Expats and Covid-19

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Sarah Peddie

The Covid-19 pandemic has changed the way we work and live for the past year and a half. For expats, their situation is a bit different as travelling around the world has been halted and there are now so many checks on getting into different countries. The process may be a bit more stressful but, it doesn't mean that you can’t travel overseas to your dream job. 

Moving abroad during a time like this takes a lot of research and time - here is everything you need to know before making the move abroad this year.

1. The country’s handling of the pandemic

Make sure you look closely at the statistics on how well a country has done on handling the coronavirus pandemic so you can decide what country is best for you. 

Bloomberg has put together a Covid Resilience Ranking to show what countries have handled the pandemic better. The top five are New Zealand, Singapore, Australia, Israel and South Korea. 

2. Find out if you can move

Do some research on whether the countries you are thinking about moving to will let you in. Some countries, especially throughout Europe, do not want visitors for non-essential travel. For example, in Portugal, people can apply for residency visas that last four months or longer.

There are many countries around the world that are eager for people to enter but will want specific requirements from you before heading over. 

Some countries have also created “travel bubbles” which means that you can move from one country to another with limited hassle - but make sure to check out the rules on quarantining and test around it.

3. Culture

Sometimes culture shock can really affect an expat in a new country - especially moving to countries in the Gulf like Saudi Arabia and the UAE. 


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Working hours and days could be completely different in the country you are going to work in so make sure you do your research for the information you need about that.

One of the most common challenges that expats face regarding culture shock is moving to a place where English is not widely spoken which makes communicating with locals difficult. Learning some key phrases of the language before you head over to your destination could really help.

4. Get the correct visa

Getting the correct visa in place before you head overseas is vital if you want to work. Different countries will have different visa types so make sure you get the correct one for you. Waiting for your visa to be processed can take weeks up to months so make sure you apply for the right one. 

If you are moving to New Zealand, for example, you can actually speed up your visa process if you apply for a job that is on the country’s Skill Shortage List. You could be fast tracked into the country and it could be much easier to apply for a visa since the job is in high demand. 

If you are thinking about moving overseas for your dream job then register with Odyssey Recruitment today and start your journey with us!