You have made the decision to work and live abroad. An exciting decision and also very drastic, especially if you have a family with children. There are many things you need to arrange if you want your children to move as smoothly as possible. How do you plan the move and what is the best time to make the switch? And what do you do when you finally arrive in the destination country? These are some of the questions you should want to have answered before you leave.
Planning the move with children
It is a bit of the age of your children how you best prepare them for moving abroad. Children who are not yet in school often adapt more quickly. For example, there are no classmates who will miss them, and playing with neighborhood children is probably not for now. Young school children are much more aware of the ‘loss’ of friends. Adolescents in particular experience it as a huge change because they can already be in a lot of trouble with themselves due to puberty. Let children therefore consciously say goodbye to friends and their familiar environment. Talk about it and indicate that they can be sad. If necessary, agree to keep in touch, for example by writing letters. Prepare your child for how it is in the other country, think of the language and that it will take some getting used to. Honesty is paramount, don’t make it more beautiful than it is. If you have the opportunity to do this, take a look at the new environment together so that your child has an idea of where it will eventually live.
What is the best time for the move
Whatever period you choose, moving abroad will generally have a significant impact on the lives of you and your children. To minimize the impact, it’s a good idea to take a vacation in the country you’re moving to first. The setting is relaxed and your child can get acquainted with the new environment in a pleasant and casual way. Especially when your children are older, emigrating can be tough for them. If you have the choice, we recommend that you finish your school year in the Netherlands. As soon as the summer holidays have started, you will make the switch abroad. Before school starts in your new hometown, your child will have time to settle down and make new friends. This makes the step to go to school for the first time a little smaller,
Arrived in the destination country
When you have finally arrived in the country where you are going to settle (for the time being), getting used to it really starts. Involve your children in the interior of the house. Let them choose how their bedroom will look. Make the new home their new home. Explore the area and go to public places where many children come. This gives them the opportunity to make new friends and get in touch with the language at the same time. Also visit the new school together before they have to go to school for the first time. Children pick up the language quickly, but if you like it, you can let them take a language course. When children have this basis, they will quickly feel at home.
If you and your family plan to move abroad, take a look around our website.