Many people move abroad to be with a partner. Of course, there are many things to consider when taking such a big leap. Below are a few things to consider when moving abroad to be with a partner.
How strong is your relationship?
You should consider how stable your relationship is and how much experience you have together as a couple. There’s a big difference between moving to another country to be with someone who you’ve been in a happy relationship with for years and someone who you’ve known for a few weeks.
Ideally, you should have experience living with your partner before moving abroad to be with them. If you’re moving abroad to live with someone who you’ve only ever talked to online, you may want to consider meeting them in person first and possibly staying for a couple week temporarily to understand what they’re like to live with. You don’t want to move abroad to live with someone only to realize that living with them is intolerable.
What new things will you have to learn?
Moving to a new country could mean having to learn new customs, new laws, a new currency and possibly even a new language. It can be a big culture shock for those who do not prepare themselves. This is why you should do your research before moving over.
It could be worth taking language classes beforehand and getting to know the culture through books and online guides. This may not only help you to adjust, but could make it easier to apply for a visa. It can also help you determine whether moving is truly something you’re prepared to do.
What will you leave behind?
The hardest part of any long-distance move is having to leave behind family and friends. You may find that you are not prepared to do this if you have close family connections and a close friend circle (although, of course, you can still stay in contact).
You should also consider what other sacrifices you may have to make. Will you have to give up a job you love? Will you have to give up certain foods and places that you cherish? Will there be certain freedoms that you have to sacrifice? These are all important to consider when making the decision to move abroad.
How long will you move for?
There may be instances when you only plan on moving abroad temporarily. Perhaps a partner is planning on working abroad for a year or six months and you’ve been thinking of going with them. Providing that you have no serious commitments back home, moving with them could be a fun experience that may only require short-term sacrifices. Of course, if you have a stable job or kids in school, it may be better to stay behind while they relocate abroad to work.
If it’s a permanent move, you need to consider whether that person is truly worth relocating your entire life for. It will be more costly, more legally challenging and you will have to make long-term lifestyle changes. It is possible that you may be able to regularly visit a partner abroad or that they may be able to regularly visit you, but overall you will have to get used to it being a long-distance relationship most of the time.
Can you legally migrate?
You’ll need to apply for a visa in most cases when moving abroad. Some countries will only let you seek permanent residence if you are in a serious long-term relationship such as a marriage – you may want to hire a marriage visa attorney in some cases. You may be denied a visa if your relationship is not seen to be strong enough. Alternatively, you may be able to seek residence by applying for a temporary working visa.
You may need to meet certain legal requirements to obtain a visa. This could include not having a criminal record, speaking some of the local language and possibly having a job lined up or partner you can rely on for income.
Can you afford to move?
Moving abroad isn’t cheap. On top of obtaining a visa, you’ll need to consider the cost of traveling over and the cost of potentially moving over your belongings. This cost will vary depending on the distance you are moving, the visa you are applying for and the amount of possessions you decide to bring. A temporary move will cost you less – not only will the visa be cheaper, but you can leave behind many of your possessions.