Moving Abroad

Ease into a new life abroad

Careful planning takes the strain out of moving to a new home overseas and starting a new life abroad.

Starting a new life abroad is not a step you take lightly and so moving your precious possessions is a task for the experts. With customs regulations, piles of paperwork and a whole new way of life to think about at the other end, it helps to know your possessions are in safe hands.

Planning ahead is the key to a smooth move overseas. Once you know you are selling up, the process starts much like it would with a domestic removal. Contact two or three BAR accredited firms for quotes. Having a survey done by a company which is registered with the British Association of Removers (BAR) Overseas Group should protect against any extra costs at a later stage.


“At the time of the survey that’s the client’s time to ask any questions they have,” advises Neil Purdie, Managing Director of Purdie Worldwide. “Typically there a lot more questions with an overseas move. Make sure the company you do decide to move with does have the knowledge and has done that country before. You need to have confidence in the person that’s moving you.”

The most common destinations are Canada and Australia, although moves to Dubai are becoming more frequent. “For Australia in particular, you need to be on top of the quarantine regulations because they can be quite strict. Everything that has been in contact with  the outdoors like shoes and bikes needs to be fully cleaned. There will be an x-ray examination at the other end.”

Move Co-Ordinator

Purdie Worldwide will appoint a move co-ordinator to help guide the customer through the process. The packing process is likely to involve some tough decisions which would not come into the equation in a domestic move.

Think about how long you are going to be abroad and decide which items you will ship, store or sell. Anything you need quickly should be shipped via airfreight. Large shipping containers will mean a longer wait.

“Shipping to Australia can be anything between seven and ten weeks,” says Purdie. “If it’s Canada it can be done in a fortnight. It really depends where you are shipping to. As long as you know in advance how long it’s going to be, that’s when you can start planning what to take and when. Airfreight can be there within in a week normally, by the time it clears customs. That’s for things that you need more quickly like the kids’ cuddly toys for instance-things that will make it feel homely.”