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Getting started with your international move

International moving involves a lot of planning and organisation. When faced with overseas moving, one can very easily become overwhelmed and not know exactly how to start planning the removal. Instead of panicking, there are some very simple steps that can be taken to avoid stress and to ensure that no detail of your move is left undone. From finding the right movers to packing your personal kit that will always remain beside you during the move, every tiny detail will get covered – as long as you stay organised and remember to use the available tools to the best advantage.

The very first thing to do when you are planning an international moving experience is to make out a moving checklist. These checklists will help you to stay on top of everything that needs to get done. Not only will it keep you focused and organised, it will also help you remember those small details that could otherwise be forgotten in the rush to prepare for your overseas moving experience. Even before calling up any movers, your checklist should be put together. If you are unable to write out a moving checklist by yourself, then you can always get an example of a good one online and then modify it to suit your needs.

The next thing you should do when planning an overseas move is to call up different movers to find the right company for your situation. Remember that you should never settle for the first company that you call. You should get quotes from a number of international moving companies so that you can compare prices and services. You will quickly note that while there are some really big discrepancies between some companies and the rest, they all even out in the end. International moving companies that tend of have lower prices will generally hit you up with hidden fees afterwards or charge for every accessorial service that you request.

Once you have found the right international moving company for your needs, it is then time to find out whether you need to apply for any particular documentation to enter the country of your ultimate destination. If you are moving for work purposes you will need a work permit and the proper visitor’s visa. If you do not apply for the visa well in advance or in the proper sequence, then you might find yourself in the unenviable situation of not being able to work in the country to which you are moving – something that can really set you back financially. If you are moving with your family including children, then you will have to find out what papers they need as well. You will also have to look into schooling for your children. Finding an international school might not be difficult, but it might cost a lot of money, so if the language of instruction is the same as your own, then you might consider public school options.

Language is another very serious consideration. If the country to which you are moving operates in a language different from your own, then you should definitely sign up for some basic language courses so that you are not completely out of your element when you first move down.

International moving can be a terrific experience – as long as it is properly planned.

Protecting your belongings during an international move

International moving has its own set of concerns that need to be addressed before your movers arrive. It is no secret that during transit, your goods will be exposed to a lot of elements that could potentially damage or harm them. Therefore, before your relocation has begun it is best to take stock of your belongings and prepare them for the move. Protecting your goods/belongings when moving can be done relatively easily – all it requires is a little bit of patience, elbow-grease and planning to get everything done on time. Here we have put together a short overview of the basic steps to take to protect all your belongings before any international move.

Proper packing
Now, there are two ways of going about packing for your international moving experience – you can do it yourself of have your movers do it for you. If you have hired an international moving supplier, then they will be adept at packing for such large moves. Generally it requires the wrapping of each individual item in shock-absorbing paper-pads before being placed in a box. These specially made paper pads have fibres that absorb the impact of jolts, thereby providing a high degree of protection to the items contained inside. These pads are used almost exclusively for overseas removals.

Appliance preparation
If you plan on taking your appliances with you, then you should have them all serviced before leaving. Allow a good six months before your relocation to have them looked over and tuned-up by a certified technician. After that you should clean them thoroughly to prevent mould and mildew build-up during transit. Read your owners manuals to find out the proper way to clean them. Remember that all of your moisture bearing appliances such as fridges and freezers will need adequate time to dry out properly before being packed for any international relocation.

Take pictures
Taking pictures of your belongings is a very smart way of protecting yourself in case of theft or damage. The pictures can also be used as proof of ownership in case something goes wrong in transit. Another up-side to taking pictures of all your belongings before packing the off, is that if you have items that need to be reassembled – you will have a visual of what they should look like for the crews that will be doing the reassembling later on.

Proper insurance
To ensure peace-of-mind when shipping your belongings when moving internationally, it is critically that you have more than adequate insurance coverage for your shipment. Do not trust that nothing will go wrong and the pray that nothing does – prepare for the worst case scenario by taking out insurance to cover loss, theft or damage. Should anything then go wrong, you will not regret it.

International moving can be an exhausting and tension-filled time in your life. However, if you plan properly and take the necessary precautions to avoid mishaps and problems then you will be able to look forward to your relocation with excitement. Making sure that your belongings are properly packed and secure is one of the best way to ensure this peace-of-mind.

