Moving abroad can sometimes mean a minefield of decisions and preparations. This section deals with practicalities of relocating to another country, from decision-making to help with all the necessary relocation arrangements.
If your dream of moving abroad is fast becoming a reality, it's vitally important to carefully consider the real implications and motivations of your move.
Maybe it's simply a relaxed life in the sun you are after or perhaps a new working lifestyle for yourself and your family. Bear in mind that living abroad is never the holiday that you expect; if you move with unrealistic expectations, without having properly researched all the facts of living in your chosen country, you could find yourself disappointed when you get there.
With so much to think about, it's a good idea to leave your packing to the professionals. Most companies will expertly pack up your things using appropriate packing boxes and special packing materials. For overseas moves, each item has to be individually wrapped with paper, bubble or foam wrap.
Should you wish to go to the time and trouble of packing items yourself, bear in mind that they will have to be labeled and identified on the inventory as PBO (packed by owner). Packing items yourself may cause problems with insurance and can make customs procedures slower and more costly, as they may wish to examine your belongings.
Your possessions will most often be transported by sea freight and this is the cheapest option available. Containers, normally sized 20 x 40 foot and 7 foot 6 inches in height, are made of steel and are water resistant. You will be charged on volume rather than weight. Your shipment may go in one full container load (FCL) or by groupage with other clients' boxes. Groupage can take longer as you may have to wait for a container to fill up before it leaves port, but it can prove more cost effective than using an entire container. Shipment should take roughly four to six weeks for Europe and America, and six to eight weeks to Asia, Australia or New Zealand.
Air freight is a faster though often more expensive option for urgent shipping and you can expect to receive your goods within 14 days door to door. Remember that if you are moving somewhere that is not near a sea port, then this method of transport could prove to be as cost effective as sea freight.
Australian Customs: Customs.gov.au
South Africa: Sars.gov.za
United Arab Emirates: Sharjahcustoms.gov.ae
Travel Advice: The Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Immunisation advice: Dh.gov.uk
UK Embassies abroad: Fco.gov.uk
Customs & Excise: Hmce.gov.uk
Voting when abroad: Electoralcommission.org.uk
Inland Revenue: Inlandrevenue.gov.uk
Worldwide government institutions: Gksoft.com
Worldwide relocation help: Easyexpat.com
Immigration tips for New Zealand: Emigratenz.org
Worldwide expatriate information: Expats.org.uk , Expatexchange.com , Justlanded.com
British expatriate information: Britishexpats.com and Expats-abroad.com
Comprehensive access to worldwide to radio stations: Radio-locator.com
Worldwide interactive driving maps: Mapblast.com
Pet transport/relocation agents: Airpets.com
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