After you have spent 4 grueling years in college (or more if you attended a post-graduate school) you may not want to dive right into your career. There is absolutely nothing wrong with that, in fact, a fair number of students decide to take time off. Many of them even live abroad for a year before jumping into their newfound career. If this sounds like something that would be of interest to you, there will be a few things that you need to do to prepare for the move. Here are a few tips to get you started.
If you’re going to be living overseas for an entire year, you will definitely want to do some research about where you will be moving. You’ll want to consider if you want to live in a city or the countryside, if you already know the native language or if you feel you could pick it up fairly quickly or if English so prevalently that it won’t even be a worry. Think about what the cost of living will be and if you will be renting a home or simply staying in a hotel on an extended stay basis.
Freeze Any Bills You Can
If you have bills that you are responsible for such as streaming services, subscriptions, or car insurance, make sure to contact the agencies and have them freeze your account since you will not be using them. Take care of any past due amounts before you leave so that they are not hanging over your head.
Trim Your Monthly Budget
Since you may not be working while you are overseas, you’ll need to save up as much money as possible. The easiest way to do this is to start trimming unnecessary expenses from your monthly budget. A good idea would be to completely eliminate any subscription-based services that you may have. They may be low-priced individually, but when you add all of them up, they can amount to a large bill each month. Another recommended action is to reduce monthly payments of your student loans by refinancing them into one single loan from a private lender. This will give you savings on interest as well as eliminate the potential of missing multiple payments and incurring late fees.
Don’t Sell Everything You Own
Don’t worry too much about your possessions. You will not have to sell or give away everything that you own. If you have family who has a garage or extra space in their home, you may be able to store it there. If you do not, storage units are not that expensive and you can prepay for the entire time you are gone. This relieves you of the stress of wondering if all of your stuff is safe and sound.
Passports and Visas
Make certain that you apply for your travel visa and passport well in advance of your desired departure date. These can take months to process at times so you really need to do it as soon as you decide on where you want to travel. Check with each country’s entry requirements as some are very strict about who can and cannot enter.
Photo by Annie Spratt