London Removals

Removals in London seem straightforward with lists of firms offering their services – from a man with a van to multinational companies. The question is how to pick the right one for you.

First, the type of mover you choose should match what you want to move. It seems a simple concept, but you don’t want a specialist commercial remover to move your house or likewise, a domestic firm to move your business. If you have any special items to move like art, antiques, wine collections or fragile electronics, you need to know that the movers have the expertise to cope with the job.

Once you know what sort of firm you need for removals in London, you need to find some quotes. Choosing a local firm is generally a good idea and you will probably not find too much of a problem in sourcing some suitable references from friends or neighbors. Moving is stressful, so you need a professional company that can ease the problems for you, whether you are moving around the corner, across the city or even further.

Reputable movers will send an estimator to your home or office to explain the services his or her company provides and to narrow down what you need the movers to do for a detailed quote. When you receive the quote you should also have a service specification, which is a point-by-point list of the moving firm’s responsibilities on the big day, so you know who is doing what and how much each service costs. The estimator will have worked out the vehicle size you need, the number of moving men on the crew and any packing materials or special equipment needed. Check this document carefully, because if you miss out a key detail – like you are doing the packing and not the moving crew – then removals in London may not go quite so smoothly as expected.

However far you are moving, you should still consider insurance for your belongings. If the lorry is in an accident, you want to know you have adequate coverage for any damaged belongings, and cutting a few pounds on the premium could cost you more in the long run. For extra reassurance, check if the firm belongs to the British Association of Removers (BAR) or the National Guild of Removers and Storers, the largest trade bodies for independent removal businesses in the UK. Both have a code of conduct and complaints procedure that you can follow if you have a poor moving experience.

Approach more than just one firm for removals in London quotes. Standards of service and costs can vary widely and generally, the further you book in advance, the larger choice of moving firms you will have. A good moving firm will offer you extra services, like assistance with packing, a supply of packing materials and short or long-term storage if your move is going to take a few days or even a few months. Avoid firms that charge for the estimator to visit – they are probably living off the fees for their quotes rather than their moving services. Any reputable firm offering removals in London will give a free estimate and removals advice.

Choosing International movers

Choosing the best movers

International movers offer a vast range of services to match the budgets and needs of all sorts of household and business customers. This makes choosing a moving firm easier as more moving companies means greater customer choice and competitive pricing to avoid losing business to rivals.

Choosing your removal firm.
When you gather quotes and speak to international movers on the phone, try to cut down your choices by making a short list, asking some simple questions and having a look at the company web sites. From the web site, you should be able to see how long the company has been in business and where the international shipping destinations are. Most moving companies highlight the logos of any trade groups or associations to which they belong. Sometimes, the web sites have pictures of their crews and lorries that can help you figure out the condition of their vehicles and equipment, as well as the professional appearance of their staff.

Key questions.
Give them a call and ask some key questions:
· How long has the company been international movers?
· How many trips do they make to your destination each month?
· Can they provide recent references? Bear in mind that they are hardly going to give contact details of dissatisfied customers.

After your initial inquiry, the company should send out a surveyor or estimator to talk you through your move and the best way of approaching the task. A good company will offer you plenty of help by explaining the international shipping process and customs requirements, as well as discussing special needs like transporting large or heavy objects. You also need to know how long the move is likely to take, especially if sea transport is involved, and who the company has as agents at the destination.

Customer service is more important than price.
Picking international movers who are familiar with your destination and who have contacts to make the job easier is probably better than choosing just on price. You also need a firm with good customer service who respond to your queries quickly and informatively. Some long-distance international shipping can take many weeks and it’s vital your movers are people you can contact and rely on to deal with problems.

Get to know the key people in your move.
Try to meet the crew foreman who will handle your move. Moving companies can have slick marketing operations but how well your move goes on the day will be down to the attitude of the foreman and the crew. If the foreman is experienced and easy-going, then it’s likely the crew will be professional and relaxed so the move will not be so stressful for everyone involved. Most international movers will appoint a move coordinator, who tracks your shipment from country to country. If you have direct access to this person you will find that any hitches should be resolved quicker as well, so ask for their direct phone number or personal email address to keep handy in case of an emergency.

