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Frequently Asked Questions

If you have a question that does not appear here please feel free to complete our Ask a Question form


When should I contact a moving/removals company to organise my pending international move?
Advance preparation is the most important factor in a successful international move. You should begin your search for a suitable moving company to carry out your move 6-8 weeks before your intending moving date. This will allow time to get competitive quotations, make all the arrangements, organise transport, etc.
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Who will provide delivery services at destination?
Our overseas offices and agents provide services and expertise in the following areas:
  • Local liaison with Excess international Movers
  • Notification of arrival
  • Customs clearance procedures at the port/airport of arrival
  • Transport from the destination port/airport of arrival
  • Temporary or long term storage if required
  • Delivery to residence
  • Full unpacking services
  • Removal of all related packing debris
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What system is there for quality rating of International Removal Companies?
It is important that you check out the background and credentials of the companies who quote on your international move. It is vital to ensure that your chosen removal company has relevant experience, and has appropriate links with foreign movers, as it is the foreign mover who will supply at least 40% of the service.
You should ensure above all else that your chosen mover is a member of FIDI, (The International Federation of International Furniture Removers), the only International Group that provides full bonding and ensures that all its members are properly accredited through an inspection and reference system. Other domestic bonding arrangements include BAR Overseas (British Association of Removers Overseas Group); and AFDI (the French Overseas Removers Association).
The BAR/IMMI & FIDI bonding schemes are similar to the IATA & ABTA bonding scheme for travellers. Shipments in transit and monies paid in advance are fully protected. Further details of the FIDI/BAR schemes are available from us or the British Association of Removers Overseas Group.
The FIDI/BAR schemes give full financial peace of mind and a benchmark of quality to clients sending shipments on our services. This is your guarantee. Accept no other.
Useful addresses: 
FIDI Global Alliance
Blvd Louis Schmidt 29 B 1, 1040 Brussels, Belgium
Tel: +32 2 426 51 60 Fax: +32 2 426 55 23 email:
British Association Removers Overseas Group (BAR Overseas)
Tangent House, 62 Exchange Road, Watford, Hertfordshire, WD18 0TG, United Kingdom
Tel: +44 (0)1923 699480 Fax: +44 (0)1923 699481 email:
The International Association of Movers (IAM),
5904 Richmond Highway, Suite 404, Alexandria VA, 22303-1864, USA
Tel: +1 703 317 9950 Fax: +1 703 317 9960 email:
American Moving & Storage Association (AMSA)
1611 Duke Street, Alexandria, VA 22314, USA
Tel: +1 703 683 7410 Fax: +1 703 683 7527 email:
Federation of European Movers Associations e.V., (FEDEMAC)
Schulstrasse 53, D-65795 Hattersheim, Germany
Tel +49 6190 989811 Fax +49 6190 989820 email:
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What marine insurance do Excess International Movers provide for International moving?
We can provide comprehensive marine transit insurance for your household and personal effects during your international move.
Our marine insurance is backed by The Baxendale Insurance Company Designated Activity Company provides a variety of different options, with competitive rates and an excellent world-wide office network, so that in the unlikely event of a claim, settlement can usually be dealt with locally.
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How do I determine the level of protection that is required for my belongings in an international move?
In general, you should think about what it would cost to replace your household goods and personal effects in the country of destination. A good source of information will be the local press in that country especially with regard to high value items likes motor vehicles etc. Cost of Living data may also be obtainable from that country's embassy.
When completing your proposal form please be as detailed as possible. Remember to include specific individual items that have a high replacement cost. It's best to give as much information as possible. If you have any questions relating to the coverage on your international move, contact our International Removals Customer Service Department.
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Can Excess arrange marine transit insurance with a reputable supplier on my behalf?
Yes, we can. Comprehensive cover can be arranged, via our specially negotiated cover with The Baxendale Insurance Company Designated Activity Company.
Please see the insurance of our website for further d
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What items should I not include in an international household goods shipment?
