Minds have now switched to thinking about the costs which we will incur for relocating overseas and the myriad of questions that require some form of an answer. In fact, even getting any degree of an answer is proving somewhat a challenge but let me explain …
It’s the same company in the UK asking us to relocate as we will be working for in Canada. In thinking about the costs of relocating, it gets you wondering about how we will get paid for work. So, at the top of the list is question number 1: do we get paid in a foreign currency or retain our monthly salary in pounds sterling? Deep intake of breath as the vagaries of foreign exchange rates, host company versus home country start to raise their heads.
Clearly this then leads you to question number 2 and debates on tax. Which is most the appropriate? Do we still pay UK income tax? What about Canadian tax and if we’re living there, well……..
Friends of mine will relish the opportunity to wax lyrical on such a stimulating and clearly complex body of knowledge and opinion (not my ideal topic of choice for a discussion around the dinner table, although give me a bottle of wine and I’ll happily participate whether or not I have any knowledge on the subject whatsoever). That said, give my friends any amount of alcohol and it’s hard to decipher any difference !! (I’m jesting if any of them are reading my blog, honest 🙂 )
Get yourself through this minefield – the common characteristics being confusion, complexity and a feeling of being clearly ‘out of my depth’ – and you’re into the whole debate on how do we get paid and into where? We’ve got to set up bank accounts in Canada and payments will need to go into this – from which we’ll need to make no doubt, an endless stream of payments both within Canada and to send back home to the UK (did I mention I have 3 kids, who certainly don’t come cheap).
Next on my list is social security/national insurance (now, don’t yawn). Call it what you will, when you boil it right down, all we need to know is – it more or less than we pay now? I’m happy to leave out all the specifics in the quest for a simple response.
To live and work in a different country for any duration of time, there will be costs to making it happen which we’re fully expecting – some of which may be met by the company asking us to relocate, some of which won’t. Once we are there and duly settled, what will be our monthly outgoings and will we be better or worse off? The safest assumption to make at this stage is to plan for failure and assume the worst!
Finally – and why my next observation features further down the list than all the other items above I don’t know – but did I mention Edmonton has one of the largest shopping malls in the world? Obviously an opportunity for any female and clearly a key influencer on whether we’ll have any funds remaining during or after our time in Canada. I suspect not.
Despite all this, I’m fully anticipating that the lifestyle, quality of life and whole experience which we’ll benefit from will be well worth all the effort, pain and no doubt, cost. Everything comes at a price. Let’s just hope it’s not a slippery slope to ruin!!!!