It is easier said than done, to migrate. It is never easy to leave behind your loved ones, your comfort zones, familiar places and familiar faces! The world economy had made it even more challenging for us to choose a country to migrate to.
Finally, we both sat down and made a list of our priorities.
- What type of country do we want to move to?
- Should it be on any particular continent?
- What are the ‘must have’ factors in that country?
- What are the factors we are willing to compromise on?
I know, it sounds a lot of work but we actually enjoyed this process. It was very interesting to find facts about various countries, compare their social status, economic status, probability of future growth etc. Finally, after due diligence, it came down to two countries – New Zealand & Canada.
Many people still ask me ‘Why not Australia?’ and no matter how silly it sounds but it’s true – I found their visa process too complicated and couldn’t understand which category would be right for us. In comparison to that, the process for New Zealand & Canada was fairly straightforward, we understood various visa options and related pros & cons.
So we both took one country each to research deeper. Over following days we brainstormed on all the factors which will matter to us in the long run and made a checklist. Then we found out as much information as possible about each one of them. Then we decided to take it one step further and agreed to prepare PowerPoint presentations for our respective country and convince the other about why that country was better.
Below are some of the factors we considered for the checklist
1. Visa options
2. Visa duration / validity
a. Ease of visa processing
b. Timeline/duration for visa processing
c. Pre-requisites for the visa
d. Total expenses
3. Job options for each one of us (including salary ranges)
4. Cost of living – Monthly & Annual
5. Work culture
6. Way of life
7. Facilities & benefits available
9. Ease of settling down
10. Healthcare system
12. Inflation rate & economic stability
13. Long-term settlement – Buying a house, Retirement, Permanent Residency, Citizenship etc.
You can add to the list depending on your individual situation. e.g. Ease of doing business, Environment to start your own business or being self-employed, Education for kids (if you have one or planning to have one), Environment your kid will be growing up in etc.