Europe is the cradle of western civilization.
Europe is the cradle of western civilization.

Europe is allegedly associated with the apex of western civilization, culture and democracy. Every single country on the old continent prides a rich historical and cultural background, major contributions to world literature, science and technology and unique folklore and traditions.

And while globalization has long rendered nationalism antiquated and borders within the EU have been getting thinner and thinner with every passing year, the decision to throw yourself into this colourful diversity of languages, customs and social norms must be carefully weighed and seriously thought over. Moving across Europe may not look like a big deal – the continent is just a stone’s throw from the UK – and yet, the particularities of your new surroundings and your new lifestyle may make you think you’ve moved to another universe.

If you are moving to another country from the UK, you have probably found some promising job opportunities, a perfect retirement destination or an educational facility that offers great possibilities in your chosen area of studies. The reasons behind your international relocation are definitely the determining factors for the nature of your move.

What Are Your Reasons For Moving Abroad?

Are you moving abroad for love? Or is your company transferring you to a position in a foreign country? Maybe you found an affordable place with mild climate where you would like to raise your children or to peacefully retire to? Or you got admitted into a reputable university? Whatever the reasons, keep in mind that an international relocation is a very complicated process and you will need professional help to carry it out successfully. Europe removals can lend you an experienced helping hand.

Famous old universities and libraries are spread throughout Europe.
Europe has always been a world centre of knowledge and culture.

When moving abroad to study, you will need a lot of general knowledge and just a few personal effects. The essential questions to ask will be about student loans and university requirements rather than information concerning driving licenses and utility transfers. All the necessary paperwork will be detailed by your future college and you will probably find living accommodations on campus. In this case, you will only take your clothes, toiletries and books and will have very few preparations to make. Even if you are going to live off campus, you will certainly not move large furniture or kitchen appliances or your own vehicle.

Either way, you will be able to manage by yourself or with the assistance of family and friends, but no professional help will be required. Be it for college or for some other temporary purpose, when you move abroad for a year or so, your relocation should be quite simple and problem-free.

However, if you intend to permanently move to a foreign country, it is a horse of a different colour. Moving abroad and starting a new life is quite a daunting challenge and there are many important things to know before you undertake it.  Here is what you need to consider before moving across Europe:

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Which Is Your New Country?

Regardless of the economic unification targeted by the expanding European Union, market opportunities, social etiquette and cultural factors vary significantly from one country to the next.

Job Market and Cost of Living

Rituals for banishing evil are present in the folklore of each nation.
Traditions in your new country may certainly take you aback!

Especially if you are moving abroad without a job, you need to research well the business environment and employment opportunities in your future country. Your professional qualification and skills may be in great demand in a certain society but of little practical use in another. Some industries thrive in one area but are doomed in a different region, so develop your business plans strategically and/or search for suitable occupations where your previous experience will be valued. Also, do not forget to check the real estate prices and the overall cost of living in your chosen country, because some European nations have very high living standards while decent or affordable life in others has a completely different meaning.

Language Barrier

Your native tongue will be all you need if you visit a place as a tourist – most of the people in any European country understand and speak enough English for basic communication purposes. If you intend to live in that country, however, you will have to pick the language as quickly as possible or you will experience great inconveniences and you will never be able to fully adjust.

Depending on the country, this may be either a piece of cake or a piece of hell because while some Indo-European languages have many similarities to the English language, others, such as Greek or Hungarian, for example, fall in separate families and are very distinctive and hard to learn. In Greece or some of the Slavic countries, you will even have to learn a different alphabet in order to read street signs and location names, for example.


If you find mists and clouds enchanting, you may be disappointed with the sunny weather in Southern Europe. The Northern parts of the continent, on the other hand, experience much more severe cold than what you are used to during the mild winters in the UK.  So, consider this factor when relocating to another country – you may need a parasol or fur-lined boots in your new surroundings. You will also need to move your clock an hour or two forwards, depending on whether you are in the Central European, Eastern European or Moscow Time Zones.


The metric system is in use throughout Europe.
One pound equals how many kilograms?

It is time to get familiarized with the metric system – kilograms, liters, centimeters, etc. are in use throughout the continent and they should have a clear meaning for you unless you want to get confused every time measurements are mentioned. However, it is not a big deal learning to convert from one system to another, you just need to get used to it.

Make Adjustment Easier

If possible, take a trip or go on a long vacation in your country-to-be. You will grasp a better idea of what life is like there and will be able to mentally prepare for the big change. Google street view offers another option to have a glimpse at your future surroundings if you cannot afford to go there in person. Try to learn as much as possible about the specific country you are planning to relocate to in advance – it will help you prevent many mistakes when moving abroad and will facilitate the adjustment process later on.

