Moving is an exciting change to anyone’s life that will bring an abundance of new experiences. That being said, it is also a daunting and extensive process, especially when you are moving to a foreign location that you are unfamiliar with. To help out with your international move, below are six tips to consider for a successful relocation.

1. Essential Paperwork

Depending on where you are moving, you may need visas, passports and other documentation for you and your family. Research regarding the mandatory documentation should be done well ahead of time to ensure the paperwork is processed and ready for your departure. Make sure to talk to an official representative of the destination you are moving to, you may even need to visit an embassy.

On the day of your relocation, the necessary paperwork should be on your person in an easily accessible place. Do not put the documents in your check-in luggage as it could get lost.

2. Select an International Moving Company

International moving companies have the resources to help you move across borders unlike regular moving companies. It is best to do your due diligence early, a few months ahead of your move is recommended, to avoid making a last minute decision that will likely result in problems.

Make sure to select a moving company that has provided services in the past to the location you are moving to. They will have better resources and experience compared to other international moving companies.

If any of your friends or family have moved internationally before and had a good experience with their moving company, research and consider the company they used. Recommendations from friends and family are best companies to select.

3. Plan What to Bring

It is highly unlikely that you will need to bring all of your belongings while abroad. Impersonal items should be sold or stored prior to your move, such as furniture, appliances and other bulky items that can be bought abroad.

Personal items should be brought with you such as clothing, pictures and anything else you will miss from home and be unable to find in your new location. Items that are unique and specific, like prescriptions and favourable toiletries, should be brought with you in bulk to cover a few months to ensure you have what you need until you find an acceptable alternative.

4. Pack Items

Before you start packing, consider what you will need on a regular basis and what you can live without for a couple weeks or even months. Nearly all of your items that you do not need on a daily basis will be shipped. Remember, international shipping is slow which makes it difficult to predict when you will receive your luggage.

As with most things, planning and preparation is key. It is suggested that you pack your belongings ahead of time because the process will take longer than you think.

5. Contact

You will need to be reachable before and after your move. If possible, get a phone that is active in your current and future destination for the duration of your relocation. At the very least, make sure you have an email account that can be easily accessed at any point during your move so you can be reached.

6. Moving Day

The day you move will be busy and long. To simplify matters, print out documents and itineraries related to your move. Possible printouts you may need include: contact information for your moving company, addresses, phone numbers, emergency contacts or flight information.

Be sure to dress appropriately and comfortably for your moving day. You will be moving a lot (pun intended), it would be a mistake to wear unsuitable attire!