Thursday, 5 February 2015

Packing your life up: where to start?

Everyone has experienced the stress of packing a suitcase to go on holiday. How to fit everything in, deciding what you really need to take and if you do get it all in, is it the right weight to get on the plane?!
So what do you do when packing isn't just for two weeks in the sun, but is instead for your new life as an expat.
Even for seasoned travelers, it’s important to take stock and prioritise what you need before the big move!

Start with the practical

Pack with arriving in mind. Put essentials in one box e.g. towels & bedding so they’re easily accessible when you arrive. Label boxes and keep a plan of what needs to go where which will make unpacking easier. Start with the practical essentials but don’t forget your sentimental items.  You will probably be able to find everything else you need once you’re settled in your new country but it’s good to have the basics ready when you arrive.

 Get it from the horse’s mouth

If you already have friends abroad, they will be the best point of reference on what you will be able to get once you arrive which should free up space in that overflowing suitcase you have been imagining. Explore your network to see if you know anyone who’s already there or who can give pointers about what to expect, what to bring, weather, and the availability of your favourite items in shops.

Be ruthless

Do you need to take everything? Even the kitchen sink? Moving is a good opportunity to do a clear out, start fresh – think about what you will need to take vs what you might need to buy. If you can’t face parting with things then consider storage options or offload to a friend/family member for safe keeping. Now is a great time for a big de-clutter so you can start afresh!

Plan, plan, plan

Scope out moving services early on and if you’re moving abroad with work see what support they have in place that could help things run smoothly. For anyone who enjoys making lists, now is a great time to start thinking of different aspects of your current life that will need to be transported and what you will need to put in place to help the move go smoothly. It can also help to research online and take a trip to your new home country before you move for good. 

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