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    Questions to Ask Your International Removals Firm

    By The reallymoving Team Updated 25th Mar, 2024

    For any move abroad, it is essential that you find a removal company that you can trust. Find out what questions to ask your international removal firm, so you can know what you’ll be getting from your move.

    Questions to Ask Your International Removals Firm

    Moving house is always a demanding time, but when you are moving across borders and oceans, the importance of all aspects of your move going to plan and avoiding a chaotic experience is even more significant.

    It is essential that you know all the right questions to ask when choosing an international removal company, as the reliable service from a professional overseas mover can be the difference between a straightforward move and an unpleasant move. Have a look through our questions to find out what to ask your overseas moving firm to ensure you are confident in the company you select for your move abroad.

    Pre-move Survey

    • Will you need to perform a survey before I receive a binding quote? This is something all reputable overseas moving companies will provide to discover your requirements and what they will need to move. During a pre-move survey is a good time to ask all your important questions.

    • What customer forms will I need to complete? Ask about the documentation required when moving to another country, and if they can offer any assistance with the forms.

    • What do I need to do prior to the date of my move? Find out the tasks you will need to do, and when they will need to be completed, in preparation for your international removal company, such as defrosting your freezer.

    • Will your removal company provide carpet and floor protectors? You won’t want to be worrying about any damage or dirt on your floors during this busy time.

    Following the survey, where you will have discussed any additional services you require, you should receive a full written quotation with a fixed price.


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    Packing and Crating

    • Are there any items I should not pack into my container? This could be because they won’t travel well, or because they are forbidden from entering your destination country.

    • How much notice should I give to book my packing date? Find out how far in advance you should inform your removal company of your required packing service. You should also ask about whether they will crate your fragile items and if there is anything you could pack yourself.

    • Can you pack my car into my container? You may wish to take your car with you when moving abroad, so ask your removal company whether this is something they offer, and how they will ship it.

    Regulations and Restrictions

    • What are the customs regulations for the country I am moving to? Your removal company will be able to provide you with the information you need to ensure you are compliant to all requirements.

    • Are there any items that are restricted or prohibited for importing into my destination country? Certain items are banned from entering foreign borders and should not be packed into your shipment.


    • Are there any times of the year I should try to avoid for my removals? Festivals occur all over the world at different times, and it would be best to avoid times where road closures would make travel difficult. Enquire as to when national holidays in your destination country are, as that will affect customs clearance times.

    • Can you give me an estimated time on how long my goods will be travelling for? They may not be able to give an exact date, but they should be able to provide an estimated time frame.

    • Can you give me an estimated customs clearance time for my shipment leaving my origin country and my destination country?

    • Do I have to be present in the destination country prior to my goods arriving? Or will my shipment be able to go through customs and continue its way to my new home before I arrive in the country?

    Terms and Conditions

    • What is your cancellation policy? Make sure you see the company’s terms and conditions as soon as possible so you are aware of the terms of your contract with the company.

    • Are there any charges that are not included in my quotation? Find out what your removal quote includes and what you may have to pay an additional amount for, such as customs charges.

    • Does your removal company require a deposit? This is something you should ask during the pre-move survey.


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    Company Details

    • Are you part of a recognised international trade body? Selecting a firm that is regulated by an international removal trade association can help you to be confident that they adhere to industry standards. FIDI, Omni and BAR Overseas are all notable trade associations.

    • What are the contact details for my agent at the destination? Or will you be my sole point of contact? When your goods have arrived at the destination country your communication may be with another move manager for the last part of your removal service.

    Additional Services

    • Can you provide or organise any 3rd party services I might need? This includes professionals such as a plumber to disconnect your washing machine. Find out whether this is something you will have to organise yourself.

    • Do you handle international pet removals? Or can you recommend a company that will be able to provide this?

    • Can I obtain marine insurance for my move?

    When moving to another country, having the support of a professional, efficient international removal company that you feel comfortable with will help to reduce the stress of your move and make the transition to your new life abroad much simpler for you and your family.


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    JCL were really helpful organising and moving my stuff from Netherlands to UK. Mark was knowledgeable about all the customs documents. They were able to organise transport at late notice. The driver was friendly, his truck was tidy and nothing was broken during transit. I highly recommend JCL.

    Ell on 21/03/2024

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