A PERSONAL RECOLLECTION OF MOVING

Submitted by Chad Cochran
on 03/10/18

As someone that has been moving long distances all my life, I am well acquainted with well-designed ideas that streamline the process of long distance moving and concepts that hinder it. The majority of my moving experience has been without the help of professionals, I soon learned the difference between the two.  As I utilized the services of a one-way rental truck company I discovered that the concept of “do it yourself” has many obstacles.

First, the limited space for the transfer of goods cross country is time consuming and disruptive to the daily agenda I have.  Second, the reliance on friends and family can be dependent on scheduling and dependability of those involved.  Thirdly, the expenses not only in monetary terms but time consumed for packing, loading, driving, unloading, and unpacking one’s possessions make this cumbersome and inefficient.

On the other hand, I have hired a long distance moving companies that put my mind at ease with the coordinated, efficient manner of scheduling evaluations, packing of goods by professionals, logistic reliability, and ensuring of my goods during packing, loading, transport, unloading, and unpacking.  This type of professionalism and reliability can only be expected by companies that have recognized the unpredictability of a “self move” and implemented structured methods to eliminate that unpredictability through a regimented process.

Two periods in my life where I utilized long distance moving companies have been positive experiences for myself and my family.  After serving 4 years on active duty in the U.S Army overseas in Europe, it was time to return home to St. Louis, Missouri.  The moving company contracted to provide the services to get me to the United States (U.S.) was thorough by providing step-by-step information regarding the process of moving my goods.

I was fully aware of the process from an initial visit to evaluate my possessions and equate that into poundage, to the physical crating of my belongings, and the eventual trans-shipment of goods to the temporary storage and receiving area.  The professionalism of the people that engaged me, not only customer service representatives but the Packers, and movers themselves, had a firm knowledge of the process and answered questions that arose without hesitation and with absolute confidence in being correct.  I commend that company for focusing on training employees about the process, but also for the expertise all members possessed regarding transitioning from place to place.

I have recently moved to Honolulu, Hawaii from the St. Louis metro area in Missouri for work.  Once again, I was impressed with the thoroughness of the procedures and policies exhibited by the contracted company.  As previous experience with long distance moving companies, I knew what to expect from professionals.  I was not disappointed.  The proficiency of the company not only accelerated the packing time but decreased the overall moving time as well due to the practices of all involved.  The packers in this instance were the stand-out professionals for this move.

As I had settled into civilian life since my first move I had accumulated many more belongings.  I had furnished a home with my wife and those belongings needed to be transported to Hawaii.  The first people to arrive estimated my cargo at ten thousand pounds.  A considerable amount since my one thousand pounds while in the Army. The entire house would need to be packed and moved eight thousand miles away to Hawaii.  The Packers finished this task within two days and explained the procedures while cataloging all belongings.

I was especially impressed when the foreman of the crew had taken charge to correctly wrap and stabilized a grandfather clock by crafting a specialty crate after padding the glass face and body.  This service was provided on site and did not need to be subcontracted outside the company.  This showed the forethought through the hiring process to provide specialty services spontaneously when needed.  This specific craftsman was an indelible part of the crew and his expertise and craftsmanship were memorable.

The crew itself was constantly busy boxing and crating certain items but with a steady consistent system to catalog high value items versus common items. Each room was sequentially packed and crated with an efficiency I have only likened to a military operation.  The house was buzzing with persons knowing what materials were to be used on different belongings to the foreman shifting people to different areas after work had been completed.  I found myself being hands off through the whole process but kept abreast of the status of my belongings periodically by the crew and foreman.

The next day when the loaders arrived it seemed to conclude fast because all our belongings had been packed and crated, and cataloged according to the procedures of the company which I was fully aware of.  The loaders made swift work of the ten thousand pounds and were finished within two hours.  I was handed a bill of lading and copies of my paperwork designating which belongings were in which crate and the loaders soon left.  I was left with a sense of ease that all my possessions would meet us in Hawaii in sixty days which turned out to be true.

We left the continental United States and arrived in Honolulu, Hawaii a week after my house was packed and loaded.  As I arrived in Hawaii I was contacted by a local company, a few days later, that had taken responsibility of my household goods and scheduled a rudimentary time to deliver my personal items.  Since my wife and I were still scouting for permanent housing the delivery would have to be postponed until we had decided on our new home.  The company was patient with the vague timeline and was more concerned with our convenience than their own.

Completing the long distance move approximately 50 days after contacting us about scheduling we had found our new home.  I reached out to the company and they were prepared to deliver within 48 hours of a firm appointment, which I made.  As the day arrived I was contacted by the movers who would deliver and unpack our goods.  The operation that unfolded was coordinated, professional, and convenient.  The local knowledge of street parking and city ordinances for large trucks was invaluable for the delivery because this allowed for the nearest parking areas to be utilized in the urban area.

The delivery men were able to obtain the proper permits to unload the vehicle in a busy thoroughfare which eased the timeline for the crew by reducing the amount of trips being made for delivery.  As the crew unloaded our belongings, starting with the high value items, which were strategically placed for our convenience.  The crew was able to unload and unpack all our goods within a standard work day, completed the needed paperwork, and left us with a sense of relief and alleviated all our anxiety of not having our personal belongings.

As we move forward to our next change of duty station in the next eighteen months we will once again be making use of long distance moving companies to provide us with professional quality service, a sense of accommodation, reliability, and convenience of not having to move ourselves.  As my experience has taught me, long distance moving companies are professional outfits that provide a valuable service for people creating new lives in new places.  The services provided not only encompass the highest standards of small business owners but the values that are relayed to the customer are reflected through the employees from management to loaders.  I look forward to the convenient experience again that pays off emotionally for the consumer in the end.

Submitted by Chad Cochran
on 03/10/18

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