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Leaving Hong Kong and moving abroad, especially if you have children, can be a daunting process. The massive upheaval can be both physically and mentally draining. Reduce the stress and make the moving process easier for you and your family by preparing the logistics in advance. Here is a list of 6 things that you should do before you leave Hong Kong to help ease the transition period and allow you to settle down quickly when you move abroad.


1) Research into your destination country

Know the visa requirements of your new country of residence to avoid any problems during the move. Extensive research prior to the move can help you gain a better understanding of your destination country and provide an idea of what it will be like living abroad. Learn about the cultural differences and nuances as a way to mentally prepare before having to adjust to a completely new lifestyle abroad. Discover what the transport system is going to be like. Would you need an international driving permit or would public transportation suffice? What about the real estate market? Find out what type of accommodations and neighborhoods are available and would suit your purposes. Doing so beforehand can help to set your expectations straight and make it easier to find the perfect home for you and your family. You can also look into the healthcare system so that you know what to do just in case something happens.


2) Gather all important documents

Compile all relevant documents for each family member such as passports, visas, work permits, school records, medical records, adoption papers, or marriage certificates before leaving Hong Kong. Having all of these documents on hand is especially important when moving abroad since there is so much paperwork involved. It can make the process of enrolling your children to a new school or starting your new career a lot smoother. Remember to make sure that all the passports have enough time before it expires.


3) Plan your finances

Organizing your finances, such as real estate planning, banks and insurance, before actually living abroad allows you to gain a clearer picture of your financial situation which is necessary for any financial decisions, immigration programmes, and investments moving forward. You can also review the tax obligations of the new country to make sure that you are in compliance when moving abroad and look up the different saving plans that you might want to consider. See if it is possible to get started on the process to create a new local bank account ahead of time to help with day-to-day banking needs and avoid foreign transaction fees. Knowing what paperwork is needed to set up a savings or checking account can help to simplify the process when you arrive, eliminating one major stress factor in the transition.


4) List out who you will need to notify before you leave

Write out a list of all the different agencies or parties that will need to know that you are leaving Hong Kong. Let your employer know your timeline so that they can prepare sufficiently. Check with the bank and insurance providers to make sure that all logistics are in order for you to move abroad. Check the website of the Inland Revenue Department so that you know exactly what you need to know to file foreign income tax or other related tax categories. If you have a lease, notify your landlord so that any legal steps and paperwork can be done in advance. Other smaller tasks include rerouting your mail, canceling gym membership, turning off utility bills, and terminating phone plans.


5) Find an international moving company

Bringing everything with you and lugging them on the flight can be tedious and tiring. Consider hiring an international moving company when leaving Hong Kong to metaphorically and physically lighten the load. Most international moving companies offer door-to-door and door-to-port service making the actual moving process much easier for you and your family.


6) Make plans to relocate your pet

Preparation is crucial if you are planning to relocate with your pet. Some countries like Australia tend to have a lot of regulations and paperwork that can take up to eight months to process, while others like the United States of America may only take a week. Since requirements differ from country to country, make sure to do your research and have all the necessary check-ups, blood tests, vaccinations, and treatments as well as any paperwork such as import permits that may be needed when leaving Hong Kong. Before booking the flight, look into the different airline options and guidelines for traveling with a pet. Some airlines may have additional rules that are different from the country you are moving to. Remember, if you can’t find the information online, just call the relevant parties to make sure that you don’t miss anything.



Make the moving process easier with Simard & Associates. As a professional immigration consulting service, we are dedicated to helping clients in Hong Kong and other Asia Pacific regions to immigrate to other countries. Get in touch with our team of dynamic immigration lawyers, consultants and global immigration experts today for a smooth and pain-free immigration process!