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Packing and shipping query timings

Packing and shipping query timings

Old Oct 15th 2015, 6:12 pm
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Default Packing and shipping query timings

we're moving from the UK to NJ in December and I had a surveyor round to my house today to assess all the items we are planning on shipping over/air-freighting or putting into storage......

We currently live in a fairly modest sized 4 bed house and although there are 4 of us (2 adults and 2 kids) we really don't have all that much stuff.

I just wondered if anyone who has already been through this could give me an idea of how long it took for a relocation company to pack up and collect all the items ready for the shipping container? He has quoted me 4 full days which seems quite a long time? I know items need to be packed more thoroughly than for a local move down the road but does it really take 4 times longer than a domestic move?

Would appreciate your views and advice-perhaps this is fairly standard and I'm just being clueless?
Thanks
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Old Oct 15th 2015, 6:20 pm
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Default Re: Packing and shipping query timings

It fundamentally depends on how many people they are sending, and what packing you do yourselves.

We were just two adults, and a 2-bed terraced house, with lots of "stuff" but not too much furniture. We packed our books ourselves, and our clothes, and dismantled some furniture for shipping. The removal company sent about four or five people for one day, but it would have been woefully inadequate if we hadn't done about half the work ourselves ahead of time.
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Old Oct 15th 2015, 8:32 pm
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Default Re: Packing and shipping query timings

That does seem slow. We did a lot of packing ourselves as you'll always get a better density than if they do it.

We moved out of a 5 bed house with 3 kids stuff and Pickfords packed up the vans in two days. 3 guys per day.

They did manage to break stuff, pack badly, damage a carpet, lose a box, turn up pished, and over-estimate our belongings by 25% too, leaving us with a big empty space in the container. A stellar performance all round.

My advice is to do as much as you can yourselves, even if they tell you they have to pack because of insurance etc.
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Old Oct 16th 2015, 1:20 pm
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Default Re: Packing and shipping query timings

I had Pickfords, took them two days - three guys first day, two on the second. One person, small terraced house, one 25ft container. Started off packing really carefully (including the kitchen rubbish), by the end of the second day stuff was being just thrown in boxes at random.

If you can, be really ruthless in throwing out stuff you don't really need and things that you keep because one day they might be useful. They may not take up much space on their own, but by the time you've both packed and unpacked them (and back again) without even looking at them in the meantime, you question why you even have them any more. i remember unpacking stuff thinking I'd forgotten I'd even owned it.
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Old Oct 16th 2015, 5:28 pm
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Default Re: Packing and shipping query timings

Originally Posted by yellowroom View Post
(including the kitchen rubbish)
Haha, moving our kitchen rubish and the half lemon on a chopping board with a knife that was on the kitchen counter (all rapped together in paper) is all I remember from a Pickford's move as a child.
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Old Oct 16th 2015, 5:45 pm
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Default Re: Packing and shipping query timings

We were in the same position as you 2 months ago. We had DT Movers company packing our stuff. They worked like vacuum cleaners - 3 guys - 1 day and a half. 4 bed house with all the furniture, except electric items, 20ft container, 140 boxes. Make sure you pack kitchen plates, cups etc in a separate box you can easily identify. You will need it first when unpacking.
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Old Oct 16th 2015, 6:20 pm
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Default Re: Packing and shipping query timings

Originally Posted by sadiigo View Post
..... Make sure you pack kitchen plates, cups etc in a separate box you can easily identify. You will need it first when unpacking.
We included some of those in the two trunks we airfreighted.
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Old Oct 16th 2015, 6:56 pm
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Default Re: Packing and shipping query timings

Both of my big moves were completed in 2 days. The move to the US we had around 5-6 people wrapping/dismantling and packing. Don't stand around as you will get wrapped and boxed. We also had a bag of rubbish packed.
We selected a certain volume of 'essentials' to come airfreighted.

Day 2 was loading the container with a smaller number of bigger people.

Unloading this end was an hour, but we agreed to unwrap ourselves. Nothing lost or broken.
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Old Oct 16th 2015, 9:34 pm
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Default Re: Packing and shipping query timings

My movers packed and moved an almost empty roll of paper towels and dirty dish rags among other kitchen essentials. My fault to an extent - I had one room with things that were Not To Be Packed and I hadn't relocated those there! They did leave the partially filled trash bag behind though...