Anyway, you can’t actually avoid the cultural shock altogether, for norms and traditions vary greatly in every country, but your daily routine will most probably be quite similar to the one you had in the UK. Try to join the local community life, befriend your neighbours and make some efforts to accept different points of view and not to criticize different sets of values and beliefs and you will fit in the foreign society in no time. One of the greatest advantages of moving abroad is that you will get to know an entirely different world and new horizons will open before you – literally.

Tight Budget or Sufficient Cash?

Before planning your relocation, you need to know your budget. An international move is quite an expensive endeavour and your savings should be sufficient to cover all the shipping costs, possible customs duties, insurance and the various expenses for starting your new life.

You can find many places with rich historical heritage in Europe.
If you have a decent budget you can afford to follow your chosen direction in life.

Even if you have secured a job prior to your move, at least one month will pass before you receive your first salary – and you will have to pay for lodging, furnishing, utilities, food, different fees and cover dozens of other foreseen or unforeseen expenses. So, get your finances in order and first determine your moving budget. Pay off any due taxes or debts before departing and do not forget to provide for possible charges and additional expenses.

Whatever your current financial situation is, if you are determined to move abroad, set up a bank account in the respective country. This is sometimes officially required, but even if it is not in your case, it will allow you an easy access to your money and will help you avoid the problem with different currencies.

Is It Too Early to Start the Preparations?

You are recommended to start the moving preparations earlier than early, so don’t lose a moment! As soon as your relocation is all locked up, your contest with time begins. It is estimated that you will need about six months to properly prepare an international move.

  • Gather all relevant information. The more you learn beforehand, the better. And this rule applies to the situation in your future country as well as to the various aspects of the moving procedure. When you know exactly what to expect, it is much easier to get properly prepared in time;
  • Search for living accommodations. You need to know your destination before you set off on your life-changing journey abroad. You’d better contact trustworthy real estate agencies in search of a suitable residence in your future area because trying to negotiate a purchase or a rental directly with an owner without being able to visit the place and see it for real, often results in bitter disappointment or even frauds. At least, arrange for a longer stay at a hotel while you are looking for an adequate home. In this scenario, however, you will need storage for your belongings. Of course, this issue will be much more easily settled if you have a friend or an acquaintance in the new place;
  • Look for expatriate assistance. Even if you don’t know in person anybody who lives in your future area, you can try to contact British people who have already relocated and settled there. There could even be a community of expatriates and these people are sure to help you with inside information and reliable recommendations concerning every aspect of life in your new country. Any practical advice or useful tips you receive will help you avoid common moving abroad mistakes and will facilitate your endeavour;
All tpes of transportation are very well developed in Europe.
A river cruise will certainly allow you to experience much of Europe’s culture but may not be the best method to move to another country.
  • Plan the moving procedure. All the above matters when it comes to organizing a successful international move but the most important stage you need to go through is still ahead of you. You must plan every phase of the moving process in details and to make the right choices in order to ensure a problem-free relocation. Without a doubt, your first steps to moving abroad should be to select a reliable removal and to do the paperwork.

How to Find the Best Europe Removal for You?

When moving to a foreign country for good, you cannot do it on your own. There are just too many details and requirements you can’t possibly know and too many complicated tasks to perform, especially when transporting your personal effects and crossing the borders. Finding a trustworthy international relocation company should be your topmost priority. Once you have singled out the removal which best suits your needs, you can proceed to the numerous preparations. So, first make an online research of the available candidates. Check their websites for proper licensing and read all the relevant information provided. You need experienced international moving services, so be careful. Do not forget to see what reviews and ratings the company have received.

Actually, it will be much easier if you just fill in international moving quotes and get contacted by several reputable removals. Either way, ask for a visual survey of your home and written estimates. Compare the different moving overseas shipping costs and check carefully the included services – transportation charges, of course, but what about customs duties or liability coverage? Do not get fooled by a seemingly lower offer because you need high quality services. Read all the paperwork and get recommendation before signing a deal, but remember that you need to book the company really early to ensure a smooth moving experience.

What Documents Will Be Necessary?

That depends on the country and on the purpose of your relocation, of course, but you will certainly need to prepare a great lot of documents.

Get proper documents and venture towards your new life.
You will need to do a lot of paperwork to cross the bridge to the mysterious new life that awaits you.

You will most likely not need a visa when moving within Europe but still be sure to contact the embassy of your future country and request detailed information about the required documentation as well as the respective deadlines.

Will you need a work permit of some sort? What about transferring your driving license and car registration? What are the immigration procedures in the particular country? Are there special vaccinations required? Just ask about any particular restrictions and requirements. Also, bear in mind that the bureaucracy may work slower than expected and allow sufficient time for issuing or updating the necessary papers.

How To Pack Efficiently?

