outbound expats

Common issues faced by outbound expats

Moving overseas is usually a very exciting opportunity, but it can also be an overwhelming experience. The issues faced by outbound expats when moving overseas will vary depending on finance, location, culture, and in general, the place they are moving to.

Here we discuss some of the most common issues faced by outbound expats in general when moving overseas, and how to overcome them:

Language barriers

If you happen to be moving to a place that speaks the same language as to where you’re moving from, you’re one of the luckier expats. Moving to a country that speaks a different language will inevitably be a little daunting.

In this case, we recommend that you attempt to have at least a basic understanding of the language before you make the move. People in your new country will appreciate the fact that you’ve made the effort, even if you’ve only picked up some of the most basic phrases. Something is always better than nothing!


If you’re moving overseas with your partner or family, you might not experience the same level of loneliness as someone moving by themselves. Either way, it’s important to try and make friends, and build bonds with the place and the people around you. Leaving a professional and social network back home can be tough, but you’ll soon build up a new one. Everyone is guaranteed to feel slightly homesick when they first move abroad, but it very quickly becomes home.


There’s a number of things that you’ll need to consider, from structuring your affairs appropriately before you leave Australia and after you land in your new country.

You’ll need to let your bank know no longer living in your home country, and you will need to consider opening foreign currency exchange accounts with companies like Australia’s leading ASX listed foreign currency conversion provider OFX (www.ofx.com) if you want to save on foreign exchange.

In fact there’s an enormous number of things that you’ll need to sort out financially before you go. As such, tax, money and finances are often daunting subjects, particularly when you’ll need to understand the impact from an Australian perspective and from the perspective of your new host country!

For these reasons, we highly recommend that every Australian embarking overseas to take an expatriate role should book and attend an “Outbound Expats” tax consultation with an expatriate tax practice such as ours or with another suitably qualified expatriate tax firm!

Doing so will give you best chance of understanding your tax residency status, the implications of your residency status along with how Australian taxes and those of your host country will apply to your circumstances. You’ll also gain an understanding about the various tax effective strategies available for you to grow your wealth and make the most of your opportunities overseas. We’ll also strategise with you so that you achieve the best outcomes based on your circumstances and so that you avoid the various tax traps that you might otherwise fall victim to. That way, you’ll be set up for success for the duration of your overseas adventure and beyond!

At Expat Tax Services, we offer that and other consultations and we’d be pleased to assist you. But regardless of whether you choose to utilise the services of our firm or not, let me reiterate that we highly, highly recommend that you book an “Outbound Expats” consultation with a specialist Australian expatriate tax firm like ours because as explained above, this will set you up for success whilst you are living and working overseas.

At Expat Tax Services, we specialise in Australian expatriate tax returns and advice. Founded in 2007, and with clients in 85 countries around the globe at last count, we’ve experienced most circumstances first-hand, so we’re well placed to assist!

If you’re need some assistance or if you’re interested in learning more, don’t hesitate to contact us today for more information and guidance – our team will be very pleased to assist you in whatever way we can.

Shane Macfarlane CA
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