Moving checklist

Moving checklists are necessary to create when you are moving home or office, and following them will enable you to avoid many of the stresses that often accompany moving. Two checklists are best; one for the move and the other for notifying everyone who needs to know that you have a new address.

Packing up your life into boxes is already difficult enough. But remembering to coordinate water, gas, electricity, phone, broadband, the banks and what seems like a million other people without a list is a nightmare.

The Moving Checklist
This list helps you keep track of all the things you need to arrange for the moving day. Include points like getting moving quotes from removal firms, arranging packing materials and arranging new furniture or carpets for delivery to your next home or business premise. Keep the list at the front of a transparent, plastic folder and keep important documents, contact details and receipts in the same folder. Other important additions to your list should include what to do with children and pets on the moving day. Do not forget to arrange all the details with the moving firm and ring a couple of days before to make sure they have the right time, date and addresses in their diary.

The Notifying Checklist
Keep this in a folder just like the moving checklist. This one deals with sending out change of address cards to friends, relatives, the local council and utility firms. If you are a business, don’t forget to tell customers and suppliers well in advance of the move that your phone numbers and address are changing. What you must do is tell everyone the date you can be found at the new address. If you rent or own your own house, this is a great time to remove yourself from all those junk mail lists. Set up mail forwarding by filling in a form at your Post Office and then only tell the people you want to receive mail from that you have moved. Make it a priority to tell certain organizations about your move such as banks, credit card companies, insurance companies (you could invalidate your car insurance if you don’t tell them you have moved house), the driving licence authority, your doctor and your old and new town or city halls.

Moving checklist and notifying list are both great for making sure your move goes well and you do not end up facing a disaster, like the removal men failing to turn up or no electricity at the new address. Working to a checklist is all well and good, but if you don’t start making the lists about a month or six weeks before you move, you may find you do not have enough time to cover all the points. Ask your removal company if they include new address labels and moving checklists as part of their service. Many offer these free to customers. Another good idea is that if you have a partner, one of you should take responsibility for the list so no important task is left off your moving checklist because you both left it for the other to do.

The ins-n-outs of the moving industry

International moving is a growing business sector that accounts for billions of dollars. It is an industry that is being fueled by the boom in foreign relocation that is a result of the opening up of the global marketplace. It is not at all uncommon for engineers from India to find jobs in the United States or for North American nationals to find work in China, Japan or any other of the Asian countries. The result is that there is now a real demand for moving companies who are well versed in international transport.

International movers are a lot more sophisticated now than they ever were and offer their clients a better deal when it comes to turn-key services. Instead of clients having to find their own customs brokers, packing companies and intermediate transport services, today’s moving companies offer all of these important services under one, very simple to use umbrella.

Anyone experienced with international moving knows that you can never book your move too early. It will take you time to find your shortlist and to then whittle it down to those companies offering you the best value for your money. It is always wise to compare and contrast the services being offered to you versus the price you are paying. While some international movers will give you a global total for all of the services they offer, the majority of moving companies break down their related services and charge for each additional item you need done. So, it is always good to find just what is included in the initial estimates that you are given by your transport suppliers.

Another thing to remember is that while the quotes you receive either over the phone or online will be close to what you will have to pay, but unless you get an agent from each company to come to your house and see what needs to be moved, you will not get a really accurate estimate for budgeting purposes. If you can get an agent to come and give you an estimate and they agree to a binding estimate, then take it. A binding estimate means that the company will not be able to charge you more for the move regardless of any extra charges incurred along the way. It also means that if the move costs less, you will not be entitled to a discount – but it is very rare for a move to cost less than the estimate. In fact, generally you should add another 20 percent to the cost you are quoted.

International moving rates, services and companies have evolved with their clients so that now most companies offer simplified rates, charges and billing. In the past, getting through the myriad different costs itself was tough to navigate. Now, moving companies make it simple for you to understand for what you are paying. Unless you have unusually large, bulky or valuable belongings in your shipment, you will generally end up paying their standard shipping rates.

Moving Estimate

Getting a moving estimate when you are planning an international move is a key factor to ensuring that you get as accurate a portrait of what you can expect to pay as possible. It is also vital that once you have a moving quote that you compare companies in order to see what is being offered and whether the moving prices are in line with the competition.

Planning an international move can either be an exciting or stress-filled affair. What you experience will depend entirely on how you approach the moving process. If you are organized and you do your research you can rest assured that your move will go smoothly. By making checklists, getting companies to give you a moving estimate and comparing companies and quotes you will be able to choose the international moving company right for your needs.

