviously, but sometimes you just need to take a leap and find your wings on the way.
Step Four: Sell your possessions
Wait, what? Didn’t I say you DON’T need to sell all your things to travel the world long-term? It is true, but it definitely helps with step 3, and with step 5 – I’m all mixed up with the order of these – and take a lesson from someone who spent hundreds of dollars to post clothes to the UK and never wore them when they arrived. Trust me – you can get it all there and you’ll want to.
Step Five: Packing to move countries
Hopefully you’ve downsized your belongings through step 4 and now you don’t have too much to take!
Ideally leave important things you want to keep but don’t need to take with someone from your home, and just take the belongings that will be of use to you. Obviously your phone and laptop, and maybe that special trinket you have in every room you’ve ever had. It’s clothes and shoes where you need to make the sacrifices.
I’m not saying it’s all easygoing and obviously this is simplified, but if you want to travel the world moving countries is a great way to do it. I wish this would be considered as more of an option. You need less money to do so, you can really experience a different culture and there are great opportunities to travel on the way there and back!