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Shipping advice needed - particularly on Parcel Monkey!!

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Hey folks

Getting into the logistical nightmare of organising my stuff for the move - I don't know how people with furniture do it, I've only got personal items and it's still driving me crazy.

I started sorting my stuff this weekend and will probably have one big box (45x45x50cm) and 2-3 smaller boxes. Most of it weighs quite a lot unfortunately - LOTS of photos (some in albums but mostly in boxes), some books, and some cuddly toys (I'm a sentimental soul :).

Once I'd got one box sorted I jumped on parcel monkey to get a quote - this was for the big box at 70kg.

The quote was £198, which whilst probably not entirely unreasonable did not seem to tally up with other prices folks have quoted on here. But weirdly the only option I was offered was DHL 1-2 day air freight. Thought they had more options than that. I'm happy to wait several weeks whilst the stuff goes by sea - the only thing I care about is that it gets there safely, not how fast it gets there.

So I guess I have a couple of questions here, for people who have already lived and breathed this most annoying logistical element of the move:

  1. Who else have people used for relatively small amounts of stuff (3-4 boxes) - and what prices? (currently awaiting a sea freight quote from Excess Baggage...)
  2. Any tips on packing? I.e. Am I better putting lots of stuff into one big and heavy box, or splitting it out into smaller boxes?

Any advice greatly appreciated - I've looked at a lot of the other shipping posts but most are a few years old :)


Jess
Forewarned is forearmed


See my Timeline for previous USCIS applications

Lifting Conditions
2/20/2013: Filed
2/25/2013: NOA1

7/5/2013: RFE

8/23/2013: Approved

8/31/2013: GC received

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Hey miss Jess,

The cheapest way to ship to the US is aircourier (or airfreight) for some weird reason. I used fastlane international (just google the name). I got the best quote and great service from them and I could choose from different services. Just make sure that when you fill out the unaccompanied baggage doc that they provide you also include a photocopy of the visa and IBC of your passport because they don't tell you that. I think that there are lots of threads in the UK forum about shipping but I hadn't noticed fastlane mentioned on them. My 6 boxes / bags of about 82kg (volumetric) were almost 300 pounds and just over with insurance.

Good luck.

PS - excess baggage took so long to come back to me with a quote that I'd already booked with the other company.

Edited by Y&E

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Some of the general shipping places put around a 25-30 kg limit per box mainly so it can be lifted by one man easily and safely. Your big box might be a little too big or too full of heavy stuff. You might want to ask about weight per box limits when you get quotes. Maybe your parcel monkey quote put some kind of oversized surcharge on it. And a tip is make an inventory of each box when you pack it. We had to provide one for the customs clearance on the US side.


England.gifENGLAND ---

K-1 Timeline 4 months, 19 days 03-10-08 VSC to 7-29-08 Interview London

10-05-08 Married

AOS Timeline 5 months, 14 days 10-9-08 to 3-23-09 No interview

Removing Conditions Timeline 5 months, 20 days12-27-10 to 06-10-11 No interview

Citizenship Timeline 3 months, 26 days 12-31-11 Dallas to 4-26-12 Interview Houston

05-16-12 Oath ceremony

The journey from Fiancé to US citizenship:

4 years, 2 months, 6 days

243 pages of forms/documents submitted

No RFEs

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Is it not cheaper to just pay excess baggage at the airport? And re: the photos...would it be better for you to scan the photos and put it on a mem card to print out later?

Mind you, 200 quid imo is a steal...

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Excess baggage as a general rule is around £6/kilo. 42kg x 6 = lots. And I am going to have more than one box overall.

Allfreight have quoted me £185 for 4 boxes, 7 days door to airport. Which is even more of a steal, so think I will probably go with them.

Fortunately I have some time but I realised at the weekend how time-consuming this is going to be so best get cracking sooner rather than later :)


Jess
Forewarned is forearmed


See my Timeline for previous USCIS applications

Lifting Conditions
2/20/2013: Filed
2/25/2013: NOA1

7/5/2013: RFE

8/23/2013: Approved

8/31/2013: GC received

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I used Transglobal Express just last week to send my things over. I had 8 boxes (around 56x40x30cm, don't remember the exact dimensions). It came to a total of 78kg and I ended up paying £217. That was with DHL door to door courier, and my stuff got here in around 22 hours from them picking it up from me, around 10 hours before my plane landed! I didn't get charged anything at customs and all I had attached to the parcels was a copy of my visa - obvs no i94 since I hadn't arrived yet, though I may have just been lucky.

