Moving To: Japan – Everything You Need to Know Before Moving Abroad

From delicious cuisine, diverse landscapes and captivating ancient culture, it’s not hard to understand why so many people from around the world are choosing Japan as their new home. For most, the prospect of relocating to Japan would be incredibly exciting. However, the thought of moving abroad and then settling into a completely new culture can be extremely stressful; and the task of relocating can be huge itself.

With over 30 years’ experience in the industry; the team at Galleon International provide a range of corporate relocation services to ensure that both the employer and the employee are prepared for the moving overseas process. For the employee moving abroad, Galleon is able to support and guide them through the international relocation process by providing useful cultural information and local contacts.

 

Take a look below at the local knowledge that our overseas agents and partners in Japan provided us:

 

1. Visas and Legal Requirements


Regardless of your nationality, the visa process is the same for all individuals looking to relocate. All you need to do is apply for the visa relevant to your stay at the nearest Japanese Embassy or Consulate General in your home country. You will need to bring with you: a valid passport; visa application form; a photograph and a Certificate of Eligibility.

While it may sound like an easy process, the Certificate of Eligibility (a certified letter from a Japanese person i.e. an employer who guarantees to support you financially) can be hard to obtain.

 

2. Cost of Living


Depending on your location, company and lifestyle, the cost of living in Japan can be extremely varied. For example, in Tokyo, renting costs can be expensive; averaging anywhere from 40,000 JPY (£288) to 150,000 JPY (£1,082) per month. Plus, most Japanese flats are rented unfurnished, so you may need to purchase cooking appliances and living room furniture before moving in. These extra costs and investments will be worth checking out before you sign any rental agreement.

 

3. Healthcare

In Japan, individuals are required to carry their own health insurance. Therefore, employees often enrol in a company health insurance plan where monthly contributions to medical insurance are deducted from their paycheck. However, in some cases, the government will cover 70% of the treatment such as prenatal care; disease control and screening exams.

 

Do you still have some questions about moving to Japan? Why not get in touch with the team at Galleon International, a renowned international removal company. Give us a call on 01708 868 068.

An International Relocation Guide to Malaysia

When faced with the idea of moving overseas, it’s no surprise that people are terrified at the thought of moving to a new country with an unfamiliar culture – and potentially a different language. This is particularly true when employees are told they are relocating to Malaysia; a country not far from Singapore and Cambodia.

However, as soon as they arrive on Malay soil, they realise there wasn’t much cause for concern. Malaysia has a diverse culture with a mix of Malaysia; Chinese; Indian and European influences all over the country, meaning communication is easy as most people speak English.

 

At Galleon International; one of the UK’s leading experts in international relocation and removals, we provide a local contact to each expat as part of our moving overseas process. As such, Galleon has an extensive network of contacts across the globe to support and guide employees relocating for the first time.

 

We spoke to our overseas agent in Malaysia and here’s what they had to say about living and working in the country:

 

1. Working Permit Visas


If you’re looking to live and work in Malaysia, you will need an employment pass. This isn’t difficult to obtain; however, the company hiring you must ensure they are not hiring you for a job that could easily be filled by a Malaysian citizen. You will also need to acquire a work visa for any spouse who wishes to work while in Malaysia. Once you have lived in Malaysia for three years, you can get a ‘Residence pass’ which allows you to stay in the country for up to 10 years.

 

2. Cost of Living


Compared to Western countries and neighbouring countries like Japan; Hong Kong and Singapore, the cost of living in Malaysia is far cheaper. While cars; international school fees and imported foods can be expensive, expats will be able to find it easy to save money and enjoy a good lifestyle. For example, Malaysian food in restaurants is relatively cheap (around RM10, or £1.90 a head) if you’re happy to eat in the local eateries.

 

3. Culture


Food is a highly important part of Malaysian culture. In fact, one of their common greetings is “Have you had your lunch yet?” It is also seen as etiquette to offer your guests food on their arrival to your home. Tea and coffee are usually prepared along with some small snacks; but this isn’t allowed to be eaten until the host says so. As a guest, you are expected to sip the beverage and taste the food offered.

