May 23rd, 2013
Teens often want something different out of their international travel experience than adults do. Today’s teens can be especially hard to please since the Internet makes the world more accessible and, therefore, creates more demand for unique locations and activities. Finding the best summer tour for your teen is sometimes about following trends in summer travel for teens, but also about listening to the specific preferences of your son or daughter.
While you might be happy to go exploring the ruins in Italy or trotting around the Louvre to look at classic art, many teens won’t enjoy the experience on the same level either because Internet viewing options have satisfied that particular itch or because they’re looking for something more thrilling on their summer vacation.
Some of the most popular tours for teens in the summer are adventure tours to locations such as the Caribbean, Belize, the South Pacific and South Africa. Each of them offers activities that can’t be simulated at home and allow your teen to experience the unpredictable and exciting forces of nature. Read the rest of this entry »
May 22nd, 2013
This summer, before you pack your college-aged son or daughter up for their summer college program abroad, there are a few preparatory steps you should take to make sure their trip is safe and fulfilling.
Learn about Local Preferences
Your son or daughter might know all about the language and social preferences of the culture, but there are some subtleties they might not have looked into. API Study Abroad Blog noted that even getting to know the usual clothing worn by locals within their age group is important. Students may feel uncomfortable when dressed less formally than others and out of place when dressed overly formally. In some areas, the wrong clothes can do worse than just make your child uncomfortable; they can be offensive to the residents of the area.
Another thing students should pay attention to before leaving are the sports and other extracurricular activities that the locals enjoy. In the Study Abroad Blog, one student mentioned that he hadn’t paid attention to the local sports of the country he was visiting, and thus missed out on some opportunities to create a richer social life with other students. By learning about popular sports and activities in advance, and even gaining a vested interest in them, a student can enrich their overall experience. Read the rest of this entry »
May 16th, 2013
There once was a time when a traveler’s budget was one of the key drivers behind his or her choice of vacation destination. But according to the 2013 Visa Global Travel Intentions Study, budget is no longer one of the top three motivators. Instead, travelers are selecting destinations based primarily on the scenery, culture and various attractions they offer.
While selecting a vacation destination based on the things you want to do, see and experience certainly sets up the potential for creating a perfect trip, it doesn’t negate the need for travelers to pay attention to their budgets. It just means they must learn to better balance their objectives with their wallets.
Budgeting for Your Dream Vacation
Unless you rely on credit cards or loans to pay for your vacation, you’re very likely dealing with a limited pool of savings to support you while you’re away. And even if you are relying on credit cards and loans, they likely still have limits that you must adhere to. That means that, no matter the source of funding for your next vacation, a budget to keep your spending on track is essential. Read the rest of this entry »
May 14th, 2013
When you purchase travel and health insurance, the policy you get is only as good as you allow it to be. If you take out a policy with limits that are too low, you aren’t going to get as much protection out of your insurance as you may actually need.
Replication of Coverage: A Bad Idea
Many travellers don’t stop to think about the limits of their next international travel and health insurance policy, they simply buy a policy that replicates the coverage they had on their last trip abroad. But travel expenses increase constantly and this can quickly make the limit from a prior trip obsolete. For example, in August of 2012, The Guardian announced that rail rates in the UK were set to rise 6.2 percent in January of 2013. In November 2012, American Express Global Business Travel released a report that predicted a 2.6 percent increase in travel costs for business travelers. They also predicted that some flights might have cost increases of as much as 10 percent.
Adjusting your trip insurance so that it has limits that will truly cover all the financial exposure you have is a much better approach to insurance planning than replicating coverage over and over. Read the rest of this entry »
May 9th, 2013
While many expats moving abroad for work are covered by their employer’s group insurance policy, there is one group of workers abroad that are completely on their own. Freelancers have the freedom to travel and often love to immerse themselves in different cultures, but these independent, self-employed professionals don’t just need to find their own clients, they need to find their own insurance as well.
