Mandy Kloppers

Moving Abroad – Your Ultimate Checklist

Few of us get the opportunity in life to move to another country. Some are lucky enough to visit abroad but even then we have limited time and never really get to know what life is like there. So, determining what you need to do and when to be ready for this monumental move is difficult at best. Below you will find some tips of guidelines to travel far away that pioneers who have gone before you offer for your convenience.

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  • Research the laws for where you are going. There are laws in different countries that most Americans would never think. For example, it is illegal to bring chewing gum into Singapore. You could be fined for feeding pigeons in Venice and watching a movie that is considered offensive to China, can land you in jail. 

You are advised to contact Foreign Embassies for the countries you are traveling to or through. 

  • Visit your doctor – Let your doctor know your plans. Get a complete checkup and request a copy of your medical records. Set up your immunization schedule. Make a second copy of your records in the event that the last one was stolen or destroyed. Make sure you add pharmacy records as well. When it is time for your departure, ask the doctor to give you adequate medications to carry you until you find another doctor


  • Other papers you should have (again have two copies of everything)
    • Passport and visa
  • Birth certificate
  • School records
  • Diplomas and special training certificates
  • Medical records (including your pharmacy records for the past year)
  • Medical insurance cards
  • A list of people who should be contacted if you are in a situation where you cannot contact them yourself.
  • Documents of property ownership.


NOTE: Notify your bank and credit card companies when you are planning on leaving so they will not deny your purchases. Make sure you have some currency on you in the event that you run into problems. Especially if you have some debts that you are dealing with, make sure your debt counsellor is aware of your new situation. Traveler’s checks and at least one credit card.

 What should you take with you?

  • If you carry it in your wallet, you need a copy of it, front and back in your carry one bag. This makes it a lot easier to get credit cards and id’s canceled and replaced if you have a picture of them with all their numbers.
  • Take a copy of any medication you are on and a letter from your doctor stating what he is treating you for, in case you are stopped in the airport. 
  • Pens
  • Plastic baggies
  • Wet wipes


  • Cell phone


    • Cell phone and charger with the proper electrical adapter for the country you are in.
    • Make sure you change to the international plan before leaving home
    • An emergency power pack that is fully charged

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  • Personal products
    • Sample size of wet wipes
    • Sample size of deodorant
    • Panty liners
    • Travel toothbrush and toothpaste
    • Travel size brush or comb
  • Fold up rain poncho
  • Extra shoes and socks
  • Duct tape
    • When you are out and something like the handle of your rolling suitcase or the sole of your shoe comes off and you are away from your destination, duct tape is your best friend.


Photo by Nicole Harrington on Unsplash