Moving out of the country sounds like a great adventure (which of course is) but not many people realize all that you need to do to prepare for the move.
First, we google many different sites about moving out of the country, then we make a timeline and a checklist of all that we need to do. Then we do what’s on that crazy checklist!
First thing we had to do was contact a Panamanian attorney. They sent us a brief checklist of what they would need. When we hired them and sent them money, they sent us an even MORE detailed list. We had to go to the police station and get fingerprinted and then send them along with a NBI form to have an FBI background check completed. Now we have to have it over nighted to Washington DC to be validated and then they need to expedite it to our Panamanian attorney, all within a month of leaving.
We needed a copy of our marriage license dated within a month of us leaving as well so I had to go to the Department of Health to pick that up and have it notorized and validated with the new date along with 6 passport photos of each of us and our birth certificates, copies of drivers licenses and passports. These we can bring with us.
Next, we have to pack….thats a whole other story but trying to pack and keep the suitcase under 30 lbs….yeah, that’s NOT working so I’ve packed and repacked 3 times already and still have to do it again. I am seperating items of what to take during our first trip and what to bring next trip and then what to pack in totes to ship when we make our big shipment of household items, bikes and gym equipment.
I’m organizing things that we still need to sell in our garage sale this weekend which will be our last weekend in the home. After the sale, I need to pack it all up into boxes to donate to the Waterfront Mission which will be picked up on Feb 13th. Allan leaves February 12th to visit his mom then I leave February 15th for one last New Orleans trip with the girls to see Stevie Nicks. I’ll meet Allan in Nola February 17th and we will leave from there on February 18th. The house is still on the market but we are hoping that once spring hits the market will pick up and we will sell it soon.
When we get to Panama we have to meet with the attorney where they will help us incorporate a Panamanian LLC, help us fill out the forms for residency, set up a bank account and obtain a work permit. While that is all processing we will be traveling the country to check out the different Expat areas to see if Bocas Del Toro is where we really want to be and then hopefully find a home that we can either purchase or rent for a while with our dogs.
In case I confused you with all that is going on, below is our upcoming schedule:
This week: Sorting through all items of what is staying, what we are taking with us this trip, what will be stored in storage and what needs to be sold and the garage for sale.
February 9th – Garage sale
February 10th – Brunch at the house with friends
February 12th – Allan leaves
February 15th – I leave for Nola
February 16th – Stevie Nicks concert in Nola with the girls
February 17th – Meet up with Allan in Nola
February 18th – Fly to Panama
May 6th – Fly into Fort Lauderdale, FL and spend time with Allans family there.
May 14-May 21 – Flying to Paris, France (vacation)
May 21 – Drive to Pensacola to pick up dogs
June 3rd – Drive to Miami
June 6th – Fly back to Panama with dogs
Think thats confusing….you should see all the little details that I did not list! I may not write again until we get there so until then….we will see you all later! Lots of love…Tammy & Allan