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Looking to move abroad at the last minute? Compare My Move have put together this guide on exactly how to leave the UK in a hurry. This can be for any number of reasons such as new job opportunities, family emergencies or unpredictable changes in situation. Although moving to another country at short notice is certainly a daunting task, it is achievable as long as you understand exactly what you need to do and plan, plan, plan.
In this guide, Compare My Move help you understand the considerations and processes that should be followed in order to move abroad at the last minute, including organising international removals. So, don’t panic, just give this guide a read and start systematically working your way through for moving success.
We won’t lie. There is a lot to do when moving abroad. It can seem a little overwhelming.
Start by creating a comprehensive list of everything that needs to be done and then prioritise that list by what needs to get done first. This is usually the things that take the longest to complete such as getting your belongings moved and applying for the correct visa. This will allow you to then allocate timeframes and deadlines in relation to your move date and ultimately create a plan which can be followed to ensure things get done in a timely manner.
We will now outline what will need to be on the list as well as giving you some idea of which of these needs executing first.
When you know you are moving abroad and you are short of time, you should contact an international removals company as soon as you possibly can. Not only will this start the ball rolling on the arrangements that need to be made before the move, but many will allocate you a Moving Manager who will be able to help guide you step-by-step through the process and highlight anything that needs to be done immediately.
Likelihood is that the removals company will initially send one of their team over to survey the property or do the same through an app. This will help them understand the scale of the move and provide you with an idea of time frames and costs for dealing with your belongings. It is key to get this done as soon as possible as the removals company will unlikely be able to schedule the move day until the survey is complete.
In cases where the move is imminent, your removals company should be able to help you find storage for the majority of your belongings. This may be the only way forward, as the process of making the arrangements and gaining customs approval for your belongings may take longer than when you need to be at your new home. In this case the removals company may be able to store your contents and then move it on your behalf later when everything else has been completed. Find out about the cost of international removals in our guide.
When you intend on moving abroad you will need to gain special permission from the country you are moving to in order to stay in that country, this is called a visa. Visas vary widely between countries and usually depend on the nature of your visit. These are usually split into two different types, either a permanent or temporary visa.
A permanent visa is used when you intend to stay in the country for an indefinite period of time. These are typically more difficult to obtain and usually depends on special situation such as marrying into a family of that nationality or via sponsorship by an employer for highly sought-after skills. Temporary visas are typically easier to get hold of and usually relate directly to your personal situation. For example, this may include business visits, visiting athletes or diplomats.
You will need to work out which type of visa you are applying for based on the country you are moving to. Starting the process of visa application as early as possible will give you the best chance of receiving it before you move. In some cases, country governments will let you apply for visas on a fast track, although this will usually cost a premium. If your move is at the last minute, you should check the typical or guaranteed turnaround time for your type of visa and base your decision to take the fast track based on whether this works for your move.
We have already done a lot of the research for popular destinations here at Compare My Move. You can check out our extensive guide to visas here.
Practically you will need to prepare yourself for the move from the UK. This will include cutting any contractual or financial ties ahead of the move. This will ensure no unexpected legal action or financial surprises chase you to your new home. This may seem like small actions to take, but making sure you set enough time aside to deal with them is going to save you a lot of hassle in the long-run.
Start by contacting your local council. They will be able to tell you if there are any outstanding or upcoming bills such as council tax. As you are moving out, you will also be able to tell them exactly when you will be doing this so they can note when your payments will run up to. If you are renting you will need to notify your letting agent or landlord, who will be able to tell you of any contractual obligations that need to be met before the move. If your bills are not included in your rent or you are moving from a property you own, you will also need to contact the utilities companies that provide services such as gas, electricity and water, pay up anything that needs covering and let them know when you are exiting the property.
Other considerations that should be taken include making sure that you cancel any memberships such as gym memberships, insurances such as car insurance and recurring location based payments such as train season passes. Of course, these can often be done via phone or on the internet when you have moved, but you do then run the risk of additional and unneeded charges. Check out our change of address checklist for more information.
As soon as you have had a home removals survey completed and know your final move date, you will be able to start packing up your belongings ready to ship or move into storage. At this point it is worth creating a packing plan and outline exactly what is being moved into a storage facility and what you will be taking with you in your personal baggage.
When shipping internationally you will need to take extra time and care over packing your belongings. The nature of moving your belongings to another country means they generally undergo more stress than a domestic move, so will need to be well padded and securely fastened into their packaging.
Removal companies will often offer a packing service as an additional add-on. This is worth considering if you are short of time and have a lot of belongings to pack ready for the move. This also means that they are able to source the packaging materials for you, taking another job off your plate at a busy time.
In the likely event that you will be moving your belongings into storage, at least in the short term, you will need to book this in with a storage provider. However, in some cases your removals company will be able to arrange this on your behalf. In cases where your removals company are not sorting your storage on your behalf, they should be able to help you understand exactly how much storage you will need for your belongings. You will need to communicate your plans with them for what needs storing so they can take this into considerations during the survey.
There are plenty of providers for storage and it is worth planning in a little time to check your options, what they offer and how much they cost. Although this is not the most crucial task to do first, it is key to secure storage as early as possible to align with the rest of your moving dates. It'll also be worth exploring options for storage abroad if you need to keep your item safe while you find accommodation. Find out more with our ultimate guide to international storage.
We hope this guide has helped you with your plans to move abroad at short notice. By prioritising the most time-dependent and crucial tasks first such as booking in your removals provider and applying for the correct visa to be able to make the move, you give yourself a much better chance of getting everything ready in time.
We can help you save time in searching for a professional removal company to take you abroad in short notice. Just fill in a quick and easy form and get connected with up to 6 professional international removal companies to save time and money when it matters most.