Are you ready to move abroad with your family on a student visa?
| Nuwan Dissanayaka - 01 Aug 2023

 In Asia, it has been a trend to migrate in search of better life either to Europe or any other Western country. The main path most of them choose is via student visa to enter these countries with their family members. When I analyzed some of the problems which these migrants are facing, I observed that they were never aware of what is coming in the future. When moving to a country under a student visa, especially with your family you have to understand that there are many challenges and risks associated with this journey.

There are several risks to consider, particularly for Asian families. Here are some potential risks:

01. Cultural adjustment: Moving to a different country with a distinct culture and language can be challenging. Adjusting to new customs, social norms, and ways of life might take time and effort. It is advisable to select your destination in advance and start studying its’ language and adjust yourself to the existing culture of that country.

02. Language barrier: If you are not fluent in the local language, communication can be a significant challenge. It might be harder to interact with locals, navigate daily life, and fully engage in your academic studies. Therefore, Asians should focus on countries that use English as their local language because Asians are more familiar with English.

03. Education system differences: The Western education system may differ from what you are accustomed to in Asia. Adapting to new teaching styles, assessment methods, and academic expectations could pose challenges.

 04. Financial considerations: Studying in Western countries can be expensive. Tuition fees, living costs, and other expenses can add up, and managing finances can be demanding, especially for a family. Most Asian families believe that having enough finances to survive the first academic year will be sufficient enough for them to live in that country. But, it’s not the truth. If you have such poor planning on your migration plan you will have to return after one year with an empty hand after losing all your assets and money. Therefore, do not risk your life-long earnings with poor financing and planning.

05. Visa and immigration issues: Navigating the visa process and meeting immigration requirements can be complex. It's important to understand the specific regulations and procedures to ensure a smooth transition and avoid legal complications. You have to be transparent and truthful with your financing. Showing money to which you don’t have access just to go through the Visa process will risk your stay in that given country and might end up with complex legal procedures.

 06. Homesickness and social support: Being away from your home country and extended family can lead to feelings of homesickness and isolation, especially if you are not able to establish a strong support network in your new location. Therefore, it is highly advisable to make a proper investigation regarding the area in which you are planning to migrate and it will help for the wellbeing of your children and your family.

07. Discrimination and racism: Unfortunately, instances of discrimination and racism can occur in any country. It's crucial to be aware that you might face such challenges and be prepared to address them, seeking support from local authorities or community organizations if necessary.

 08. Employment prospects: After completing your studies, finding employment in Western countries might pose challenges due to different labor market conditions, work permit requirements, and competition for jobs. Therefore, you should do a complete analysis of your degree program and available job opportunities after completing the program. Simply selecting a program with a low cost and a high acceptance rate will be a suicidal decision.

Despite these risks, many families successfully navigate the process of migrating to Western countries for educational purposes and find it to be a rewarding experience. It's essential to thoroughly research your destination country, seek advice from relevant authorities or educational institutions, and consider all factors before making a decision


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