By: Jen Flanagan, Content Editor, GentleGiant.com
Any successful move requires thorough planning and consideration, and long-distance or cross-country moves specifically require a little extra TLC to make the experience as seamless as possible.
Here are five items to consider as you prepare to plan your long-distance move:
#1: Make sure you are aware of who will be handling your items throughout the process
When you hire independent long-distance movers such as Gentle Giant, you are hiring a company where all employees work for the same company and have been trained to the same standard. These companies will not subcontract the pick-up or send a driver to a destination and have them look for labour once they are there; this ensures consistency and reputation.
Other companies, such as van lines, have multiple different employees involved with the labour of your move. There might be one company loading your items at your origin, another company driving them to where they need to go, and a third company unloading the items at your destination. This can be a risk if you find any damages in your items, as it would be difficult to know which company is responsible. Keep this in mind as you search company reviews.
#2: Give yourself plenty of time to plan out a moving date
The more time you can commit to planning your move, the smoother the process will be. As soon as you know the date of when you need to move, we suggest calling reputable moving companies immediately to inquire their availability on your desired date(s). We suggest a month or more in advance, especially if you are moving over 500 miles.
Another important note is the delivery window you will be given by your mover, which is the estimated time in which your items will arrive to their destination. Keep this date range in mind, especially if you need to start a new job in a different city.
#3: Understand the variety of shuttle charges and packing costs
There are certain charges associated with long-distance moves which are not always present with local moves. The line haul charge you will be given will be the bulk of your total cost, but there are almost always additional charges. For example, a shuttle to load or deliver your items might be needed if you are moving to or from a neighborhood with narrow streets. Since your items are transported on tractor trailers (18-wheelers), these shuttles are sometimes a necessity, as these trucks are over 60 feet long and cannot always be maneuvered right near the door at pick-up or delivery. There will be a fee associated with using a smaller truck to shuttle items to and from the tractor trailer if it is needed. For those seeking help with packing, there is an additional labor and materials charge if you are looking to have movers assist with your pre-move packing needs.
#4: Make appropriate provisions for specialty items or antiques
Don’t compromise your valuable items. Decide if these items, whatever they may be for you specifically, will need to be assembled by a third party. This gives you plenty of time to make the appropriate arrangements or bring the items in your car with you during the move instead. Any items of value should be brought to the attention of your move consultant, who can make a note of the item in your file, so your moving crew is aware of this ahead of time.
#5: Consider hosting a house-cooling party to say goodbye to friends and neighbors
Most people have heard of a house-warming party to welcome guests to their new home, but a house-cooling party can be just as fun and beneficial to your moving journey. At a house-cooling party, you have the chance to connect with local neighbors and friends before you embark on your new adventure in life. You can also invite guests to take any belongings you don’t want to pack up during your move or any perishable food. Use this time as an opportunity to exchange new contact and address information with anyone you wish to stay in touch with.
As overwhelming as moving may be, many of us have experienced the process, and the result is always rewarding. Our trained moving professionals at Gentle Giant offer help, support and resources, every step of the way including resources like this handy moving checklist. We wish you the best of luck in your new journey!