Once you have managed to get a moving quote from several transport companies, the next step will be to compare the offerings. While your natural inclination will be to simply choose the lowest quote on your list, it is imperative that you fight that temptation and actually find out what each quote includes. The lowest moving prices on your list might be very basic estimates for just the transportation part of your relocation. In order to have your belongings transported from your house to the carrier might be extra. Packing your belongings might also be extra. It is almost a given that warehousing and in-transit transportation will not be included either. Whereas the higher moving prices on your list might actually includes many of these services – that it why it is so important to compare companies and quotes before choosing an international movingcompany.

The other thing you should think about after receiving a moving estimate is to factor in whether the estimate was given to you by a representative who came to your home and evaluated your move on-site or if the moving quote was given on-line or by telephone. The most accurate moving estimates you will ever get from an international moving company will be given to you by a business that sends an agent estimator to your home. Otherwise you can easily look to having even the highest quote on your list increased by at least 20 percent, if not more.

The moving quote you receive is generally a rough estimate of what you can expect to pay. However, you should also factor in such accessorial services as packing, insurance, storage and in-transit transportation. While some people might try to save some money by deciding to pack their belongings themselves, this is never recommended. Most insurance companies will refuse to insure shipments that are not packed by the carrier. In fact, if you pack your own shipment, your carrier will be automatically absolved of any damages that might occur during transport, since you might not have packed something up to the carrier’s standards.

Naturally an international move will cost a lot of money in logistics but trying to skimp and save when it comes to your moving company is not a good idea. Instead, get each company on your short list to give you a moving estimate and then compare the prices and companies to get a good idea of what you should budget for your move.

If you need international moving estimates, we will be happy to help. Just fill out our no-hassle form and receive up to five, free quotes from overseas moving companies in your area.

Moving Quotes

Moving quotes are the most important things to get when you decide to move overseas. An international move is fraught with all kinds of obstacles and organizational hazards, but if you plan properly, then your move can go off without a hitch.

The first thing you will realize after you have received several moving quotes is that different transportation companies have very varying rates for their services. Moving costs can alter dramatically from one international moving company to the next. The same holds true with moving rates. Each moving company will give you a different estimate for how much they want to help you get your belongings from point A to point B. Ensuring that you find the company best suited to your needs and budget is the only way to give yourself peace-of-mind.

Getting moving quotes can be as simple as filling out our one easy-form and receiving up to five, free quotes from reliable and established transportation companies or you can go the more time-consuming and tedious route of calling up every transportation company listed in your local directory and trying to get quotes directly from them and then whittling that list down to your shortlist. Regardless of the method you choose for obtaining your moving rates, you will quickly notice the disparity between services and costs. Although it might be very appealing to simply choose the company with the most economical moving estimate, this is never a good idea. Most of the time such companies deliberate use a low moving cost to lure unsuspecting clients before slapping them with grossly over-priced related services that can range from packing to warehousing your shipment while in transit. Reading the fine print and finding out exactly what is covered by the moving rates you have been quoted is crucial to not blowing your moving budget.

Once you have found the company with which you wish to do business, if possible, get the them to send over a representative to give you a binding estimate. A binding estimate is the most accurate moving cost you will ever get because the total you have been given cannot change once the contract has been signed. If the move ends up costing more, the international moving company is not allowed to charge you extra and they must swallow the additional costs. However, conversely, should the move actually end up costing less, then you cannot request a refund for the difference. It is for this reason that many moving companies will not give binding estimates. So, if you can secure one – take it immediately! Regardless of that, if you cannot get a binding estimate, at least get an in-house estimate because it will be far more accurate than an estimate you get over the telephone.

Planning your international move should be fun and joyful. While there will always be an element of uncertainty and anxiety about your new life, you should never have such feelings about the international moving company you have chosen. As long as you get your moving quotes and you do your follow-up thoroughly, you can definitely count on starting over on the right foot.

International Transport

International transport wraps the world in a complex web of road, rail, sea and air routes. For an amateur, deciding how to relocate your possessions from one country to another can be a logistics nightmare. Miss one vital connection by a few minutes, and your whole travel plan unravels. That’s why you need to find an international moving company with expertise and contacts to ship your belongings by the most cost-effective and efficient methods available.

