Your move abroad

Answers for the top 50 common questions that employees have regarding international moves.

If you are reading this publication, it means you have an exciting opportunity to improve your career while expanding your personal horizons. In addition, if you have an accompanying spouse/partner and/or children, they too are about to embark on an exciting adventure during which they will meet new people and explore new cultures. 

However, even though this is a tremendous opportunity, you probably have a number of concerns. Moving to a new location, especially a new country, requires attention to many details, both personal and professional, and your move is so much more than just the physical shipment of your household goods.

Therefore, if your employer extends an international move offer, you should evaluate the opportunity from various perspectives, including:

  • What lasting impact will the move have on your career?
  • What personal adjustments must be made by you and your family?
  • What is the financial impact to you and your family?

This booklet addresses employees’ many commonly asked questions regarding international moves. Since no two international move programs are alike, these questions and answers are by necessity very general in nature. Specific queries regarding your specific individual situation should be directed to those responsible for your company’s global mobility program administration.

When making the decision to take an international move, the personal adjustments you will face can seem overwhelming. These can most effectively be addressed on a face-to-face basis with advisers who specialize in cultural adjustment and counselors who deal with relocation. Current and former globally mobile employees and your employer’s global mobility program administrator can all address many of your questions. In addition, there are a myriad of materials available online or in print. 

The potential impact of an international move on your career is ultimately dependent upon your employer’s culture and business needs. You should meet with both line management and human resources representatives to identify the potential long-term effects of your international move on your organization and the plans for future utilization of an experienced “internationalist” (which you will become).

The material in this booklet is a general guide, is not country specific, and is intended for use by globally mobile employees from any country. However, for the benefit of U.S. outbound employees who will continue to have a U.S. tax filing requirement, we have included some general U.S. information in the tax section.

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