Choosing an International Removalist: What to Ask
Moving can be a daunting experience, particularly making the move overseas. All anyone wants is to make the process as smooth as possible in this transition and choosing the right removalist service can make a big difference in the overall experience. If this is your first move, there are several important questions you can ask that will assist in the selection process so that you engage the right professional for your situation.
Here are some guidelines on exactly what to ask your company of interest, exactly what answers you should be looking for, and how to pick up on a removalist red flag.
What Is Your Experience Working With Overseas Removals?
When choosing an international removalist company, it is helpful to ask what previous experience they have had working in overseas removals. Most reputable services will be able to provide you with a clear history and any testimonials if asked. In this stage, it can also be beneficial to ask the company what their point of difference to other removalists services is, and why you should hire their company in particular. This will give you a basic overview and help define which company is the best one for your needs.
What Is Your Moving Method?
One of the fundamental questions to ask before engaging with a new removalist company is an exact run-down of their moving process. Here, you will discover what method of transportation is used by the company in question, and at what point of the process their services begin and end. It is important to note that not all companies will move your goods from one address to another but will only be part of the process from port to port. If this is the case, you will want to have plans in place to transport your belongings from the pickup point to your new location well ahead of time. Hearing an in-depth description of the moving process can also present an opportunity to ask more questions about how items are packaged and individually handled from point A to point B.
Are You Licensed, Or A Member Of Any Internationally Recognised Organisations?
You are trusting this company with carrying all your personal belongings internationally, so to ensure you choose a genuine and reputable service, it is essential to ask whether they have the appropriate licence and to provide documented evidence. You can also enquire into if they are a part of a recognised moving association or trade organisation.
Some names to listen out for are the British Association of Removers (BAR), the International Association of Movers (IAM), the Fédération Internationale des Déménageurs Internationaux (FIDI), and the Australian International Movers Association (AIMA). This proves whether they follow best practice and will provide a level of comfort knowing that the company upholds a high quality of service.
What Insurance Or Other Services Can You Offer On My Removal, If Any?
Moving companies can supply so much more than basic transportation. If you ask, your specialist should be able to provide you with a list of other services they offer, which can include insurance, packing, temporary storage solutions, and even recommend cleaning services to use during your move. Be sure to do your research into the company beforehand so you can ask the specifics surrounding these additional services.
What Is The Estimated Timeline For How Long My Belongings Will Be In Transit?
Estimated delivery times vary considerably across companies, and often, this is reflected in the pricing. Some specialists offer services based on a range of pre-selected dates, while others offer customisable time frames, which can impact the overall cost significantly. While both options are suitable, it is important to discuss the finer details of the timeline, such as how long your goods will sit waiting in a warehouse ready for overseas transport, and how long approximately it will take to move from the port to your new address.
How Do You Protect Fragile Items In Transit? Are There Options To Increase Protection?
If you are planning on packing any fragile items, you should ask what measures the removalists will take to ensure the packages are treated and transported with care. Experienced removalists companies will know how to treat items that require additional protection in packaging, so it is worth enquiring into what materials will be used, whether it be an extra lining of bubble wrap or a layer of polystyrene. Precious items should have specialist packing solutions, and this question will help you understand more about the company’s packing methods and dedication to care during transportation.
Are There Any Additional/ Hidden Costs?
This question is particularly important to ensure you and your company of choice are on the same page regarding budget and overall costs, so that there are no surprise charges or additional costs down the track. You will want to clearly define what your quote specifically includes, what services come at an additional cost, whether or not you will need to put down a deposit, and if there are any unnecessary costs included that you could cut ahead of time. The right overseas removalist will be completely transparent in discussions surrounding costs and quotes.
With these questions you should be able to find the best removalist service for you, gain some clarity into the overseas shipping process, and take some of the stress away from what is a big transition in your life. Employing a service that meets your expectations will help ease the process and give you the support you need to make a seamless move overseas.