Are you sick of the 9-5 grind and dreaming of a world beyond your cubicle?
How about packing up and taking on the world?
I’ve worked abroad for many years, and I’m here to tell you that working abroad is an incredible experience. But it’s not without its challenges!
That’s why I created this How to Work Abroad: Ultimate Guide — designed to make your journey as smooth as possible.
With my experience working abroad, I will provide all the tips and tricks you need to make your international career successful.
Working abroad may seem daunting, but you can make it happen with the right research, preparation, and enthusiasm!
Let’s get started!
Working Abroad as an American
Working abroad as an American is a great opportunity!
You can experience different cultures, meet interesting people, and expand your professional network.
Sounds great, right? It is! But there are a few things you have to consider before taking the plunge.
- How are you going to navigate immigration laws in other countries?
- How familiar are you with the language and customs of the host nation?
- Do you have a plan for an international job search?
- How will you handle remaining bank accounts or manage credit history during your travels?
These are just a few of the questions you should ask yourself before making a move.
You should consult an immigration lawyer for detailed answers about visa requirements and restrictions.
When it comes down to it, being practical and prepared will go a long way toward ensuring your experience is successful (for employer and employee!)
So just remember: consult a lawyer, have a plan, be aware of language/culture differences, and stay organized!
How to Find Jobs Abroad
Now that you better understand the practicalities of working abroad as an American, it’s time to start looking for jobs!
Let’s look at some of the best strategies for finding jobs abroad.
Ask Your Current Job for Opportunities Abroad
If you’re already employed, why not ask your current job if they have any cross-country opportunities or global projects that need tackling?
You might think that companies only care about their bottom line. Still, in reality, many employers value employees who are open to broadening their horizons.
As of 2019, about 1.3 million people worked for US-based companies abroad, so there’s a good chance your employer can provide an opportunity.
Instead of waiting for an amazing job opportunity abroad to appear out of thin air, take matters into your own hands.
Speak up and ask around; who knows what exciting progress could come from it!
- You already have a good relationship with your employer – they know you and what you are capable of
- It’s an easy way to take the initiative in pursuing international opportunities
- Your current job may be able to offer more than one opportunity
- No need to start from scratch – you have a network of people and resources already in place
- Your current employer may not be open to the idea of sending employees abroad
- You may not get the job you want
Use an Agency to Find a Job Abroad
Working abroad provides invaluable experiences and unique opportunities to make life-long memories that you wouldn’t experience if you had stayed in your native country.
But organizing all the details to make your abroad dreams come true can be daunting and time-consuming.
That’s where agencies come in!
For a fee, agencies can help you with:
- Visa processing
- Opening a bank account
- Getting set up with a new phone provider
- And job placement
Don’t let logistical stress keep you from living your international dreams; let an agency give you a helping hand and bring you another step closer to the international career of your dreams!
- Agencies can help with visa processing, bank accounts, phone providers, and job placement.
- Having help removes some of the stress of organizing all the details of working abroad.
- Agencies provide you with knowledge and guidance to tackle any foreign situation.
- Agencies can help you find a job in an area you may not be familiar with.
- Agencies can help with relocation, so you don’t have to worry about the process.
- Hiring an agency can be expensive, especially if you need multiple services.
- There is no guarantee of a successful outcome, even when working with an agency.
- The process can take longer than expected.
- The agency may be unable to help with certain aspects of the work abroad experience.
- There is always a chance of scams or fraudulent agencies.
Be a Teacher Abroad
Teaching abroad is an amazing opportunity to expand your horizons and experience something different.
With a TEFL (Teach English as a Foreign Language) certification, you can work almost anywhere in the world teaching English abroad.
What’s even better is that teaching abroad doesn’t exactly require a master’s degree. All employers ask is that English is your native language!
Yes, you heard right – you can leave your mark on the globe without extensive training.
Along with flexible hours and a decent salary, it’s definitely something worth investigating further – especially if you’re looking for new ways to explore other cultures.
- TEFL certification is not a difficult requirement to fulfill.
- It offers flexible hours and a decent salary.
- You don’t need any extensive training apart from your native language.
- You can experience the culture of different countries while teaching abroad.
- There are many opportunities to work with people from all over the world.
- You may face cultural and language barriers while teaching abroad.
- Adjusting to a new environment and culture can take a lot of time.
- The job itself can be quite demanding and require a lot of patience.
- There is no guarantee that you will find a job right away.
- You may need to work long hours to make a decent salary.
Save Money, Move Abroad & Find Work
How’s this for an adventure? You say adieu to your old comfort zone, hop on a plane, and nail down new digs.
If you’re the type that loves a little thrill of the unknown (and you have the means to do it), why not pack up, ship out, and see what happens?
There’s no need to tie yourself to tradition – you don’t need to wait until you have a job before you make your move. Put away the doubt others may try and convince you of. Just because your journey is unconventional doesn’t mean it isn’t feasible.
How do you make this happen? Apply for jobs in advance and start networking with recruiters once you’ve arrived.
As long as you have a decent safety net, there’s nothing stopping you from taking an international adventure without jumping straight into a new job when you get there.
- Living abroad without a job lined up can be exciting and adventurous.
- It allows you to explore new places and cultures.
- You can save money by finding cheaper rent and living costs in other countries.
- You have more freedom to find the perfect job that matches your skillset.
- You can make valuable contacts and network with people from different countries.
- It can be difficult to find work if you don’t have prior knowledge of the area.
- You will need to save money before you leave if getting a job takes longer than expected.
- There is no guarantee that you will find a job in the country you move to.
