Things are daunting and everything hurts when you decide to move to Europe. It's stressful because you have so many things to do but really it's easier than you think. It's not like moving across the country at all where all you need to do is make sure you still get provincial heath insurance, assuming you're Canadian
As I do most things solo, I did my move first to Amsterdam and then later to England solo as well. After a few tries at it, I'm pretty sure I've got it down to a science - a science that had baby with art because it's damn beautiful too; just like the landscapes you'll be seeing and the accents you'll be hearing.
1. Where to Move
This is easily the most important step. Deciding where to move is a bit more complex than which place appeals to you most although that should be taken into consideration. I, for example, am fluent in English and until moving abroad spoke Cantonese and a little bit of French. If I were to move to Bulgaria, I would probably have a very difficult time finding a job or even a steady apartment because things are easily mistaken with Google translate, sadly. While it's not as fun to limit your options to what is entirely reasonable because living in Paris would be so much more romantic than living somewhere you can actually communicate and afford to live - it is important. Besides it does help your experience when you can actually create long lasting friendships because you are able to communicate in more than grunts and miming.
Once you've weighed the options between one country over another you you need to get a Visa to work and live in that country. If you're between 18-30 in most countries you'll find it very easy to get a travel visa, some might have stipulations that say you can only work in one place for three months at a time or that you are not able to be placed in permanent work. This is under the assumption that you are an unskilled worker, of course. If, like me, you're Canadian you are required to save approximately 3,500$ before applying for the visa as a means of showing that you have enough funds to last you until you find a job. I would suggest saving a few thousand more for your own stability. If the opposite is true it can be a little bit more complicated. Some professions require that you will have to do another exam before you take on the same position in another country. The best way to find out what steps you need to take is to go onto your countries travel website and visa regulations. They will be clearly stated there.
3. Resume and Work
This is the perfect time to update your resume because you will be giving it to as many businesses as you can. Be sure to research the standard resume form for the country you are moving to. For instance, it is required to have a photograph of yourself attached with the resume in some countries whereas it isn't for most industries in North America. Once your C.V. is updated, you should scope out jobs in the city you are moving to and apply online to jobs. This will, at the very least, tell prospective employers that you are interested in a position with them even if the time line doesn't work for them for the position you are applying to they might have something suited to you around the time of your arrival to your new home.
I grew up moving around a lot so I have packing my life into boxes down to both a science and an art form but for those of you who don't my biggest tip is to minimize your things. There are many ways to do that, my personal favourite is donation to a local charity that way you're helping others and the environment by not throwing away perfectly good items. Once you've decided what items you want to keep, you should still cut that down in half because you will find all of those things in the new place you are moving to and honestly, you will want a new wardrobe or new home decor to match the city. Finally you should slowly start to pack things away, preparing for your flight.
Unless you haven't secured a flat and a job already your priorities should be the many but small tasks you will need to do. Health Insurance, a tax number, a new debit card, a new cell phone or SIM card and finding important places near you i.e.: doctor, dentist, grocery store, etc. Once you get these things done your stress level goes down immensely. Some of these things are easily over looked until you desperately need them too. Just think of the services you use at home and apply them to your new home because chances are that you'll need them there too.
Don't stress too much about anything, though. Even if you get it wrong there is a solution to everything and people want to help you succeed so take the plunge! and move to Europe!