Job Abroad

How to Find Your Dream Job Abroad

Written by Katie Cullen
Written by Katie Cullen
10th May 2016 (Last updated on Monday 21st August 2017)

Living abroad is a big dream for many. Whether it's soaking up the sun on golden beaches or speeding down ski slopes in the Alps, we've all dreamed of shipping off abroad at some point or another.

With international travel becoming increasingly cheaper over time, more Britons have moved abroad than ever before.

An estimated 5.5 million expats are believed to have made the jump overseas, with 1.25 million living in Australia alone.

To live abroad will mean you'll have to find a new property, as well as assimilate into a new culture and find a new job abroad. Luckily, Comparemymove.com are there to help you with moving abroad and can save up to 70% of your moving costs.

Finding a job abroad can sometimes seem a lot more difficult than it actually is, although form filling, red tape and a lot of convincing employers are necessary. Hunting for jobs overseas while you are still in the UK can make things a lot more difficult purely due to distance.

Plenty of jobs are available for most people wanting to primarily focus on travelling over work, such as TEFL-based teaching roles, cruise-ship work and au pairing.

However, in this article Comparemymove.com will be focusing on how to find a career abroad with the prospects of moving abroad on a permanent basis.

Of course, experiencing a new country is the main reason for a lot of people to move, but a lot of people don't always want to sacrifice their career straight away.

Unless you have been offered a job outright, finding a job in a different country and moving abroad is not just a spur of the moment decision and will most likely need lots of planning.

Certain barriers may restrict you for obtaining certain roles. Even if you do have the right academic credentials and work history, immigration laws and visas may stand in the way that could either slow the process or even cost you a potential role in your chosen country.

That said, there are things you can do to adapt yourself within the international jobs market and achieve that new job in a whole new country.

Research, Research, Research

Before you start job hunting, you should have only one country in mind that you would like to move to. Wanting to just ‘move abroad' rather than ‘move to France' or ‘move to Australia' will mean you might just end up flip-flopping (no pun intended) from country to country without achieving anything.

With a clear country in mind, you should research the industries prevalent in your chosen country and adapt your CV and outlook towards the high-demand roles. If nothing interests you in the country's current job market, or if there are too fewer roles in your field, it might be worth reassessing why you want to move to that country, or even abroad in general.

However, in the likelihood that your field of work is in high-demand, it is time to move onto the next step, and it could be a big one.

Master the Lingo

Monolinguals may have a difficult time with this, unless moving to an English speaking country like the US or Australia. Speaking the language is an essential skill which will most likely be required by employers.

If you are set on moving to a certain country and don't mind putting the moving date back, it is worthwhile looking into taking some language lessons. Although a lot of people speak English as a second language, you cannot rely on other people's knowledge over your ignorance of their language.

Language lessons can be found in the classified ads of your local newspaper or on websites like Gumtree. Alternatively, Duolingo is a great free app for learning another language which also gets its users to translate books into English and vice versa over time.

While free apps may help you get to grips with the language, certain employers may ask for evidence to certify you can speak the language.

Make Your CV Understandable

Your academic achievements and work history may look impression to British eyes, but could be incomprehensible to those from a different society with alternative grading systems.

Not only will your CV most likely have to be written in the language of your chosen country, but it is also worth thinking about converting your grades into the local equivalent.

On average, recruiters will look at a CV for around 5-7 seconds, meaning it is especially important when applying abroad to adapt yourself to the local way of thinking, even if you are still currently in the UK.

Research how people in your selected country will write a CV and mimic your findings. While it is extremely important to stand out from the crowd, you still have to present an understandable job application.

Each country has a different format for job applications, so research what will be required for your CV. Some countries may require hobbies and practical experience outside of regular work, as well as marital status, a picture of yourself and date of birth. For example, in Finland you will have to have the word ‘ansioluettelo' (Finnish for CV) at the very top of the page.

Visas and Paperwork

Visas and paperwork will not generally apply so much if you are an EU citizen looking to move within Europe. However, it is worth noting you may need a bank account in your chosen country before you can even apply for most jobs.

It is vital that you know the immigration process of the country you are choosing to move to as it could make or break plans for your future abroad. In some countries, your potential employer may have to sponsor you for a work visa before you can move, which means putting down a fairly large sum of money to approve your status.

Nine times out of ten, your employer will have to get involved in your application process of applying for a work visa, which may put some people off.

Potential employers may be put more at ease if you show a good knowledge of the work visa application process, as they will likely not have a clue (unless they employ from abroad on a regular basis).

Where to Find a Job Abroad

This is the difficult part. Most employers in your chosen country won't be looking for applications from abroad. While it's true some may advertise and actively seek out workers from the UK and other countries, it is highly likely you will have to search and apply in the same fashion as regular domestic-based applications.

Searching for job boards in your selected country, you should hopefully have found a number of applicable jobs in your field. It should go without mentioning, you are more likely to get a job abroad if your role is in high-demand.

Having English as your first language could be extremely beneficial as employers will most likely appreciate the value of your fluency in an increasingly globalised English-speaking world.

Alternatively, there are plenty of international jobs agencies with careers available abroad. However, a lot of these agencies may specialise in certain sectors or countries, so you may find yourself limited as to what is applicable to you.

Keep an eye out for opportunities abroad with British companies expanding overseas. While they may be sourcing employment abroad for certain reasons, your skills and knowledge of the UK market could be essential, alongside your willingness to up-sticks to a new culture.

Another would be to work online. Blogging, teaching online and virtual assistant roles are all good options and all you'll need is an internet connection and a half decent laptop!

Be Prepared

Applying for a job abroad will essentially be the same as applying in the UK, only there will be more barriers and challenges to overcome. For example, you will likely have to be interviewed over Skype or on the phone, which is a very different experience to being interviewed in person.

As with any job application and interview process, you should prepare yourself for any questions that may be asked, and that you may want to ask. Additionally, you will almost definitely be asked about your move to their country, at which your goal is to assure them of your certainty in the process.

Let them know your reasons in a positive light, showing off your knowledge of the visa process and assuring them that your role in the company would be a vital asset.

At the end of the day, you are advertising yourself to a company, so it is essential to prove that you are worth all that hassle of paperwork and moving overseas for.


Moving abroad is a big step in anyone's life and requires plenty of research and dedication.

While there are plenty of jobs out there for expats to get involved in, such as teaching English as a foreign language, Bar work and au pairing, a lot are specified towards students and young adults looking to travel and may not suit everyone.

Keeping a calm and level head is essential when moving abroad. Make sure you do not hand in any notices or end any leases in the UK before your move is finalised, as things could, and possibly will, go wrong.

Make sure you can speak the language before even applying for jobs, unless they specify you do not need to speak the lingo. Ensure everything is in place and you know the process of moving to your new country before you make the jump.

Finding a job is only one aspect of moving abroad, as you will still have to find a new property and move all your possessions overseas.

Luckily, Comparemymove.com have made international moving simple with our quick and free comparison quote forms. Get free quotes today from our trusted international removal companies and save up to 70% on your moving day costs.

Image courtesy of: "Beach" by Kris Arnold | CC BY 2.0

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