Moving internationally can be an exciting time for you and your family. The challenge of adopting a new culture, meeting new people and exploring new countries make for an enjoyable experience.
What you don’t need is the distraction of problems arising from the international moving of your personal effects. It is important to undertake some planning and research to ensure you understand the requirements involved and an appreciation of the laws and regulations governing the importation of your personal and household goods into your new country.
Allied Pickfords can offer you a variety of international moving and relocation solutions to suit your individual needs:
The vast majority of household and personal effects moved internationally are forwarded by surface aboard modern containerised vessels. Generally, this is the most economical way of forwarding goods. In international moving, there are several options available governing the level of service provided, the length of time taken for the journey and the reliability and frequency of the ocean carrier.
Some carriers provide a direct service, where a consignment remains on the same vessel for the entire journey from the original port through to the destination port. Other carriers provide services that tranship the cargo en route i.e. the cargo is moved from one vessel to another at some stage during the journey.
As a general rule, a direct sailing will be more expensive than a transhipment service, however this cost factor is normally offset by the transit time as transhipments are usually longer at sea. A transhipment service also incorporates an additional risk in that the cargo is transhipped in a foreign port, where there is little direct control from either the origin or the destination country.
In addition, there are various international relocation services available in handling your goods and we are pleased to provide a guide to these:
Sole use container
This category ensures that the container carries only your goods and under normal circumstances, these can be loaded directly into the container, and the container sealed, at your residence. This leaves the container ready for delivery direct to the departure wharf without the need for any further handling of your goods in the origin country. As a rule, because the entire container is utilised, this is the most economical method of shipment. It also generally provides the fastest transit times, as there are no delays in waiting for other freight to fill the container.
Less than Container Load (LCL) Consignments
This method is used when there is insufficient cargo to justify the use of an entire container. Shipping Companies and Freight Consolidators provide this service by consolidating freight from different shippers, to a common destination, into container loads. When shipping via LCL, the goods are required to be crated to ensure their protection during transit. This is necessary, as there is no guarantee as to what other cargo may be consolidated with your household effects in the container. Unfortunately, due to the necessity of crating the goods, and the higher freight cost involved, this can be an expensive means of forwarding goods overseas.
Shared use container
This is an alternate service provided by Allied Pickfords, whereby we combine several household and personal effects shipments into containers destined to common destinations. This allows us to pass the freight savings on to you and because only household and personal effects are loaded into our Groupage, there is not the necessity to crate the goods prior to shipment. This of course alleviates the additional cost involved in crating the consignment. Whilst this is an economical alternative to LCL, longer transit times may be experienced whilst awaiting the receipt of other consignments needed to complete the loading of the container prior to dispatch.
The option of moving some or all of your goods via air is worth considering. Many people elect to take a "survival" shipment of their personal belongings via airfreight as it generally allows quick arrival of the basic items required to commence life in your new country.
Whilst as a general rule airfreight is more expensive than surface freight there are situations where even entire households may prove to be more economical to be forwarded via air. As with the services offered by surface carriers, there are similar options available with air carriers, with consolidated and transhipment services being widely available.
Every individual household will have their own requirements and we would be happy to discuss the most suitable options available to you in regards to your own specific needs.
If you are moving on a temporary posting, Allied Pickfords can provide secure long-term storage in your origin country for those household items that are not required in your new location. In addition, we can provide secure storage facilities in your destination country should that be required whilst you source appropriate accommodation.
Since every country has their own laws and customs, it's a good idea to study the etiquette and customs of your destination country before your relocation. This should assist you in avoiding any inadvertent problems after you have arrived in your new country. The Embassy or Consulate of your country of destination is a good starting point for this information. Allied Pickfords is able to provide a snapshot view of a number of countries through our "Moving To" series of brochures and in addition, we are able to provide our customers with a comprehensive country profile that is available for over 80 individual countries.
Many countries apply stringent rules as to the acceptability of some items being imported. Indeed some items, which may be commonplace in your country of origin, could be prohibited in your country of destination.
Most countries apply restrictions to firearms, alcohol, drugs and often political or pornographic literature is totally prohibited. In other instances, some items can attract duty or tax liabilities and in order to avoid any problems at the time of clearance of your goods you should make enquiries with the embassy or consulate of your country of destination to ascertain their advice. We can also assist in this regard and our Move Consultant would be happy to discuss this with you in advance of your move.
Additionally you should be mindful that due to differing voltage requirements, and broadcasting frequencies, some of your current electrical items might not be suitable for use in your new country. Again you can discuss this with our Move Consultant.
Visas and Passports
For entry into most countries on a long term or permanent basis, it will be necessary to have the appropriate visa and passport requirements. You should contact the Consulate of the country to which you are relocating to ensure that your documentation is in order, and that entry of both yourself and your goods is allowable. Some countries apply strict regulations in importing your household effects and heavy financial penalties can be applied if the appropriate visas or work permits are not in place. Allied Pickfords cannot advise you in respect of immigration, however the Consular Representative should be equipped to advise you of all documentary requirements and how to apply for appropriate visas and work permits.
Vaccinations and Inoculations
You and your family may need immunisations, inoculations or booster shots before moving overseas. You can find out what inoculations are necessary (and recommended) by contacting the Consular Representative of your destination country. Your family Doctor should also be able to provide valuable advice in this area.
Personal Records and Valuable Documents
You and your family should get complete medical and dental check ups prior to your departure, and obtain copies of your records to take to your new country.
In addition, you should obtain all other personal documentation e.g. prescriptions, birth certificates, marriage certificates etc. and carry these with you for quick reference if necessary.
Valuables from safety deposit boxes, jewellery boxes and the like should also be carried on your person.
When moving internationally you will need to determine your tax obligations in both your country of departure and your new country. Additionally, you will need to consider the transfer of funds and the closure of your current bank accounts and the opening of appropriate bank accounts in your new location.
The overseas department of your current bank should be able to provide assistance with the transfer of funds, letter of credit, currency exchange rates etc.
When questions arise, your Allied Pickfords Move Consultant should be the first person you ask. With our wide depth of experience, we are well equipped to provide accurate timely information on a wide variety of topics. If we do not know the answer to your question, we would certainly know in which direction to point you to find out.