Organizing and packing for an international move is a big job, especially if you have children. Following are some tips on packing and making the move.
1. Deciding what to ship, when to ship, and which shipping company to use.
– What to ship.
Ship everything you wish to have at the new destination that you can live without for the duration of shipment.
- Furniture – Consider each piece of furniture; if there is something not worth the value of shipping (monetarily or sentimentally) keep that to furnish your house from time of shipment until you move out. Everything else will be shipped.
- Clothing – Ship all off-season clothing (consider the season for the new location, too.) Also, if you have large quantities of in-season clothing which you wish to bring to the new home, some must be shipped.
- Other household items -Most will be shipped (kitchenware, decorations, etc.) Keep just the items you will still need after the container is packed (items for cooking, cleaning, a few towels and blankets, etc.) These will then go into suitcases, or will be sold or discarded in the last days.
- Miscellaneous items – Children may have some very special blanket, toy, or other item which may help with the final days before moving, and with traveling; all other toys and games should be shipped. Our Christmas box and many favorite books always make the move with us.
– When to ship, and with which company.
Research shipping companies well ahead of time. If possible, plan shipment dates to coordinate with your travel time; you will be without the items in the container as it is en-route. Also check the company reputation so you can feel confident your container will arrive as scheduled.
2. What to pack into suitcases.
- Find out how much luggage you will be allowed to take on your flight; many airlines only allow one suitcase per paid passenger.
- Items for suitcases: All remaining items which you want at the new location. Be prepared to leave some items behind.
- Items for carry-on luggage: All important papers, passports, jewelry, etc. Suitcases can get lost or break open; it is best to keep important items in carry-on luggage. Also, each person should have a change of clothes, a snack (no drinks), and something for entertainment. Most airlines provide some entertainment, but you might want a book or game along, as well.
3. Remaining items will be put into storage or discarded.
- If you are moving your entire household to the new location, you will not likely be storing anything; in this case everything which is left after suitcases are filled will have to be discarded. You will wish to plan ahead so you know what goes where the very last days (items to be sold, given away, or thrown away.)
- If this is a temporary move, you might be putting some items into storage. You might want to slowly move items to storage as you pack, with one bigger move at the end.
- Realize that no matter how organized you are, the last days and hours will be very busy.