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Living abroad 3-6 months at a time?
Old 03-31-2012, 01:22 PM   #1
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Living abroad 3-6 months at a time?

Now that ER is within a few months, I am seriously considering living abroad for a few months at a time. Perhaps, 2-3 months in a smaller town in Italy, or Germany, or maybe Eastern Europe??

I am looking for people who might me interested in sharing their experiences doing this. There is no point in waiting. I am not getting any younger.
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Old 03-31-2012, 01:28 PM   #2
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My wife and I are planning to do the same thing, but we are still about 3 years away.
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Old 03-31-2012, 01:48 PM   #3
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We spent two months in Central America this winter. We'll probably spend next winter somewhere else, maybe South East Asia. We didn't settle in one area but used the time to backpack around. That will probably be our M.O. going forward, but the idea of settling somewhere for maybe a year and learning the language has an appeal too.

Make sure to research visa requirements and restrictions for wherever you're planning to go. Different places have different restrictions on how long you can stay. Sometimes you can get around those with a simple boarder run, other times not. The Schengen Visa area in Europe creates special problems for people wanting to tour around the region for more than three months. Plenty of people get tripped up by not knowing the rules.

Good luck.
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Old 03-31-2012, 02:22 PM   #4
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I think you will do just fine. DW and I were just talking about this today. When we were in Barcelona 3 years back we quite fancied renting an apartment there. (On a different occaision we rented a house about 25miles from Pamplona)

We have rented for several months at a time in England, and next year plan on renting in Ireland for a month or 2, then the following year in Australia.

We have had very good experiences renting houses directly from owners in France and Spain in recent years. We love living in places away from the cities so you can get into the local life.
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Old 03-31-2012, 03:42 PM   #5
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I have done it, and loved every minute of it. It was possible when my kids were younger and not in school (and then when we home-schooled); now it is more difficult for us as they have gotten older and are back in school and they have friends and other activities etc, i.e. they have their own opinions about things. In 10 more years we will be empty-nesters and the extended living overseas will resume.
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Old 03-31-2012, 04:45 PM   #6
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Alan, did you contact the owners before arriving or after arriving? Most of the places I have found online are for short term tourists, very expensive.
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Old 03-31-2012, 06:49 PM   #7
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Alan, did you contact the owners before arriving or after arriving? Most of the places I have found online are for short term tourists, very expensive.
Always before arriving.

In France and Spain it was the owners and those houses were only 2 weeks at a time, and we shared the cost with other family members. For the 7 months in the UK it was through a realtor. We haven't started the process looking for rentals in Ireland yet.
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Old 04-01-2012, 08:18 AM   #8
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Hi Chuckanut,

My husband, Billy, and I have been traveling almost full-time since 1991 and love living in foreign locations for months or years at a time.

There are many ways to find housing in other countries, including apart-hotels, home exchange, rooms to rent in pensions, Craigslist, etc. Or you might try house sitting -- There are some absolutely awesome opportunities - months in a country home in Tuscany, on the Dordogne in France, Marbella in Spain.

Can't speak the language and want to get a start? Try downloading the free Travel Language Guides by World Nomads. You will learn basic travel phrases in any of 25 different languages. You can download on your iPhone or MP3.

It's an exciting adventure and good luck! We're hooked, actually.

Best,
Akaisha
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Old 04-01-2012, 11:27 AM   #9
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Alan, did you contact the owners before arriving or after arriving? Most of the places I have found online are for short term tourists, very expensive.
I'd definitely look into house sitting if you're planning to stay in one spot and don't mind handling some basic responsiblities (like caring for a pet). There are a number of sites to choose from. Trustedhousesitters.com is one people have had some success with.
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Old 04-01-2012, 07:15 PM   #10
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Since I was originally from Manila, I thought of renting a high rise condo
within the modern part of the city. A total expense of $2000./month
will be sufficient.
These areas are ultra modern with all the amenities available in any big US city. I'm looking for a place which everythng is within walking distance.

