The following items should never be included in an overseas move due to the hazardous nature or high value of the items:
Aerosol spray cans Ammunition, flares, fireworks Bleaches, paints, thinners Fire extinguishers Gasoline, oil, lighter fluid, kerosene Matches Open containers and bottles Perishables Propane tanks Weed killer, insecticides, other poisons
Coin and stamp collections Furs Jewelry Irreplaceable documents Money
Import regulations for the destination country should be checked on these most commonly restricted items prior to packing:
Firearms Ivory products Liquor Drugs and medications Pornography Religious statues or ornaments Weapons ( knives, swords, etc ) Articles on endangered species list
It’s really never too soon to begin planning for a move, and veteran movers have found that a comprehensive timetable and checklist is the best strategy to ensure a smooth relocation. It’s also a great way to involve the entire family in the move and to spread some of the responsibilities to each person, including your children. You’ll feel a sense of accomplishment as items are checked off. Moreover, as the weeks roll by, your checklist will help ensure that nothing has been overlooked or omitted from your planning, and that alone will go a long way toward relieving some of your anxiety.
Contact your mover to make arrangements for moving day.
If you’re moving at an employer’s request, verify what expenses and responsibilities are theirs and which are yours.
Decide what to do with your home. If you are renting, check the lease and give the appropriate notice.
Remove items from your attic, basement, storage shed, etc.
Begin to inventory and evaluate your possessions. What can be sold or donated to a charitable organization? What haven’t you used within the last year?
Start to use up things you can’t move, such as frozen foods, alcohol, and cleaning supplies.
Arrange medical and dental check-ups, obtain supply of prescription medication together with a letter from your doctor that your need for these.
Notify your children’s school of their departure.
If possible, make a “reconnaissance trip” to your new location; while there, you might choose your house, bank, and school for your children.
Confirm that all passports are valid. Otherwise, make your application for your passport, appearing in person at the applicable state office as soon as possible.
Confirm that all visas are in order. The consular representative for a particular country can advise you if visas are required and how to obtain them. Work permits are often imperative and must be obtained before leaving the country.
Get a supply of passport-size photos to take with you.
Check whether any permits are required for residency, vehicles or firearms, etc.
Check with the consular representative of the country to which you are moving about required inoculations.
Determine overseas electrical requirements and what appliances you will ship or purchase. Check if there are restrictions or limitations on importing certain appliances to the destination country.
Most furniture won’t be damaged in countries with cool climates. With hot and humid climates however, consider buying native furniture.
Electrical services and broadcasting systems varies in different countries. Confirm if your TV will be usable in your new country.
Your Embassy in the foreign country can supply you with the names of real estate representatives or rental agents. Do not commit yourself to any formal agreements until after you have inspected the premises on arrival.
Consider selling your car. Duties in some countries are very high, and the customs procedures may delay the delivery of your shipment.
Locate all auto licensing and registration documents.
Make sure your driver’s license and international driver’s license are up to date.
Contact schools, doctors, dentists, lawyers, accountants, etc., and obtain copies of your personal records.
Obtain invoices for new purchases for customs import formalities.
Make a list of everyone you need to notify about your move: family, friends, professionals, creditors, subscriptions, etc.
Obtain a change-of-address kit from the post office and begin filling out cards.
Contact your local voter registration office if necessary to register as an overseas elector.
Contact utility and related companies (gas, electric, oil, water, telephone, cable TV, and trash collection) for service disconnects. However, remember to keep phone and utilities connected at your current home throughout moving day.
Contact insurance companies (auto, homeowner’s or renter’s, medical, and life) to arrange for coverage in your new home.
Plan a garage sale to sell unneeded items or arrange to donate them to charity. Dispose of items you do not want to ship. If you do not need it, do not ship it.
If some of your goods are to be stored, make the necessary arrangements now. (Your moving counselor will be able to help.)
Read through the Customs Information, or check the customs regulations for your destination country.
Make travel and living arrangements and reservations for your moving trip. However, don’t make plane reservations for the same day that you’re moving out. House closings are often delayed, and other unexpected situations often arise.
Arrange special transport for your pets. Call the veterinarian to schedule an appointment for 7-10 days before your departure.
Collect important papers (insurance, will, deeds, stock, etc.)
Arrange to close local charge accounts and national accounts you won’t have the occasion to use, as well as savings and checking accounts.
Consult the overseas representative at your local bank about currency exchange, letters of credit, Traveler’s Checks or possible transfer of funds.
Get appraisal of valuable items. Start preparing valued inventory. Separate valuations are necessary for air and sea shipments.
Identify items that need to be handled with special care.
Consider opening a safe deposit box in which to store important documents and valuables you do not need to bring with you.
Learn some useful phrases in the language of your new country.
If you’re moving out of a building with elevators, contact the building management to schedule use of the elevators.
Contact your moving counselor to review and confirm all arrangements for your move.
Service automobile and other appliances that are going with you.
Have a chat with younger children about the country you are moving to, and explain the reasons why you are moving.
Settle any outstanding bills with local merchants.
Don’t forget to pick up any dry cleaning, return library books and rented videotapes, etc.
Take pets to the veterinarian for any needed immunizations. Get copies of pet’s records.
Drain gas and oil from power equipment (lawn mowers, snow blowers, etc.)
Dispose of all flammables and explosives, and give away plants.
If necessary, plan for a babysitter on moving day.
Make sure all necessary paperwork is filled out and made ready to be handed over to the packing crew on the day of the move. Keep it all in one place to avoid misplacement.
Arrange with neighbors to leave sufficient parking space for the removal vehicle.
Contact your International Relocation Consultant to confirm arrival time of the crew as well as to notify him/her of any last minute details.
Make sure you have the destination agent’s name, address, and phone number.
Defrost your freezer and refrigerator. Block doors open so they can’t accidentally close on pets or children.
Have your major appliances disconnected and prepared for the move.
Pack a box of personal items that will need to be delivered first at your new home. Have this box clearly marked and loaded last.
Organize and set aside those things that you’re taking with you on your trip so that they don’t get loaded in error. Include:
Credit cards, Checkbook, Travelers Checks
Passport, Visas, Driver’s license, other identifications
Entry permits, licenses, duty free Customs permits
U.S. customs Certificate of Registration
Moving papers, documents, insurance policies
Plan a simple breakfast for moving day to eliminate refrigeration or cooking. Use paper plates. Or plan to go to your favorite breakfast place.
Record all utility meter readings (gas, electric, water).
Make sure that someone is at home to answer the crew’s questions.
Please keep all jewelry, important documents, coin and stamp collections in your possession. Do not have the moving crew pack these goods with your household goods.
Before leaving, check each room, closets, attics and basements. Make sure windows are closed. Turn off all electric lights. Lock all doors.
Leave the rest to the professionals, sit back and relax, and look forward to the new opportunities, new friends, new experiences, etc., that are part of any move.
Check in with your Embassy as soon as possible after arrival. The embassy can be of real help in answering questions and guiding you as to local registration and any other official procedures.
Contact your International Relocation Consultant and inform him/her of your arrival and how to best reach you when your belongings have arrived and are ready for delivery.
Make sure the destination agent knows how to reach you.
In most cases, you will need to complete personal entry formalities and documentation so that your legal entry is complete.
Then, relax, and the destination agent will organize customs clearance, transportation, and delivery to your new home.
Be present during unloading, ready to direct placement of your furniture and belongings.
Check condition of your belongings. If any items are damaged or missing, note this on the inventory list and report it to your International Relocation Consultant.
Let us be the first to welcome you to your new home!
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