Teach English Abroad: Enjoy Traveling and Seeing the World!
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FAQs for Living and Working Overseas:

Written by a former Peace Corps Volunteer living overseas since 1989

The Expat Guy: FAQs for Working and Living Overseas

What should I take overseas with me?

What should I leave at home?

Should I mail stuff to myself?

Take only what you really really (really!) must.  Humping heavy stuff around the world is no fun at all.  Especially, as it seems you will only arrive on very hot and steamy days - or in the middle of an ice storm - neither of which is a lot of fun for "humping" stuff around!


Generally speaking, most medicines are much cheaper overseas - so don't bother to stockpile.  Unless the medicine you need/want is unusual or very new - it - or a generic version of it - will most likely be easy to find where you are going.  Best to contact an international hospital in the country where you are going if you are unsure.  They can tell you definitively if that medicine is available or not - this is a better option than asking on a discussion board.  Your health is too important to leave to a possibly unqualified "opinion" on a discussion board.

Take anything critical to your health

Anything critical for maintaining your health - bring it with you. Take enough to allow some time for you to try to access it locally after you arrive.   

Other Stuff

Bring only the basics in clothing. You'll find you can get by with far less than you are used to.  Bring a few special photos of family and friends.

Work Stuff

Bring anything critical to your occupation.  Reference books are heavy and bulky - but they are often quite expensive overseas and sometimes hard to come by.  But. . . with the Internet - you don't need them quite as much.  You can look up almost everything online.  And, even the most remote villages nowadays have Internet access (okay, an exaggeration!).  But the Internet is available almost everywhere now.

To Bring a Computer or Not?

Lots of people use moving as an excuse to pick up a nice notebook computer.  It may just be something to worry about having stolen.  A cheap desktop where you are moving will cost you (usually) about half what your notebook will cost.  But, prices can vary a lot - so ask on the discussion boards.  And, often, pirated software (I'm NOT advocating this) is loaded onto these desktops for free or a tiny fraction of what you would pay at home for the same stuff.

Get a big memory stick - load all your essential stuff on it - and bring that instead.  It's a whole lot less trouble!

Mailing Stuff

Not recommended.  Things get lost, things don't arrive.  If you really need it - put it in your suitcase.  If it is critical - carry it onboard with you.



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--  Ly Liet Thanh -- Training Director
of FUNSUN Resorts in Vietnam


How to Evaluate TEFL Programs
For when you start teaching English Abroad:
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