If you’re one of the 1 million Filipinos leaving the country every year to seek a better life abroad, you must be full of excitement for your new adventure. With the excitement comes trepidation but here’s good news: a new book is written with you in mind! The Overseas Fabulous Pinay: A Modern Filipina’s Guide on How to Thrive Abroad by Donna Avellana Künzler is the comprehensive guide for the modern and professional Filipina determined to succeed abroad.
Avellana Künzler, who has spent almost 20 years abroad in a successful career in finance, starts her debut book with the all-important list of what to prepare before your big move—from researching the weather and food to the paperwork you’ll need to bring with you. Avellana Künzler advises, “Make sure you have prepared all the required paperwork and clearances for your move. Some are a must, while some are a nice-to-have. As a friendly reminder, do note that some paperwork needs time and effort, or needs to be done in person. Give yourself ample time when preparing these documents before your departure.”
Top 10 Required Paperwork:
1. Your passport.
This must be valid for at least six months or one year from your date of travel, depending on your destination. Check your destination country’s embassy website to be sure.
2. A visa/work permit/residence permit.
You might not be admitted to your destination if you do not have the appropriate document to evidence the legality of your stay as a foreigner.
3. POEA clearance.
If you are coming from the Philippines, you want to obtain proper immigration clearance when you are at passport control at the airport. It’s also for your own assurance, a way to ensure that your future employer is not an illegal recruiter.
4. Your employment contract.
This is a must-have document in case you get asked at passport control to provide proof of your employment.
5. Proof of accommodation.
Another must-have if evidence of your stay is requested at passport control.
6. Various certificates of your education and professional qualifications.
Keep a copy or have the originals in case they’re required for employment purposes. These may include certificates of education, transcript of records, copies of professional certifications and training, employment certificates, employer recommendation, and reference letters.
7. Certificates of your funds and investments.
These refer to bank accounts, stock certificates, property title, etc. They might be handy in case you need to prove your net worth. This applies to future investments, computing your income tax, and so on.
8. Driver’s license.
Have one that is valid, so you are able to rent a car when needed and also when you apply for a driver’s license in the country in which you will work and live.
9. Power of attorney.
If you are leaving property behind (e.g., real estate, an automobile, etc.), organize a power of attorney to facilitate its administration and maintenance.
These are your birth certificate, medical certificates, vaccination record/history, and NBI clearance.
This list is just the tip of the iceberg of helpful information in The Overseas Fabulous Pinay—an easy-to-read handbook jam-packed with useful tips, light-hearted anecdotes, and detailed guides on moving abroad. By the end of its 130 pages, you can expect to come up with a battle plan on how to move abroad efficiently, settle in and adjust to your new work culture, beat homesickness, and ultimately to enjoy your fabulous life overseas.
Avellana Künzler says, “Through my book, it is my goal to empower Filipina women by sharing my knowledge and years of experience of living abroad. My aim is to inspire and uplift the image of Overseas Filipina Women by being a role model to show that living abroad can be an enlightening and rewarding experience.”
This book is truly relevant for all its practical tips to not just survive abroad but to thrive as well. You will be equipped with useful information to create a fabulous life overseas—from a list of survival skills and necessary documents to compassionate advice on how to overcome homesickness and make new friends in your new home.
Critics agree! On June 3, 2020, the Nonfiction Authors Association honored The Overseas Fabulous Pinay with a GOLD AWARD in its Nonfiction Book Awards. On July 22, 2020, it was also recognized as a Finalist in Best Interior Design in the 2020 International Book Awards.
More than just helping professional Filipinas moving abroad, Avellana Künzler also wants to focus on uplifting Pinays here. She says, “I want to use my author platform to support my advocacies on education, women empowerment, and the promotion of Philippine indigenous products which support local communities and the well-being of Filipinos overseas.” To support this cause, part of the proceeds from the book sales of The Overseas Fabulous Pinay will be donated to the Assumption Mission Schools.
The Overseas Fabulous Pinay: A Modern Filipina’s Guide on How to Thrive Abroad by Donna Avellana Künzler is available at major online book retailers Barnes & Noble, Kobo, and Amazon for P750. Check www.ovfabpinay.com for announcements for book events and to get to know the author more through her blog. Be part of the #ovfabpinay Facebook community [www.facebook.com/ovfabpinay] and follow @ovfabpinay on Instagram [www.instagram.com/ovfabpinay] for more updates.
About the Author
DONNA AVELLANA KÜNZLER was born and raised in Cavite, Philippines. An accounting degree holder and Information Technology Auditor/Consultant for most of her career, her #ovfabpinay life started in 2001 when she relocated to Singapore for work. She continued her adventures in the US (San Jose, California) and then across the pond in the UK (London) before finally ending up in Switzerland (Basel and then Zurich). She works for a Swiss global company, and is responsible for finance process governance and standardisation in the finance organization. She and her husband currently live in Zurich where she is transitioning from #ovfabpinay to #ovfabpinaymom with the recent addition of their daughter to the family. The Overseas Fabulous Pinay: A Modern Filipina’s Guide on How to Thrive Abroad is her first book.