From underwear to board games – Things to consider when moving interstate and overseas.

10 May

FROM UNDERWEAR TO BOARD GAMES – THINGS TO CONSIDER WHEN MOVING INTERSTATE AND OVERSEAS  I’m in an unusual position because I will be moving to both Brisbane AND Vietnam shortly. I have been talking about moving out of Sydney for the past two years and it’s finally happening at full speed so I’m really excited. But it’s also overwhelming considering the logistics of, not one, but two major relocations within a very short time frame.

I am due to move to Brisbane because my partner Shea has been offered a six month position for a major project in Queensland. It’s a great opportunity for me to temporarily transfer with him and explore another major Australian city. Shea will move north next week and I will couch surf in Sydney until early June when I finish working with my current company (you don’t happen to have a spare couch, do you?).

At the start of July, after just one month in Brisbane, I will move to Ho Chi Minh City in Vietnam and start working in a new communications and media role for an INGO. Moving overseas requires many additional tasks that are not required when moving interstate, and by moving interstate leading up to my move to Vietnam, it makes simple tasks such as receiving courses of vaccinations very difficult to complete properly. I often think, “If only I could take my doctor with me.”

I have a million things to do in preparation for the first move – catch up with family, friends, throw things out, finish uni assessments, throw things out, pack and throw more things out – so I can’t concentrate on anything but the impending move. Then for the second move, I also need to arrange visas, vaccinations, loads of extra paper work, and I need to assist my current colleagues with a smooth handover during a very, very busy time. It sounds exhausting, doesn’t it?

I have developed a Work In Progress checklist below that is intended to help me, and other nomads in similar situations to me, to keep track of essential tasks. Please comment in the box below if you have any recommendations that might help to streamline my moves interstate or overseas. I have moved many times but always fail to do it smoothly. Any help would be appreciated in my time of need!

Things to do:

  • Paperwork – resign from work, email job acceptance, arrange visas, complete travel form, bank form, emergency contacts, promotion details, pre departure report, sign code of conduct and job agreement, download relevant medical examination forms and letters to doctor, note my vaccination history, take a psychological questionnaire, submit my tax, email real estate, complete assessment for Contemporary Communication Theory uni subject, complete assessment for Individual Communication Management uni subject
  • Materials and services – Unlock my mobile phone in order to access global roaming, get a hair cut and colour, buy new underwear, buy necessary entertainment for on the road (maybe I shouldn’t have thrown that travel board game out already), buy Vietnam Lonely Planet book
  • Appointments – discuss resignation and finishing date with boss, meeting with real estate, medical travel health assessment, second stage travel health assessment, pathology test, third travel health assessment, vaccinations, vaccinations, vaccinations, more freakin vaccinations, dentist, call my new job Project Coordinator, phone meeting with Vietnam In Country Manager, meeting with the Australian partner organisation, phone meeting with the team in Vietnam, phone meeting with my Vietnamese counterpart
  • Packing – throw everything out except one backpack full of clothes, three pairs of shoes, laptop, still camera, video camera, phone, external harddrive, handful of photos, drop other things to my parents
  • Change of address – redirect mail for phone, bank, insurance, superannuation x3, cancel electricity, gas, research to see if electoral roll notification is required, RSVP “unable to attend” to upcoming events (sorry!)

Please assist me by commenting with advice in the box below, and wish me luck!

By Marissa Toohey


6 Responses to “From underwear to board games – Things to consider when moving interstate and overseas.”

  1. Belinda May 10, 2010 at 11:53 PM #

    Hey chikka
    Don’t forgot to convert currency, figure out what ur doing with cards (if ur using credit- check int conversion fees).

    If ur taking ur mobile and laptop make sure u take a international power convertor. And check ur mobile isn’t locked to ur Aust provider incase u decide it’s better to get a pre-paid Vietnam sim card when ur there.

    Take photocopies of ur passports, visas etc and give them to your mum.

    Um… Had some more but fogotten. I’ll add when I remember.

    • theBubbleBuster May 11, 2010 at 8:59 AM #

      I knew I was forgetting things! How could I forget to organise money though… Thanks Bel!

      • Beck May 11, 2010 at 3:28 PM #

        Good luck Riss!

        I’m doing a not-that-different thing … moving to Austin, Texas, at the end of July to pursue my Masters (with a scholarship!). Will be clearing down to one bag of clothes and books and one of sports equipment by the end of June, then going to spend some time with my parents, then on a plane to the States. You’re doing a better job getting organised than me so far 🙂

      • theBubbleBuster May 11, 2010 at 8:02 PM #

        Thanks Beck and congrats on your scholarship! I’m so glad you got it after all of your hard work. Shea and I are talking about moving to Houston in Texas next year. So if we end up there, I’ll be in touch to drop in to see you on the way to Mexico! I bet roller derby is huge over there too …

  2. jamie May 13, 2010 at 2:29 AM #

    Sounds exhausting!! I plan to be in HCMC in Late November! I can’t wait to read more about your travels!!

    • theBubbleBuster May 13, 2010 at 9:28 AM #

      Thanks Jamie. Let me know if you end up in HCMC in November – I should be able to give you some great tips by then 🙂

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