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How to Ship Moving Containers Overseas

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How to Ship Moving Containers Overseas
How to Ship Moving Containers Overseas

Are you looking at moving overseas

We're going to answer all of the essential questions regarding what goes into shipping moving containers overseas so you can have a solid overview of the process. 

The most common way to ship moving containers overseas is through sea freight. Cost-efficiency is the main reason why people choose to utilize sea freight shipment. Air Freight shipping stands as the second most popular method of transporting belongings overseas. 

While moving your belongings overseas via airfreight travel is much more expensive than sea freight shipping, there are some perks associated with the process.

Before we dive into those perks, let's start with a rundown of what goes into the most popular overseas shipping method of freight travel. 

How Is Overseas Freight Shipping Arranged? 

The first step in arranging to ship your belongings overseas through freight travel is to contact an international moving company. Once you've booked your time slot, the company will bring a container to your home to load your belongings. After packing away all of your household items, the driver will transport the container to the appropriate port for overseas travel. 

There are two main size options involved with overseas freight shipping:

  • Full Container Load (FCL)
  • Less than Container Load (LCL)

If you're moving with a large number of household items, you'll probably want to opt for the more extensive FCL setup. LCL is perfect for people shipping small to medium sizes of objects. If you select an FCL, you'll have the whole container to yourself, whereas LCL is shared.  

You're probably wondering how much this all is going to cost. 

Let's take a closer look. 

How Are Overseas Freight Shipping Costs Calculated? 

The main factors that influence your overseas freight shipping costs include where you're shipping from, how much luggage you're shipping, and what type of service you're selecting. Door-to-door overseas freight shipping involves the moving company helping you pack your belongings at your door, then delivering your household items to your new door overseas. Door-to-port overseas freight shipping consists of the same process of the moving company first coming to your house but differs in that you'll collect your items at the nearest international port to where you're moving. 

Due to the convenience, door-to-door overseas freight shipping is going to cost you more than door-to-port service. 

What Are the Perks of Overseas Air Shipping? 

Earlier, we mention that there are perks involved with overseas air shipping. The main perk you receive when choosing overseas air shipping is an expedited moving process. Air travel is naturally much faster than loading a shipping container onto a large freight ship.

Why Is Air Freight Shipping Faster?

It's vital that you can rely on the moving company you're working with to get your belongings overseas within the timeframe that they provide. Air Freight shipping is a great way to ensure that your possessions arrive on time, as flights tend to leave every hour. 

When working with a sea freight shipping method, you have to send your items to the seaport nearest to your location. If you're further inland, dealing and traveling to ports can be a hassle. Flights have more flexibility in terms of where they can land your belongings. 

How Secure Is Airfreight Travel?

The last essential perk we're going to cover with air freight shipping is the enhanced level of security you receive. If you pack your items in a shared sea freight container loaded onto a ship with hundreds of other containers, the chances of theft are higher than an airplane. Airports have more limited space as well as closely monitored safety controls. 

What's the Main Drawback of Air Freight Travel? 

The main drawback of shipping items overseas via airfreight is the elevated cost. Planes only have so much room, so if you're looking to pull off a large scale move with a full moving container, it's going to cost you. Shipping a limited number of items by plane tends to be a more popular option as you'll spend less and receive your items in a timely fashion. 

Now that we've covered some necessary information related to moving containers overseas let's answer some more focused questions related to the process of shipping belongings overseas. 

How Do I Get My Pet Overseas? 

Pets are often essential parts of our lives, so it's crucial to have accurate information on how to help your pet travel with you overseas. First, read up on the guidelines that the country you're importing your pet to has on animals regarding vaccinations and other essential paperwork. The most typical form of international travel for pets tends to be through a cargo flight. 

Shipping a live animal is more complicated than sending household belongings in a freight container.

Certain countries limit what kinds of animals they import and have other strict laws regarding the overseas transportation of pets. Before pulling off your overseas move, speak with your vet, and consult your international moving service for more information. 

How Can I Ship My Vehicle Overseas? 

Like shipping household items overseas, transporting a car overseas tends to be performed via air or sea freight service. Air Freight shipping tends to be utilized for modern or vintage luxury vehicles. The owners of these cars prefer paying more money to ensure their cars are delivered in a safe and timely manner. Sea freight shipping is a more popular option for sending cars overseas due to the lower cost. 

Make sure you research complete all the proper paperwork for importing your vehicle to achieve a more seamless transition. 

What Are Some Final Useful Tips for Moving Overseas? 

The most useful tips for moving overseas tend to involve helping you save money. If you don't plan your overseas move carefully, you can easily exceed your pre-planned budget. 

Below is some advice to help you reduce the amount of cash you spend when moving to your new country: 

First, plan way ahead of time. International moving companies can take a lot of the stress off your plate during the planning phase. Consulting ahead of time will reduce the amount of pressure you feel about working out the process's finer details. On the topic of saving money, the more you put off your overseas move to the last minute, the higher your shipping costs.

It's always best to seriously evaluate what you need for your move overseas. Selling off unneeded items before your move can make the difference in purchasing a full container load or a less than container load. 

Everyday items people overlook selling for international moves include:

  • Books
  • Clothing
  • Electronics such as televisions
  • Kitchen appliances
  • Shoes

Selling off the above items can be challenging, but these are items that have the ability to be replaced. 

Lastly, the country in which your moving will have a significant impact on how much shipping your belongings overseas will cost. We know that you won't always have the luxury of choosing where you move internationally in contexts such as job relocation, but if you're moving to fulfill a personal dream and have the freedom to go where you please, evaluate each country you're looking at and their cost of living. 

While embarking on an overseas move can be stressful, the more prepared you are, the easier the process will be. 

Joe Webster
Written By:Joe Webster
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Joe Webster began his journey in the auto transport field by attending the University of Southern California (USC), where he graduated with a Bachelor of Business Marketing. 

After college, he started his career in the auto transport industry from the bottom up and has done virtually every job there is to do at A-1 Auto Transport, including but not limited to: Truck Driver, Dispatch, Sales, PR, Bookkeeping, Transport Planner, Transport Manager, International Transport Manager, Brokering, Customer Service, and Marketing. Working with his mentor Tony Taylor, Joe Webster has learned the ins and outs of this industry which is largely misunderstood. 

With over 30 years experience in the industry, we've been helping people ship their vehicles, motorcycles, RV's, heavy equipment, household goods and more across the country or overseas without a hitch. Ask us anything.

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