International Movers Q&A: 10 Things to do Before the Move

woman carrying suitcase in foreign country

From learning new cultures to exploring new places, there is much to look forward to with an international move. But there are also some very important things you should take care of before venturing out on your journey.

Here are 10 things you should consider before your international move:

1. Visit Before You Move

If possible, visit the new country before you move to get a feel for the neighborhood, so you can get familiar with the area. It's also a good way to determine if that particular neighborhood is where you want to stay.

2. Get the Necessary Vaccinations

Some countries require you to be vaccinated before entering, so ensure you have done the research to understand what vaccinations are  necessary. Since some vaccinations may take time before they become effective, you also want to make sure you get your vaccinations well in advance.

Discuss the vaccines you need with your doctor and have them fill out the International Certificate of Vaccination or Prophylaxis so you a record of your shots to present to doctors and medical facilities across international borders.

3. Interview International Moving Companies

When you're moving to another country, you may need to organize your move sooner than you think since it will likely take longer to coordinate than a domestic move. Take the time to evaluate and choose reliable international movers to help you save time and conveniently coordinate your move. Make sure they can help with all the unique aspects of your move, including handling paperwork required for shipping your belongings across the ocean.

4. Practice the Language

Your new destination is the ideal place to practice the local language. Take the time to get out of your comfort zone with the language. Go on an adventure, walk into a new shop or establish a new ritual. There is a lot you can learn outside of your language books by immersing yourself into your city.

Study how people are communicating, and practice formal and colloquial forms of the language. Also, take time to learn the customs as it will help you to more easily communicate with the locals.

5. Purchase Adequate Insurance

Having the right insurance coverage provides you with peace-of-mind, so don't skip out on getting insurance that gives you all the coverage you'll need. Research and compare insurance policies, including medical, household goods and traveler’s insurance.

6. Get an Unlocked Mobile Phone

With an unlocked cell phone, you can easily purchase and set up new mobile services upon your arrival. You'll just need to get a calling card or service. This helps you save time and money by removing the need to shop for a new phone.

7. Prepare Your Important Documents

Before you move to your new home, it's critical to have all of your important documents in place. Make sure you have your passport and any visas you may need before your move. Research and apply for visas well in advance of your move date so you don't have to worry about a delayed trip. Make copies of all your important documents and bring the originals for documents, such as your passport.

This also includes keeping track of and organizing all your non-travel related documents. Birth certificates, social security cards and other important account information should all be backed up with digital versions, and the originals should be stored in a safe place.

8. Cancel Unnecessary Accounts

Whether it's bank accounts that you won't use when you move, or phone accounts from providers who don't have a presence in the country you're moving to, it's critical to cancel these accounts. Not only will you save money, but you also eliminate the potential of fraud in the event a hacker breaches your dormant accounts.

9. Get a Card You Can Use Abroad

When you head across international borders, you want to ensure your credit card works. There is almost nothing more disruptive or stressful than realizing your credit card doesn’t translate in the local economy.

Get one that is designed for international travel, so you don't have to worry about walking around with a large amounts of cash. If you’re going to be traveling a lot, there are many credit cards that will not only work abroad but earn you a lot of points as well. Just be sure to investigate any yearly fees to make sure they fit within your budget.

10. Celebrate!

Give your family and friends time to say "bon voyage" by hosting a dinner or party. You can celebrate and conveniently see everyone simultaneously in the same place before your move. It's also a great place to give everyone your new contact information.

Final Thoughts

When you move across international borders, it's critical to ensure everything that needs to be taken care of is done before the move. That's why you must make preparations before you make the big move.

Suddath® is a FIDI member and offers a comprehensive suite of international moving services that guide you through the entire process.