Monday, February 22, 2010

Life Admin

After several hours on the phone this week and last with my UK mobilie phone company and my US credit card company, it's finally dawned on me:  life admin, as an expat is practically *double* what it used to be!

Now, not only do I have bills & crap to deal with from the UK, I've got bills & crap to deal with from the US!  There's been this feeling the past two years that I spend more time on life admin-and until recently, I assumed it was just 'UK Stuff.'  I realize now it's UK & US Stuff.  Geez.  Can't we poor expats get a break? :)

I feel like I have to make almost one phone call a week back to the US for something-credit card, mortgage, the normal UK life stuff.  It bums me out to know this is probably always going to be the case-either while living in the UK, living in the US-or heaven forbid a third, new life admin country...

Any expats out there have any handy tips/tools for keeping this type of stuff in check?  I'd much rather be spending my time on fun things!


  1. Hey, Kristina, I've been reading your blog for a while now in preparation for my own move across the pond (from DC to London) and I just wanted to say thanks for all your stories and bits of advice! It's comforting to think that someone's survived the upheaval of settling elsewhere - it makes me optimistic for my own chances!

  2. Tell me about it! having similar issues myself today. I have no tips though, sorry.

  3. After almost 20 years as an expat, I no longer have UK things to deal with (except when the passports expire). However, with three kids, there is a mountain of "kid admin" to get through every week.

  4. I still deal with this, even though I'm living in Canada now! For the first few years, it was tough to juggle the student loans back home, the credit cards in the UK and Canada and all the bills...but now, I'm just used to it. I think I have something like 6 different bank accounts, in 2 different countries, with 4 different banks. My god, I need a PA. Know anyone who wants to work for free doing my bills? lol

  5. I feel exactly the same way. I have double the stuff (bank accounts, credit cards, taxes, cell phones) and it just flat out takes up more time than I would like. (She says as she realizes that she is 4 weeks behind in Laundry and has been buying clothes instead of washing them...)

  6. I'm a Brit in the US. I hate double-admin too. The tax returns are the killers... I found having a 'UK calendar' and a 'US calendar' with the key admin stuff on each was really helpful for giving me the notice I needed that something was going to fall due. It just felt less like being ambushed!