Travel is adventure, but this does not preclude taking precautions so that the stay does not turn into a nightmare. Whether you are going for a holiday, study, internship, job or volunteering, here are some guidelines that could facilitate your expatriation:
Get your valid papers and visa
The first thing is to make sure your papers are in order. In the European Union and neighboring countries (Switzerland, Monaco, Liechtenstein, Andorra), a valid identity card is sufficient. But most other countries now require a bio-metric passport that you must carry out with the municipalities equipped with the appropriate equipment (digital photography and fingerprinting). The procedure can take up to two months, so it is better to do it in advance. It’s the same situation for your visa which, depending on the country, may take some time to be issued. Do be aware, some countries may also require that the expiration date of the passport exceeds several months by the date of return. Inquire directly with the consulate or the embassy of the country, to be found on the directory of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs..
Find out about your social security options
To what extent will your care abroad be reimbursed? As part of a professional detachment, especially for civil servants, you can continue to enjoy the benefits of social security. However, an expatriation to study or work makes you dependent on the social security system of the country of destination. If you are going on holiday in Europe, you can get the European health insurance card, which covers medical care when you travel. It must be ordered 15 days before your departure with your health insurance fund. Outside the EU zone, only medical expenses deemed urgent by the medical officer of your health insurance can be refunded upon your return, but you will have to pay for them at your expense. Also you can yourself a city discount card which can save you a lot of money during your exploration of these host cities.
Make an appointment with your doctor
Make an appointment with your doctor to ask him or her what precautions to take for your destination. Check with your doctor if your vaccines are up to date. Some countries require you to show your vaccination record and proof that you have been treated against yellow fever or malaria as soon as you enter the country. For the latter, you may need to take anti-malarial treatment for prophylaxis, starting one week before your departure and continuing four weeks after your return.
If you receive treatment in the UK, take advantage of your visit to the doctor to ask under what conditions to pursue medical treatment in your destination country. In addition, it may be appropriate to take out repatriation insurance if the medical structure of the host country is not sufficient.
Report on arrival
For short stays, missions, internships, holidays of less than two months, it is advisable to register with your government. Complete a brief form with your contact information and dates so that you may be quickly contacted by the center crisis embassy in case of trouble. In the case of a long stay of six months or more, it is important to register with the consulate. Doing so will be able to expedite the renewal of the passport or other official document in the event of loss or theft. You can also go to the nearest embassy or consulate when you arrive in the host country, or contact them by telephone.
Know the law
In order not to risk or receive a hefty fine or spend some time behind bars, it is strongly advised to read the legislation in force in the host country: traffic laws, and laws regarding prohibited products and medicines are particularly important. It is also important to learn about habits and customs in order to avoid offending your hosts. Always bear in mind that what seems self-evident in your country may not be so natural elsewhere. Remember also the expiration date of your visa, so you can either renew it or leave the country without the risk of an outdated date.
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