Viewing 14 posts - 1 through 14 (of 14 total)
  • Trans-atlantic moving logistics
  • andeh
    Free Member

    We’re moving to Canada (yay) but we need to move our crap (boo), who has done it? We don’t have much furniture to move, really, just lots of sentimental junk.

    Options seem to be moving company who deal with the lot. They seem expensive (I know sea freight is currently insane) and we may have to ditch a lot of stuff to make it work…

    Or, I’m not sure how feasible it is, try and DIY a 20ft shipping container. This would also be expensive (though not much more than moving companies) but could potentially fill with additional stuff for people also moving to offset the cost. Sounds like much more faff to me but wife is keen as we wouldn’t have to get rid of as much stuff. I sense I would be taking care of the organisation 😒

    Advice? Lost everything at sea? Got a big boat? Cheers

    bonni
    Full Member

    I moved to Canada 15 years ago (yay), and moved back a few years later (boo), so have done it twice.

    On the way out (from Ireland) we went with a small company who rented out space in shipping containers. We packed everything in boxes and pictures were boxed in wooden crates (they did the latter). The freight went to a US port* and was overland hauled to western Canada. This resulted in the US Customs punching in the tops of all of our boxes to probe them, resulting in lots of broken stuff. Ars*holes! Most of it was not valuable, so we just got on with our lives rather than try to claim.

    On the way back we had a bigger removal budget and had more stuff so went with a high end removal firm. Cost lots, avoided the US, and everything arrived intact.

    So, my one bit of advice – avoid US ports.

    *I seem to recall it was planned to go to a Canadian port but the St Louis was blocked with ice and resulting marine traffic, so the ship was diverted to the US.

    fadda
    Full Member

    I have nothing helpful to say, other than you lucky, lucky barsteward!

    (and commiserations to bonni, for having to move back…)

    andeh
    Free Member

    Thanks Bonni, useful to know! I’ll keep an eye out for anything that goes via the states. The main company I’ve been looking at (Seven Seas?) Seem to give you a box that you fill, then plonk it into a container.

    Fadda, it’s never too late! It was significantly easier (and cheaper) for me to get a visa than it was for Mrs Andeh to get one for here. She’s from Vancouver, so we’re moving “home” I guess

    andos
    Full Member

    Having worked in the container and shipping industry, I would suggest taking out itemised insurance rather than by weight, and avoid shipping anything of sentimental value that cant be replaced. Certainly the container terminals in NY are a law unto themselves, but tbh you can get unlucky with a dropped container or items damaged in any terminal. I would certainly suggest going through a specialist freight forwarding co who will advise on packing, paperwork etc and carry out customs clearance and onward transport, rather than trying to coordinate this yourself.

    bonni
    Full Member

    I’m pretty sure we used Seven Seas. Not sure which way though, so not helpful.

    reluctantlondoner
    Full Member

    Seven Seas – close the thread 😉

    I’ve moved around the world a heap and always used Seven Seas. Easy. Reliable. As cost-effective as these things can be.

    If you’re being moved by a company you can buy half a container or even more from Pickfords, but it’s pricey. I know people who have moved cars around the world in Pickford containers on company dime 😳

    LAT
    Full Member

    we’ve only used moving firms when moving big distances (we became used to the luxury when the company paid).

    it is expensive but it is far less stressful. we’ve always moved in short timeframes, have a 4 year old (this last move) and like to squeeze the last bits of fun out of where we are.

    pickfords are better than eagle when leaving the uk. though whoever you use, prepare for stress.

    where are you moving too? i’ve just moved from whitehorse, yukon to abbotsford in bc.

    good luck with the move.

    edit: never lost anything, had a couple of breakages, but not ornaments or valuables.

    take your bike with you as your stuff will take a long time to arrive by sea

    edit again: just thought, did you say that you aren’t taking any furniture? have you considered storing your things until you are settled and having them shipped out at a later date? i say this because the housing market in a lot of canada is bonkers at the moment. lack of rental properties, houses selling for way over asking price, etc. you may end up in the situation where your things arrive before you’ve even had an offer accepted on a house. if you know anyone where your going, see if anyone can recommend a good realtor. the selling of houses is different here and it helps to have a person who knows what they are doing – even if you wonder what they’re up to.

    andos
    Full Member

    Try Interdean or Santa Fe

    LAT
    Full Member

    i agree with everything andos says

    andeh
    Free Member

    Lovely, lots more good advice, thanks!

    I always suspected trying to DIY a container was boarder line insane. Even the prospect of getting all the stuff down to Felixstowe, or wherever, added a whole new level of faff.

    LAT, we’re moving to New Westminster and have an apartment (sorry, condo, lol) sorted already courtesy of the in-laws. Vancouver real estate is INSANE! Makes London look like Barnsley. We have plenty of family and friends in Vancouver and on the island, so lots of support if we need it.

    Only furniture we’re really going to take is bed frame (apparently shopping for a bed with me was so stressful it will never be repeated), which breaks down easy enough, and a coffee table, which I’m very attached to. All our other stuff is cheapo IKEA, or rescued from assorted dubious means, so not worth the shipping.

    LAT
    Full Member

    it’s not just the prices, but the speed at which houses are selling. was the same in whitehorse and i hear it’s the same around toronto.

    pleased to hear you are fixed with a place to live.

    exciting times.

    politecameraaction
    Free Member

    There is often not much of a difference between part load/shared container and having your own container – worth getting a quote.

    Also, selfpacking often isn’t much cheaper than having full packing removals – and then movers will exclude self-packed stuff from insurance coverage

    dickyhepburn
    Free Member

    +1 for Pickfords when we moved to the US and defo list everything and get insurance. We lost a couple of things around customs (boxes opened, stuff taken, boxes re-taped shut) so take photos of packing boxes before you open them, then tick everything off your list. Insurance paid out without a quibble as apparently “this happens”

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