Three factors determine your move:
· Speed
· Distance
· Cost

Speed and cost really determine your international transport budget – your destination is fixed – but how you get your belongings there and how long the trip takes is variable. How your belongings finally arrive at their destination depends on your attitude towards all three.

Flying is the quickest way of reaching most places on the globe, but air freight is expensive. Next come road and rail; but even if you are moving overseas you will certainly use one or both methods to get your belongings to the airport or docks. That leads us to the last international transport option – a ship. Ships are slow and sedate but get there in the end and are often the cheapest mode of transport. If you are moving something large overseas, like shipping a car, ocean is really the preferable option over air. In auto-transport, the car is secured inside a wooden frame in the container and the rest of the container can be packed with other belongings. The container is also easily moved by road or rail at the beginning and end of the journey. Flying a car overseas would be prohibitively expensive unless the car was a valuable classic. Cars can also go overseas on a roll-on/roll-off (RORO) ocean-going ferry, similar to the ships that transport new vehicles from Japan to the US and Europe. Only specialist international transport companies have the resources, knowledge and contacts to help with such a move.

In the international moving trade, most people in the know say that understanding the customs importation rules in different countries and making the right contacts with shipping agents takes about 10 years. When you are comparing free quotes for a good international shipping firm, also check out they have full-cover insurance and an agent with an international bond to make sure your valuables are covered against loss, accident or damage. A good moving firm will have several different options for moving your belongings – depending on how quickly you need to move, what you are moving and how far you are going. If a company cannot offer different options for shipping your belongings, and instead just offers a single solution, consider carefully whether the arrangement best suits them rather than you. You should also ask for references. Any reputable firm will be proud to offer testimonials from satisfied customers. And they should also have membership certificates from relevant national and international trade bodies that give reassurance about the firm and their customer service.

Moving between countries and taking different modes of international transport is not easy to coordinate and you must make sure the firm you use is up to the job.

International Removals

International removals have three main factors that determine speed and efficiency – urgency, destination and budget. Basically this means the quicker and further you want to go, the more the move will cost. If you want to cut the cost you have to look at where else you can save. The distance is a constant, making the only other variable urgency. So if you want to save money, you might have to be patient while your belongings slowly cross the world.

How do moving companies ship your belongings to other countries?
That brings us back to destination and urgency. Air freight is the fastest way to ship something from A to B, but the costs are significantly higher than other transport methods. If your move is transcontinental, road and rail are other options that are slower but cheaper. Intercontinental removals can go by sea; shipping this way is cost-effective but slow. Most likely,international removals will involve a combination of two or three transit methods, with road at each end of the move and geography and urgency deciding the other methods in between.

How do I choose a moving company?
Picking a company with the right credentials to take care of your precious belongings and move them hundreds or thousands of miles means sitting down and comparing several free quotes. The points you need to consider are:
· Ensure the removal company will send an estimator out (at no charge) to look at your belongings and assess how much space they will take in a container.
· Check that the firm is registered with trade bodies and federations, or has an association with a professional bonded agent who is qualified to handle a move to your destination and has full-cover insurance.
· If your belongings are stopping over at an international removals company warehouse, make sure the storage area is clean, dry and secure.
· Few moving companies with less than 10 years of international experience have the expertise and contacts to make an international move go well. Ask how long the firm has been in business.

Once you have met their estimator, each house mover will send you a specification for the move that will describe each stage in detail. Here, you can compare costs for each leg of the journey and they should not vary much since space costs more or less the same for every firm, regardless of the mode of transport. The difference in costs comes with how much they charge for their administration, packing, storage and their own transport services. If you have several free moving quotes and one is wildly expensive and one suspiciously cheap, then consider one of the middle-ground quotes, because they are more likely to be accurate, realistic and cost-effective.

If the move is outside your budget after all the estimators have visited, then the only other choice you have is taking less with you, which is a good chance to clear out and get rid of all the stuff you have cluttering up the home but don’t really need. Also consider the cost of international removals against the cost of replacement at the other end. For instance, many electrical goods are designed for the country where they are sold because power supplies vary in other places. So it might be logical and cost-efficient for you to purchase these items in your new home country.



Compare Free Quotes
In The International Moving Industry
from up to 5 professional companies
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