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How To Choose a Moving Company When It’s Time To Settle Down

It's not uncommon for a backpacker to come across a new country that changes your perspective on life so much that you consider moving there.

Logistically, moving to a new country comes with plenty of challenges, but how do you deal with them along the way? Below, we'll get into that and more. Let's get started.

Choosing a Moving Company

Choosing a moving company wisely can save you a lot of money. (photo: Theo Dorp, Unsplash)
Moving in Hong Kong (photo: Theo Dorp)

1. Consider Your Location

Where you're moving is important because it affects the moving companies you can choose from.

When you're relocating overseas, it can be a daunting task for any movers. Thankfully, services like Three Movers operating worldwide won't have any issues.

Understand that overseas shipping can be expensive, especially if you plan to bring all your belongings. Consider selling off some items, such as furniture, to reduce the load.

If you're moving domestically, shipping becomes much less expensive, and you can bring along most of your stuff for a more affordable rate. 

The longer the distance, the more it'll cost, so try to get a few quotes to negotiate down the price for your big move.

2. Choose the Right Moving Service

Like all businesses, there are good and bad moving services. You want to look out for bait-and-switch pricing, which can often lead to 25% increases in price when the delivery driver arrives to handle your belongings.

Always vet your transport company by checking out the Department of Transportation's website, Trustpilot, Facebook Reviews, Google Reviews, and any other review aggregator to check whether the moving company is legit.

Reviews can also be faked, so you mustn't choose a company with ten reviews that are all five stars. A mix of good and bad reviews is typical, even for the best company, so use your best judgment.

If you're going overseas, then it's also essential you work with a moving company that knows the ins and outs of overseas shipping. You don't want any problems during shipping, so always go with companies capable of fulfilling your order without any issues.

3. Insurance

Going from living out of a backpack to moving to a new country will bring its own set of problems. Avoid the most significant challenge by understanding the type of insurance coverage you'll have for your belongings during transport.

Many transport companies use what is known as “reduced value insurance,” which means that you will only receive 60 cents per pound if anything happens to your belongings.

If you lose electronics or personal items, the problem is that you're likely looking at a considerable discrepancy in the money you receive from the claim and what you'll be getting in return.

If you're shipping expensive items, you will want to go with full value coverage, which insures your items for their total value. It will cost a little bit extra, but it's worth the extra peace of mind when moving.

4. Time of Year

Moving boxes (photo by Michael B, Unsplash)
Moving boxes (photo by Michael B, Unsplash)

If possible, avoid moving during the winter months. This is because, logistically, tons of packages are moving across the globe as the fourth quarter revs up. With the holidays on the horizon, it will lead to higher shipping rates.

You can also check the best times to move to your new destination and align a date with the best times to move during the year for lower costs from moving companies. Alternatively, ship ahead of time and leave your items in storage, although this will incur a higher charge.

5. Guaranteeing Security

Moving to a new country after traveling as a backpacker can be stressful. You do not want to take any risks when it comes to working with any moving company. That's why it's paramount that you guarantee your security, as there are plenty of shady companies out there.

A great moving company can offer round-the-clock support, and they aren't afraid to speak with you over the phone. They should also be respectful and not pressure you to make quick decisions.

Never put any money down until you have a clear-cut quote and a guarantee that your items are adequately insured DURING transit and not just carrier shipment. If a deposit is necessary, make sure it can be canceled if you are unsure of your upcoming move.

Always rely on free quotes, and don't put down any money until necessary. As long as you take the proper requirements to protect yourself and your belongings, you shouldn't have any problems along the journey.

Expert moving consultant Chris Townsend says, “While moving and transport can seem like a confusing journey for most, as long as you know a few tricks of the trade, you shouldn't have any problem relocating anywhere in the world with safety and security that you won't be left out to dry.”

Let's Review

First and foremost, evaluating your destination is crucial to determining the type of moving service required.

Understanding the logistics and associated costs is essential, whether it's a domestic or international move. Selling unnecessary items can significantly reduce expenses, especially for overseas relocations.

Selecting a reputable moving service is essential. Bait-and-switch pricing tactics can lead to unexpected costs, making it crucial to vet companies through reliable sources like the Department of Transportation's website, Trustpilot, and various review platforms.

Recognizing the potential for fake reviews, a mix of positive and negative feedback provides a more accurate assessment of a company's reliability.

Considering insurance is another vital aspect of the moving process. While reduced-value insurance may be standard, opting for full-value coverage for valuable items ensures adequate protection. Though it may come at an extra cost, the peace of mind offered during the move is invaluable.

Timing plays a crucial role in the cost and efficiency of the move. Avoiding peak seasons, especially during winter and holidays, can lead to lower rates. Planning the move based on optimal times for both departure and arrival can also contribute to cost savings.

Security is non-negotiable when entrusting a company with your belongings. Seeking round-the-clock support, honest quotes, and proper insurance coverage during transit is essential.

Never commit to a deposit until you are confident about the move, and always prioritize free quotes to make informed decisions.


This story is brought to you in partnership with Three Movers.

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