An Expat life has suggestions of glamour. Foreign locations, new friends and experiences. The life admin side, however, is not so glamourous.
You will often need to pack quickly, frequently, and flexibly. Well, you will become an expert at packing!
If you are about to embark on an expat adventure, here’s some tips on how to pack from the experts.
Keep ID Close
Setting up a new life abroad means you will often need ID. Not just passports, but birth certificates, marriage certificates, driving licenses and insurance documents.
Dig them out and keep them in your hand luggage.
Keys, wallets, laptops and phones should be separated from the rest of your packing so they do not go in the sea freight by mistake!
This also includes charging accessories, and any necessary adaptors for when you arrive.
Ensure you have enough medical supplies for a month or so. Setting yourself up with a new doctor in a new country can take time.
It is always safest to pack enough medication – and keep it in your hand luggage.
What’s the weather?
Dress for your new location! You will need to pack enough clothes – and the right type of clothing – in your suitcases.
Check local weather forecasts, as well as average temperatures for the next few months. Your freight belongings may take several weeks, or months, to arrive. Plan enough stuff, plus coats, if the weather will turn cold.
Pack to Unpack
Unpacking is hard work! Do as much preparation during the packing stage as possible. Keep useful items together, and label boxes clearly with their contents.
Wash and dry all bedding, clothes and rugs before they get packed up. It will be so much nicer to unpack clean items you can use straightaway.
Store Large Items
House sizes vary in different locations, so don’t take the entire contents of your house. Consider what you really need based on your length of stay. Pack up and store larger items that you can live without.
Check voltages! Electrical equipment may not work in your destination, so no point dragging your vacuum halfway around the world if you can’t use it. Store it, ready for your return.
Self-Storage is a convenient and cost-efficient way to keep hold of all these items. They will be kept safe and secure until you return. Shurgard Self-Storage can help.
What’s not on the list?
There are many rules and regulations about what you can pack in your shipment – be sure to check these out with your removals company.
Food – including tinned and packet food – and alcoholic drinks are the main forbidden items. Why not have a farewell party and use it all up!
Embarking on an expat assignment is a very exciting time, but preparation is key. Get organised in advanced and read up on your destination as much as possible.
Good luck with your expat assignment!
Have you got any other tips to share?