Every spot on the globe has its own risk factors that freelancers must take into consideration. One way to learn about these location-specific concerns is to visit The State Department’s website. There, you will find both travel warnings and alerts. Warnings are issued when there is a very serious and ongoing situation and The State Department wants to discourage travel to an area. Alerts are notifications of short-term hazards, such as natural disasters, that are either occurring, have potential to occur or are expected and that temporarily increase traveler safety risks. Read the rest of this entry »
May 7th, 2013
If your employer is relocating you abroad, you may be immersing yourself in the language, laws and culture of the country you’ll be moving to. But it’s also important to consider the more practical arrangements and considerations you must make while you’re still stateside.
You should have an estate plan in place before you go abroad. This plan should include a will that spells out how your assets are to be distributed should your death occur. You can also create a trust that gives even more oversight into asset distribution.
It’ also a good idea to make arrangements for your children should you and your spouse pass away before they reach 18. International health insurance can be especially helpful in this area because it ensures that there are financial resources available to get your kids back to the state and in the arms of their new guardian should something happen to you while the family is abroad. Read the rest of this entry »
May 2nd, 2013
Summertime is on the horizon and for a lot of kids that means summer camp. But these days, many parents are trying something different.
Instead of sending their kids to the local lakeside campground, they are sending them abroad to summer adventure camps, work programs, or educational programs in international locations.
No matter what summer program, camp, or country you and your child select, it’s important you also choose the right international insurance coverage.
The insurance requirements for your teen’s visa will vary depending on the type of visa they must obtain. Read the rest of this entry »
April 30th, 2013
There are many reasons one might decide to relocate abroad, but moving for work is one of the most common. Employment opportunities overseas come in all shapes and sizes. Professionals are required in industries such as communication, finance, education, technology and so many more. People of all skill levels and educational levels are needed and they’re paid fair wages for the sacrifices they make.
If you want your future to include working abroad, there’s no time like the present to start preparing. As you do, you’ll also be making yourself a more attractive candidate for global opportunities.
Gain Language Skills
According to a 2012 survey conducted by Rosetta Stone, almost two-thirds of senior managers in the global mobility industry state that the biggest obstacle they face in completing a successful reassignment is an expat’s inability to speak the local language. If the company you work for or industry you specialize in has a large presence in a particular non-English speaking country that you especially want to relocate to, take the time to learn the language in advance so that you can show yourself as the best candidate when the time comes to apply for the relocation.
There are several reasons why language skills can make the transition more successful and beneficial to your employer. First, they reduce the risk that you will ask to end the relocation early because they improve your chances of fitting into your new environment. Language skills also make doing business much easier and more effective and you won’t need to utilize an interpreter. Read the rest of this entry »
April 26th, 2013
The city of Dubai is probably not what most people envision when they think of the Middle East. The city’s extensive business network, malls, schools, intense nightlife and variety of restaurants set it apart from much of the region and have made it an ideal destination for many expats and their families. But before one relocates to this growing metropolis, they need to get familiar with the intricacies of its healthcare system.
Health Insurance Requirements in Dubai
Dubai rests on the coast of the Persian Gulf. Just south of Dubai is another large city, Abu Dhabi. Abu Dhabi made health insurance coverage compulsory for expats in 2005. Dubai considered doing the same in 2008, but delayed that requirement after the financial crisis. They did so out of a concern that it might cause some of their expat population to leave, an event that would have been especially devastating to the city’s economy since, as the The Telegraph reported in 2010, roughly 80 percent of Dubai’s population is foreign.
In 2013, however, the Oxford Business Group reported that Dubai was attempting to finally launch its compulsory health insurance program this year. This will force expats to obtain health insurance while they live in Dubai. Those who haven’t done so already may be in for a steep learning curve. Read the rest of this entry »
April 24th, 2013
There is nothing like a tragedy to make one rethink the state of their insurance portfolio. The recent bombing in Boston serves as a timely reminder that we are never completely safe or removed from the potential for violence, injury or illness. Even at an event with a heavy police presence, such as the Boston Marathon, we can quickly find ourselves under attack and facing the very real possibility of physical harm or death.
It doesn’t have to be the overwhelming power of a bomb that impacts you. It could be gunfire in a crowded public place, the crush of a panicked crowd, or even one angrily wielded knife that changes your life forever. Sadly, not only could any one of these events alter your life, they each have the potential to be harmful enough to end it much earlier than you would have expected. If one should, it will be far too late for you to consider whether your life insurance policy will pay out under the circumstances. Read the rest of this entry »