The Earth is full of such diverse lands. You can find places with different cultures, religions, foods, skin colors, languages, and ways of living you’ve never even dreamed of. Experiencing places different from yours is so important to develop a global way of thinking and to increase the world’s tolerance for different people. That’s why traveling is so important. But, for some of us, traveling is not enough. Interacting with a different culture on a regular basis is the best way to really learn it. For those of you looking to have an experience living abroad, we have compiled a list of ways an American can move abroad.
**Disclaimer – This is written by an American, so I can only speak from an American’s point of view. Make sure to double check these items if you’re from another country.
1. Study Abroad
One of the easiest ways to move abroad is with a large organization supporting you, like a university. Most community colleges and universities have some sort of study abroad program that can assist you in continuing your education abroad. You can also apply directly to an international school. Some schools in Europe are free for even American citizens. And this way will allow you to graduate debt free!
2. Au Pair
Au Pair translates to “at par” in French. They are meant to be live in child care providers that are equal in the family. They are different from a nanny or housekeeper, as they become an extension of the family they are assigned to. It allows the children to have a unique cultural experience, as the point of the program is to find Au Pairs from other countries. If you enjoy taking care of children, this might be the best choice for you because your host family typically provides housing and food for free. Some of them even provide you with a vehicle, phone, and pay for you to join them on their vacations. Check out Au Pair World.
3. Teach English
The English language has become a global language, and being fluent can definitely be an asset for people in all countries. Because of this benefit, a lot of countries need English teachers, and they willing to pay for it. You will probably want to get your TEFL (teach English as a foreign language) certificate to make your resume more desirable. You can try to find a job yourself, or allow an experienced organization help you. TEFL Heaven provides in-person TEFL training as well as guaranteed job placement in select countries. Some countries even pay you enough to save money because the cost of living is so low.
4. Transfer Within Your Company
If you work for a company that has operations in other countries, this is a great option to help you move abroad. You will have an organization supporting you throughout the move and visa process, and you will most likely keep your same pay. Finding a company to do this is not the easiest, but once you do, you have to take advantage of the opportunity.
5. Working Holiday Visa
Americans can obtain a working holiday visa in certain countries. This allows them to stay on an extended “vacation” and pick up work as you go to support your travels. Most of these last for 12 months, with the option to extend at the end. If you are between 18 and 30 years old, can prove you have cash, and can pay for the visa fee, Australia and New Zealand are very easy to move abroad to. Mexico also allows you to live there up to six months with the Tourist Visa.
6. Work Away & Help X
There are two sites that I know of that allow you to volunteer in exchange for a free place to stay: Work Away and Help X. They allow you to go almost everywhere in the world with a free place to stay and a new country to explore. You can help run a farming school in Ecuador, assist an artist with their studio in London, or work at a buzzing hostel in Israel. There are so many options, but it’s not a long term solution. Depending on Visa requirements, you can usually only stay for a few months in each country at a time. Make sure to read reviews and read this comparison article to make the best decision for you.
7. Peace Corps
With a two year commitment, the Peace Corps allows you to volunteer abroad. This is a great opportunity to make a difference in the world and provide some help to those that need it. You can find jobs all over the world volunteering as an educator, in community development, or the environmental field. Check out their current openings HERE.
8. Become Fully Remote
Traveling around the world is a dream for a lot of people. Because of their careers, it remains just a dream. If you’re lucky enough to have a job you can do from, you can become a digital nomad. You can place your laptop on a desk in any part of the world and continue to do the job you already know you love. Forbes has a good ready on how you can become a digital nomad.
If you’re thinking about moving abroad, DO IT. If not now, then when? Don’t put this off, because before you know it, time will have flown by and you didn’t make the plunge. Even if it’s just a short three month trip, experience living abroad once in your life. Learn more about how to manage your finances. In the comments below, let us know where you want to move abroad to! Check out our article on how to stay happy while living abroad.