 

If you still have questions about moving to Malaysia; get in touch with our international relocation team on 01708 868 068.

UK Businesses Looking to Move Jobs and Production Abroad After Brexit

A recent survey was undertaken by CBI (The Confederation of British Industry). The survey revealed that an increasing number of UK companies are creating back up plans with regard to jobs and production to move overseas due to uncertainty surrounding Brexit. But what does this mean for the UK in the long term?

The Economy

With 56% of businesses that were surveyed preparing to adjust supply chains abroad. “Unless a withdrawal agreement is locked down by December”, jobs will be lost. This will have a knock-on effect on the UK economy.

During an interview, Nicky Morgan, a Conservative MP who chairs the Commons Treasury Committee, said: “tremendous damage” is being caused to banks and other large financial services in London due to the current negotiation stand-off.

Increase in demand for relocation services

Naturally, an increase in businesses looking to move overseas means there will be an increase in demand for relocation services. As a business owner, you need to ensure that you have an effective relocation strategy in place. Galleon International are experts in international removals. Our team listen to your every need and tailor our service to suit you. We believe a personal service is essential to keep your employees and their families happy. After operating for almost 40 years, we have gained access to all the local knowledge you need to know to ensure you’re ready to start your new life.

Are you planning to move overseas just in case things don’t go as smoothly as planned?

At Galleon International, corporate relocation services, we have a team of experienced global mobility experts. Our team will create and tailor completely bespoke programmes to suit your corporate relocation needs. To find out more information on how Galleon International can help your business when relocating employees, give us a call today on 01708 868 068.

Moving to Switzerland – Everything You Need to Know

For years, Switzerland has topped the polls for the ‘best place in the world for expats to live’. It comes as a result of many financial; technology and pharmacology sectors choosing to send their highly skilled employees here for relocation. The country’s stable economy; low crime rates and high standards of living are just some of the reasons why Switzerland is so popular with expats.

 

When it comes to your own overseas move to Switzerland; it is vital to understand the important cultural values and customs that you will be introduced to. Otherwise, you and your family may struggle to adapt to the brand-new culture and surroundings.

As an international moving company, Galleon provides a range of corporate relocation services to ensure both the employer and the employee are prepared for moving overseas. For the employee moving abroad, we have an array of international relocation experts who can provide useful cultural information and who can act as a point of contact in their new home.

Take a look at the local knowledge our overseas agents and partners in Switzerland provided us:

 

1. Housing

It may not be known to expats at the time of moving, but Switzerland is a landlord’s market. For example, in the main cities such as Zurich and Geneva, the demand for housing often outweighs the supply. There could be at least 60 applications per flat when you are searching for residential properties.

2. Visas and Work Permits

If you are currently a citizen of an EU country, moving to Switzerland is not like moving within the union. Following the latest immigration changes in 2016, there have been further restrictions put on migration from the EU. For example, the Swiss electorate took part in a referendum vote to re-introduce quotas for foreigners and privilege over Swiss nationals over foreigners in the labour market.

For those outside of the EU, it is important to start the process months in advance since it can take a while for your application to be approved by the Ministry of Labour.

3. Language

When moving to Switzerland from Europe or North America, you may not expect as much as a culture shock. However, there are more differences in Swiss culture that expats will not realise until they are there. For example, for the French-speakers the language will be the same but the culture is different. Unlike in France, people in Switzerland favour punctuality; they go to work early and head home early.

The extent to which you are affected by the culture shock depends on how much you choose to stay in your ‘expat bubble’.

Do you still have some questions about moving to Switzerland? Why not get in touch with the team at Galleon International – international removal company. Get in touch with us on 01708 868 068.

Relocating Employees: 3 Ways You Can Make Corporate Relocation Easier on Your Employees

In the moment you ask your employees to move overseas, they may be feeling a mixture of emotions. Excitement, dread and panic could be just some of the feelings going through your employees head; until the immediate flurry of logistical considerations set in.

