Moving overseas is a big change in your life. It is not just the move in itself but also the added stress of having to complete things in one place and start all over in the new place, leaving behind friends and family or things and places that have become familiar and learning to adapt to a new environment.
I am about to complete my third overseas move and am going to share some of my experiences with you.
As soon as you know you’re moving, start to plan. Make a list of all the things that come to your mind in regards to your move. The moving company will also give you a list of things to think of and complete, so as soon as you have the first company over for a quote you’ll get some more ideas.
Get a diary or wall planer and write in the date you need to be at your new place, when you will have to move out, pack the container, rent temporary accommodation, book the flight, transfer etc. The more you get down on paper, the less you need to worry and keep yourself awake at night.
Organise moving company
If you are moving as job relocation, your business usually helps organise many of these things. If however you do it by yourself, you need to first think about how much you want to take with you and who do you want to use as your shipping company. You can find the names of those companies either by searching on Google or by paying attention to the overseas shipping company trucks that you might see around your area.
Get at least three quotes. This will first of all give you a bit of experience of what they might ask and what they need to know. Prior to your first quote make a list of things you want to take and things you want to leave behind or sell. Think about whether you want to pack certain things by yourself or whether you prefer them to pack everything. Check with them whether they insure things that have been packed by you.
Whether you choose to pack or let the moving company pack, make sure that you start to de-clutter about 4-6 months prior to the move. Go through your cupboards and throw out those things you haven’t been using for a long time. Plan to sell furniture that you don’t want to take. Check for car boot sales in your area, where to bring stuff to recycle or organise a garage sale.
Packing your personal effects
Moving overseas does not mean just packing things, putting them into a truck and unpacking the same day in your new house or apartment. Packing for a container to be shipped needs a bit more preparation.
If you pack certain things on your own, you want to start ordering some moving boxes at least 3 months before the move and start packing things you are sure not to be using in the interim. Remember to leave out the things you need first at the other end and make sure they will fit in your suitcase.
Make sure you let your friends know ahead of time that you’re moving. You might want to organise a farewell party and / or say good-bye to people in smaller groups. Take time to plan those things into your diary.
Some of your friends might also be keen at giving you a hand and helping you pack. Make sure to call in those favours!
All in all I found it’s all about planning ahead and starting early.
Good luck with your move!