It is inadvisable to include perishable goods, foodstuffs of any description, or liquids (which may leak in transit causing damage to other items. Above all exercise common sense. Your shipment may be in transit for anything between three days and three months for long intercontinental transits like Europe-Australia. Don't overload items, or fill the car up to the roof with odds and ends as it may damage the suspension.
You should NOT include the following:
Hazardous materials such as paint, matches, aerosol cans, gas canisters or other flammable materials such as wood, bricks, cement, rocks and soil of any type.
Firearms and ammunition.
Plants of any kind.
Corrosives and explosives.
Pornography of any description.
Also, and in addition, we cannot accept the following goods for shipment by air:
Aerosols, batteries, explosives, fireworks, corrosives, perfume, pressurised or unpressurised cylinders/canisters and/or similar type containers, firearms and ammunition, radioactive material, paint, fuel and/or fuel tanks or other flammable items, etc.
If you have any doubts as to what may or may not be included, please do check with our International Removals Sales Team Contact. They will be delighted to help and advise.
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Are all charges included in the price?
If you book your shipment as a door-to-door move, then all charges including customs clearance charges, and local delivery to your residence, (with normal access, not above first floor level) will be included in the estimate that's given to you. However, you will still be responsible for any duty or tax that is raised on your shipment by Customs. In a very few countries, for example South Africa and Zimbabwe, port service charges are assessed on declared value. This charge is therefore not included in the door to door estimate that we give you, and it will need to be paid at destination direct to our overseas office or agent. Please advise us if there are special difficulties that may apply to your delivery, or if access is abnormal, or delivery is above the first floor.
If your shipment is booked door-to-port only, then all destination charges are payable locally on arrival, including customs clearance, port service, unloading and local delivery charges. The various names applied to these charges may vary from country to country and service to service, but basically, they cover unloading from the ship/aircraft that your goods are carried on, unloading from the steamship line or airline cargo container, handling in and out of destination warehouse (as a continuous movement following on from the shipments arrival), and local delivery to your residence, with normal access, not above first floor level. Any exceptions to these basic standards may cause the price to increase. As above, you will be responsible for any duty or tax that is raised on your shipment by Customs.
Please review your requirements, and discuss our estimate with our International Removals Sales team to make sure you understand the details, especially if you're comparing a number of moving companies offering a plethora of different options with regard to price and service.
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What will the removals estimator tell me when he visits my home to assess the cost of my overseas move?
Our Sales & Service Representatives can advise on all aspects of your move. They are fully equipped with the latest removals estimating tools, including hand held computers, which make estimates more accurate and give you automatically a full printout of the inventory. This gives you the opportunity to hand pick the items that you must take and leave behind those that you don't really need. Our Sales & Service Representatives can further advise on the following options: route and transport options and costs, packing requirements, crating, transit times, shipment protection, unpacking, customs requirements and storage at origin or destination.
Note: All customs advice given at client’s risk - rules and regulations do change on a frequent basis and unfortunately they are not always communicated to us by Customs.
Our representative will discuss in detail the different shipping/Air Freight options available to your overseas destination, and s/he will make an estimate of the volume and if possible the weight of your consignment. They will also discuss the various paperwork and custom's documentation required. They will give you information regarding our office or agent who will deliver your possessions from the port of arrival to your new residence overseas, together with general advice on your move.
No more than a couple of days after your representative's visit (in main markets), you will be in possession of a detailed estimate of the costs of your move, and the various shipping/Air Freight options that pertain to it.
Our Sales Department will be in touch shortly thereafter to answer any questions that you have and to discuss the options with you.
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Who do I contact on arrival overseas to find out about the status of my shipment?
All details of your shipment will be available to you as soon as possible after packing. Excess International Movers operate the latest computer systems giving up to the minute status reports and shipping documents at the touch of a button. We can advise you by phone, fax or email of these details.
When you move with us, we'll provide you with full information and details of how to contact our office or agent in the destination city that you're moving to. However, normally, you won't need to do anything, we will have pre-alerted our agent, and they'll contact you when you arrive.
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How do I find up-to-date information regarding customs regulations and documentation?
