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International Moving

When you consider all of the problems that can arise when you are simply moving across state-lines, relocation to a new country can seem like an insurmountable task. But with the right amount of planning and organization, even a move to another continent can be made relatively painless and easy.

There are so many more potential pitfalls to plan for with an international move than a domestic relocation: Visas, language barriers, finding a reliable and competent moving company who won’t send your belongings to Timbuktu when they should be in Trinidad. These are just a few of the problems you will encounter when you decide to relocate, add the fact that a lot of moving companies are inexperienced with the requirements for international moves, and your move can quickly devolve into a serious mess.

You can find a bunch of useful articles and tools elsewhere on the Moving Guardian website that will help you to plan and organize your move, but when it comes to choosing a competent and qualified international moving company, you should bear the following advice in mind before making a final decision.

What can I take with me?

This question really depends on why and for how long you can expect to be residing in the new country. Are you moving for work? Will the stay be short term or permanent? Depending on your answer you will be faced with either simply shuttering your home up while you are away, to selling it if the move is permanent. There may well be limitations on the amount and kinds of household good that you can take into the new country, and the cost of shipping all of your goods may be too costly, so you may have to consider storing, selling or giving your possessions away.


Most countries require foreign nationals to have a valid work visa before they are allowed to work. You will need to make sure that you have secured the correct visas before you make your move. This information can usually be found on the relevant government website for the country you intend relocating to.

Don’t fall foul of local laws

Every country’s laws are different and you should familiarize yourself with them before you leave to ensure that you understand exactly what will be required of you.

Hire a professional International Mover

Unlike a move within the continental United States, when your move entails relocating halfway across the world, you will need to select an expert international moving company. For an international move, your goods won’t be simply packed into a truck and driven from point A to B: instead, they will more than likely be loaded into a huge metal cargo container and then shipped … literally … by sea. There are numerous problems that could crop up on the voyage and you need to hire a company that is fully insured and knows how to pack these containers so that your goods reach their home port in one piece.

There’s plenty of time to pack … right?

Wrong! The chances are that you have far less time than you think you do to pack and organize all of your belongings. You will quite literally need months to ensure that you have everything organized and in place before you actually move. Remember it’s always better to be packed and ready too early than too late, so always allow yourself a larger buffer of time than you would if you were simply moving across state. Moving Guardian has some handy tools and articles to help you begin organizing your move. They can be found here <link to moving planner> <link to moving calculator>

Things are always far more complicated than they appear, so choosing the right moving company is paramount if you want to ensure a safe and efficient relocation. What this all boils down to, is making sure that you are fully prepared and ready for your move. A professional and experienced international-moving business will be able to help you prepare for any of the above plus a thousand other potential problems and hiccups that you will most likely encounter.

Do your research before you settle on a final choice for your mover. Ask them as many questions as you want: How long have they been in business? What’s their Better Business Bureau rating? Do they have specific experience of relocating to your new country? Any legitimate company will welcome these questions, so never be afraid to ask.

Be sure to check back to soon. We will be updating our “America’s Best Movers” database to help you locate trusted, rated “A” or higher, international-moving companies alongside our trusted US based companies.

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