But when you’re living in a new country, it can suddenly become a necessity in ways you might not have realised.
In those first few months, for example, you’ll spend who knows how many hours carting around new furnishings to help make your new place feel like home. And what better way for the whole family to embark on a weekend adventure.
Indeed, when living abroad, your car becomes so much more than just a way of getting from A to B. It becomes the mobile hub that opens you and your family up to a whole new world, helping you to explore and familiarise yourself with your surroundings so you too can navigate your new home like a true local.
Stephanie Lindqvist and her family on vacation in Florida.
Just ask Stephanie Lindqvist, an American expat currently living in Sweden. Along with her husband Johan and their two children, Stephanie has spent the better part of the last twenty years relocating across the globe in places as far afield as Turkey, France, the Philippines -- and now Sweden.
“A spacious car definitely helps you settle in somewhere”, she says. “When we were living in Turkey we drove all over the country in our Volvo. When you have a car that you can comfortably fit everyone into you can go on the most amazing vacations and stop off wherever you want.”
The brand new Volvo XC40
Volvo’s new XC40 is a small SUV with smart storage.
There's a place for everything in Volvo's new XC40.
The cleverly designed interior helps you to make the most of the space in your car. There are dedicated nooks and crannies for everything from your phone to a box of tissues, as well as retractable hooks to stop personal belongings moving around while you’re on the go.
And if all that’s not enough, it has a built-in bin so you won’t have to empty rubbish from footwells and car doors after your family road trip.
There’s even a fold-up floor in the trunk to keep things from shifting while you’re driving. Perfect for any relocation when there’s always plenty of need for space to pile in shopping or suitcases.
There's plenty of smart space to pack up your belongings in Volvo's new XC40.
“When you move there’s always things you forget or don’t bring,” says Stephanie. “It’s really important to have a car you can fit everything in. It just makes life so much easier.”
But what if you aren’t planning to relocate with your car?
The good news is that, with Volvo Cars’ Diplomat and Expat sales schemes, you can have a custom XC40 delivered to your next posting. It’s also easy to have the vehicle shipped back to wherever you call home if you one day plan on moving back. And the whole deal comes at a very favourable price.
The perfect city car
One major consideration when choosing a car for your relocation is whether it’s designed for your local terrain.
"There’s always different requirements when you relocate,” says Stephanie. “In Istanbul, it’s really hilly and, although winter is short, it can snow. So we needed a car that could handle that.”
Volvo's new XC40 is made for city life, but can handle adventures!
She adds that it was totally different when she was living in France, and different again now that she’s in Sweden.
“In Paris, you don’t want a big car because it’s a total pain to park. There’s often just 30cm between you and the car next to you! And now we’re living in the suburbs in Stockholm, we really need a car because otherwise you’re really cut off.”
The XC40 is Volvo’s smallest XC yet, so although spacious within, it’s built for the tight spaces that accompany city life. It also comes with Volvo’s standard City Safety feature, which activates the brakes automatically to avoid a collision if a pedestrian, cyclist, or large animal unexpectedly appears in the way.
But with its all-wheel drive, 246-hp turbo four-cylinder engine, and effortless steering, don’t discount the XC40 as an SUV that can take you and your family out of the city and on an adventure whenever you want to go off exploring.
The XC40 is available from April 2018.
You can choose from the full range of Volvo’s models, including the XC40, using Volvo Cars’ Diplomat and Expat schemes. Request a quote online and get a custom Volvo delivered to your next posting so you can drive in style from the moment you arrive.
This article was produced by The Local Client Studio and sponsored by Volvo Cars Diplomat Sales.