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British Expat Newsletter: August 2018

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In this issue

This month

As ever, August has been a slow month for news. But the big news for us is that after four years in the UK, we’re off overseas again at last. Phew!

Bureaucracy is often the biggest worry for people planning to relocate. Even when moving around the EU there’s still some paperwork to cope with – typically the requirement of many countries’ authorities to register your residence with the police, although in fairness they often apply that to their own citizens too. Once we’ve left the EU, that looks set to become more difficult. Outside Europe, it always has been. Thankfully our visas are taken care of and we don’t have to worry about work permits. But it’s a real concern for people who are travelling under their own devices and don’t have the back-up of a large organisation to help them through.

Then of course there’s healthcare. Again, this is something that’s going to become an issue for many of our readers in the EU, if – as seems inevitable – Britain leaves the EHIC scheme. Of course, there are exceptions like Malta and Ireland where the UK has a pre-existing reciprocal agreement. Elsewhere, expats will need to organise some health insurance for themselves, particularly where that’s a condition of being granted leave to remain in the country. And naturally, as you get older you’re more likely to need to claim – so it becomes increasingly difficult to find an insurer willing to take you on, and the premium payments are that much higher.

The big challenge we face right now is getting our stuff sorted and ready to ship. We’ve already put quite a bit of it into temporary storage, some of which we’ll take with us but quite a bit of which will probably stay in storage while we’re overseas. Part of the reason we’ve done this is to make the packing process easier. But a large part is to enable us to move about the house more easily so that we can get it ready to let.

And the decision of what to do with the UK house is in some ways the biggest issue of all. The first time we moved out of the UK together we let our house, to an apparently decent small family through what we believed was a reputable letting agent. When we returned four years later, we first had to evict the tenant – then we found the house had been trashed and most of the furniture we’d left had gone.

Stung by that experience, we were more than happy to sell the house and dispense with all those worries. While this gave us a big increase in capital, it also meant that when we returned to the UK nine years later we were off the London property ladder and had to move further out to get back into home ownership. Another unpleasant shock.

This time around we’ll be letting our house again. But the Web is 17 years older in the meantime, so we’ll have access to a lot more information about potential letting agents, and hope to be able to find one with a solid reputation among landlords. And we’ll be closer to the UK than before, which will mean that from time to time we can come and see for ourselves that everything’s OK.

I’m just looking forward to the time when we can close the door behind us in our new home, collapse into our chairs and settle down…

You’ll get absolutely no clues to where we’re going to be living from this month’s Quick Quiz. Paraguay’s in the wrong hemisphere, the wrong direction and is emphatically not close enough to the UK for us to be able to come and visit from time to time! But it does have some surprises up its sleeve – as you’ll find out if you try our Quiz. Have a go!

And our Pic of the Week is also from Paraguay. Like last month’s, it has a celebratory theme. But this one looks as if it’s a Where’s Wally? convention. Have a look and you’ll see what we mean!

Are you ever flummoxed by fancy foodie words, mystified by menus, or confused by culinary terms? Then head on over to and become enlightened by our quirky A-Z of food. And it’s got cartoons in it! Don’t forget to tell all your friends about it too.

Meanwhile, of course, the forum continues to provide information on a wide range of expat issues, as well as the opportunity to socialise with like-minded people all around the world. You can see the full range of discussion boards here.

Write for British Expat

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Besides articles, we also publish quick trivia quizzes—five questions about any subject. So, if you’d like to write for us but don’t feel like producing a literary masterpiece, then why not try writing a quickie quiz about your city, country, or even your hobby? Please use our contact form to get in touch.

British Expat Amazon Shopping

Amazon don’t just do books, you know. We’ve teamed up with them to bring you the ultimate in online shopping—from a micro SD card to a garden shed! A great way to do your shopping online, especially if the shops aren’t up to much in your part of the world.
BE Amazon Shop: UK & EU | BE Amazon Shop: non-EU

So there’s a round-up of all that’s been going on. Come on over and see for yourself! Don’t forget…
Visit the BE website and join in with our lively community!

Till next time…

Happy surfing!

British Expat—the definitive home for British expats

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