Long-term Travel: How to Move to Europe from the USA

move to europe from usa

There are many, many reasons to want to move to Europe from the US and if I've done my job right you'll know all about those reasons, especially the specific reasons for you, because this blog post is all about how to move to Europe - once you've already decided that's what you want to do (perhaps trying house sitting in Europe first is a good idea!)

Before You Move To Europe From The US

In this post we'll look at how to prepare before you trip and how to actually do the trip. I hope you find it useful :)

#1. Trial Move First!

Although you've probably already decided that you want to move to Europe, and it might have been your dream for years or even decades, I still recommend a trial run first. Even if you've been to Europe many times for a holiday, I still recommend trying to live there before you actually live there. Why? Because I've personally had many dreams that fell to dust when I actually experienced them for real, and it's easier to move on and have new dreams when you haven't put you're everything into your original dream...

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So, how can you trial living in Europe? If you're not new to this blog you know I'm going to say 'by house sitting of course!' (For those that are new, house sitting is like baby sitting but for houses and pets instead of babies.) I house sat my way around the world for the first 5 years I travelled and it was a great way to live in a country without actually committing to living in a country! Your accommodation and bills are free and house sits tend to be in more local areas than say, hotels or hostels. There are house sits available all over Europe - particularly Western Europe. If you are from the US (which I'm assuming you are as you're reading this blog post) you are allowed three months visa free visit in the EU - now if you're just holidaying you might not be able to afford to stay in the EU for three months, but with house sitting your costs are significantly reduced (as you don't have to pay for accommodation).

international moving companies usa to europe

Once your three months are used up, I also recommend that you trial countries outside of the EU too (US citizens tend to get three months visa free per country here, but do check each country). The Balkans (outside of the EU) tend to be cheaper and in many ways more relaxed than EU countries, and you might find somewhere you prefer around there - they may not be as famous as Italy, but the sun shines just as bright.

#2. Downsize Your Possessions!

Once you've decided that you're taking the trip across 'the pond' the next step is to think carefully about what you want to take with you. Honestly, even more than I recommend taking a 'trial living trip' to Europe, I recommend even more strongly that you really, really carefully consider what you're taking with you.

Why? Because there's nothing more annoying than shipping stuff halfway across the planet that you don't need or don't want (not to mention the ecological impact). Think of this trip as a great opportunity to downsize, and then downsize again. This is something I personally feel really passionate about (having grown up in a clan of hoarders), and I could go on and on about it, and have done in this post: how to start decluttering when overwhelmed.

#3. Try International Moving Company USA to Europe

Once you have thought carefully about what you are and aren't taking with you when moving to Europe from US you next have to pick a moving company. Luckily, this is probably the easiest part - movers can ship anything from your household to your vehicle, and will do so with the utmost professionally.

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Side-note: I have met people that shipped their pets over too. I personally have an issue with this though, because I think people do it for themselves instead of their pets. That kind of travel is generally insanely traumatic for animals, it's better to leave them with caring friends and family in the US (or just wait a few years before you move). Please put yourselves in their 'shoes' and don't kid yourself that life with you is worth twelve hours traumatic hours on a plane (no offence).

Wrap Up: How to Move to Europe From the USA

Although it might ostensibly seem like the most complicated thing in the world to do, moving to Europe is actually pretty easy once you actually do it - especially if you downsize and trial living in the country (or countries) you dream of living in. If you have any questions please ask below :) And thanks for reading!

What do you think? How would you move to Europe from the USA? Feel free to let us know in the comments section below, we're open to advice and tips! :) P.S.: If you're interested in a way of travelling and getting accommodation cheaply, you might wanna check out house sitting. Trustedhousesitters.com was kind enough to provide us and our readers with a 10% discount, feel free to click on our link to use it :)

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We overland. We eat plants and fungi. We live outside as much as possible. We are all connected. A female travel blogger overlanding and writing about ecotourism, ethical and sustainable travel, socially conscious travel and housesitting. An online travel magazine since 2015.


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