I did check Parcel Monkey for a quote myself but with the dimensions I gave them it told me they didn't offer ANY parcel services for that weight/size. Transglobal didn't have any problems and when I called they said there's pretty much no limit for DHL, within reason. Another reason I didn't go with Parcel Monkey was that all my emails to them went ignored, and a google search on reviews brought up nothing but bad experiences.

I was VERY impressed with DHL, wasn't that impressed with Transglobal's customer service, the girl dealing with my emails would read 3 questions and reply to 1, which was a little frustrating, but I found that calling them and reading questions off a list so there was no escaping me worked best.

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Hey folks

Getting into the logistical nightmare of organising my stuff for the move - I don't know how people with furniture do it, I've only got personal items and it's still driving me crazy.

I started sorting my stuff this weekend and will probably have one big box (45x45x50cm) and 2-3 smaller boxes. Most of it weighs quite a lot unfortunately - LOTS of photos (some in albums but mostly in boxes), some books, and some cuddly toys (I'm a sentimental soul :).

Once I'd got one box sorted I jumped on parcel monkey to get a quote - this was for the big box at 70kg.

The quote was £198, which whilst probably not entirely unreasonable did not seem to tally up with other prices folks have quoted on here. But weirdly the only option I was offered was DHL 1-2 day air freight. Thought they had more options than that. I'm happy to wait several weeks whilst the stuff goes by sea - the only thing I care about is that it gets there safely, not how fast it gets there.

So I guess I have a couple of questions here, for people who have already lived and breathed this most annoying logistical element of the move:

  1. Who else have people used for relatively small amounts of stuff (3-4 boxes) - and what prices? (currently awaiting a sea freight quote from Excess Baggage...)
  2. Any tips on packing? I.e. Am I better putting lots of stuff into one big and heavy box, or splitting it out into smaller boxes?

Any advice greatly appreciated - I've looked at a lot of the other shipping posts but most are a few years old :)

Hey there!

I had the same problem as you, I only had a few boxes. I searched so many websites and avenues, but the cheapest way I found was to use Parcel Monkey. BUT, the trick is, to use smaller boxes with smaller weights. Somehow, me sending 7 smaller boxes, weighing about 10kg each, was cheaper than sending 2 large boxes at 23kg!

I just worked this out by playing with the quotes on their website.

So I sent, one big box, which was actually a massage table, so couldnt make it smaller, that was 23kg. Then I had 6 smaller post office boxes, think they were like 40cmx30cmx16cm, somthing like that. They were 10kg each. All this, with insurance, was only about £150. And this was also including a box with with my wedding dress in, which was slightly bigger.

This was the best quote I could find anywhere, thats even cheaper than paying excess baggage at the airport. I think that all together the total weight was about 100kg.

The service was absolutely fantastic, all my stuff arrived in the US within 2 days and that was with a customs delay in the UK!

I would say though, that ParcelMonkey assured me that the DHL delivery driver would have the paperwork for me to fill out. Needless to say, he didnt and had no clue what I was supposed to fill out. Luckily, I had searched on here and found the customs form that someone had posted a link too, I will try and find it for you. Make sure you fill one out for each box. I also had to write a list of every item that was in each box, and that was attached to the box with the customs forms. The lovely DHL man came back 10 minutes later, so I could print them all out and helped me put them on the boxes when he came back.

The great thing is they use DHL and you can track it on the DHL and parcelmonkey website, it really is a great service, would definitely use them again.

Hope this helps!

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If you're not worried about how long they take to arrive, have you considered perhaps packing some of the non-essentials into boxes and then sweet talking your family into storing a few of them? I anticipate that any trips to the UK will involve carting things back from Nik's parents for a couple years. 1 full + 1 empty suitcase going over, and 2 full coming back sort of thing.


K-1:

January 28, 2009: NOA1

June 4, 2009: Interview - APPROVED!!!

October 11, 2009: Wedding

AOS:

December 23, 2009: NOA1!

January 22, 2010: Bogus RFE corrected through congressional inquiry "EAD waiting on biometrics only" Read about it here.