Remember that it will be very expensive and absolutely unnecessary to pack and move abroad your entire household. You will probably not be able to use some of it, anyway, so sell or donate anything you don’t need, like or care about. You pay per cubic measurements of your packed household items and they need to get in specially designed containers.

All your personal effects have to be secured in boxes very well with plenty of padding and adequate wrapping, so that they don’t get damaged during the transportation. If you are not sure you will be able to do it yourself, ask for professional packing services. However, keep your hand luggage separately, so that it doesn’t get mixed with the rest of the stuff and make sure that documents (especially passports and tickets) and valuables stay with you all the time. Also, remember that there are specific items you are not allowed to ship to another country, so contact the respective embassy and request a copy of their customs regulations.

Moving Furniture Across Europe

If you intend to move bulky furniture across the continent, have in mind that it is not an easy task and there are many risks involved. Experienced removals will know, of course, how to deliver a piece you really don’t want to part with to your new home but take only items of high monetary or sentimental value, disassemble whatever possible and secure small protruding parts.

However, it’s really not worth moving large furniture which is likely to get damaged and will cost you dearly.

Electric Appliances & Electronics

You will need specific adapters.
It is no piece of cake to plug your laptop in.

Electric appliances are often heavy and cumbersome, while electronics are extremely fragile and sensitive. So, you are advised to leave anything but really expensive electronics behind. However, you will need to get hold of an appropriate electrical plug adapter which varies in different places, although Schuko grounded plugs will be what you need in most of the European countries.


Shipping your car will not only cost you plenty of money but will also necessitate a lot of paperwork done properly and timely. Learn all the requirements in advance, get the documents ready and prepare the vehicle well for the transportation process. Or even better – hire international auto shipping services that will take proper care of your automobile (just remember to remove all your personal effects from the car because they will not be insured). However, remember that traffic in all European countries except Britain goes on the right side of the road and this fact may lead to many inconveniences if you want to use your right-hand-drive automobile in your new surroundings. Besides, most of the countries have really well-developed public transportation systems.

If you want to move abroad cheaply, try to simplify the process by taking only essential and valuable items to your new country.

Is It Safe for Pets?

Your animal companions should endure the flight to your destination country without experiencing much inconvenience since it will take 2-3 hours at most when moving within Europe. However, you need an appropriate carrier and a number of required forms and documents. Familiarize yourself with any rules regarding the transportation (ask your airplane company) and the importation (contact the respective embassy) of your pet well in advance so that you have enough time to fulfill the requirements. Have your little friend examined by a vet – make sure all vaccinations are done, get any relevant records and ask for advice on how to make the journey less stressful for your pet.

What Effects Will Moving Abroad Have on Children?

Your school-aged child may feel lonely during the first months in the foreign country.
The passion for knowledge has always been burning vigorously in Europe.

The answer to this question strongly depends on the exact age of your young ones. Moving to a foreign country with a baby or a toddler will not influence them at this point because they will accept the new surroundings as their natural home very quickly and will grow as a part of the respective society. Pre-schoolers will also have the chance to fit in the foreign culture early enough – they will probably make friends easily and will pick the language before starting school.

It is school-aged children who will face the toughest problems. Their general knowledge of the world will surely increase greatly and they may have many new opportunities in the new country but they will be severely encumbered by the communication barrier. They will most probably lose an entire year learning the foreign language and even then it will hinder their studies. Lost friendships and disrupted routine could be devastating for your young ones, so you need to support and encourage them. Find friendly educational environment and arrange for entertaining afterschool activities that will boost the development of your children and will help them fit in.

Teenagers should be happy to move to an “exotic” place where a variety of new entertainment options will be available and to meet exciting new people. They will be able to build up a new reputation among peers and will have new opportunities for education and professional development. However, if your teens do not approve of the relocation and attend a reputable educational facility, especially in their senior year, or are already involved in a serious romantic relationship, you may even consider letting your son or daughter stay in the UK.

Moving abroad with a family is a much more responsible task than moving abroad alone, so much more careful preparations need to be done in order to achieve a successful relocation.

What You Should Not Forget

Health Issues

You are well advised to schedule appointments with your doctor and your dentist before the move. It will take a while to find proper healthcare services in your new country and you may find it difficult to explain certain medical problems in the foreign language. Make sure your medical records are perfectly clear, you have an appropriate insurance and you will be able to get your prescription medicines. Get advice concerning any special medical care required.


Always keep a piece of home in your heart.
Don’t forget where you come from.

Well, forgetting to change your address when you move abroad sounds a bit ridiculous, but remember that change of address means switching off utilities, forwarding mail and suspending subscriptions as well. Notify all the relevant institutions and people well in advance so that you get no unpleasant surprises.


Taking postcards and small gifts typical for the UK may not be essential for your international move but it will be nice to have a piece of home to show and give as a present to your new neighbours and colleagues. No matter how far you go, never forget who you are and where you are coming from!

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