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Expats bear currency fluctuations in mind

British people heading abroad need to keep currency fluctuations in mind when planning life in a new country.

This is the advice of expat banking director at Lloyds TSB International Richard Musty, who said in an article for the BBC that rises and falls in the value of currency can have a considerable impact on quality of life overseas.

He noted that while sterling is at a relative historic low against the euro and the US dollar, there is nothing to prevent it falling further, or, conversely, rising, which would make it more expensive to pay any bills or charges in pounds.

In order to reduce the risk of currency fluctuations and avoid losing out when sending money home, he suggested transferring funds into the currency that is most likely to be needed in the long-term, so if the move abroad is only temporary it may be advisable to leave some savings in sterling.

Mr Musty explained people planning to move overseas should take note of the experiences of British expats living in eurozone countries on relatively small UK pensions a few years ago, who began to struggle financially when the pound weakened against the euro by around 30 per cent in just over 12 months.

In addition to currency fluctuations, those moving abroad will also have to take a variety of other finance-related issues into consideration, such as setting up an international current account and selecting a savings account for use in their destination.

Seeking expert advice on financial matters ahead of moving overseas may be beneficial and Andrew Tully of MGM Advantage said doing so is "vital" to ensure the move goes smoothly.

He said sound advice could mean "the world of difference between the retirement of your dreams and an experience altogether more challenging".

MGM Advantage recently noted many Britons moving overseas do not consider what will happen to their state pension when they relocate, meaning they run the risk of it being frozen if they move to a country that does not have a reciprocal agreement with the UK.

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