This article is provided by expatfinder.com, your global relocation center. Access a trusted network of service providers such as international movers, local real estate agents and more.
Getting to Know your Destination with Destination Services!
The existence of destination services is not well known, and because of the lack of information on how expert support is actually readily available in all cities around the world, most people are often daunted by the experience. Everyone is aware that relocating to another country, is not always a walk in the park. There have been stories of struggles preparing necessary paperwork, finding safe and affordable housing, opening bank accounts and others.
Little do many people know, there are destination services companies that provide assistance to expats logistics services in their destination abroad. These firms offer services such as pre-arrival support, home search, school search, spouse support and cultural training.
What They Do
Destination services companies typically work with employers for the latter's employees on foreign assignment. Employees who feel supported from pre-departure until their return are able to focus on business objectives. Destination services companies also extend assistance to the employee's family members, thus the growing number of employers seeking for their services. Employees may still avail of destination services even when their companies are not paying.
Destination services companies provide area orientation to help employees decide whether or not to accept an assignment abroad. Trained consultants conduct briefings for employees and their families about the new host country. These consultants act as ambassadors of specific destinations and advocates for employers. They also take the role of advisers for employees, listening to their concerns and issues.
Home search is probably the toughest part of moving to a new country. Doing this alone will take up time, energy, and money, especially when you're unfamiliar with the area. You can check out the free support service from expatfinder.com or find the mobility consultants by yourself to assist in finding various types of accommodation. For temporary housing, consultants can either coordinate with the employer's preferred supplier or make recommendations of high-quality accommodation. For long-term accommodation, destination services firms help expats on home search, logistics and legal processes.
Destination services companies provide school search services including searching for school options, preparing needed paperwork, and assisting with enrolment. Consultants may arrange school tours for employees and their families to help them decide the best choice for their children.
The important part of a consultant's job is making expats feel at ease in the new host country. Prior to your arrival, destination service companies offer community orientation, documentation assistance, language trainings and cultural seminars to help employees and their families find their place in the community.
Aside from getting you and your family settled with a new home, orientation about the country's culture, and all the formalities with documentations etc., destination service companies can also help your spouse in finding a local job of her own, and provide all the necessary assistance to get them started with their new life in your new country of residence.
The cost of destination services vs. Doing things on your own: Do the maths
While one might think these are not true necessities, even more when on a tight budget or allowance, well you might want to think twice and do the maths.
With accommodations for example, for 5 nights in hotel room or one week to conduct a home search, you are easily spending more than what you will pay a consultant for a home search. Not to mention the stress you'll be taking on yourself in trying to get to know the market prices, finding the right areas and the right type of housing for you and your family.
Destination service consultants act as on the ground consultants and are usually paid by the hour for all the things you need them to arrange. It's better to spend your relocation budget on destination service consultants, rather than doing things on your own, or using costly temporary options such as hotels, until you get acquainted with the local market. Hiring destination service consultants will save you time, effort, and money, simply by avoiding mistakes and mishaps that might be caused by your lack of local knowledge, when you settle in. You'll be surprised to see how much money and effort you'll save in doing so.
How to get destination services
Aside from paid destination service consultants, there are other ways for you to get destination services without getting a whole package.
Ask your moving company
Some moving companies also offer a relocation package. You can go to expatfinder.com and get free moving quotes from at least 6 trusted international moving companies. When you receive the quotes ask if they offer any destination service with the move, or if they have a partner that they can recommend for destination or relocation services to your new country of residence.
Tap into the sharing economy
When you really don't have much to arrange when you move, or if you have a very tight budget, tapping into the sharing economy is one of the newest ways to get you settled in your new host country. Sites like Airbnb, and Share Traveler can help you get to know your new city's local culture by providing "experiences"with local city guides.
Websites like Vaybale, and Zozi provides cool new stuff to do in your new city. Arrange tours, guides, and activities during your pre-arrival visits and get yourself acquainted with your new city of residence.
There is a lot to think about and to budget when it comes to an international relocation but one thing is certain, it is always smoother with the help of an expert local guide, be it a destination service consultant, your international mover or simply a local tour guide.