March 15, 2010: AOS interview - RFE for I-693 vaccination supplement - CS signed part 6!

March 27, 2010: Green Card recieved

ROC:

March 1, 2012: Mailed ROC package

March 7, 2012: Tracking says "notice left"...after a phone call to post office.

More detailed time line in profile.

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If you're not worried about how long they take to arrive, have you considered perhaps packing some of the non-essentials into boxes and then sweet talking your family into storing a few of them? I anticipate that any trips to the UK will involve carting things back from Nik's parents for a couple years. 1 full + 1 empty suitcase going over, and 2 full coming back sort of thing.

I'm thinking about it, but I have limited options. My mum and stepdad are in the process of getting divorced (as I prepare to move to the States, so you can imagine the stress levels in my family :blink: ) and my mum's going to be moving into a much smaller flat so she's out. My one hope is my dad and stepmum. There's just them 2 in a 5 bedroom house, so I might be able to swing storing a couple of boxes there for a year or so...

Best quote so far is £170, but I strongly suspect once I give them actual weights (which they didn't request) that may go up...


Jess
Forewarned is forearmed


See my Timeline for previous USCIS applications

Lifting Conditions
2/20/2013: Filed
2/25/2013: NOA1

7/5/2013: RFE

8/23/2013: Approved

8/31/2013: GC received

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I'm using Seven Seas. I rang a few places but most didn't get back to me...

I have 3 'Book Boxes', 2 'Tea Chests' and a number of framed pictures / prints (9 of). They are all going via Air as it's 1/3 of the transit time and about 1/2 the price of sea. Go figure!

I have the added disadvantage of living 'across the water' so have to pay a little extra for collection / delivery. :( Oh well...


1990(-ish): Family Holiday to FL. Met Nicole & family.

1990(-ish) - 1992(-ish): A few return visits

08-09/2007: Go back to FL. Meet with 'the folks' & Accept that we both 'like' each other & start dating.

02/2008 - Present: ...go back to FL again a few times.

09/2009: Propose and she says 'Yes'! :D

11/06/2009: I-129F posted to VSC

11/07/2009: I-129F received at VSC

11/09/2009: NOA1

11/13/2009: Touch

12/2009: ...back to FL once again

03/08/2010: Touch & NOA2 (119 Days)

03/11/2010: NVC have my case

03/12/2010: NVC incorrectly assigned & dispatched case to Dublin, not London!

03/18/2010: Package arrived in Dublin

03/19/2010: Ring Dublin and get case transferred to London

04/01/2010: London Sent 'P3'

04/03/2010: I Received 'P3'

04/14/2010: 'P3' sent back to embassy

04/16/2010: 'P3' recieved at embassy

04/29/2010: Medical - Passed

06/17/2010: Interview - In AP (220 Days)

08/17/2010: AP Finished - Approved

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So, reactivating this post after a while...

It's now looking like I may well be able to get most of my stuff over with friends bringing additional suitcases with them - at £32/suitcase it seems to be cheaper than the shipping companies (at many of you rightly stated :blush: )

I know this is a bit dubious customs wise, but I'm just wondering if anyone's ever had any trouble doing this? If I fill in the same customs forms as I would with a shipping company and stick them in the suitcases do you think this would be OK?


Jess
Forewarned is forearmed


See my Timeline for previous USCIS applications

Lifting Conditions
2/20/2013: Filed
2/25/2013: NOA1

7/5/2013: RFE

8/23/2013: Approved

8/31/2013: GC received

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That sounds like it could cause problems for them if it appeared they were moving here with things tourists wouldn't normally bring for a short trip. And if you didn't get it right, they could be denied entry. What do they put on their green customs form? Do they turn in your forms and a copy of your visa to the customs officer? He would be separate from the immigration guys. There is a CBP person at each POE you can call. I would call the POE where they will arrive and get specific information about what to do and if it would be allowed. Here's the list of airports, names, and phone numbers.

http://www.cbp.gov/x...ts/cbp_psml.xml

I spoke to the supervisor of CBP at theHouston airport with some questions about the green immigration form. It wasn't the person on this list but I don't remember how I got his name and number. I was with my fiance/husband and wanted to know if it was a problem if I was bringing two suitcases full of cds, computer parts, and men's clothing for my fiance. And what would I write on my customs form? He told me no problem and just write household goods on the green form and no list of specifics and none of those long customs forms were needed. But I was traveling with the K1 immigrant. So I think you should check it out with the officials since you won't be physically with them with your visa. And get his name so they have a reference if they have problems.

