How much does it cost to move overseas in 2023?

How much does it cost to move overseas in 2023?

How much does it cost to move overseas in 2023?

How much does it cost to move overseas in 2023?

Jip Verduijn -October 13, 2023

Jip Verduijn -October 13, 2023

Jip Verduijn -October 13, 2023



Are you ready to embark on an exciting adventure and move overseas? While the idea of starting fresh in a new country is thrilling, it’s essential to understand the costs associated with such a move. In this blog post, we’ll guide you through the factors affecting international moving costs and tips for reducing expenses. So, buckle up and let’s dive into the world of international moving!

Table of content

  1. Key takeaways

  2. Understanding the variables: Factors affecting the cost of international moving

  3. Cost breakdown: How much to budget for an overseas move

  4. International moving expenses: Beyond the basics

  5. Professional international movers: Services and pricing

  6. Comparing international movers: Reviews, ratings, and credentials

  7. From packing to pets: Comprehensive guide to overseas relocation

  8. Your financial checklist: Understanding visas, customs, and taxes

  9. Vehicle shipping costs

  10. Storage solutions during an international move

  11. Tips for reducing international moving costs

  12. How to get an accurate international moving quote

  13. Common terms and concepts in international moving

  14. Summary

  15. Frequently Asked Questions

Key takeaways

  • Understanding the right variables can help you budget for an overseas move.

  • Prices of professionals vary greatly because different or additional services can be offered

  • Tips like downsizing, booking early and sea freight are great ways to reduce moving costs.

Understanding the variables: factors affecting the cost of international moving

So, what exactly determines the cost of moving your belongings overseas? The main factors affecting international moving costs are:

  • Distance

  • Shipment size

  • Transportation method

  • Customs fees

  • Insurance

  • Visas

  • Temporary accommodation

  • Temporary storage (if needed)

Identifying the right international moving company is vital since just a small part of registered moving companies have a license to handle ocean freight services.

Many moving companies, or networks of partners, provide international services like packing, loading, and unloading. It's important to carefully make your decision out of many international moving companies to match your budget and needs.

Cost breakdown: how much to budget for an overseas move

A full-service international move generally comprises services like professional packing and unpacking, shipping insurance, door-to-door delivery and payment of customs duties. Further, one can opt for any additional services such as storage and custom crating. The average cost to move with international moving services varies widely. It depends on the destination country, shipment size, and transportation method. For instance, shipping costs for a 2-bedroom apartment can range from $4,000 to $10,000, while a larger home could cost anywhere from $8,000 to $20,000 or more.

Remember, these figures represent average costs. An international estimate from a trustworthy moving company will yield a more precise price.

Don’t forget to budget for additional expenses, such as visa fees, destination country customs duty, and any required import taxes. Also, consider purchasing additional insurance coverage for your belongings. Basic insurance coverage may not be sufficient to cover the full value of your items in case of damage or loss during transit.

International moving expenses: beyond the basics

When planning your international move, there are several additional expenses to consider. Some examples include:

  • Visa fees, which can range from $150 to $1500+, depending on the destination country and type of visa.

  • Pet relocation costs, which can vary from $300 to $1,200, depending on the airline and international moving service chosen.

  • Short-term accommodation expenses.

  • Storage costs.

  • Shipping a vehicle overseas, if you plan to bring your car with you.

Make sure to budget for these expenses when planning your international move.

The cost of shipping a pet overseas can increase due to customs clearance and vet bills. It makes it crucial to select a trustworthy, experienced international moving company. 

Finally, don’t overlook the importance of moving insurance. It helps safeguard your belongings while they’re being moved and can save you money in case of any damages or losses during the move. Insurance costs vary depending on the value of your items and the level of coverage you choose, so be sure to factor this into your overall moving budget.

Professional international movers: services and pricing

Hopefully you have a better understanding of the factors affecting international moving costs. Let’s explore the services and pricing structures of professional international movers. These movers provide a range of services, including:

  • Packing

  • Shipping

  • Storage

  • Documentation help

  • Customs clearance

  • Delivery

The best international movers can give you a precise estimate, or at least an accurate range, on international moving costs and ensure your relocation goes smoothly.

Comparing international movers: reviews, ratings, and credentials

It is crucial to check the ratings, reviews and credentials of international movers when comparing them.

In addition to reviews, examine the company’s experience, credentials, and customer service. This is to ensure you’re choosing the right international moving service for your needs.

Remember, when examining quotes from international movers, it’s vital to consider more than just the cost. Their reputation, customer service, and the services they offer should also be taken into account. By thoroughly researching and comparing multiple movers, you can feel confident in your decision and ensure a smooth and successful overseas relocation. Branche organizations where people often go to are IAM & FIDI.

From packing to pets: comprehensive guide to overseas relocation

A successful overseas relocation involves careful planning and attention to detail. Begin by researching the culture, language, and laws of your new country, as well as the visa requirements and health care options.

Next, consider your packing, shipping, and storage needs, and whether you’ll require custom crating services for specific items.

If you’re bringing your pet along, research the rules and regulations of the destination country and the cost of pet transportation. Moreover, consider the social support you’ll have in your new country, including family, friends, and any potential language barriers.

Finally, ensure you have a thorough understanding of the education, healthcare, and tax implications of moving to a new country. These aspects can vary greatly in most countries.

