International removals made easy for nervous expats

International removals made easy for nervous expats

International removals made easy for nervous expats

Moving house is rated as one of life’s worst experiences, especially if it’s across continents rather than to the next town!

Experienced expats who’ve moved many times know the secret is to make and stick to a detailed plan covering the entire process from start to finish. For everyone else, it’s the perfect nightmare as it includes the threat of losing treasured possessions as well as everyday items you’ll find difficult to replace. In this online day and age, it’s easy to check out diverse international removal companies, thus avoiding the cowboy outfits and selecting a company which suites your requirements and finances. Obviously, quotes will vary between companies, but it’s perhaps not a great idea to choose the cheapest and hope for the best.

Before you make your informed choice, you’ll need to see a cost breakdown rather than an estimate of the final charge. It’s not just the cost of shipping your home contents, it’s also the vagaries of customs duties on arrival, handling fees at terminals and the cost of carriage from the port to your new home. It won’t be possible for your chosen carrier to give you an exact arrival date, but a close ballpark date is normally good enough.

Choosing a shipper with fully comprehensive insurance is a must, as the mandatory marine insurance won’t help you if the fine print doesn’t cover the descriptions and value of your belongings. It’s also necessary to itemise any valuable belongings such as antique furniture or art along with their true worth, thus ensuring they’re covered for all eventualities.

Another important aspect of choosing a shipper is door to door service as against simply port-to port, which leaves you to pick up your goods and negotiate local customs and excise as well as finding an onward carrier. Obviously, door-to-door is more expensive, but for most expats it’s worth every extra cent. If you’ve fragile valuables, using a shipper which provides professional packing services is essential as well as saving you the unenviable task of listing everything on an itemised shipping manifest as you pack it.

As regards air freight, it’s the most expensive and fastest, with container ship transportation far slower and far less costly. It’s your choice, but most international removal companies use freight shipping. A reasonably new aid for nervous expat relocaters is online tracking of your possessions, as it not only confirms the ship hasn’t sunk or been pirated, it also gives you an exact idea of its arrival date, thus avoiding expensive daily phone calls to your shipper pleading for updates.

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