Ship Personal Belongings Internationally: Everything You Need to Know

You might decide to immigrate to another country for many reasons and factors. Perhaps you’ve found yourself immigrating overseas in search of better job prospects, saying bon voyage to be with a loved one, or simply wishing to lead a simple way under the sun.

This guide aims to provide everything you need to know about sending personal effects internationally.

You may want to know everything about customs during shipping personal belongs internationally. Welcome to check:

What is the customs clearance process

Documents required for customs clearance.

What is the customs clean fee, and how to pay it.

Before moving your belongings to another country, ask yourself some questions

Before moving your belongings to another country ask yourself some questions

Asking yourself questions before starting your international moving journey will help identify the scale of your move and the best way to move to your destination country.

How to move your belongings to another country?

You’ll have the choice of moving them by land, air, or sea freight. It will help if you start searching for a moving international team as far as three months before and book them at least two months prior.

That will allow the moving company to evaluate your needs, understand your requirements, and help you determine the ideal fit for your time frame and budget.

Where will you live?

The world is your oyster when we talk about shipping household goods overseas. You will find many countries that are great places to live. The perfect international city or town will vary on your unique situation and needs.

Below are a few things you must consider on choosing where to live:

·        Consider the lifestyle and weather

·        Consider the community for newcomers and ex-pat population

·        Consider the safety issues of the country

·        Consider the job opportunities

·        Consider the culture and whether it fits you

·        Consider the cost of living and your budget

·        Consider if you like to live in a Enlish main language country

Can you afford an overseas move?

Let’s face it. Moving overseas is extremely costly. Hiring an international moving company to secure a new place and getting marine insurance will be expensive. You need to ensure you have your moving and shipping cost properly calculated.

Try to save at least 3 to 6 months’ worth of income. You have a wiggle room as you look for. It will also help if you acquire all the needed and proper documentation and perhaps learn the new language.

Shipping Household Goods Internationally/Overseas

Shipping Household Goods InternationallyOverseas

Shipping all your personal effects and household hoods offers a different set of challenges, which need more careful planning than an intercontinental move. Also, thorough planning guarantees your international move goes off smoothly.

As with any moving company, no matter your destination, you should always consider the location, timing, volume, distance, and time of year. You will find different methods of shipping your personal effects and household goods overseas.

Shipping overseas using sea freight

The most cost-efficient way of international moving is through sea freight. Your mover packs and sends the full container to your home to load along with your personal effects. Once they are filled, they’ll pick up the container with a truck and transport it to the port, where it will be loaded on the ship and sent overseas.

International logistics specialists are normally full-service and will arrange for your container load to be unloaded and brought to the destination country with all the needed documentation.

Using sea freight will allow the international moving company to give you two options, depending on the number of things you should move:

·        Full container load

·        Group (shared container shipping)

·        Less than a container load

Click here to read more about FLC shipping: Meaning and Shipping Rates.

Click here to learn more about what LCL shipping is.

Shipping overseas using air freight

A faster yet costlier method for shipping your personal effects overseas is via air freight. Remember that the higher cost of air freight is worth the price tag, especially if you’re on a tight deadline, even though you still need to consider how much your personal effects weigh.

That’s because many air freight shipping companies have a weight limit you need to follow.

Click here to learn everything about Air freight and Air cargo shipping.

Shipping personal items internationally via courier

Do you plan to send your personal effects abroad or at home? You can also consider sending them through a courier service. Take note that the price of shipping household goods through a carrier depends on the delivery destination and the pick-up place, the shipment’s size and weight, and the urgency and type of transport picked.

For example, DHL is one of the best courier companies which can ship from one country worldwide. Click here to learn everything about DHL express.

Moving to another country via land freight

This limited shipping household goods option involves crossing into Canada or Mexico from the United States. However, it does exist. It’s cost-effective to rent a moving truck, utilize a freight trailer, or ship household goods and drive yourself to your new destination.

You will also find various hybrid options to discover. Indeed, hiring international movers or a moving company will add more convenience and ease to your moving journey.

Shipping Vehicles

Shipping Vehicles

The easiest and often safest way to deal with overseas car shipping is in a shipping container. If you’re moving your whole household, container shipping is economical. It costs similar to container shipping—whether stuffed or full to the ceiling.

If there is room for a car, you are just shipping it for free. The same goes for your boat, motorcycle, and other motor vehicles.

Vehicles you can ship duty-free

It’s important that you prove that you have owned your motor vehicle for over six months, especially if you don’t want to pay duty. The six-month rule establishes that it’s a car you have been using—not a motorcycle or car you simply purchase to bring to your new destination country.  

Loading a vehicle in a container

Do you plan to ship a car overseas along with your personal effects and household goods? It will help if you load all your other things first and back the car in so the front windshield faces toward the doors. When the customs officer checks the container, it will be simpler to reach the car and assess its vehicle identification number through the windshield. To avoid damage in transit, secure your care properly inside the container.

RO-RO shipping for vehicles

Are you shipping only a car abroad without any personal effects or household goods? You might consider using roll-on and roll-off services (Ro-Ro). It is like a floating parking facility for cars, machinery, and other vehicles-anything that could be driven off and on the ship.

