As exciting as it may seem, moving internationally is never easy. From arranging packing supplies and divesting yourself of unwanted items to sorting out visa issues, there’s a long to-do list. Moving abroad takes more effort, planning and preparation than simply moving towns or cities. Here are a few simple tips to help save money and sanity.
9 Smart Ideas When Planning to Move Abroad
You’ve decided to move abroad, and you’re nervous and excited. Moving overseas is way different than vacationing overseas, and there are many legal and technical issues to sort out. Even the slightest mistake can result in unnecessary stress and hassle. That’s why we’ve compiled nine tips to make things smoother and reduce stress.
Hire an International Shipping Company
International moving is not the time to challenge yourself. There’s a lot at stake and moving can be costly if you’re not fully prepared. You’re better off hiring a reputable and trustworthy international shipping company. Services, offers and pricing vary between companies, so be sure to interview at least three candidates and compare quotes.
Lighten the Load
Before you hire a moving company, get rid of unnecessary items. Remember, the cost of your move is largely dependent on the volume and weight of your belongings. So, the more you transport, the more you pay. International relocation is expensive, so you’ll want to save money where you can. Sell your unwanted items online or organize a garage sale. The money you make will help cover moving expenses. If you don’t have the time or energy to do that, simply give it away. You may have to make some tough decisions, but you’ll be glad you did.
Don’t wait until the last minute to book your move. Be sure to research and schedule all travel details months in advance. From airplane tickets to visas, these travel arrangements are vital to ensure your move is smooth and successful.
Also, remember to cancel all insurance policies, as they likely won’t be valid once you’ve relocated.
To keep yourself from forgetting what you need to do and when, consider scheduling all moving-related tasks on your smartphone or tablet.
Get Your Passport and Visa
This is vital before relocating to a foreign country. Some countries require that you have up to 12 months remaining on your passport before you enter. So, research your destination country to make sure you’re fully aware of what will be asked of you upon arrival, and renew your passport well beforehand.
As for your visa, it is arguably the longest and most complicated part of the process. Be ready to fill out a lengthy application, which will probably ask for personal details. These include how you plan to fund your stay and your travel or housing arrangements. The application and approval process can take months, so start everything three to four months before your scheduled departure.
Purchase Moving Insurance
Whether or not you have a lot of valuables, make sure you know what your insurance covers and what it doesn’t. When hiring an international shipping company, evaluate your valuation coverage options carefully. While it’s mandatory for moving companies to provide coverage against damage or loss in transit, their insurance will likely cover only a small amount. That’s why it’s important to ask about the type of insurance they offer and the total coverage before finalizing any deal. Extra insurance is advisable to cover potential losses.
Never Stuff Your Car
Since auto shipping companies typically charge based on your vehicle’s weight, you have to pay more if you stuff it with valuables or luggage. Plus, your car will remain unlocked while in transit (to accommodate multiple inspections), so there’s the possibility your belongings will be stolen. Most international car shipping companies won’t insure your vehicle’s interior or any goods left in them during transit. This includes the glove compartment, trunk, and any other latched section that could open accidentally and damage your belongings. You are completely responsible for any damage or loss of commodities left in your car during transport.
Consider Auto Safety Standards
Every country has its own vehicle safety standards, and your car must meet them to be allowed in. Remember, if your car fails to do so, you may be forbidden from driving there. Do your research and get your car serviced accordingly.
Keep All Documents in Place
For secure overseas shipment of your automobile, your shipper will ask you to submit photocopies of certain documents. These include your vehicle registration, insurance certificate and credentials proving ownership. Keep these papers ready to avoid any problem, delay or inconvenience.
Carry an All-in-One Plug Adapter
Different countries have different power plugs. So, before using your coffee maker or hair straightener in your overseas residence, check what voltage your devices accept. Carry an all-in-one plug adapter that will support sockets/plugs of any type.
Whether you’re moving internationally or domestically, relocating your home comes with a lot of risks, stress, headaches and expense. While these problems are pretty much inevitable, try not to let them dampen your excitement for this new adventure.