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Moving Overseas Doesn't Need to be Scary

There is no question that moving overseas can be a daunting thought. It, however, does not need to be if the movers and your forward planning are geared toward the task as a move across the country rather than across the world. The only differing tasks that need to be added to the moving check list are mode, cultural and governmental. The governmental moving addition will be tended to by the moving company and the cultural will move along as it will.

Air transport

If air transport is a consideration than be ready for increased cost. Moving your belongings by air will cost substantially more but will get your items there quickly. If this mode of moving is used try to think about leaving heavier items in personal self storage until you decide if you really need them or, try to create a successful garage sale, give them to friends or just trash them.

With a currently weak dollar doing some comparison shopping at your final destination could help in deciding on whether the idea of moving some items by ship makes sense. Also remember that you may want to ship your car by sea so there may be room in a 20' container specs for other heavier items. In other words think aie and sea combinations. It's a bit more to think about but could cost less in the long run.

Sea shipping

Moving by sea is the most like shipping across the US. There are two ways this may be accomplished but they both involve a container resembling a truck. The first involves a 20' or 40' container showing up at your door just like a regular moving truck. Each item is individually wrapped in a paper called Kympac to protect the item. The container is then tightly packed at your home and off it goes to the shipyard. The second option lands your belongings in a warehouse where the same process occurs. This way of doing things usually involves the addition of a car or other large item that requires extra connections to the container. This mode of moving is slower but less expensive.


For the most part, the paperwork you will need to get your belongings through customs should be handled by the moving company or freight forwarder. Each country tends to have a few quirky little items that need to be followed, but if the moving companies and certified moving consultant (if you choose to hire one) involved have worked in the particular country in question they should have a handle on the needed documentation. Your only task is to make sure the moving companies involved do not forget about you.


Getting your belongings to your foreign destination sounds allot more difficult than it really is. Moving everything and anything has gotten routine in our mobile society. In other cultures, however, things work at a little slower pace and scale is a bit different. The sofa that easily fit in your US living room may not make it through the front door of your new place so think in those terms when packing. Lastly, slow down and relax. Do not expect everything to happen yesterday. If you get yourself into this way of thinking you'll be happier in the long run.