I figure I'll get bored after 3 months and will be ready to get back.
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Old 04-01-2012, 07:41 PM   #11
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I've been away from the forums for a bit, but this thread caught my eye, as the expat idea is something my DW and I would like to explore. Firecalc results look promising if we stay on course, with a goal of FIRE in 5 years. The big thing that still seems a bit of an unknown to me is how to handle health care once we leave the coverage we get through w*rk. Cost for services in most countries seems much less expensive without even buying insurance, but I'm just wondering what expats do for peace of mind if they've got, say, a 5-7 timespan to cover until residing back in the U.S. to take advantage of Medicare.
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Old 04-01-2012, 08:33 PM   #12
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Chuckanut,
I am right behind you ... my wife and I plan to do the same thing ... 3 months at a time abroad starting next January. South Pacific is our first trip. Europe is second trip.
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Old 04-01-2012, 08:54 PM   #13
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I can't help but think it will be quite an adventure. But, my roots will be in the USA, this is not a permanent move. I won't really be an ex-pat.
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Old 04-01-2012, 09:58 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by Birchwood View Post
Since I was originally from Manila, I thought of renting a high rise condo
within the modern part of the city. A total expense of $2000./month
will be sufficient.
These areas are ultra modern with all the amenities available in any big US city. I'm looking for a place which everythng is within walking distance.

I figure I'll get bored after 3 months and will be ready to get back.
DW & I have considered Manila or a surrounding island. We estimated $1500 per month spend with similar amenities. We're probably looking 5 - 7 years from now, spending summers somewhere different while the kids are out of school and can joy us. I was looking at Davao City as a quieter place to explore too.
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Old 04-02-2012, 01:08 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gone4Good
We spent two months in Central America this winter. We'll probably spend next winter somewhere else, maybe South East Asia. We didn't settle in one area but used the time to backpack around. That will probably be our M.O. going forward, but the idea of settling somewhere for maybe a year and learning the language has an appeal too.

Make sure to research visa requirements and restrictions for wherever you're planning to go. Different places have different restrictions on how long you can stay. Sometimes you can get around those with a simple boarder run, other times not. The Schengen Visa area in Europe creates special problems for people wanting to tour around the region for more than three months. Plenty of people get tripped up by not knowing the rules.

Good luck.
I'M looking to do this after the up coming football season. My son plays. My goal is to spend non-traditional holiday, thanksgiving and Christmas in warm climate through Jan then go to another warm climate area until April, spring football for my son. Then off again to another fun spot.

I do plan to get a small home base in south FL close to airport.
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Old 04-02-2012, 07:31 AM   #16
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We came to Mexico and got in touch with the local English speaking congregations who knows something about local living and most economical ways to live here. One couple rents a economy, small apt with cable and 10mb download internet and pay only 3200 pesos including gas & water ... That's $250 usd per month!

I'd say stay in a cheap hotel and look for someone local and ask lots of questions of who may help for a living... Think concierge for travelers on a local level.
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Old 04-02-2012, 07:43 AM   #17
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We got in contact with the local English speaking congregations who knows something about the local community. There's a couple from Italy who pays 3200 pesos including gas & 10mb Internet and cable for an economy flat here... That's $ 250 usd per month! And did I mention that it's 1 mile from the Caribbean in Playa del Carmen? The only caveat is this is for a year after tough negotiations.

Think about staying cheap and looking for a local concierge person to help with the ropes. Show interest in attending a local group and I bet you could have success. Ask locals for recommendations.
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Old 04-02-2012, 07:48 AM   #18
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One thing to think about is house sitting or dog sitting... Free rent for little work... There's websites for these too.
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Old 04-02-2012, 07:54 AM   #19
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The big thing that still seems a bit of an unknown to me is how to handle health care once we leave the coverage we get through w*rk.
Depending on how much you plan to travel, you could take advantage of local care in foreign countries and pay out of pocket. If that is too frightening for you, you could take out traveler's insurance or full care international insurance through Bupa, IHI, World Nomads or other companies that offer it.

The rates you will get for full care insurance depends on what country you use for a permanent address. If you use a U.S. address the cost will be high.

You can choose to have travel insurance cover the time you are in the States and take care of other issues locally - meaning in other foreign countries.

Billy just recently had an emergency hospital event in Guatemala - 2 nights stay in hospital, MRI, x-rays, intravenous meds, doctors, nurses, concierge care, etc. etc. etc. and the cost was $1,600 USD.

Best,
Akaisha
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Old 04-02-2012, 08:34 AM   #20
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Akaisha, hope everything is fine with Billy.

Thanks for the post on health care. Some potential world travelers are concerned about health care outside the US. We lived it for many years too and learned (from much experience) that average care in most places is just as good as average care in the US, just less expensive. Hospital care is much less expensive. The real issue is not level of care but language.
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