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How to Prevent Things From Breaking When Moving Internationally

Daisy Wilson October 13, 2017
Posted October 13, 2017 In Moving Tips&Tricks,
Daisy Wilson

Daisy was born in Salt Lake City and in her free time, she writes about moving and watches Charmed.

There are around 10 million American expats in the world. And probably most of those people had to learn how to prevent things from breaking when moving overseas. Even though relocation to another country is an exciting experience, it is also one of the most stressful events you can endure. And packing your belongings is probably the most stressful part of it. Learning how to prevent things from breaking is a crucial part of your stress-free relocation.

From gathering the documents needed for travel to deciding what to pack, moving abroad to a new home demands a lot of effort and time. It would be a shame to invest so much time and money into your relocation across the world only to end up with broken items. For this reason, we have answers to questions like “how do you stop things from breaking” or “can bubble wrap protect glass” and many more. So keep reading and find out how to have a successful relocation.

Create a Packing Schedule and Take Your Time

Whether it’s your first time or you’re an experienced traveler, the first step you need to take is to make a checklist for relocating abroad. And part of this checklist is a packing schedule. When making a plan or strategy for packing, you need to know where you are heading to. For starters, you will not pack the same items when relocating to Hawaii or if you decide to live in some of the best places in Europe.

Start with the process one month in advance, so you ensure everything is packed and placed in boxes properly. This is how your timeline should look like:

  • Making household inventory,
  • Buying supplies,
  • Decluttering,
  • Room by room packing.

Make an Inventory List of Things You Plan to Bring With You

An inventory list is essential not only for better organization of your move, but it would be helpful for estimation of your move as well. An international moving company will better estimate international moving costs if they have a list of things you plan to relocate, especially if you plan to hire them for packing service. When you make a list, divide your belongings into categories. This way, you will know how many fragile, large, or heavy items you have. Also, this inventory list may even be mandatory since most customs will demand this paper.

Figure Out What Kind of Overseas Shipping You Need

Whether you are relocating to Venezuela or some faraway Asian city like Bangkok, you will have to choose an overseas moving company and pick the suitable means to ship your belongings. Most companies have two options: relocating by air and by sea. As you can imagine, shipping by air will cost more, but it would be faster, while shipping by sea is more affordable but takes longer. And don’t forget your belongings will be on the ocean where conditions can get harsh. Even if your items are placed in storage like containers, you will have to learn the answer to the crucial question – how do you keep things from moving in a box.

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For Shipping by the Air, You Will Have to Downsize a Bit

If you decide to ship by air, one of the best tips is to downsize a bit and then some more. Even if it is possible to relocate your entire house this way, it is unnecessary. You probably have a ton of belongings just lying around taking your space without any usage at all. So purging will not only save you some money, but it will also be good for your mental health.

There Are Different Packing Rules For International Moving

Whether you are relocating to the Bahamas or as far as to India, you will have to find out what kind of items are prohibited from entering. But aside from that, when you start boxing up your things, you can implement certain rules and tips to get through the custom much easier. For starters, by using transparent containers. That way, customs will inspect the box much faster. Also, do not use any materials that stop the X-rays from penetrating the box.

Buy High-Quality Supplies to Prevent Things From Breaking

If you wish to know the answer to the question “how do I protect my package from breaking,” the answer lies in good professional supplies. Your belongings will be protected during the transportation, and you will be able to move without any relocation stress. Here are some supplies you need to purchase:

  • Duct tape and duct tape gun,
  • Contractor tape,
  • Soft foam sheet,
  • Cushioning pennants,
  • Bubble wrap,
  • Plastic wrap,
  • Blankets,
  • Paper.

Use Medium Size Moving Boxes and Section Boxes

When relocating overseas, it is vital to do your job as easily as possible wherever you can. And getting the right size boxes will not only protect your belongings, but loading and unloading will be much easier. Buy medium-sized boxes with handles on each side for easier carrying and better grip. Also, if it is possible, buy transparent plastic containers – it doesn’t necessarily mean you will go through customs faster, but there is a great chance this will be the case. And if you plan to relocate to Manila with your wine glasses, you will need to buy a sectioned cardboard container.

How to Properly Protect Your Items for Shipping Overseas

It is hard to imagine living overseas without your precious belongings. Yes, you can relocate without them, but depending on where you plan to move, this can be more expensive than hiring an overseas shipping company to ship them, especially if you plan to retire in Europe. Some places, like the United Kingdom, can be pretty expensive but with lots of options, while some, like Iceland, offer fewer choices still at a high cost. But even if you are relocating to Canada, one of the best tips is to try to ship as many things as you can. We all know that furnishing the house from scratch can be an exhausting job.

Rules for Dishes and Glasses Are the Same

So how do you protect fragile items? The answer is pretty simple – by protecting each piece with high-quality materials. Use paper for dishes and bowls. Place one bowl or the plate, then paper around it, then another bowl inside that bowl, and repeat this until you have a stack of five pieces. Once you have a stack, you can roll it in one piece of paper, then cover and secure it all with duct tape.

When it comes to packing glasses, use one paper for one glass. Make sure to fill the hollow space inside the glass to prevent breaking under pressure. When filling up the container, first put the cushioning foam to the bottom, then heavier things, and finally lighter ones on top. Place plates vertically, and ensure there is no room for any piece to move inside of the box. Make sure to reinforce the corners and bottoms of every container with duct tape.

How to Keep Electric Devices Safe in Storage

No matter if you are relocating to China or maybe to Russia, you will want your old plasma TV instead of buying a new one. And as you know, your belongings will be in storage for some time (not to mention that shipping containers are quite similar to storage units). So how to protect TV for shipping? One of the best tips is to take one styrofoam sheet and place it on the screen. Ensure the sheet covers the screen from the inner edges, and then use a foam sheet and cover your TV. After this, take bubble wrap, cover everything again, and place everything in a custom-made cardboard container. And make sure you write fragile and on which side is a TV screen before sending it to storage.

How Do You Keep a Mirror From Breaking?

Are you wondering how do you pack fragile items without bubble wrap? It’s quite simple. Place a mirror on the floor and make an X sign with packing tape, from corner to corner. Then place a moving blanket beneath the mirror and cover it so that the blanket’s edges are on the side where the glass is. Then use plastic wrap and roll it all up a couple of times.

Protect Lamps and Other Bulky Items From Damage

You will have to pick the boxes of the right size for your lamps and other bulky belongings. Use one box for the lamps and another one for the shades. Cover the lamps with bubble wrap and place them in the box. And if you wonder “how many layers of bubble wrap should I use,” two should be enough. The shades should be protected with paper. The most crucial part in preserving the shade is to fill in the hollow inner space with paper as well. And of course, before placing any of the pieces in the box, you should place cushioning on the bottom, top, and between each layer. Check this video for more tips.

Getting Used to a New Country Will Be Much Easier if You Have Your Belongings Undamaged

People and belongings are what make a home feel like home. And relocating overseas can be difficult. You will have to learn a new language and find a place to live while experiencing cultural shock and other things. Adjusting to a new country can be a hard and lonely thing. And even if you relocate to the friendliest place on Earth, you will feel homesick from time to time. That is why it is crucial to make your house feel like home.

And even though homes can be different in shapes and sizes, if you have your belongings there with you, it will feel like you are back home again. And if you feel like relocating an entire home to another country is hard, think again. The US is huge, and people are relocating to Orange County from Connecticut and vice versa all the time, without any struggles. So what is the difference when relocating to Argentina? In both cases, people can DIY moves or hire professionals for help. And the relocation is always way easier and less stressful with the help of professionals.



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