Thursday, October 04, 2007

Expat's absolute necessities in KL

Time waits for no one.

As we grow older, we become wiser. And that is what happened to me. Gone are the days when I would splurge mindlessly on silly things which I thought were "necessities" of life. Things like bags, shoes, make-up, and so on. I guess with age, plus my marriage, and moving to another country made me wake up to the real facts of life.

I started to prioritize things I will spend on. The definition of "necessities" have changed, too. The thinking pattern has moved from "ME, ME, ME" to simply "us". Now, there are new considerations which take some wallet share -- such as life insurance, health insurance and retirement.

What makes it complicated for us, unlike others out there, is because we are expats. Which means we are not sure where we will be months or years from now. Possibly, we may still be living here in Malaysia. Or maybe somewhere else in Asia. Or maybe France. Time will tell.

This makes choosing the right company to sign up insurance and retirement with an important consideration. We were able to get a health insurance for expats, which will follow us to any country we go to. It has a vast network and even covers maternity. This is highly important for me, especially since I have this big fear of childbirth. Blame it on the video which the teachers at my high school -- they showed an actual childbirth video and that sure scared the hell out of us (and a reminder that with sex comes risks... and that risk is getting pregnant at the wrong age).

There were many online expat insurance offers. But I'm traditional. I want to talk to a warm body. I have tons of questions. I was lucky enough to meet this chap who is very experienced with things for expats. His advise and time have shown us which health insurance to take, which retirement package to focus on and so on.

What I am driving at is that for expats out there, please take time to consider these things because it is important. It may not seem important NOW, because things are going well and you are living the moment. But one must sit down and think of these things. And should the day come that you do think about it, do consult an expert. That makes the "trial and error" go away, and believe me you don't want to end up with a wrong company or policy plan.

Thought of sharing this tip as I got a call that my health insurance card is ready. Do think about it!
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