Moving Overseas: 9 Tips for a Smooth International Move


If there’s one thing that is more daunting than relocating to a new home, it’s moving overseas. Aside from the “usual stress” that comes with preparing for a move, you are also faced with several other matters to attend to in order to make adjusting to your new life in another country easier.

If you are facing this dilemma for an upcoming move, fret not, for you can easily make this challenging change in your life become less stressful. All you need to have is the right knowledge about how to plan, pack, and accomplish important tasks ahead of time.


Planning is a necessary first step to succeed in accomplishing any complex task – international relocation included. That said, below are some tips you can try to make your international move less difficult:

1. Establish a Central Command Center

While this may sound quite technical at first, establishing a central command center is actually a practical tip for moving a family overseas. Your command centre for relocation should include task items, contingencies, and milestones or accomplishments.

If you’re the traditional and non-techie type, you can create a command center out of paper pads and cardboard folders. However, if you’re quite adept in using a computer and portable gadgets like smartphones, you can create a digital version that can easily be updated and organized as you see fit.

2. Create a Checklist

Having a checklist of tasks and items to bring filed into your command center is a great way to organize your move. This way, you can ensure that important items – like maintenance medications and emergency tools – are packed properly and brought to your new home overseas.

3. Contact a Reliable Removalist

When moving to another country, it is absolutely necessary that you hire an international removal company to help you deal with the logistics of relocation. Since they have the right degree  of experience in dealing with such matters, you are assured that the technical aspect of your relocation will be dealt with properly.

Of course, you should make sure that you choose a reliable firm and reserve a move date at least one month early. Just make sure that you adjust your time frame based on whether your relocation is set at a busy time for these companies (they’re usually very busy during summertime).


Another major task you need to accomplish when moving is the proper packing of your belongings. Read on for easy-to-follow tips in accomplishing this task:

4. Take Time to Declutter and Purge

If you’re not a big fan of organizing, now might be a good time to reconsider. Since you will soon have to go through every piece of item you own, you can take advantage of the situation by decluttering and purging the items you no longer need or use often.

The trick is to separate everything that doesn’t have an immediate use or has a similar purpose as another from the items that you need every day. After that, you can  decide if the ones that don’t have a place in your new home go to the donation box, the garage sale, or the trash.

5.  Organize and Label Accordingly

After ridding your closet and cupboards of the items you won’t be bringing with you, you should proceed to organizing items before packing. Create an inventory and make sure that your possessions are categorized accordingly. Prepare special labels for items that are fragile, extremely breakable, or need to be carried the right way up.

6. Choose Sturdy Packaging Materials

Moving overseas often entails transporting your things by air or by sea. This means that the boxes you would use to keep your possessions safe would undergo multiple handling and possible changes in weather conditions. Because of this, you should never skimp on the quality of packaging supplies to avoid having to deal with damaged belongings later.

7. Consider Items with Special Packing Requirements

Items with special packaging requirements include furniture, electronics, and other items that come in an unusual form or are made from highly breakable materials like glass and porcelain. Be sure to plan for added protection of each of these items to avoid damage.


Another aspect of an international move that requires a lot of attention is documentation. Below are some ways you can accomplish this task without unnecessary delay:

8. Process Your Visa Way Ahead of the Move

Do the visa application process several months ahead of the move as you should not even be planning a move overseas without having visa matters arranged first.

When applying for a visa, you have to be detail-oriented and critical to ensure that your papers get approved on your first try. Make sure to have a checklist of the requirements for the application and accomplish the forms diligently. It is also important that you have original and authentic copies of the required documents in case some questions are raised during your application.

9. Have Digital Copies of Your Documents Ready

Aside from your visa and passport, you may also need copies of your birth certificate, marriage contract, and other papers that can prove your identity for your move. The trick is to have digital copies handy on top of the printed ones to make sure that you have something to show the authorities if the need arises.

Quick Roundup

Planning an international move can be daunting, but it doesn’t have to be stressful. You can make sure that your overseas relocation goes smoothly by following these tips in planning, packing, and filing necessary documents so that you can have a good, fresh start in another country.

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