- You may need to make several trips back and forth while looking for a job.
- Adjusting to different cultures, customs, and languages while searching for a new job can be overwhelming.
Try A Holiday Abroad to Find Work
Working abroad doesn’t have to be a permanent endeavor.
If you’re hoping to experience the freedom of traveling while still bringing home some green, a working holiday visa is just what you need!
This incredible opportunity allows travelers aged 18-35 to stay in whatever country they choose for up to two years – with no restrictions on free travel.
- You can get a visa allowing you to travel and work in another country for up to two years.
- It’s a great way to experience different cultures and make new friends.
- You can learn new skills, gain valuable experience, and build your resume.
- You may be able to find jobs that are not available in your home country.
- You don’t have to commit to staying in one place forever.
- Finding a job can be difficult and competitive, especially if it’s not in a major city.
- Your language skills may not be up to par with other applicants.
- The cost of living in some countries can be higher than in others.
- You may not make as much money as you would at home.
- Balancing work and culture shock can be challenging, especially if it’s your first time abroad.
Do a Work Exchange Program
How to work abroad without breaking the bank?
You’re in luck! A work exchange is a way to go if you’re looking for a low-budget travel experience.
Exchange your skills and get free room and board from virtually any place on the globe; a work exchange is an ideal way to really explore your options.
If you’re the type who loves traveling around the world but not spending too much money, then a work exchange is perfect for you – no financial stress, just figure out how to get that visa!
- You can work in another country for free, with no financial worries.
- It’s a great way to explore the culture and meet new people.
- You will gain valuable experience from working in different countries.
- The cost of living is usually much lower than at home, so you can save money.
- You can learn useful skills, such as cooking and gardening.
- It can be difficult to get a work exchange program approved.
- Language barriers may make it challenging to communicate with locals.
- Finding the right job for your skillset can be difficult.
- The hours are usually long and demanding.
- You may not have access to the same amenities as you would at home.
How to work abroad? How about doing it the volunteer way?
Take a chance and travel not only for pleasure but to help people from around the world.
Not only will you see different cultures, but you can also make a difference in ways that may have a lasting impact.
Sure, there won’t be any paychecks involved, but experiences are priceless, right?
Get out of your comfort zone and just go! Taking part in volunteering abroad concocts one of the most unique working experiences you could ever imagine.
- You can help people who are less fortunate than you and make a difference in their lives.
- It’s a great way to explore the culture of a country and meet its people.
- You don’t need any qualifications or prior experience, only an open mind.
- You’ll gain valuable skills that employers may find attractive.
- Volunteering abroad can open up opportunities for future employment.
- You may not make much money, if any, at all.
- It may be hard to find a reputable organization to volunteer with.
- Language barriers could make it difficult to communicate with locals.
- Living in a foreign country can be difficult, especially if you don’t know the culture or language.
- You may not have access to the same amenities as you would at home.
Become a Digital Nomad
How about skipping the job hunt entirely and jumping right into a career as a digital nomad?
A digital nomad is anyone who works remotely, usually while traveling to different locations.
The great thing about this lifestyle is you can work from anywhere – if your wifi connection holds up, that is!
While you enjoy the freedom of working from wherever you want, don’t forget that it takes more than just a backpack and a laptop to find success.
To make it as a digital nomad, you’ll need focus, dedication, and good time management skills – especially if being on the move gives you many distractions.
So get out there, explore the world, build yourself a great portfolio of freelance gigs, and experience the best of both worlds – gaining new skills while having a unique travel adventure.
- You can work anywhere in the world, as long as you have an internet connection.
- You don’t need any specific qualifications or prior experience.
- You can be your own boss and choose when and where you want to work.
- You gain valuable skills that employers may find attractive.
- It’s a great way to explore the culture of different countries.
- It can be difficult to find reliable work at first.
- You may not make much money at first
- Moving from place to place and working different jobs can feel unstable.
- It may be hard to stay disciplined and motivated when working remotely.
- You might have trouble with time management if you don’t plan ahead.
How to Get a Job Abroad
Now that you know How to work abroad, it’s time to get serious about landing a job in a foreign country.
Let’s look at some tips to help you get started.
Step 1: Polish up Your Resume
Start by brushing up on your resume and cover letter.
You’ll need to tailor it for international employers and make sure you emphasize any skills or experience that would be relevant to the job you’re applying for.
Step 2: Practice Interviewing
Interviewing for a job abroad is much like interviewing for any other job.
Still, you’ll need to be prepared to answer questions about your knowledge of the local culture and language.
It doesn’t hurt to practice with a friend or family member, so you’re ready when the time comes.
Step 3: Reach out to Your Network
Networking is key when it comes to finding a job in a foreign country.
Reach out to friends and family members who may be able to help connect you with potential employers or offer advice on the best way to go about your job search.
You can also join online or in-person ex-pat communities to expand your network of contacts.
Step 4: Interview for the Job and Negotiate the Salary
Once you’ve got an offer, make sure to negotiate the salary.
Employers in different countries may have different expectations when it comes to salaries, so be prepared to discuss these things openly and honestly.
Once you’ve reached an agreement on the terms of the job, it’s time to pack your bags and get ready for a life-changing experience!
Packing It Up
Now that you know how to work abroad, the possibilities are endless.
Whether you’re looking for a full-time job or just a few freelance gigs, with the right preparation and attitude, you can have an amazing experience working abroad.
So what are you waiting for? Get out there and start exploring!
Before you go, we’d like to hear from you; what advice would you give to someone looking for How to Work Abroad? Let us know in the comments!