Working abroad is an exciting opportunity to gain valuable experience, explore new cultures, and make a positive impact on the world. It can also be a great way to advance your career, learn new skills, and develop relationships with people from all over the world.
Whether you’re looking for a job abroad or just want to travel and work overseas, there are plenty of opportunities available. With so many international jobs out there, you can find something that fits your interests and goals. Plus, working abroad gives you the chance to learn about different cultures and languages while gaining valuable professional experience.
The benefits of working abroad are numerous, from gaining international work experience to exploring new places and meeting people from all over the world. So if you’re considering taking up an international job or traveling overseas for work reasons, consider the potential benefits it could bring! Also, learn about some of the many wonderful benefits many of such an endeavor as outlined in this post.
Salary and Benefits
Many people consider working abroad for this one advantage alone. It’s no secret that a number of overseas employers pay top dollar. And they give the most generous perks to professional-level expat workers. This is not a myth – I have experienced it first-hand.
I worked in two Middle Eastern countries that typically pay some of the highest expat salaries around the world. My salary increased by 22% when I first started working in the Middle East. Like many other foreign workers in the country, I received housing, utility, transportation allowances, and health insurance benefits.
I also received cash in lieu of tickets to return home every year for my entire family of four. Additionally, I received 8-weeks of paid vacation annually, along with paid national holiday time off. And these are just the main perks that I received when working abroad.
As I mentioned in my previous post, international employers are willing to pay top dollar for top talent. Many of the wealthier countries are known for offering some of the best expat salaries and perks. Here is a list of some countries that tend to pay top dollar:
- Hong Kong
The ability to grow and develop as a professional is hands-down one of the greatest benefits of working abroad. Beyond salary and perks, the growth opportunities that working abroad can afford you are priceless. This is why I consider it among the top advantages of working abroad.
International work experience looks great on your resume or curriculum vitae. It provides you with a wealth of knowledge, skills, and abilities that are highly sought after by employers. Diversity, language skills, adaptability, flexibility, etc., are common skills that expat workers often bring to the table. Many employers are fully aware of these benefits, which is why they often prefer candidates with international work experience.
I was very fortunate to work in diverse environments with very talented and skilled people during my time abroad. I learned countless lessons from these individuals that I have continued to carry with me as I transition into different roles and spaces. The people and experiences I encountered expanded my worldview and my understanding of how the world operates in such a profound way. I can truly say that I am a completely different person now than I was before I moved abroad.
Many expats that I know or speak with share the same sentiments. Working in a different country with a uniquely distinct culture has the ability to help you develop at a much faster pace. I am sure that much of it has to do with you being forced to adapt to change and learn new processes rapidly. Developing these soft skills will aid you in many ways in your professional and personal life.
When you work abroad, you often have the opportunity to meet people from all over the world. Even if you work in a homogeneous country, you will still be able to interact with locals and some foreigners who often serve as great networking connections for you.
Either way, you will meet people that you generally would not come in contact with otherwise. These connections can serve you well in many ways during your time overseas and beyond. I still have connections in every country that I lived in and even a few countries that I visited while living abroad. Most of them are amazing friendships that I cherish deeply. However, some of them serve in dual capacities as friends and career connections. They are likewise individuals I can call on for references, job opportunities, or business partnerships.
Working abroad will also aid you in your personal life beyond your career. It gives you a chance to dig deeper into self-discovery, self-improvement, and, oftentimes, self-actualization. Being abroad somehow gives you the opportunity to look at yourself in a whole new way.
Expats often begin to deeply connect with themselves on a higher level than they ever did before their international journeys. This is irrespective of a person’s age or stage in life. Having to rapidly adapt to change and learn the nuisances of a new culture forces you to gain a better understanding of who you are.
It likewise gives you a greater understanding of your soul mission. It’s like being a baby all over again. But you benefit from having the knowledge and experiences of an adult. I think part of this has to do with being removed from the regular distractions encountered in your normal, day-to-day life. Once you settle in a new country, you often have to find different ways to entertain yourself and make new friends. This is not always easy at first. If you move to a rural area or to a place where your native language is not widely spoken, you may have even more challenges.
Living in West Africa, which was my first expat experience, was a major catalyst in my personal development. I didn’t have issues with the language, as English is the official language of the country I lived in. However, I had many issues with finding amenable sources of entertainment and quality friendships.
This forced me to spend quite a bit of time in meditation and introspection, which was necessary for my soul and spirit. My journey of self-discovery catapulted to a much higher level during this time in my life. Even after my three years in the country, I continued to purposely take out quality time to focus on self-discovery and self-improvement as I transitioned to two different countries over a five-year span.
This experience was not unique to me. Many of my expat peers indicated to me that they had had similar experiences. They were amazed at how much living abroad helped them grow and understand themselves so much better in such a short span of time. Would we have achieved the same results living in our home countries? Probably so. However, I think it would have happened at a much slower pace. And I think my progress would have been shallower in comparison to the way I think and interact with myself and others at this stage in my life.
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