International shipping is a massive undertaking. Packing and shipping are just part of the picture. Additionally there are laws regarding what can and cannot be imported to various countries. Customs regulations and import duties vary wildly, and having someone help navigate these waters, particularly in a foreign country with different cultural customs, is wise.
With the right help, it can go smoothly, though. Here are a few of the important steps in the process.
- Find some helpers. Look for one or more companies to help with packing, shipping, and customs. Of course finding one company to handle it all will make for a seamless transition. Try searching for international packing and shipping companies in major port cities. These companies usually have easy access to a variety of shipping possibilities and can also assist you in packing and transporting items from wherever you are to their location near the port. Cities like Houston are perfect because they have both a massive sea port and a large international airport. You can learn more about shipping options and countries you can ship to here.
- Packing up the freight. Whether it is furniture, a car, an office, or a precious heirloom, if you are willing to move it to another country, it is very likely valuable to you. You have almost certainly trimmed the fat of what you own. Putting your valuables on a cargo ship or airplane is different from putting them on the back of a truck. A professional who knows how to safely pack Nana’s rocking chair for a sometimes rocky boat ride will ensure a better outcome for your valuables. These companies can also assist in determining whether you will simply ship a certain number of cubic feet or require an entire 20 or 40 foot container.
- Getting to the port. Your carefully packed treasures must now be moved from your home or business to the port or airport. When shipping from Houston, both ocean and air freight are possible. Packing and shipping companies will often handle transporting your freight from your home to the port.
- Getting through the customs process. When bringing freight into another country, customs officials inspect it to ensure compliance with local laws and to assess the duty or import tax. This process can take several days, depending on the destination country. A customs broker helps navigate this incredibly confusing process. They can often help you get a better rate for customs duty.
- From the port to the new home. Once through the customs process, the items are in a holding area. Timely removal helps avoid possible storage charges at the port. Having a mover ready to take the freight from the port or airport to its new home will help ease your stress.
Now you just have to unpack. It is nice when your valuable freight arrives in the same condition it was in before the move, but unpacking is a lot of work. Well, you can actually hire a packing company. They can help on the other end as well with both unpacking the container and the boxes.
If you want to get a quote for your international freight shipment, please contact us. Remember, freight shipping from Houston or cargo shipping from any city goes smoothly when you use the right packing, crating and shipping company.