As you prepare for the international relocation, you must make sure your employees are just as prepared for the ‘moving overseas’ transition. Moving house is stressful; regardless of the overseas move element! So it is important that your company takes the initiative to make the corporate relocation process easier on them. Not only will this result in happier employees, but you can ensure a seamless workflow transition. This means that your employee will be back to their typical workload in no time.

At Galleon International; an international moving company renowned for their personal and bespoke corporate relocation services, we have three tips for ensuring your staff have a stress-free overseas move.

 

1. Prepare Employees for Moving Abroad

As your relocating employees get ready to move into their new homes, make it as simple as possible for them to access local information. For example, you can provide them with information about the best neighbourhoods for families; what the climate is like and information on living costs. An even better way to get your employees settled into their overseas home is sending them there on a trip.

If you are unable to provide either of these services yourself, Galleon International has access to hundreds of overseas agents and partners who can provide important, local information to your employees.

 

2. Explain The Process and Your Expectations


The stress and unknown factors of moving abroad will have your employees asking lots of questions. Will you help the employee find new housing? How will the international removal of all their belongings work? Do you plan to compensate your employees for the relocation?

The key to a strong work environment is building trust through open communication. So, if you know the relocation is going to be short-term; be clear with your employee and explain your expectations for the employee’s future. The more worries you can help alleviate during the initial moving process; the more confident and comfortable your employee will feel.

 

3. Hire a Reputable International Moving Company

No matter how much time and effort your team put into the logistics of moving overseas, a professional and reputable international moving company can help put everyone at ease. When it comes to the corporate relocation side of things, your employees will feel their valuables are in safe hands with a trusted moving company. This means your employees can focus on the important bits such as finding local schools, saving for their housing costs and of course, working.

To find out more information about our corporate relocation services, get in touch with our team on 01708 868 068.

International School Fees Rise by 20% in 2018

Following the publication of a recent survey by ExpatFinder.com, the international relocation guide has reported a huge increase in school fees since 2017.

The survey looked at 688 international schools across 27 countries; revealing a staggering 19 per cent rise in school fees this year. Some countries reported a more substantial hike in fees than others; Singapore saw an increase of 20% and Luxembourg reached a staggering 31% respectively.

As a result of changes in international moving and costs of living, it’s not uncommon for tuition fees to rise. However, current expatriates will be feeling the pinch of providing for their children abroad, particularly as the demand for international school places by affluent locals rises.

Some of the most expensive countries for international education are:

  1. China: While the total cost of a child’s education varied greatly between the 688 countries, China topped the table for ‘most expensive schools in the world’. For expatriates living in China, their child’s education could cost them US$33,591 per annum.Moreover, the study found that the aspirations of Chinese families to have an “English-medium” and “internationally oriented education” fueled the demand for international schools in the country.
  2. Switzerland: Switzerland is home to some of the most exclusive and expensive schools in the world, which is why a year of education will cost US$32,453. In 2016, a report by The Telegraph listed five of the top boarding schools in the world; all of which were based in Switzerland.

Global mobility experts explain the trend for exclusive; international schools in Switzerland as a result of the multinational companies based in Geneva. These expatriates have created a huge demand for high-quality schools in the area where the children can earn an International General Certificate of Secondary Education (GCSE). 

  1. Singapore: According to this year’s International School Fee Survey, it costs a total of US$25,758 to attend school in Singapore. As one of the most expensive countries in the world; it’s not hard to understand why Singapore’s international schools are some of the most expensive in the world.After all, international schools in Singapore offer the acclaimed International Baccalaureate qualification, demanding more teachers to a classroom. This allows schools to require higher tuition fees from attendees.

Want to find out more information about international schools in your transfer destination?

Galleon International has a team of global mobility experts. Our experts can provide you with all the information you need regarding your overseas move. As part of our corporate relocation services; our transatlantic partners can provide you with all local knowledge and contact details you will require when settling into your new home.

Finally, for more information on how Galleon International can be there to help you with moving overseas; get in touch today on 01708 868 068.