A Quick Guide to Moving Abroad

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If you are moving abroad, it is natural for you to worry about what you should do with all of the possessions you’ve accumulated over the years. How does the process work? How do you downsize for a move overseas?

These are probably among the many questions floating around in your mind right now. And it is not just about the items and objects. It is the emotional aspect of having to let some things go while you are also being uprooted from a place you have known and been accustomed to for a long time.

Change is difficult, but with it comes new possibilities and opportunities. So get ready to embrace the change and keep on reading to learn about the correct approach to downsizing your worldly possessions before moving overseas.

Start Adding Up the Numbers

Before even deciding what to do with your belongings, you need to open up a spreadsheet and do some necessary calculations. It might not be obvious, but depending on the country of your destination, buying new things may wind up far cheaper than shipping your existing items, especially if you have to temporarily put some stuff into storage as well. 

Do your homework on what is available in the country and city you are moving to and at what cost. By doing this, you will get a better understanding of what is worth bringing with you and what is not a worthwhile use of your resources and your budget. The last thing you want is to invest in shipping your stuff only to find out that you could have replaced them with better things for much less at the other end of your relocation.

Shipment will be the main cost of your move to your new home overseas, and its rate will depend on multiple factors: the distance between the origin and the destination, quantity of items, transport route, and the method of transportation. 

Naturally, there is a direct correlation between transport costs and distance. Shipments are calculated by weight and volume as well, so the price tends to rise as the number of your items increases. As for the route and method, common routes are cheaper due to the increased competition, and air freight is the most expensive while sea freight is the least expensive method.

All in all, small moves are smart moves. Try to sell or get rid of everything except for a small selection of necessary and personal items. Then, use the money for the sold items and the shipping cost you saved to buy better replacements.

Organize a yard sale

If, like so many other Americans, you have a four-bedroom house with an attic and a garage packed with stuff, the big first move is to get rid of as many things as you can through a yard sale. Moving is expensive, more so if its destination is another country. Don’t rush downsizing because a lot of your possessions still have value. 

To organize the yard sale, you should first take a look at the weather forecast and plan it for a good day. Also, make sure to check with your town to see if a yard sale requires a permit. Next, advertise by making some signs and putting them in the neighborhood. Use the power of social media to give the event more exposure. Put your most desirable items out front and center when arranging your things for sale. And last but not least, price your stuff fairly and be willing to negotiate. Your front yard shouldn’t still be filled with most of your things at the end of the day.

Donate What You Can

If your sale goes well, but you still have too many things left, you can extend it for another day or two. Eventually, though, there are bound to be things that won’t sell, things that may still have value or use to others. This is the perfect opportunity to make donations to those who are less unfortunate than you. There is no shortage of charity centers and organizations that eagerly await generous contributions from those who want to make a change.

With many, you can schedule a free donation pickup and not worry about anything else. In addition to the gift of helping others you give to yourself, donations have other benefits such as tax deductions. Just be sure to keep your donation receipts!

Research Customs Regulations and Procedures

Although customs clearance is never easy, you can certainly take steps to make it as easy as possible. Start by checking in with the embassy or immigration office of the country you are moving to and learn thoroughly about customs regulations such as prohibited or restricted goods, cash controls, excise duties, VAT on goods, etc.

You are guaranteed to have heavy paperwork involved, documenting everything you bring into a country. The officials use this information to calculate customs duties and monitor anything suspicious. And by bringing as little as you can, you will avoid many potential issues with duties and taxes.

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