Financial Planning Before Moving to Thailand
Moving to Thailand is an exciting prospect. But it can be stressful too – especially if you’re moving with a family or on your own. To ensure that the transition is as smooth and easy as possible, there are some important financial considerations that you should make before you leave Australia. We’ve put together our list of the most important things to do before making the move.
1. Save, Save, Save
You’ve heard this before: “Save, save, save.” It’s an important rule to follow when you’re living abroad. But if you’re just starting and have no idea where to start, here are some tips.
- Start by setting a savings goal. Are you saving for an emergency fund? A vacation? Upgrading your wardrobe? Figure out what your goal is and then set up a separate account for it so that it doesn’t get mixed up with other money (more on this later).
- If possible, put the money away manually instead of using automatic transfers from checking into savings; this helps keep temptation at bay and ensures that you’ll deposit more than the minimum amount each month—which will help grow your nest egg faster!
- Keep track of how much has been saved so far by writing down how much was deposited each time or filling out a worksheet every month or week; this will help keep motivation high while also making sure there aren’t any gaps between deposits (and thus lost interest).
2. Health Insurance
- Does the country you are moving to have health insurance?
- What is the cost of health care there?
- Will your current insurance cover it, or do you need supplemental coverage?
If you answered no to any of these questions, then you need health insurance. While I’m an advocate for traveling as lightly as possible and taking advantage of socialized medicine wherever possible, in some countries that simply isn’t possible (or even desirable). You may want private doctors and facilities for their faster service or better technology. And if something does happen during your stay overseas—it happens—you will want to be able to access quality care on short notice instead of having to wait days or weeks for appointments with doctors who speak English (or any other language).
3. High School Exit Exams
High school exit exams are important because they determine whether or not your child will be allowed to enter university. Your child might need to go to an English language school during their gap years so they can enroll in an international school in Thailand. This is not just any old university though, it’s a local Thai university with degrees that are recognized both here and abroad by employers. These exams also help identify the strengths and weaknesses of each student, which is a great way to measure their progress in the classroom as well as their ability to study independently outside of class time.
4. Travel Documents
This is another very important point, especially if you’re going to stay for a long period. You need to make sure that you have all your travel documents ready before moving to Thailand. This includes:
- Passport (valid for at least 6 months)
- Visa (single entry or multiple entries)
- Visa photos in advance (at least 2)
- Travel insurance (make sure it covers any medical emergencies and has enough coverage)
5. Consider a Bank Account in Thailand
Opening a bank account in Thailand is easy, and it’s the best way to ensure that you have access to your money when you need it. There are several types of accounts available. If you plan on living somewhere for less than 90 days and want to keep your home country’s bank account open, consider opening online savings or checking account with a local bank—these accounts allow you to make deposits from outside Thailand as well as withdraw funds while abroad (generally through ATMs). You can also set up direct deposit so that your paycheck gets directly deposited into this account every month; this makes budgeting much easier because all income goes into one place instead of bouncing around between different accounts. Other good reasons for opening an international bank account include:
6. Sending and Receiving Money in Thailand
Many ex-pats in Thailand send or receive money from abroad. Some common methods to do this include Western Union, TransferWise, PayPal, and banks. The first option can be expensive as there are a lot of fees involved (you may want to use your bank instead). But if you’re sending less than $1,000 then TransferWise is probably the cheapest way to do it ($2-3 per transfer).
7. Car Insurance
This is a no-brainer, but you should have car insurance before you can drive in Thailand. It is a good idea to check what is covered in your policy, because it can vary greatly depending on the type of car insurance in Thailand.
Some car rental companies offer their customers the option of renting a car with insurance already included in the price. This may be a less expensive option than purchasing temporary Thai car insurance from an agency or through your credit card company while overseas preparing for your move (and before arriving). However, this will vary depending on whether or not other drivers are allowed on that policy and how much coverage is provided (i.e., third-party liability).
Important Financial Considerations When Moving to Thailand
There are several financial considerations to make before moving to Thailand, but if you only hear these two, remember them well:
- Saving. The first thing you should do is save as much money as possible. You will want to have enough cash on hand for the initial costs of moving and settling into your new life in Thailand, such as paying for housing deposits and utility bills. Once you’re ready to work, some jobs can be done remotely or with flexible hours; if this is an option for you, it will give you more time to save up even more money before starting a full-time career in Thailand.
- Health insurance. Many people don’t realize how easy it is to get sick while working abroad—especially when traveling from one country with different bacteria and viruses than their own home countries! Everyone who moves abroad must have health coverage before they go; otherwise, they risk being stuck with enormous medical bills when something goes wrong! The same goes for any other pre-existing conditions like allergies (to foods or medications) or chronic diseases like asthma/chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). If a person doesn’t have adequate medical coverage while overseas then they could end up bankrupt by expenses after getting sick – which would ruin all the fun stuff about living abroad!
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