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What is the difference between immigration and emigration?

Immigration and emigration are often determined to be the same. However, this is not the case. Immigrating and emigrating refer to the action of leaving or entering a country.

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    Immigration vs Emigration

    Moving abroad to a foreign country can be a daunting process for many. When it comes to immigrating or emigrating, many may believe that it is an umbrella term for those moving to another country. However, there is a key difference between immigration and emigration.

    Typically, the term you will use depends on the context of your sentence. If you are talking about a departure, the term emigrate is most appropriate, whereas, immigrate means to arrive in a new country.

    Generally, those who wish to immigrate or emigrate do so for a better quality of life, for example, for political reasons or for work and finance.

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    Immigrate means to move to a different country to live. An individual will choose to settle in another country in which they were not originally born. Making a permanent move from your home country to live abroad is referred to as immigration.

    Often those who immigrate will seek permanent residence in the other country.

    Whatever the reason for immigrating, you must first seek the correct permission to do so in the form of a visa. IAS are experts in visa applications and can help at any time.


    Emigrate means you plan to exit your current homeland to settle in another country. More often than not, those who plan to emigrate do so for a better life. Perhaps the conditions in their current country are not liveable.

    No matter your country of origin, it is essential that you seek the correct permission to move to the receiving country. Without doing so, you could be potentially breaching immigration rules that may result in deportation or further action.

    Making a permanent move is often a huge process that requires careful consideration. Moving from one country to another by way of emigrating should be planned carefully before you arrive in your destination country.

    What is the difference between a migrant and an immigrant?

    Migrants and immigrants share similarities, however, they are in fact different. The key difference between the two terms is that a migrant is considered a person who moves from one country to another country but on a back and forth basis, as a pose to permanent residence.

    For instance, the term ‘migrant worker’ refers to a person who moves from country to country to work rather than to live.

    The word immigrant will typically apply to a person who wishes to settle in another country to live permanently.

    How do you apply to settle in another country?

    How to apply to settle abroad will depend on your destination country. Each country will have its own set of eligibility criteria in place to meet. Settling in a foreign country often requires very stringent criteria to be met- meaning that it is essential to research the requirements of your foreign country of choice before you proceed to apply.

    In most cases, to settle abroad, you must meet the lawful residence requirements specifically set out in the countries immigration and emigration rules.

    Whether you plan to stay permanently or remain temporarily for work, you must understand the moving process fully and apply for the correct visa or residence permit.

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      How can IAS help?

      If you are interested in immigrating or emigrating to another country, you should consider seeking the help of a trained immigration lawyer to guide you through the process.

      Our lawyers at IAS can provide you with tailored advice and packages based on your personal circumstances. We strive to make the application process as seamless as possible.

      For further information on how we can help, call us today on +1 844 290 6312.

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