Go ahead and climb the steps into the EU
Bureaucracy is one of those things you must deal with. In many cases paperwork and delays can be annoying and exasperating. When you thought you already had everything completed, there is always a last essential document that is missed. In this situation, be patient. Don’t give up on your adventure by so much bureaucracy, it is one of the first steps and obstacles to overcome to begin your dream.
In most cases it is possible to obtain a document that compares your title with those issued in the EU country to which you want to move. To do so, check out the ENIC / NARIC centre of the country where you want the comparability of your qualifications to be assessed. However, you have to be aware that the administrations of EU countries remain responsible for their education systems and are free to apply their own rules, including whether or not to recognise qualifications obtained overseas.
Your travel documents
If you are willing to travel to the European Union or within its borders, you need a passport and possibly a visa: valid 3 months after the scheduled date of departure of the EU country in which you are and issued less than 10 years ago. You can apply for a visa at the consulate or embassy of the country you are planning to visit. If the visa is from a country in the "Schengen area", automatically you will have the possibility to travel to the other Schengen countries. In addition, a valid residence permit in any of the Schengen countries is equivalent to a visa. Instead, if you want to visit countries outside the Schengen area you may need a national visa, as there are passport checks as you approach the boundary.
Citizens of certain countries do not require visas to visit the EU if the stay does not exceed three months. The list of countries whose citizens require visas to travel to the United Kingdom or Ireland is somewhat different from that applied by the other EU countries.
Your travel insurance
Even if you are not an EU-national, but you are resident in the territory of an EU Member State you can apply for and use a European Health Insurance Card or Temporary Replacement Certificate. It should never cost you anything and it should be provided by your health insurer prior to travelling. However, it is important to know that you cannot use your card for medical treatment in Denmark, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway or Switzerland.
You have to bear in mind that the card does not guarantee free services. Each country’s healthcare system is different and some services that does not cost you anything in your home town might not be free in another country. The period of validity of the card is a decision for each issuing Member State to make.
Time to explore
After finishing with all the bureaucracy it’s time for you to enjoy your trip. Either travel or stay, don’t forget to spend time with those who know the country best, the locals. Keep your mind open and don’t let your own influences (stereotypes, prejudice or clichés) prevent you to live a genuine experience. The best part of being overseas is to be in front of new ideas, cultures or thoughts. You will feel a more intimate, authentic and deep experience of the place.
Before going on a trip, you might like to plan it.
Check out visit Europe and explore all the transport possibilities, like rail networks or cheap airlines. You can also find ideas on how to make the best of your leisure activities and be inspired by other personal travel stories around European cities. Find out how to plan your trip with let's Go, a travel guide written entirely by students and brings together invaluable travel experiences.
Indeed, you won’t be the only foreigner living in your new city. There are different expatriates’ groups around the world that can provide you with many useful tips. Check out just landed, expatriates.com or InterNations.