Frequently Asked Questions About International Removals
Below are answers to some of the common questions you may have about international removals and shipping. You will also find FAQ Guides on each of the country pages.
If you have further questions, please don’t hesitate to ask your Account Manager or one of our team on 020 8686 7733.
You can also find our Baggage Shipping FAQ Guide here.
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What is the international removals process?
We aim to make your international removal as easy and stress free as possible. You will be assigned a dedicated Move Manager to organise your move and guide you through the whole process.
Step 1: Get an online quote or home survey.
Step 2: Confirm your booking and pay your deposit.
Step 3: Complete your shipping documentation and customs forms.
Step 4: Move Day – Our packing team will arrive to pack and collect your belongings.
Step 5: For full container loads, your belongings will likely be loaded on the shipping container at your premises. For groupage / part load, your items will be taken to our depo for consolidation.
Step 6: You can relax while your items are shipped to your new country.
Step 7: On arrival, we will take care of customs clearance and our agent will contact you to arrive final delivery.
Do I need a home or video survey?
We highly recommend booking a free home or video survey to receive an accurate estimation of the volume of goods you are sending for your quote.
During this consultation one of our expert international removal surveyors will be able to assess aspects such as packing materials required and access to your property.
You can also use this opportunity to ask all your questions about the move. For example, what you can / cannot take and how to prepare your belongings for shipping.
We recommend a home survey for larger moves, and a video survey for small moves. Your Account Manager will able to advise you on the suitable option.
When do I need to start the moving process?
We recommend getting an initial online quote as soon as possible.
Ideally, you should arrange a home survey at least 3-6 months before you move.
You should book your move at least 1 month before, but preferably earlier to ensure you get the dates most suitable for you.
How much will my international removal or shipping cost?
Removal clients get a free no obligation home survey. Prices can vary depending on your destination and your shipment size, i.e. For a part household, we offer a shared container service where you only pay for the space you utilise or for a full household, we offer a sole-use containerised service.
How long will it take for my shipment to arrive?
The time between removal at your UK residence and arrival at your destination is dependent on the country you are shipping to and the size your shipment. Transit times range from 1 to 12 weeks.
You will also need to allow extra time for customs clearance, which can vary considerably depending on various factors such as the country, how busy the port is and the contents of the container.
What if I Don't know my removal date yet?
Understandably, you may not have a set removal date yet. We recommend four weeks’ notice before removal. However, we appreciate that several contributing factors may mean you cannot give this much notice. For this reason, we offer a provision booking process where we will allocate a crew for your removal on the provisional moving date you advise.
Can I change the items on my removal list?
Items can be added/removed from your removals list before your removal day. Discuss any changes from your Account Manager.
What if I don't have a delivery address?
This is not a problem as all we will require is a contact address and contact details. The delivery address can be advised at a later date or once you arrive.
How do I find out the cost of Marine Insurance and Shipment Protection cover?
Our policy is quick and easy to set up, simply complete our Shipment Protection valuation form with the items you would like to cover and their values.
- Removal (we pack) consignments cover for Australia, New Zealand and Europe by air and road costs 3% of the total insurable value you declare.
- Removal (we pack) consignments cover the Rest of the World and Europe by sea, plus imports into the UK cost 3.5% of the total insurable value you declare.
- Vehicle shipments cover costs 2% of the vehicle’s declared value
- Self-Pack (you pack) consignments cover costs 5% of the total insurable value you declare
- Baggage/Airfreight consignments, which are owner packed, will cost 5% of the total insurable value you declare
What will happen on my removal day?
On the day of your removal, one of our experienced export packing teams will arrive at your residence to start professionally packing the content for your home. PSS only handle and specialises in international removals and shipping.
It is essential that any international removal is professionally export packed using the correct packing materials. All items will be packed into export-approved cartons, and all furniture will be wrapped and protected using 6-ply export-approved blankets.
Our export packing teams will always bring extra cartons and packing materials on your removal day, so if you are undecided about a particular item, please don’t worry.
Once packing is complete, our crew will create an inventory listing all the times you are sending to your destination. 90% of full containers are loaded at your home. This is, however, dependent on access to your residence and the type of load.
If you plan on shipping a part load shipment, your goods will be removed from your residence using a PSS vehicle and loaded into a part-load container at one of our depots, ready for shipment to your destination.
What happens at my destination?
When your goods arrive at the destination, we will handle all the customs formalities, clearance procedures and/or inspections. Some destinations require the shipper (yourself) to attend a meeting with your local customs office as part of the clearance process. Should this apply to you, we will notify you well in advance,
We offer a door-to-door service, so once your goods have passed through customs, they will be delivered directly to your residence. Your belongings will arrive at your residence inside the sea freight container or in a removal vehicle. This will all depend on the country you are moving to and the size of the shipment. Rest assured that we will keep you informed every step of the way.
Are there additional charges?
All of our estimates are quoted as a door-to-door service. This service includes the custom clearance and other related charges (and other destination applicable charges).
All related charges information will be clearly listed in your removal quote and explained to you by your Account Manager. There is a possibility of additional charges if you ship items that are prohibited or restricted entry into the country you are moving to.
Some countries have an agricultural concern, meaning a physical inspection of garden equipment and similar items may be performed upon arrival and, in some cases, treated. In this eventuality, an additional fee would apply. Your Account Manager would be pleased to explain this in greater detail.
When is payment due and will I have to pay a deposit?
Our payment terms are 7 days before removal day and we require a £350 deposit when booking your removal.