Saturday, July 11, 2020

Moving our boxes to Australia with Seven Seas

As you may know, we are in the process of moving to Australia in a couple of weeks time. We have sold our house to a couple who live in nearby Harford County. We had put our house on the market just before the virus closed everything down. When the state opened we put it back on the market and it sold in 10 days.

The big question is what to take with us to Oz, and how do we do it. For the non-urgent stuff we got a quote from a local shipping company for a 20' container for over $9000. Fortunately, we found a much cheaper alternative, Seven Seas, who will ship a large Movecube for about $2800, plus Australian customs fees of about US$500.

We bought a bunch of U-Haul boxes and started to pack them. Our real estate agent recommended that we rent a storage unit and keep them there while the house was on the market. Decluttering! I duly took our boxes up at regular intervals, but I did notice that some of the boxes deformed when they were stacked.

Here you can see the deformed U-Haul boxes. The Seven Seas boxes have a special impregnation that makes them much stronger. We ordered 9 large boxes and 54 small boxes. Both sizes have the same footprint and the large box is twice the height of the small box. It makes for much easier stacking.

I packed most of my electronics hobby stuff in plastic lunch boxes that I bought from Dollar Tree. I numbered each of them and stored a description in a spreadsheet so that I can find things when they arrive at our unit in Australia. We filled the remaining space with blankets, some of Marianne's fabric stash, or whatever else we wanted to see at the other end.

Marianne packs a painting. In the foreground are the Ikea legs from her work tables. We also used a lot of packing tape. The best we tried was the Scotch tape.

We had a few odd-shaped boxes for the items that were too large for the regular boxes.

Seven Seas supplied a roll of bubble wrap but we didn't use much. Marianne has a whole house-full of fabric which she used.

A row of neatly stacked boxes.

Marianne dwarfed by the stack. We weighed all of our boxes and placed them at the entrance to the storage unit so that they would form the first layer of boxes in the Movecube.

Our driver from Seven Seas turned up a few minutes late and our friends Amanda and James set to work loading the Movecube. They are both very strong and with some help and advice from Darrel the driver, they loaded the cube inside an hour. It was pouring rain so we all got quite wet.

I was honoured to be the celebrant at Amanda and Jame's wedding back in 2015.

Success! We had been very concerned about how we would fit everything in but we only had one item left over, part of a desk chair. It is very much a three-dimensional jigsaw but with suggestions from everybody, we managed it.

Darrel closed up the box and if all goes well, I shall see it in Brisbane in a few months time.

Marianne and I duly thanked Amanda and James, as well as Darrel who was very friendly and helpful. We breathed a huge sigh of relief and headed home to have hot showers.

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