A reader recently emailed:
“Myself and a friend are looking to relocate to Barbados. Where do we start ? We have both been to the island and both love it and realize that we could defiantly live there. We are now looking for employment, my friend is a hairdresser with 20 years exp. Myself I am more of a office based person with a lot of customer service experience so I am open to any opportunity.
“We would just like some advice on where and how to start so we can relocate smoothly and asap”
Another reader wrote:
“I’ve skimmed the book “How to Retire Overseas” which has given me the big picture of what a person needs to know or think about before making The Move.
“I was born in Aruba but left as a very young child so I have no idea of living conditions/cost. Where can I go to start gathering me info to help me make my decision? Thanks much.”
Cost of Living
How to Retire Overseas is an excellent place to begin gathering general information about moving overseas. However, author Kathleen Peddicord couldn’t possibly include information about every country.
Keep in mind also that cost of living information can change rapidly, so you can’t rely on information printed in a book that’s already a year old.
There are several websites that publish reliable cost of living information:
- Expat Intelligence
- CIA World Factbook can’t be beat for a solid overview of a country’s economy, history, people and more.
The Escape Artist website features a page with links to information about living in most countries, including Barbados and Aruba.
Real estate agents can be gold mines of information, but you have to find one who’s honest, ethical and has been in the country long enough to know what’s going on there.
Each country has its own rules about who can work there. In general, though, employment is reserved for a country’s legal residents unless you have a skill that’s in high demand. For information about visas and work, consult the country’s embassy or consulate.
Last but not least, engage the social web to help you find answers. Join expat forums online and ask for information. Start with sites like:
Don’t neglect non-expat specific social sites like Facebook and LinkedIn!
If you’re knowledgeable about Aruba or Barbados, leave a comment for these readers to help them find the information they need.
Photo by Paul Simpson on flickr