Documents Required for Shipping Personal Belongings from China to Another Country

Documents Required for Shipping Personal Belongings from China to Another Country

Before you start living abroad and have a new adventure, you must check all the documents you need in your new destination county. Here are the documents you need to start your international shipping journey:

·        School records

·        Health and vaccine records

·        Social security cards

·        Marriage certificate or divorce papers

·        Driver’s license

·        Birth certificate

·        Work permit

·        Visa

·        Passport

Do I Need to Buy Insurance to Move My Personal Belongings Internationally?

Do I Need to Buy Insurance to Move My Personal Belongings Internationally?

Yes. If you bring your personal effects and ship household goods overseas, you should get insurance beforehand. Indeed, a storm striking your entire shipment seems very unlikely. However, it does happen. Insurance will often cover the entire loss of your shipping container.

Does Customs Clearance Need for Moving Personal Belongings?

Does Customs Clearance Need for Moving Personal Belongings?

No. Your shipping containers don’t go through the customs clearance process when they leave the country. The only exception is when you export a motor vehicle. In that case, you will need to present export paperwork.

Oftentimes, a customs officer in the United States prefers to do a random inspection on an outbound container, checking for stolen items or contraband. You will pass the inspection without fuss if nothing is illegal in your full packing.

Unfortunately, you must pay a fee for that. You might need to pay for an extra inspection that the customs office in your destination country decides to perform on top of the official clearance procedure.

Freight Forwarding Company from China to Ship Personal Items Internationally

Freight Forwarding Company from China to Ship Personal Items Internationally

Do you need to ship your items from China? Contact DFH. We are one of China’s prime and most dependable freight forwarding companies. We will pay attention to the entire process of shipping personal effects and delivering them to the new country.

Call us today or visit us at to learn more about how we can help!

What Needs to Do Before Moving Overseas?

What Needs to Do Before Moving Overseas?

Before you start packing goods and household items, consider these tips first.

Tossing items

Place all personal items in either trash, sell, or donate pile. Use marketplaces and apps to earn money on used belongings for goods you like to sell.

Meanwhile, for the things you cannot be sold or donate, you can get the help of junk removal companies to dispose of your household items efficiently.

Storing items

Do you need to store items in the new country’s storage facility until you return? You won’t need to move all your stuff overseas. While you are away, you can consider renting a protected and safe storage unit to hold equipment, furniture, and household items that you won’t need when living abroad.

Packing items

If you are buying or renting a furnished home in your new country, check what is included with the property. You may already have most of the high-ticket items in a furnished home, including a table, bed, or lounge furniture.

You may also have basics like utensils and dishes. Consider the basic things you have and the things you would like to buy or rent after you get there.


Looking for more answers to your concerns? We hope this section will answer some of your inquiries.

How much does it cost to move personal belongings from China?

Remember that the cost of personal effects shipping will depend on your chosen shipping method, the quantity of shipment you have, the distance moved, the season, and the shipping route.

Moving to a new country by sea freight is more likely to be less costly than moving by air freight. Many reports also indicate that international shipping often costs between $1,000 to $10,000.

What is the best way to move personal belongings?

When sending your shipment and packing list overseas, many individuals prefer using sea freight shipment, as it is lower cost than other shipping methods. Nonetheless, if speed is crucial to you and you only have the budget to pay for shipping overseas, then you can go for air transportation. That simple.

How to ship my furniture internationally?

Are you wondering how you can ship your furniture along with shipping personal effects overseas? You have two options for that: sea freight and air freight.

Air transportation is usually faster but costlier. On top of that, shipping through the ocean takes a little while but is much more reasonable. If you’re planning on shipping only a few pieces of furniture, you can decide to share a shipping container, also referred to as LCL shipping.

How to ship pets to another country?

How do you ship your furry friends overseas? Moving with pets locally is never simple, but moving them overseas is more challenging than ever.

Research the pet import laws of your new country’s destination. Check all the detailed information you must know. Chances are your pet will need particular vaccinations before it is allowed abroad.

After you have all the pet import requirements and guidelines, you must understand how you will transport your pet. To do so, we suggest looking for the airline requirements and getting in touch with a pet relocation service.

Do I need to pay duty when shipping personal belongings overseas?

Whether or not you have to pay duty on personal items depends on your shipping route. Are you sending loose items via courier? You must pay tax and import duties for customs clearance for goods that exceeds the suggested value.

The tariff will normally depend on the cargo you’re importing to the new country, irrespective of whether you bought them online or abroad and sent them back to your destination country.

But if you’re sending personal items within Europe, you must pay customs in most cases.

Click here to learn more about what customs duty is and how to calculate it.

How do I ship multiple personal items overseas?

Some freight forwarding companies offer van delivery services. That is the best choice for sending multiple personal items locally and internationally. You will have a vehicle dedicated to your shipment and direct transport from the pick-up to the delivery address.

It’s worth mentioning that this is also the most convenient option for international shipping and relocations. That’s because it has fewer packaging and labeling requirements. Pack your personal items along with moving blankets or cushioning materials, and you can ship them abroad or domestically.

Feel free to get an instant quote to learn more.


Shipping personal effects and personal items overseas can be somewhat stressful, but understanding how you will move abroad does not need to be. Ensure you find the ideal freight forwarding company when shipping personal effects abroad.

We wish you the best of luck!


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