Sometimes, you’ll be exploring a new destination on a holiday and think, “what if this was my home?”. If that sounds like you, this post will outline exactly how to move to another country WITHOUT a job so you can make that life a reality!
Many people think that it’s impossible to move to another country permanently without having a job, but honestly, it’s not completely out of the question.
It seems like a dream – to just pick up your life and move to another country without having a job waiting for you there, without knowing what’s around the corner.
Although it might be a scary thought for some, it’s one of the most common ways for people to take the leap and emigrate.
It’s often easier to find work and apply for jobs once you’re actually in the location itself. After all, if you’re applying to be working in an office in Melbourne, chances are you’re going to need to be around for an interview.
Can You Move to Another Country Without a Job?
Obviously, whether you can emigrate without a job depends on where you’re looking to move to. But in general, yes, you can move to another country without a job.
Each country has its own specific visa rules and entry requirements that can be pretty strict when it comes to working.
Despite this, you absolutely can move to another country without a job. People do it every day. Want to find out how you can be just like one of those people?
Let’s find out how to move to another country without a job!
I’ve lived abroad for many years and love helping others find work abroad and figure out their “Move Abroad Plan.” Check out my class below to get you started ASAP!
How to Move to Another Country Without a Job: 5 Essential Steps
1. Choose a Country
First things first you’re going to want to choose the country that you want to live in.
It’s a good idea to have a list of three or four potential countries lined up just in case the visa rules for people without jobs are super restrictive.
Definitely check the visa rules before going any further into the logistics of moving there.
If you can only move there for 30 days on a tourist visa if you don’t have an employer ready to sponsor you, then you’re going to find it difficult to convert that short-term visa into a work visa in just a month.
Some countries with flexible visa allowances include Nepal, Mexico, Poland, Kazakhstan, and more.
It’s also important to remember that living somewhere is massively different from visiting a place.
You might have loved visiting London or LA or Singapore, but would you really want to live there? Could you see yourself there as a local? Could you afford it?
That last one is a big consideration. Your money is going to go a lot further in Latin American, Southern America, Eastern Europe, and parts of Asia.
If you don’t have a job lined up, you’re going to have a period of time in a new country where you’re likely to be paying for hostels or an Airbnb, eating out, and trying to get your bearings in a new country.
In this period, you want to be living as cheaply as possible until you’ve got some cash rolling in.
Also, think about if you know anyone in the country you’re looking to move to.
If you have family or friends in that location, you might be able to stay with them in the first instance until you find a job and get yourself on your feet.
In some cases, if it’s immediate family like parents, children, or spouses, you might be able to get a special visa. It opens the doors for countries that may have stricter visa restrictions for people trying to move there without a job lined up.
Take This Quiz to See What Country is Right For You!
2. Start Saving Money ASAP
Speaking of living in an affordable way, you’re going to want to start saving right now.
You’re not just saving for those first few weeks or months before you land a job, there are several costs that you need to consider.
Visa applications aren’t always cheap and neither are flights, temporary accommodation, and moving costs.
I highly recommend comparing flight prices using Skyscanner to save quite a bit of money.
You’re going to want to work out how much you’re going to need for these costs and probably double it to give you enough contingency for any unforeseen problems.
Another reason that you need to start saving before you leave for your new chosen country is due to visa allowances.
If you don’t have a job, you need to prove to your new nation that you have enough money in your accounts to support yourself while you’re here.
From their point of view, they don’t want to have to pay for you if you run out of money and get into trouble.
This is a super common visa condition and every country requests a different amount. For some, you also have to have at least that set amount in your account for a couple of months at least.
When you research your visas, this will be really clear, so you can start saving and work out a timeline for your move from there.
3. Learn the Local Language
I absolutely believe that even if you’re visiting a new country for even just a couple of days, you should attempt to learn enough of the local language to get by and be polite.
Also, you should brush up on your language skills on Pimsleur so you can add it to your CV confidently if you’re looking for a local job!
It’s the right thing to do and most locals will appreciate it. If you’re planning on moving to a new country with a different language, learning it is not just polite and respectful, it should be a necessity.
Being able to speak the local language means that you can help navigate the culture, meet new people, and, most importantly in this instance, is probably going to help you get a job quicker.
I recommend taking one-on-one affordable classes from native speakers on iTalki and then supplementing with Pimsleur.
It’s no small thing to be bilingual and if it’s between you and someone else who only speaks one language, you’re probably going to come out on top.
Knowing the local language is also going to help you get settled in the area when you need to do all the official paperwork for a bank account, rental accommodations, any taxes or city fees, and more.
There’s red tape in every country, and trying to get around it in a language you don’t know just sounds like a nightmare!
You’ll always learn more of a language once you’re immersed in it, but it’s really worth giving yourself a decent head start before you fly out.
Learning the local language is an invaluable skill and one you absolutely need if you’re moving there permanently.
4. Volunteer to Get Your Bearings
When you arrive in your new chosen country, it’s a good idea to either volunteer or take part in a workaway gig, to begin with.
One of the best ways to do this is with Trusted Housesitters.
Trusted Housesitters is a site where you can stay at someone’s house while they are away in exchange for watching their house or sometimes their pet. It’s a great way to travel the world for free!
This way you can get some free accommodation, meet some people in your new location, and really get your bearings.
You can save money, get some local tips, and work out where’s the best place for you to live.
It also takes some of the pressure off. For example, if you’ve got limited savings and you’re staying in a hostel trying to get a job and you know that you’ve only got six months of money to tide you over, it’s not going to be fun for anyone.
If you’re staying with a family and helping to teach their kid English (grab a TESOL certificate here to make yourself more competitive!), or you’re voluntarily running a hostel’s social media, or you’re painting up a new outhouse, you’re building connections and not spending all your money as soon as you get there.
Most volunteer schemes host more than one volunteer at a time, so there might be another would-be expat looking for a potential roommate!
You also get designated time off like you would in any job, so there are plenty of opportunities to organize job interviews, house viewings, meetings, and more.
5. Find a Job
Okay, this is the big one. You’re in your chosen new home, now it’s time to find a job.
Depending on where you are and what kind of job you’re looking for, there are going to be different ways to find a new job.
If you’re looking for something entry-level with an hourly rate and some flexibility like bar work, retail, housekeeping, or other roles in hospitality, you can normally walk around town with resumes and keep an eye out for those hiring flyers in the window.
If you’ve got a specialty or some experience, head online to sites like Indeed or LinkedIn jobs and hit up the job boards.
In order to make your resume/CV more competitive, I definitely recommend earning a few certifications on Coursera.
My favorite certifications that are guaranteed to make your CV look great to employers are Graphic Design, Software Development, Project Management, and Brand Management.
I used courses and certifications in Software Development to help me land the position I have today!
Make sure you change the location on your profile to match your new home and get applying. With global job boards online, it’s never been easier to find jobs abroad.
Another way to find jobs is through expat forums or groups on social media.
They’ve all been where you are, so they’ll be able to help out with tips and tricks for finding work, and getting yourself settled and it might also be a great way of finding some new friends.
Some of them might even be hiring at their own places of work!
Similar to if you volunteer on a Workaway gig or on Trusted Housesitters, it’s all about the connections that you’re making in your new home. It’s not always what you know, but who you know!
So, there you have it – my guide on how to move to another country without having a job lined up.
It might be scary to take the plunge and move across the world, but thriving in a new country is entirely possible. Just follow these five steps and you’ll be living your best life in no time!
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