Edited by Nich-Nick

England.gifENGLAND ---

K-1 Timeline 4 months, 19 days 03-10-08 VSC to 7-29-08 Interview London

10-05-08 Married

AOS Timeline 5 months, 14 days 10-9-08 to 3-23-09 No interview

Removing Conditions Timeline 5 months, 20 days12-27-10 to 06-10-11 No interview

Citizenship Timeline 3 months, 26 days 12-31-11 Dallas to 4-26-12 Interview Houston

05-16-12 Oath ceremony

The journey from Fiancé to US citizenship:

4 years, 2 months, 6 days

243 pages of forms/documents submitted

No RFEs

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That sounds like it could cause problems for them if it appeared they were moving here with things tourists wouldn't normally bring for a short trip. And if you didn't get it right, they could be denied entry. What do they put on their green customs form? Do they turn in your forms and a copy of your visa to the customs officer? He would be separate from the immigration guys. There is a CBP person at each POE you can call. I would call the POE where they will arrive and get specific information about what to do and if it would be allowed. Here's the list of airports, names, and phone numbers.

http://www.cbp.gov/x...ts/cbp_psml.xml

I spoke to the supervisor of CBP at theHouston airport with some questions about the green immigration form. It wasn't the person on this list but I don't remember how I got his name and number. I was with my fiance/husband and wanted to know if it was a problem if I was bringing two suitcases full of cds, computer parts, and men's clothing for my fiance. And what would I write on my customs form? He told me no problem and just write household goods on the green form and no list of specifics and none of those long customs forms were needed. But I was traveling with the K1 immigrant. So I think you should check it out with the officials since you won't be physically with them with your visa. And get his name so they have a reference if they have problems.

Thank you :) I'm going to get the other half to give them a call in Orlando...otherwise I'll just ship it :) Starting to feel a bit more organised...kind of...


Jess
Forewarned is forearmed


See my Timeline for previous USCIS applications

Lifting Conditions
2/20/2013: Filed
2/25/2013: NOA1

7/5/2013: RFE

8/23/2013: Approved

8/31/2013: GC received

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After going with 7 Seas i'd say that i'll not use them again. They stated a 14 day delivery time. I've already been in the USA for 4 weeks and the items haven't even arrived stateside. It'll be a further 2 weeks once until i get them once they do.


1990(-ish): Family Holiday to FL. Met Nicole & family.

1990(-ish) - 1992(-ish): A few return visits

08-09/2007: Go back to FL. Meet with 'the folks' & Accept that we both 'like' each other & start dating.

02/2008 - Present: ...go back to FL again a few times.

09/2009: Propose and she says 'Yes'! :D

11/06/2009: I-129F posted to VSC

11/07/2009: I-129F received at VSC

11/09/2009: NOA1

11/13/2009: Touch

12/2009: ...back to FL once again

03/08/2010: Touch & NOA2 (119 Days)

03/11/2010: NVC have my case

03/12/2010: NVC incorrectly assigned & dispatched case to Dublin, not London!

03/18/2010: Package arrived in Dublin

03/19/2010: Ring Dublin and get case transferred to London

04/01/2010: London Sent 'P3'

04/03/2010: I Received 'P3'

04/14/2010: 'P3' sent back to embassy

04/16/2010: 'P3' recieved at embassy

04/29/2010: Medical - Passed

06/17/2010: Interview - In AP (220 Days)

08/17/2010: AP Finished - Approved

event.png

event.png

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Hi folks, quick update here...in the end I went with Trans Global Express to book DHL. I shipped 2 suitcases totalling around 45kg for 80 quid plus 6 for insurance for DHL Air Express. DHL picked up the suitcases within the specified time frame the day before I flew out and they arrived at my door in Florida the day after. Just unpacked them and everything is in perfect condition.

Really great service and VERY cheap, will be using them again for sure!


Jess
Forewarned is forearmed


See my Timeline for previous USCIS applications

Lifting Conditions
2/20/2013: Filed
2/25/2013: NOA1

7/5/2013: RFE

8/23/2013: Approved

8/31/2013: GC received

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