Know before you go: key documents for moving abroad

April 18, 2017
To help you organise your move we have created a useful checklist of paperwork you are likely to need on your travels and when you arrive in your new location.
Make sure you have time left on your passport; many countries insist on 6 months after your arrival date so it is worth checking the expiry date months before you travel.
Hopefully visas will be organised by your employer in the country you are moving to or your current employer, if you are moving office. However, it is worth staying in touch with the relevant HR department to ensure all is going smoothly before finalising your own plans.
If you can, check in before you get to the airport and print boarding passes early. If you hope to use an app to get through the airport, it’s well worth having a printed version in case your battery dies or your phone doesn’t work as expected!
Depending on your role, and especially if you are going to work for a new company, you should bring any certificates or qualifications you have. Don’t forget to ask about the process of having them verified in the country you are going to work in.

If you are going to drive when you are abroad you will need an international drivers licence. The only exception is if you have a driving licence from an EU country and you are moving to another EU country where your own licence will be recognised.

Outside of the EU you will need an international licence which you use in addition to your driver’s licence, not instead of it. The Automobile Association in your country of residence will be able to help you with this.

It is worth bringing any important legal documentation you own with you. This could include:

  • Birth certificate
  • Marriage certificate
  • Your will
  • Power of attorney
  • Income tax records
If you get your vaccinations in your home country make sure you receive a written record of them and bring this with you. You may be asked to provide this information to enter the country or when starting a new job.
Ask your doctor and dentist for a copy of your medical and dental records. Having them with you will make life easier for your new physician and dentist as they will have your full history. If you take regular medication bring a prescription with you and research the availability of the medication in the country you are moving too. Speak to a health practitioner before you leave about alternatives if you need to.

Finally for some destinations you must prove that you have access to healthcare in the form of an international health insurance plan. Have a copy of your policy with you when you travel.

We offer comprehensive international health insurance for expatriates working abroad, get in touch, if you have any questions. We would love to answer them.