London is one of the most exciting cities in the world, and it’s no surprise that so many people opt to relocate here from overseas. Many people from Japan choose London as their moving destination as well. However, as with moving from Japan to any new city, there’s so much to consider before making the big move. Today we’re going to look at some of the most important things you need to consider before moving to hopefully make your move stress and hassle-free.
Double Check Visa Requirements
Before moving to UK from Japan, the most important thing you need to check is your visa eligibility. You may be reading this as your company or family has sponsored you to enter the country, but if not, consider checking out the gov.uk site, which will tell you about the visas available for living and working in the UK. This is the most important consideration before moving anywhere in the world, to ensure you are only remaining in Japan for the legally allowed time.
Choose where to live in London
Just like Tokyo, London is a huge city, with many different distinct boroughs to choose from to live in. Naturally, your budget will most likely determine where you are going to live, as will the location of your work if you have a job secured in the city already. Try to find somewhere with good transport connections that is within walking distance of a tube or bus station. If your relocation to London is a permanent one, it’s still worth renting for your first months or year in the city, to ensure you buy in an area you feel truly at home in. As a general rule, the further out from Zone 1 you are, the cheaper housing will be. By balancing your commute time, travel costs, and rental costs, you can conclude where is best for you and your family to live.
If you are coming from Japan, you may find taxes in the UK to be higher than in Japan, but it’s important to understand the benefits they offer to citizens, such as free healthcare with the NHS and education for those under eighteen. The UK’s tax system is a progressive system, meaning high earners will be taxed more than those in the lower categories. You’ll also want to ensure you set up council tax, vehicle tax, and TV license payments, all of which are required if you use those services.
Most individuals who move to London don’t buy a car, as it’s generally considered very unnecessary in the city. It is just like moving to a big city in Japan, Tokyo for example. Take your time to study the London transportation system, and get a good understanding of the tube, overground, and bus offerings in your area. You may also want to cycle or walk if that is a feasible option for you, and both of these are very popular options with Londoners. Remember, London is a very spread out city, so be realistic about your commuting times to and from work, and know that this will take up a fair share of your time each day.
Find your new Local Services
As with moving anywhere globally, you’ll want to find new local options for all of your regular services. Try to find a good, reasonably priced local supermarket that is within walking distance of your home, or opt for delivery services from Tesco, Ocado, or Sainsbury’s if you prefer not to carry all of your shopping home. You’ll also want to find a local bank to open an account with, as well as your other essential services such as a hairdresser, gym, and anything else you use weekly. London has the best selection of restaurants, gyms, and stores in the whole country, so you won’t struggle to find anything once you move here!
London is an exciting city for anyone to relocate to and offers so much to its residents. You’ll never be bored in London, with new areas to explore any time you find yourself with nothing to do. While it’s certainly not the cheapest city to move to, once you get a good understanding of its transport and housing systems, you should be able to set yourself up for a comfortable life in your new home country.