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Becoming an Expat

Levels of education and How to find jobs as a couple..

Here's a forum to talk about all the ins and outs of leaving the UK and launching yourself into the wide blue yonder - selling up, saying goodbyes, all that sort of thing. NB - this is NOT for country-specific issues; please post those on the appropriate country forum.

Levels of education and How to find jobs as a couple..

Postby sarahlu » Sun 26 Aug 2012 08:20 GMT

Hi all,

I'm new here, this is my first post on the forum but hopefully won't be the last as I'm setting the wheels in motion now :)

Im a trainee primary school teacher in the UK (about to start my final year), a mature student embarking on a career change from IT. My partner still works in IT, he has a good (degree level) job with a good salary but has no degree having worked his way into the position.

We have been talking about moving abroad for some time now and are finally at the stage where we want to start making it happen. Things are slightly easier for me as when I'm a qualified teacher I have some idea about where to find work, many opportunities provide accommodation and I have some idea where to start. We are slightly more worried about my partners situation as he has no degree and we don't know if this will affect him finding overseas employment or not.

I suppose this would depend on where we go and at the moment we don't have anywhere definite in mind. Both of our preferences would be somewhere in South East Asia (I've travelled there quite a bit and love it), perhaps China or maybe the middle east as teaching jobs are more available there. Does anyone know whether there are any specific countries are pretty much impossible for expats to find work without a degree so we can rule these out? He would be looking for IT related work ideally (he works on a software helpdesk for the NHS), but would not be against trying something new if it was a possibility.

The other thing is, how do you go about moving away when there are two of you in a do you manage to find jobs at around the same time? Does anyone have experience of this? Is it more likely that one of you finds a job, you go and the other one looks for work out there?

Sorry if these seem like silly questions, but I need to get my head around this so we can start making things happen :)


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Postby Kay » Sun 26 Aug 2012 08:49 GMT

Hi Sarah

Welcome to BE. If you're a qualified teacher then you should be able to find a job just about anywhere in the Far East or SE Asia. All you need to teach English in Thailand, for example, is to be a native speaker and hold a degree. The pay isn't very good but there again, the cost of living isn't high.

I don't know if your partner would find it so easy, but maybe he could be self-employed and do something online.

If you stick to Europe, you may find it easier to deal with the red-tape about working and visas and all the other rules that kick in.

If you're very keen on SE Asia, then Cambodia might be a good place for you. They're a lot less strict than their neighbours in Thailand. Malaysia positively welcomes foreigners to set up home there, with their MM2H programme, but it's a lot more expensive. Plus it's hard to get a bacon sarnie sometimes because it's predominantly Muslim.

Each place has its pros and cons. Perhaps you could spend a week or two in each country before choosing your preferred destination.

Good luck!
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Postby sarahlu » Sun 26 Aug 2012 09:17 GMT

Hi Kay, thanks for your reply. I have travelled in Cambodia, Malaysia and Thailand and enjoyed them all very much. I really dont have a preference between them so it would depend solely on the job situation for my partner. Europe is something we hadn't considered, mainly as the low cost of living in Asia appeals to us, but we wouldnt rule anything out, we just want to get out of the UK and experience life somewhere new! I havnt heard of the MM2H programme but will look into it. Thanks again for the info :)
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Postby ruggie » Sun 16 Sep 2012 19:10 GMT

Hi Sarah. Kay will be better equipped than me to talk about your partner's chances of finding work in SE Asia and how to set about it, but my experience of the IT industry has always been that a degree may influence what job you start your working life doing and how much you get paid at that point, but soon afterwards the only things that count (in the IT service industry rather than development labs) are specific product skills, dedication and the ability to handle customers.
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