Your financial checklist: understanding visas, customs, and taxes

A vital aspect of planning your international move is creating a financial checklist that covers visas, customs, and taxes. First, research the visa requirements for your destination country and budget for the associated fees, which can range from $150 to $1500+.

Next, familiarize yourself with the customs duty charges and taxes for importing your belongings and vehicle. These costs are determined by the destination country and can greatly impact your overall moving expenses.

While international moving companies can offer advice on customs and taxes, the final costs are ultimately decided by your destination country. Therefore, it’s crucial to research these expenses in advance and factor them into your overall moving budget.

Vehicle shipping costs

Shipping a vehicle overseas can be a significant expense in your international move. The cost of shipping a car abroad starts around $700 and can get up to $4,000 or more, depending on the size of the car and the distance it needs to travel. Additionally, there may be extra costs associated with registering your car in your new country. Examples are obtaining a new driver’s license, registering the vehicle, and obtaining insurance.

If you’re considering shipping your car overseas, it’s important to balance the costs against the benefits. In some cases, it may be more cost-effective to sell your vehicle and purchase a new one in your destination country, depending on import taxes and duties.

Storage solutions during an international move

Storing your belongings during an international move can be a convenient solution, especially if you’re unsure about the duration of your stay. There are two main storage options to consider: international warehouse storage and public storage. Storage size, extra features and duration for which it is needed, all these factors play an important role in deciding the storage costs. For instance, climate control or extra security can add to these costs.

International warehouse storage is usually more expensive than public storage. This is due to the labor involved. Examples are forklifting your belongings and having a crew member uncrate them before putting them back in storage. Nonetheless, many storage companies provide discounts for extended usage. This  should be factored in when researching storage solutions. Public storage refers to storage facilities that are available for general use by individuals and businesses. These facilities are often located in urban areas and offer various storage options, such as storage units or spaces of varying sizes.

Customers typically rent a specific space within a public storage facility to store their personal belongings or business inventory. These spaces are usually self-service, meaning customers are responsible for loading and unloading their items themselves.

Tips for reducing international moving costs

There are several ways to reduce international moving costs, making your overseas move more affordable. One effective strategy is to downsize your belongings before the move. Selling, donating, or discarding items that you no longer need can significantly reduce the volume of your shipment, lowering your moving costs. Additionally, doing your own packing can save you money on professional packing services.

Another tip to save money and reduce moving costs is to book your move early and avoid peak moving seasons, as this can help you secure better rates and availability.

Lastly, consider opting for sea freight instead of air freight, as it is usually a more cost-effective option for transporting your belongings overseas. This is explained in the FAQ.

How to get an accurate international moving quote

Obtaining an accurate international moving quote is essential for budgeting your move and avoiding any unexpected expenses. To get an accurate quote, follow these steps:

  1. Reach out to a professional moving company and request a free estimate.

  2. When selecting a licensed international moving company, provide detailed information about your belongings and any special needs you may have.

  3. This will ensure the quote is as accurate as possible.

Comparing quotes from several trustworthy movers is crucial to securing the best deal for your move. Make sure to consider factors beyond the cost, such as the company’s reputation, customer service, and the services they provide. By doing your homework and gathering multiple quotes, you can confidently choose the right international mover and know the exact cost of your move. 

Common terms and concepts in international moving

Navigating the world of international moving can be confusing, especially with the various terms and concepts used in the industry. Here is a list of common terms you may encounter during your move:

  1. Full-service moves: The moving company handles everything from packing, loading, transporting, and unloading your belongings.

  2. Partial moves: The moving company packs and loads your items, but you are responsible for transportation and unloading.

  3. Self-service moves: You handle all aspects of the move, including packing, loading, transportation, and unloading.

Moreover, understanding the paperwork required for international moving is crucial. This includes:

  • Passports

  • Visas

  • Customs forms

  • Other documents pertaining to your destination country

By understanding these terms and concepts, you’ll be better equipped to navigate the international moving process and ensure a smooth transition to your new home.


In conclusion, it’s crucial to understand the costs involved and plan accordingly. By researching international moving costs, comparing international movers, and considering additional expenses such as visas and customs fees, you can ensure a successful and stress-free move. And a tip from 

jip: Remember to downsize your belongings, get accurate moving quotes, and familiarize yourself with the terms and concepts of international moving. With thoughtful planning, your overseas relocation will be a smooth and enjoyable experience!

Frequently Asked Questions

How much does it cost to move belongings to another country?

Moving to another country can cost anywhere from $1,000 to $10,000+, depending on the services needed and method of transportation chosen. Professional packing and furniture disassembly, loading into a container for sea freight and air freight are among the most common services included in the cost.

What is the cheapest way to move belongings overseas?

When you're looking to move your belongings overseas, sea freight is the way to go - it's typically up to 16 times cheaper than air freight.

What are the main factors affecting international moving costs?

Moving internationally can be costly due to factors such as distance, shipment size, transportation method, customs fees, insurance, visas, and accommodation.

How can I get an accurate international moving quote?

To get an accurate international moving quote, provide a licensed moving company with detailed information about your belongings and any special needs.

What are the storage options during an international move?

When moving internationally, you have two primary storage options: international warehouse storage and public storage.

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