Travelling as a CPA

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  • #186260
    Anonymous
    Inactive

    I'm in my mid-20s studying for the CPA exam and all I really want to do is travel and live in different places in the world. A big reason I got into accounting was because of its portability. I know the ACCA might become an important qualification for me, but I was wondering if anyone has any experience or knowledge about working overseas as a CPA. Could be for a specific company, could be freelance. Just trying to find some extra motivation while I'm finishing up this FAR text, you know?

    Thanks

    #578434
    Anonymous
    Inactive
    #578435
    SlickRick
    Member

    In the exact same boat as you. Would love to hear some input on this.

    #578436
    Mayo
    Participant

    Auditor global rotations in Big 4 or Large regionals are what I'm familiar with:

    https://www.grantthornton.com/careers/career-mobility.aspx

    https://www.bdointernational.com/Careers/secondments/Pages/default.aspx

    https://mycareer.deloitte.com/eg/en/life-at-deloitte/global-programs/international-mobility-programs

    However, there's also opportunity for travel in industry as an Internal Auditor:

    https://estore.ul.com/OA_HTML/OA.jsp?OAMC=R&OAFunc=IRC_VIS_VAC_DISPLAY&p_svid=5821&p_spid=255073

    “This is a high energy team of 8 individuals and you will have the opportunity to travel internationally, interact with leadership, and work a schedule that allows for a healthy work/life balance. “

    In the same vein, you could become a contractor (same as public accounting audit with higher salary and OT pay): It might not be international, but it'd be great if you want to see the country, and don't feel like paying for it all yourself:

    https://www.siegfriedcareers.com/jobpost/accounting-manager-7/

    “Accounting Manager – Anywhere”

    Locations include Boston, Chicago, Atlanta, Detroit, Houston, etc.

    https://www.siegfriedcareers.com/why/locations/

    In addition, you get paid more if you agree to travel as much as you're needed to.

    #578437
    vanadium3
    Member

    just keep in mind it's travel for work and not for pleasure. you'll spend a lot of time at airports, hotels, client sites, and grocery store. occasionally you can visit some other areas.

    Though you do get a lot of miles and hotel points for traveling, so that might help when you plan your vacations.

    As for overseas, yeah there are opportunities, but you have to be peak performer to get those abroad assignments. Instead of public, try to find a global company to work for that has to do with IT..

    #578438
    Anonymous
    Inactive

    I work in the internal audit department for a global, public company for the last year and a half and I've been to Europe twice. My coworkers have traveled to the middle east, asia, africa, south america, and europe, pretty frequently. I don't travel as much as my coworkers because I don't really want to but I still have the option if I wanted to.

    #578439
    fuzyfro89
    Participant

    Internal audit at a large, global company will probably be your best bet, though business travel is not the same as a vacation.

    I'll repeat, business travel is not the same as a vacation.

    #578440
    Mayo
    Participant

    “just keep in mind it's travel for work and not for pleasure. you'll spend a lot of time at airports, hotels, client sites, and grocery store. occasionally you can visit some other areas.”

    “business travel is not the same as a vacation.”

    Lol, how true.

    Me: Hey man, I heard you just came from 3 months in London. How was it?

    Buddy: I guess just like the US? Not sure because I mostly worked 90 hour weeks in the audit room. So I guess no real difference except that everyone sounded like James Bond.

    Me: oh…

    It just depends. If it's a “project” then it usually means work work work. If it's a long term assignment there will be some down time for sure.

    #578441
    soyanks
    Member

    Go work for internal audit dept of a CPG (Consumer Packaged Goods) such as Proctor & Gamble or other multi-national corporations.

    All you do is travel to different parts of the world where they have offices.

    #578442
    Anonymous
    Inactive

    LOL yes, it's definitely NOT a vacation. However, you do get to see some things that you wouldn't see if you were on vacation. Such as how the business world works in a foreign country & face to face conversations with locals. There's pluses and minuses. Also, sometimes you go to out of the way towns in a foreign country ( I went to a small little city in France, an hour train ride outside of Paris for work for 2 weeks..not a lot of english spoken) so it's not like you're always going to Paris or Rome or some other glamorous place. Especially, if you work for a manufacturing company like I do…a lot of the sites are not in big metropolitan areas. But, it's still your best bet if you want to travel the world for free.

    #578443
    Mayo
    Participant

    An old boss of mine used to be the Director of IA, and she told me when she went to visit the operations in S. America she had to have two bodyguards because she looked “extremely American”.

    Screw that noise. I like my head on my shoulders thank you very much.

    #578444
    Anonymous
    Inactive

    Thanks a lot for the input everyone, there's a lot of good information here. What I have in mind isn't actually traveling on assignments. It's more like finding a place, any English speaking country in Western Europe for example, and finding a place to work there as an accountant for a year or two. More of on my terms than the previous posts discuss. I care less about money or than I do about free time and I'd like to live in a different place or two and explore the surrounding areas while I'm there. Is this too idealistic? Accounting seems like such a portable profession and it seems like there's a fair amount of job hoping, especially of accountants in their 20's.

    Thanks again

    #578445
    Tux
    Member

    I'm interested in this too, but my focus is tax, not audit.

    If anyone has ideas, please share……

    Eplop – try searching the internet for Caribbean accounting jobs. I believe there are lots of audit type jobs there.

    Also, search Craigslist in various countries.

    Otherwise, I know that I've seen volunteer accounting jobs in under-developed countries. I know – we all need to get paid, but it sounds like a good way to meet new people, which could always lead to new job opportunities.

    Just keep searching the internet. You'll come across the right thing at the right time.

    #578446
    Tux
    Member

    I'm interested in this too, but my focus is tax, not audit.

    If anyone has ideas, please share……

    Eplop – try searching the internet for Caribbean accounting jobs. I believe there are lots of audit type jobs there.

    Also, search Craigslist in various countries.

    Otherwise, I know that I've seen volunteer accounting jobs in under-developed countries. I know – we all need to get paid, but it sounds like a good way to meet new people, which could always lead to new job opportunities.

    Just keep searching the internet. You'll come across the right thing at the right time.

    #578447
    LIZZLIZZ
    Participant

    Thanks everyone for all the helpful links !

    I currently work RHI as a full time employee. being paid by the hour as an accountant is the best thing ever. I usually stick to one client for about a year or so then move on to the next. I had my 1st bit of travel with this client I must repeat “it is not a vacation”. I still loved it and would love to have a job with more travel. Sleep is for the Dead…ROCK ON !

    #578448
    Anonymous
    Inactive

    The problem with worldwide rotations is that often people get stuck.

    I've spent some time abroad and many of the corporate expats I met all pretty much said the same thing, “they got assigned to Asia, Europe, or S america for 3 months, then the project gets delayed to 6 months then we need you for 1 more year to finish this project. Then they say if you stay we'll give you a big fat raise. Then they say, if you leave yo lost your job.

    Consider whether, you are willing to permanently relocate for a few years of excitement?

    #578449
    Matt
    Member

    ^ Sounds like a dream come true. Assuming you don't have any roots tying you down to the US (i.e., family), I don't see why “permanently” relocating abroad would be any worse than staying permanently in the US. Appreciating the learning experience of living abroad needn't be relegated to mere short-term thrill-seeking “excitement”. After all, I'm sure immigrants in the US have perfectly valid reasons for resettling in the US, so I don't see why vice versa can't also be true.

    Naturally, for someone who wasn't planning to be relocated permanently, I can see how that would be incredibly frustrating.

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