Everything you need to know about moving by plane or boat

November 28, 2014

Organizing a long-distance move can be overwhelming. To help you get started, here's everything you need to know about moving by plane or boat to make it easier.
The first thing to do is find a company specialized in technical packing, loading and unloading, as well as long-distance transport. Reputable companies should be familiar with customs, both in Canada and the country of final destination. Don’t hesitate to ask for several quotes to compare prices and services.

The choice of transport, by air or sea, will largely rely on the volume and weight of the cargo. Depending on your budget, you can opt to split the difference and ship some items by air and the rest by boat.

Moving by air

Air transport is suitable for small loads, with a volume of between one and three cubic meters. The advantage of this method of transport is that the delay is comparatively much shorter.

  • It takes approximately seven to 10 days to relocate the items from one place to another.

The one downside: to date, airline shipments are still quite expensive.

Moving by sea

Sea freight is suitable for larger shipments. Volume varies from a one-cubic meter box to large freight containers.

  • Transit time can be two to six weeks, depending on the location.

Organizing it all

Before you begin to pack, it’s recommended to take a serious inventory of your belongings. Here's what to consider:

  • What you will bring what you will purchase at your new location
  • Electric outlets and voltages for electronics and appliances. Buy adapters if necessary.
  • The number of boxes you will need
  • When packing boxes by room, fill them up with the least frequently used objects first.
  • Wardrobe boxes are practical for hanging clothes, such as jackets, dresses and coats.
  • Empty drawers so as to not damage their contents.
  • International moves require you to prepare at least three months in advance.

Helpful tips for packing boxes

With a little bit of care, your belongings will arrive in one piece.

  • Use bedding, sweaters, scarves or bubble wrap to pad fragile items.
  • Small but heavy items (books, cans) should be packed in small boxes.
  • Larger and lighter items should go in larger boxes.
  • The heaviest items should be packed at the bottom of the box.
  • Use felt-markers to label “fragile” items, write down which room boxes go to, and list the contents of the box.
  • Pack medication in a separate box and carry it with you.
  • Dishes should always be packed on their side and never laid flat. This will significantly reduce the risk of breakage.
  • Prepare a bag of items you known you’ll need once you land, including snacks, plastic plates, toilet paper, disposable tissues, tools, tape and more.

While there is a lot to organize when moving long distance either by plane or boat, a bit of planning goes a long way to making moving day—and your new adventure abroad—exciting.

Everything you need to know about moving by plane or boat
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