An OFW Asked: What Factors Should I Consider Before Deciding To Work Overseas

20 May 2023
An OFW Asked What Factors Should I Consider Before Deciding To Work Overseas

Deciding to work abroad can be a life-changing decision, opening up new opportunities and experiences, and realigning your career path. However, before taking the leap, it is important to carefully consider various factors that can significantly impact your personal and professional life. From cultural differences, health insurance, living costs to other financial considerations, this article explores the key factors you should ponder before embarking on a job abroad journey.



Crucial Considerations Before Working in a New Country

Working abroad can be an exciting and enriching experience, but it also offers its own set of challenges. Before you make the decision to accept a new job and work overseas, there are several important things you need to know. Understanding the new culture, work permits, legal requirements, cost of living, job market, and potential language barriers are just a few factors that should be carefully considered. This article will help you understand the essential information and considerations to help you make an informed, better decision and ensure a successful transition to a new country.



1. Conduct thorough research of the job market and visa requirements in your chosen country

Before making the decision to work abroad, it is crucial to conduct thorough research on the job market and visa regulations of the country you intend to work or relocate to. Evaluate the demand for your skills and explore potential job opportunities within your field. Take the time to understand the visa, work permit, immigration guidelines and requirements of your future employer associated with overseas employment or jobs in your desired country. Ensure that you possess the necessary qualifications and documents. Depending on your present circumstance, you may need to obtain a work permit or visa, and fulfill specific language proficiency or educational prerequisites. It is also crucial to familiarize yourself with the application process and requirements for both employment abroad and obtaining a work visa. Pay close attention to any restrictions or requirements that apply to your specific circumstances, such as nationality and the duration of your initial employment contract or stay. By conducting thorough research, you can make informed decisions and better navigate the process of working abroad.



2. Gain a clear understanding of the cost of living in your prospective destination

Expenses such as housing, transportation, food, healthcare, and other essentials can vary greatly between countries. Conduct thorough research on the cost of living in the country you intend to work in or completely move to. This will involve assessing factors like housing prices, transportation costs, food expenses, healthcare expenses, and other necessary expenditures. It is also important to consider the average salary for your position in that country. By examining the cost of living and comparing it to potential earnings, you can evaluate whether you will be able to maintain a comfortable standard of living in the chosen country.



3. Acquire knowledge of the native language and customs of the country where you intend to work

Familiarize yourself with the local language and cultural practices through research. This will not only enable you to communicate with locals, but it will also facilitate effective communication with colleagues and clients, as well as enhance your ability to navigate social interactions smoothly. Demonstrating your commitment to understanding and respecting their culture is essential. Furthermore, this knowledge will aid in establishing relationships and successfully navigating the unique experiences and obstacles that come with residing or working in a foreign country.



4. Be ready for cultural differences

Be ready for cultural variances, or culture shock, as you embark on your dream job abroad, even if you have previous travel experience. Take the time to familiarize yourself with and get ready for disparities in work hours, communication methods, and business protocols. Conduct thorough research on cultural norms, etiquettes, and practices, and endeavor to acquire as much knowledge as possible prior to your arrival. This proactive approach will aid you in anticipating and adapting to any necessary adjustments during your transition.



5. Create a strategic financial plan

Establishing a solid financial strategy is essential when preparing to relocate to a different country. Before your departure, thoroughly investigate the job market and ascertain the average salaries in your industry within the destination country. This evaluation will enable you to evaluate the competitiveness of the salary and benefits package offered by your prospective employer. It is crucial to include various moving expenses in your budget, including flights, shipping costs, and initial living expenditures. Additionally, consider the importance of opening a local bank account and obtaining a credit card that is compatible with the financial systems of the country you intend to move to.



6. Establish a strong support network

Creating a network of support is crucial when relocating to a foreign country, particularly if you find yourself without familiar connections. Prior to your arrival, take proactive steps to establish a support network. This can be achieved by connecting with locals through social media platforms or becoming a part of expat communities. Furthermore, don't hesitate to reach out to your employer or colleagues for guidance and assistance during your transition. Their support and advice can prove invaluable as you navigate your new environment.



7. Understand tax implications

Having a clear understanding of the tax implications when working overseas is crucial. It is pivotal to familiarize yourself with the tax regulations in both your intended work country and your home country. Conduct thorough research to determine if you may be subject to double taxation and whether you need to file tax returns in both jurisdictions. By comprehending the job market, cost of living, cultural disparities, and tax obligations, you can avoid unexpected surprises and ensure a smooth transition to your new destination. Furthermore, establishing a support network and devising a well-thought-out financial plan will assist you in navigating the unique challenges of living abroad and maximizing your experience.


Before embarking on a job search abroad, it is important to meet certain requirements, which can vary based on factors such as your recruitment agency, job application process, destination country, and home country.



Essentials for Overseas Filipino Workers (OFWs)

A. Ensure your passport is valid and will remain so for the duration of your trip. Some countries may require certain passport documents to be valid for a minimum of six months beyond your planned departure date.



B. Check if you need a visa for your destination country. Some countries require visas for tourists and foreign workers. Contact the embassy or consulate of your country of destination to determine visa requirements and application procedures.



C. Verify if any vaccinations are mandatory for entry into your destination country. Consult with your doctor, a travel agency, or a medical clinic to find out if you need any recommended or required vaccinations.



D. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many countries have additional entry requirements, such as proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test. Stay updated with the entry visa requirements and protocols for your destination country.



E. While not always obligatory, having travel insurance can offer and secure financial protection and peace of mind in case of unforeseen circumstances like medical emergencies or trip cancellations.



F. Ensure you have sufficient funds to cover your expenses during your trip. While some countries may not require money for visas, they may need proof that you can financially support yourself.


Working abroad can be an enriching experience, but it's crucial to be prepared. Conduct thorough research, fulfill the necessary requirements, and consider aspects such as job market, visa regulations, cultural differences, financial planning, building a support network, and tax implications. By taking these steps, you can make the most of your opportunity and create lasting memories while working abroad.


Purchasing a house and lot can be a significant milestone and a wise investment for OFWs. Owning a property in the Philippines provides a sense of security and stability for OFWs and their families. Instead of spending their hard-earned money on renting or temporary accommodations, investing in a house and lot allows them to establish a permanent residence and build equity over time. Moreover, it serves as a tangible asset that can be passed down to the succeeding generations of your family, creating a lasting legacy. By purchasing a house and lot, OFWs can have a place, a sanctuary, they can truly call home and enjoy the benefits of long-term financial stability.


Apart from the financial advantages, buying a house and lot also offers OFWs a sense of belonging and a connection to their roots. It provides them with a physical space where they can reconnect with their families and culture during their visits or vacations to the Philippines. Having their own property allows OFWs to maintain strong ties to their homeland, fostering a sense of identity and belonging, even when they are working overseas. Additionally, owning a house and lot can serve as a long-term plan for retirement or a backup option if they decide to return to the Philippines permanently. It provides them with a sense of control over their future and a place they can come back to after their overseas journey.


Are you an OFW looking for an affordable house and lot to be your long-term investment for yourself and your family? Then, contact Lumina Homes now. We offer high-quality yet affordable house and lot for sale in various primes spots in the country. We can assure you that you find a house and lot Philippines for you to invest in.

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