What does emigration actually cost? (Photo: Shutterstock)
However, to bring some light into the darkness, let’s take a look at all the aspects and factors you should consider if you want to emigrate. Thus can better plan how much money you really need for your upcoming emigration.
How much money do you need to emigrate?
So before you set off to your destination with packed suitcases and full of anticipation, a detailed calculation should be made in advance to avoid any nasty surprises in dreamland. Because with many emigrants the dream failed within shortest time at financial means and the return into the homeland stood unwillingly immediately before. Precise planning that takes various factors into account is therefore essential and an important cornerstone for successful emigration. The following are the factors in detail, which it is important to consider in financial planning.
What is the cost of living?
Of course, this varies greatly from country to country. In European countries, the cost of living is usually comparable to the cost in Germany, whereas outside of Europe, especially in South American, African and Asian countries, the cost of living is often several times lower. In contrast, these are in metropolises many times higher. It is best to find out about regular fixed costs such as electricity and water before emigrating.
The prices for food should also be found out in advance. The local products are usually more affordable, but as an expatriate you may want to use the trusted imported products from time to time, which is reflected in their prices.
In order to get a rough overview of the living costs, it is advisable to take a look at the Numbeo calculator. These are average values that provide a good orientation. The calculator gives a good overview of the average prices of basic foodstuffs, the prices of rent and public transport, as well as restaurant visits and leisure activities.
As a rule of thumb, you should be able to make ends meet with your start-up capital for at least six months, or better still nine to twelve months, without a regular income in your destination country. Especially if you don’t have a permanent job in sight or if you want to start your own project locally, the cost of living should be covered for six months to a year.
In this time window, the chances are good to find a suitable job or to become self-employed with your own project on the local market and establish yourself there. There are many stories of emigrants who did not take this buffer into account and thus had already used up the reserves after a short time and thus could not secure a further existence abroad.
What is your housing situation?
Depending on the initial situation in your home country, it may be worth considering renting out your own apartment or house, so that you have additional income month after month. If a long-term or permanent emigration is considered, it can also be advantageous to sell your own accommodation. If you live yourself for rent, the lease should be terminated in due time. However, if you want to keep a loophole open, it may also be worth considering temporarily subletting your apartment.
Before emigrating, you should already have thought about the future accommodation in the new adopted country. It should be decided whether an apartment or a house should be rented. It is important to check if the accommodation is rented already furnished or if you buy the furniture yourself locally. In addition, the rent deposit and any commission for the broker should be included in the calculation.
In the event that a vacant property is to be rented, it is also advisable to compare prices locally and to check whether a local carpenter can make the furniture cheaper and more visually appealing than buying it in a furniture store, such as Ikea. In addition to the furniture, other utensils, such as for the kitchen, are needed to be able to manage everyday life. Here it is also advisable when planning a purchase to take a look on the Internet at sales sites or online flea markets in the region, where you can make a bargain or two.
Many emigrants are reluctant to part with their belongings and therefore plan to have their furniture and private possessions shipped to their new home country in a container. Also for this option, prices of different forwarding agencies should be compared; however, this is often a very expensive matter. However, before considering this option, an inventory of furniture and possessions should be made and everything that you can no longer use in the new country should be cleaned out. Only the most necessary items should be transported to the new home country.
How does the job or. Labor market off?
In order to secure a long-term existence abroad, a job is indispensable. Ideally, you have already looked for a job before emigrating and have already signed the employment contract. If this is not the case and you are looking for a suitable job in your home country, you should check the prospects for a new job realistically beforehand.
The current economic situation in the destination country should be examined. If unemployment is already relatively high there and work may often only be seasonal, finding suitable employment may prove more difficult than expected. Many emigrants therefore work abroad in professions that do not correspond to your original qualifications and requirements.
In addition, a plan B should be forged to safeguard the situation in the event that no work is found locally. Depending on the destination country, it is also important to consider that a work visa may be required before taking up a position.
Do you migrate alone or with the whole family?
The overall situation of an emigration depends of course also strongly on whether one emigrates alone and unattached or whether one plans this step together with the family. In this case there is a need for larger living space for the whole family. For school-age children, a suitable school should be found as soon as possible.
Depending on your knowledge of the foreign language, this can also lead to initial complications and you should invest in a language course or even in a private tutor if necessary. In this context, the costs for school or kindergarten as well as for public transportation should be checked in advance. With several people in the household, the cost of living is correspondingly higher.
Other factors to consider
In order to be mobile locally, a car is necessary in most cases. At this point it must be decided whether this may be carried from home. Of course, this depends on the distance and the import regulations of the destination country. If you are planning to buy a car in your new home country, you should also check the necessary documents. It should also be checked whether the driver’s license is valid in the destination country or whether an international driver’s license should be issued by the responsible traffic authority. In some countries, such as the USA, it may be necessary to take another driving test in order to obtain the local driver’s license.
In order to be able to make use of medical care, an international health insurance policy should be taken out for all family members involved in the emigration. It is worthwhile to compare the offers of different providers.
Since unforeseen events can occur at any time, there should always be a reserve for emergencies. At least the amount for airline tickets to the home country should be planned as a nest egg. The flight tickets back home are not covered by the employment agency or the German consulate.
In addition, the labor laws abroad are often not as strict as in the home country. At any time, one may unexpectedly lose one’s job, resulting in the loss of one’s budgeted fixed income. In this situation, a financial cushion is necessary to stay afloat for a while.
If an emigration is planned accordingly with a well-calculated start-up capital, nothing stands in the way of your success and the emigrant can plunge into the adventure of emigration with full vigor.