It might surprise you to learn that as many as 10% of working people choose to take a foreign posting, which can come with some very attractive perks. It does take a lot of effort to relocate to a foreign land and commit to 2 or 3 years working, and it isn’t everyone’s cup of tea, as this very often involves having to learn a new language and living in a strange culture.
The Pros of Expat Contracts
In most cases, your employer would offer you a lot of perks and benefits when you undertake a foreign posting and might include the following:
- Tax Free Salary
- Free Accommodation
- Medical & Health Insurance
- Company Vehicle
- Domestic Help
If you are bringing your family with you, your employer would pay for an English school in Bangkok and your son or daughter can continue their schooling using the same curriculum. International schools have high term fees, as you would expect, but it is normal practice for the employer to take care of school fees, among other things.
The Cons of Living Away from Home
When you commit to living and working in a foreign country, you are giving up a lot of things that you probably take for granted; it might be that you have to learn a new language and then there’s the cultural aspect of the experience. Of course, a lot depends on where you are posted; a 3-year posting in Thailand is more attractive than spending that time on an Atlantic island such as the Falklands, or working in a fish factory in Iceland, and obviously, you must see some merits in the posting, as you agreed to take it on. Click here for more tips on choosing the best school for your child.
Living in a Strange Culture
If you are the type of person that finds it difficult to experience new things, working abroad might not be for you, and in most cases, the posting is primarily accepted for the financial benefits. The more you prepare, the easier the transition will be and if there are other expats working at your office, they will help you to settle in. It should be noted that living and working in a foreign country leaves you open to their laws and customs and doing some research about the culture and history is definitely recommended.
Seeing the Good
If you are planning to devote a few years of your life on a foreign posting, there are many positive aspects about such an experience which you should focus upon. If you plan on taking your family, this is an adventure for both your partner and your kids and if you are disciplined in your lifestyle, you could save quite a lot of money over 2-3 years. Of course, it is important to keep abreast of the current Covid-19 status in the country you are going to live.
One thing is for certain, if you do a good job while representing your employer abroad, this will be a feather in your cap and might lead to a promotion, or at least the offer of another foreign posting.