In my case packing a two-bedroom house took maybe half a day for two people, but then I mostly own books which are easy to pack, and had done things like packed electronics in their original boxes where I had them etc.
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Old Oct 21st 2015, 9:49 pm
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Default Re: Packing and shipping query timings

From memory, our move from Switzerland to the US was 3 days. Two for packing (4 guys, I think), then a full day for loading the shipping container. We're 2 adults, 2 kids, in a 4- bed house too.

Things that make a difference:
- bubble wrapping EVERYTHING, even the cheapie IKEA bookshelves we had. We joked that the packing materials were worth more than the contents.
- taking a full inventory. Every box has to be tagged with a numbered sticker, and the contents recorded on a shipping manifest.
- access. Do you have room to park the shipping container at your house? (Ours was 40ft). If not, they'll need to build in time to shuttle everything offsite in a smaller van.
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Old Oct 24th 2015, 2:14 pm
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Default Re: Packing and shipping query timings

Thanks for all your replies-much appreciated.

I think Kodokan is spot on with your comments about all the bubble wrapping and full inventory list. We have been told categorically that we are not allowed to pack anything ourselves so I guess it will take a while to wrap and pack everything. Also, there may be some access issues since I'm not sure we'll get the shipping container onto our driveway so there might be some shuttle servicing required! 2 weeks until packing!!!
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Old Oct 24th 2015, 5:41 pm
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Default Re: Packing and shipping query timings

Originally Posted by NJNewbie2015 View Post
Thanks for all your replies-much appreciated.

I think Kodokan is spot on with your comments about all the bubble wrapping and full inventory list. We have been told categorically that we are not allowed to pack anything ourselves so I guess it will take a while to wrap and pack everything. ......
All shippers tell you that. I don't believe there is a single one who will either unpack and rewrap things you have already packed, or decline to load what you have already packed. The acid test for this is to ask your shipper if they will deliver packing boxes ahead of "packing day" - most if not all shippers will.

I was at a conference last week where, among the information shared, was that officially per US Customs "less than 5%" of containers coming into the US are opened for inspection. The unofficial information, from someone on the ground, is that it is a LOT less than 5%!

Last edited by Pulaski; Oct 24th 2015 at 6:35 pm.
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Old Oct 26th 2015, 6:56 pm
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Default Re: Packing and shipping query timings

Ours took 1 full day, and they worked non stop, stopped for the provided bacon butties and cuppas, we had a 3 bed semi, we packed some stuff and they didn't bat an eyelid

We had issues with the shipping but that was due to weather delays on incoming vessel

The only thing broken was our bureau which had a leg snapped off, they are very skinny and fragile, I claimed £100 and they paid

I did laugh when we were being unpacked, there was one of those wire things you hang on radiators with 2 tea towels on it wrapped!
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Old Oct 27th 2015, 12:52 am
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Default Re: Packing and shipping query timings

Originally Posted by Pulaski View Post
All shippers tell you that. I don't believe there is a single one who will either unpack and rewrap things you have already packed, or decline to load what you have already packed.
Yep there are. Every bloody box. Not me, my friend. We get to use the same company. I'm hoping to use the children to distract them.
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Old Oct 27th 2015, 1:27 am
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Default Re: Packing and shipping query timings

When we moved here 2 years ago, we had packed loads of things like books,etc and my wifes quilting fabrics were all packed in plastic containers. I had listed on the outside of each box what the contents were as the movers had already told me to do that as they had to do a complete manifest. We left all the delicate things - crockery and my wifes collection of Crown Derby for the movers. Come the day, 2 guys arrived at 8.00am and by 6.00pm our 4 bed house was done and loaded.This included dismantling a 2 door American Fridge freezer, a 3 piece suite, dining room table and chairs - all protectively wrapped. Everything was wrapped in bubble or foam sheeting, all plastic boxes wrapped but the cardboard boxes I'd packed - in boxes provided by the movers - were just labelled. In total 194 items. When we unloaded here in Cebu about 6 weeks later the only damage was a very thin mirror cracked. Oh, any box I had packed was marked on the manifest as "self packed".
Yes, even the spare pack of kitchen towels were packed with some saucepans!
It was the least stressful move we've made.I tracked the container all the way from pick up to unloading at the docks here.
If we had let them pack everything then it would have been two days.
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