Moving abroad is a huge, life-changing experience. And not just for the person who’s making the move. Friends, siblings, colleagues and, most especially, parents can all be affected too.
If your offspring’s about to make the move (or has done already), you’re no doubt thinking of ways you can support your child on their journey. From moral support to money transfers—we’ve got you covered.
Here are 5 ways to support your child when they move abroad.
Prepare them for independence
If this is your child’s first experience of living away from the family, one of the best things you can do is prepare them for independence before they move. Whether it’s teaching them how to cook their favourite meals or schooling them on finances, key life lessons will help them through the move, as well as throughout the rest of their life.
Before they make the move abroad, take the time to teach them all that you know. From doing the laundry to changing a fuse, an introduction into every little household task will prepare them for living alone. (It’ll also reduce the likelihood of them calling you in a panic when their electricity trips and they don’t know how to fix it—we’ve all been there).
Keep an open line of communication
Whether your child is moving for studies, work or simply an adventure, encourage them to talk about how they’re feeling. Ask them what’s going through their head as they embark on one of the biggest moves of their lives. Their excitement may well be masking some nerves. If it transpires that they are feeling anxious, encourage them to talk. Listen and let them know that their feelings are totally normal and understandable.
And once they’ve made the move, keep in touch. Let them know that you’re available whenever they want to talk. If you know somebody else who’s also moved abroad, ask for their advice on what could help. You could also put them in touch in case they want some guidance pre- or post-move.
Plan a visit as soon as you can
A great way to help your child settle in is to plan a visit as soon as possible. Ideally, this should be in the first 6-12 months while they’re still finding their feet. Your child may insist that they don’t need you to visit, but secretly they’ll relish the chance to introduce you to their new neighbourhood and show you around (hopefully).
If your child feels homesick, knowing that you’ve planned a visit can also give them something to look forward to. Especially if it’s a while before they’re due to visit home themselves. And if time and budget don’t allow, make sure to plan regular video calls instead. Seeing each other face to face will be hugely comforting—for both of you.
Familiarise yourself with their routine
Once your child has made the move, it’s a great idea to get to grips with what a standard day looks like for them. Having a general feel of their itinerary makes it easier to spot an emergency situation, or get in touch if you need to contact them at short notice. However, tread lightly here. You don’t want your child to think you’re checking up on them.
It’s also a good idea to get the contact details of their landlord and employer. This will give both you and your child peace of mind that if a worst-case scenario happens, you’ll be able to get in contact. Make sure they have your emergency contact details, too, including the phone number of your employer, next-door neighbour and close friends. Hopefully, they won’t ever have to use these numbers, but it’s better to be safe than sorry.
Send them money
We know that budgets are tight—particularly in today’s circumstances—but sending money to your child is a great way to help them settle in. This does not have to be large sums on a regular basis. The odd payment towards their weekly shop when they’re running low can make a huge impact.
Thankfully, sending money is easy, fast and affordable thanks to TransferGo. We offer low-cost transfers to over 160 countries and counting. Regulated by the FCA and supervised by HMRC, we’re also 100% secure and there are no hidden fees. And when you use the code THANKYOUBLOG, you can also make a free, same-day money transfer! Happy days!