When you move to another town or state, it can be a stressful experience. But consider the headache of moving to another country. Not only will you have to adjust to a whole new culture and way of life, you also need to obtain the proper visa, find housing and somehow ship all of your possessions abroad.
If you plan on traveling and need to ship your belongings abroad, here are five helpful tips to make the process much easier.
1. Hire a Professional Shipping Company
Unless you are shipping very small items, it’s critical to hire an expert shipping and freighting company with international shipping experience. Your larger possessions will be traveling by ship, and are usually loaded into the cargo ship via crane.
There is always the chance that items may be dropped from high heights or damaged during transit. If you employ a professional company, you can rest easy knowing that they will package your items properly to protect them from harm. Also be sure to acquire shipping insurance in case something does happen.
2. Get Organized
To save yourself a lot of time and trouble, get organized well before the big move. If you are putting items into storage and shipping the rest overseas, clearly separate objects into different piles so you know exactly what you intend on taking with you.
Make a separate pile for important documents and items that shouldn’t be shipped, including your passport, visa, list of emergency contacts, and medicine. Irreplaceable belongings, such as expensive jewelry and family heirlooms, should also be carried with you.
3. Find Out About Restrictions
Contact the country you’re traveling to and find out about any restrictions on products you want to bring. Every country is different. Some will tax you heavily on very specific items. Argentina, for example, does not allow electronics and charges an 80% tax on your car’s worth.
4. Dealing with Customs
In some countries, getting your possessions through customs can be a nightmare. Some nations are lenient while others will investigate an expat’s every belonging. If you don’t speak the language, hire a translator to assist you with any paperwork you might have to fill out. If you use a knowledgeable shipping or freighting company, they will know you will be dealing with a customs agent and will package your items accordingly.
5. Time of Transit
When shipping items internationally when you move abroad, know the exact date you want the products to be delivered and plan your shipment diligently. For some countries, overnight shipping may not be available at all.
It’s important to have everything in order and a plan in place when shipping your belongings overseas.