Customs regulations are unfortunately subject to frequent change. Regrettably, such changes are not always publicised. We endeavour to provide the most up-to-date customs information available, from a wide variety of different sources, including Customs Services themselves, industry, trade association, the internet, and a wide variety of other sources. Nevertheless, it is impossible to guarantee the accuracy of the information provided, as customs rules and regulations, together with duty and tax rates, documentation and forms, can, and do, change overnight.
We endeavour to supply all the relevant forms required. Nevertheless, it is the individual's responsibility to ensure sure that they have the correct documentation for their personal situation.
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How do I arrange for an estimate for my forthcoming international removal?
You can get an estimate for your international removal by using our quote request form. This can be found by clicking here
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What are the different cost/service options available to me?
When moving overseas you have a number of service options available to you. You may select a service based on the price, transit time, method of containerisation, routing consolidation opportunities, sea or air freight, port of exit, etc. Each option's cost component determines the amount you'll pay.
In general terms, it is advisable to select the most direct route with a minimum amount of handling. However, every move and personal budget is different so it is important that you discuss fully with our International Removals Sales Department Contact to determine the best service to meet your personal needs.
Remember, when calculating the cost of your international move, you should be aware of the total cost including the amount of time you'll have to wait for the arrival of your goods at destination. If you're going to have to stay in a hotel or other temporary housing until your household shipment arrives, you'll need to consider these costs as well as the cost of the shipping charges. Many people have made the mistake of selecting the slowest transit time (cheapest price) and then had the expense of two to three weeks of hotel costs while they awaited the delivery of their shipment.
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What advice can you give me on how to plan for my international move?
There is no substitute for planning and preparation. As soon as you know that you're going to be moving overseas, contact us.
In addition, begin to think about separating out all the items that you'll need to sell, store, dispose of, give away, and those you'll want to move by sea, have sent by air cargo or delivered to another family member before your departure. It's a very good idea to have researched these categories before our estimator visits you to survey your household effects.
As you approach Moving Day, think about which items you will need for your journey, specifically travel papers, immediate clothing, passports, medical documentation and records, family papers, valuables, jewellery, medicines, school reports, etc. Excess International Movers can provide a variety of host country information including destination guides and country facts sheets, together with detailed Customs rules and regulations.
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Is it cheaper to ship certain items rather than sell them and replace them at my destination?
There are several factors that help to determine which is the best option, such as the replacement value of the items in question at destination compared with the saleable value at the point of origin, the size and the overall volume of your shipment. Our sales team will be pleased to offer guidance.
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How much notice must I give to book a date for packing?
We recommend that you give a minimum of 2 weeks’ notice, although if this is not possible we will endeavour to meet your requirements. Ideally, as soon as you know when you want to move you should confirm dates with us.
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When do I pay?
We ask for a £50 deposit to be sent in with your booking confirmation. The balance is payable on receipt of invoice, after the packing has been completed. Please note that cheques require clearance before goods can be shipped.
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How can I pay?
You can pay online with a credit (Visa/MasterCard) or debit card here
You will need your Job Number and Invoice Number to hand to complete the online payment process.
Please note that credit card payments are subject to a surcharge of 2.5%.
We also accept payment by cheque, bank draft, bank transfer. If paying by bank transfer please quote your 7 digit reference number, so that the payment can be allocated correctly. Please do not pay our crews, third party drivers and carriers, or drivers in other countries. Please contact us if you are in any doubt.
Cheque payments require a clearance period of up to seven working days for domestic cheques and up to 35 days for foreign cheques. Cheque payment is not recommended for air freight.
Please note payment must be received in full before goods can be forwarded.
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Do you provide storage?
Yes, both at the point of origin and at the destination. If you require storage we offer discounted rates for consignments we are shipping overseas. We are able to offer highly competitive rates to suit individual requirements.
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Can I pack myself?
If you wish to pack yourself we will provide you with all the materials you need. We do however strongly recommend that you take advantage of our professional packing service. We employ highly qualified staff to perform this skilled task.
Our clients often wish to pack a few personal items themselves. Cartons and packing materials can be delivered to you in advance of the removal so that this can be done at your leisure.
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