MOVING MINUS 90 DAYS
Begin consular procedures
- Begin consular procedures, request
information on how to obtain your visa, residency and work permits
before you leave. These procedures take time, sometimes many weeks
- even months. Begin as soon as possible.
- Check the documents required for the
exportation of your goods from your country of origin and for their
importation into the country of destination. Your status may enable
you to benefit from certain advantages, such as the obtaining of an
" EXEMPTION ". This will avoid you having to pay duties and taxes
upon importing your used personal effects.
- Consider renewing your passport and
those of all accompanying family members. These should be valid, at
least, until your next return to your country.
- Establish international driving licenses.
Depending on the country of destination, you might have to obtain
a local driving license by going to a local driving school and eventually
passing a practical /theoretical driving test. In all cases, keep
your actual driving license with you. It may be requested by the local
authorities in order for you to avoid having to pass a test.
Educating yourself about your country of destination
- Start informing yourself about your
country of destination by surfing on the net or by obtaining guides,
brochures, video tapes and CD ROMs, to be read and watched by all
family members. Some expatriate sites will guide you in your host
country or in your native land.
- Check the electrical supply available
at your country of destination. Ask your local electrician if your
electrical appliances will function with the use of adapters and/or
transformers. TV systems will need be compatible too, don't forget
to check this. point.
- Familiarize yourself with the currency
in your destination country, some currency converters are available
- Assess your abilities in the host
country language. Maybe you require some language tuition.
- A Cross-Cultural program will be useful
for you and your family. There are seminars available to prepare for
international relocation, these are designed to help expatriates communicate
and do business successfully.
Searching your new home
- Try to obtain information about real estate
market in your destination country. Visit web sites and online newspapers
to have an idea of the prices in the country. Sometimes, there are
expatriate's neighborhoods (not far from international schools); a
good realtor will provide you with this information. If the destination
country is not too far from your own, a home search trip should be
- In some countries appliances are included;
in others (particularly Anglo-Saxon countries), is not easy to find
a house without furniture. The type of accommodation on offer in the
country will influence the final cost (moving furniture, just personal
goods or storage for several years, etc.)
- Relocation services exist to help
expatriates in moving and settling. These services are sometimes paid
for by the employer, because expatriates will be expected to become
productive as soon as possible after their arrival with no concerns
about housing. The relocation companies will help you with the inventory
of fixtures before moving-in, with all of your contracts (gas, electricity,
water and telephone companies or insurance, etc.), they may help you
to discover your new country (city tour, open a bank account, etc.)
even ask for a visa for you.
- In finding your ideal home, you should also consider the
right home lenders that would cater to your needs. It is not easy as some would burden
you with high interest rates that you cannot manage to fit in with your budget. It is
also important to look into some terms like heloc
or home quality line of credit wherein
you use your existing properties which can be used as leverage for the next homeloan
you will have.
Now is time for you to search a school
for your children. Some international organizations gather international
schools and give the accreditation of the curriculum and educational
levels compared to schools in the county of origin.
- Search health information available
about your country of destination, via internet you will find the
latest information for travellers, with health information on specific
destinations. Check for hospitals and how healthcare is structured
in your new country.
- Take out an international health insurance
able to cover you and your family in any case (even in short term
missions of several days).
- Don't forget vaccination requirements for
travelers of all ages. Some vaccines must be given several weeks before
leave, ask your GP to schedule this.
- Ask your GP, dentist, ophthalmologist
and any other specialists to renew all your prescriptions so that
you can continue your treatment abroad. Do not forget to ask for your
MOVING MINUS 60
- Begin your list of all household goods and
personal effects being moved. Contact at least two moving companies.
Arrange for an appointment for a pre-move survey.
- A pre-move survey is the key a successful
move. During this visit don't hesitate to ask about the period of
time required for delivery, the mean of transportation that should
be used. Explanation of all the human and technical issues concerning
packing and unpacking, anticipation of additional services (external
elevator, difficult access, disassembling and reassembling of furniture,
packing of heavy / large items, etc.) Is the reassembling of the furniture
included in the quote? Is an additional insurance coverage necessary?
What documents have to be submitted to the customs? if your goods
share the same container this will be cheaper or will direct transport
- If you have a pet, ask if they can
transport it and be in charge of customs regulations (you are responsible
for medical documents and vaccines)
- Compare quotes (price, services, volumes/weight
estimate). Following these procedures, choose your mover and determine
the date for Packing operations.
- Make Airline or Rail reservations.
Be sure to keep your tickets after arrival. These could eventually
be requested at your destination for Customs Clearance purpose.
- Make a car rental reservation if necessary.
- Make plans for temporary accommodation for
the post - Packing period on Relocation index (section Apartments).
The same should be done at destination, whilst you are waiting for
the final delivery of your goods.
Change of address
- Inform your local authorities (Condominium
Association etc.) of your forthcoming departure.
- Inform the various organizations of your
forthcoming change of address. Transfer your subscriptions or cancel
- Where possible, it's recommended to
shut off water, light and telephone 24 hours after moving date, in
case moving day falls behind schedule. Make the same arrangement at
your destination, everything must be installed 24 hours before you
move in, this will avoid any unpleasant surprises.
MOVING MINUS 30
- Have your house linen, curtains and
- Sort out your goods and disregard
those you will not be using anymore.
- Contact all benevolent associations
to whom you've decided to donate all effects that you will not be
moving. Set up an appointment so that these can be picked up from
MOVING MINUS 7 DAYS
- Clean your bicycles, garden tools
and furniture and empty the tanks of all combustible items.
- Now is the time to sell or donate
all unwanted effects. Do not forget to return things that you had
borrowed from family or friends.
Give all your new contact details
- Give your new contact details to your circle
of family and friends. Make sure that the moving company have both
your addresses; at origin and destination. Any intermediate contact
numbers should also be transmitted (parents, hotel, etc.).
- Reconfirm your moving dates to your moving
company. Make sure you have their addresses at origin and destination.
- Arrange to have your children looked after
during the packing and loading operations.
- Add adapters and/or transformers to
your shipment. These are necessary for the operation of your electrical
appliances at destination. You will also be able to purchase them
before the delivery of your effects in your new residence.
- Begin your "Valued Inventory List"
of all household goods and personal effects being moved. Fill the
inventory in while being as precise as possible.
MOVING MINUS 2 DAYS
- Prepare your luggage: consider season and
likely weather conditions in the destination country on your arrival.
- Use destination stickers to sort out
your goods by destination or method of transportation (by sea, by
air, etc), if more than one destination (storage, cottage, etc) or
- Start dismantling your furniture,
removing curtains, pictures and light fixtures, unless the moving
company is contracted to provide this service.
- Clean and let dry all kitchen appliances
to avoid the appearance of mildew during shipping. Disconnect all
electrical and cover naked wires where necessary.
- If at all possible, reserve a parking
spot for the removal van or container as close as possible to your
residence. Loading operations will become much easier.
- Put aside a few soft drinks and some
food for the packing crew in order to optimize their working conditions.
MOVING DAY !
- Put away all important documents and
articles of value (passports, airline tickets, cash, travel addresses,
destination country contact details, portable computers, phones, keys
etc.) that you wish to carry personally. This will avoid having them
- Upon the arrival of the packing crew,
you should go round your home with the crew foreman and point out
all that needs to be packed. If you have any special requests; i.e.
packing of your beds last, now is the right time to mention them.
- Before the truck or container departure,
you should go round your home with crew foreman if some goods were
There... you are now ready to move !