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Moving to America

Planning a move to the Americas? Whether it’s the United States, Canada, Mexico, or one of the Southern nations like Argentina on your horizon – moving across the ocean is a big deal. But don’t worry, this quick guide will get you ready for the adventure of moving to America. And the best part? You’ll be able to get in contact with experienced removal professionals to handle every detail of your American relocation, making your move as easy as pie.

Estimated reading time: 5 minutes

What is the Cost of Moving to America?

The average cost of moving to America from the UK is estimated at approximately £3000. Thinking about an intercontinental move may feel like a big challenge, but don’t let the 5,000+ kilometres worth of ocean scare you away! Sure, it’s a long distance to cover, but you’d be surprised at how seamless your removal can be with the help of the right international removal company.

How to Calculate the Cost of Moving to America?

Whether you’re eyeing a new life in North or South America, the costs will vary significantly based on your country and city destination as well as the weight of your cargo. Below is a table with a ballpark figure for 20ft and 40ft shipping containers to Brits’ most popular countries within the American continent:

Destination Country (Port City) 20ft Shipping Container 40ft Shipping Container
United States of America (New York) £1,650 – £1,824£3,135 – £3,466
United States of America (Los Angeles)£1,745 – £2,228£3,350 – £3,750
Canada (Montreal)£1,980 – £2,540£3,782 – £4,280
Canada (Vancouver) £2,230 – £2,890£3,950 – £4,550
Brazil (Rio de Janeiro) £2,780 – £2,990£4,860 – £5,820
Mexico (Veracruz) £3,490 – £3,739£6,033 – £6,840
Argentina (Buenos Aires)£3,560 – £3,950£6,029 – £6,948
Chile (San Antonio) £4,922 – £5,829£9,486 – £10,336

Save up to 40% on Your Move to America

Transport Options for Moving to America

When embarking on your big move across the pond, you have two main options for transporting your belongings: sea or air freight. Opting for sea freight is generally the most cost-effective choice. While it takes longer to arrive, this method offers significant savings compared to the faster, yet much more expensive, option of air freight.

Transport Methods to Your City Destination

Upon arrival in your destination country and after clearing customs, your belongings can then be transported to your new home in America, either by train or lorry, depending on the local infrastructure and your specific location. In Canada and the United States rail freight transportation is commonly available between major cities. As for Mexico down throughout South America, opting for transport with a removal lorry is typically the more reliable option.

The 2 Main Options for International Relocations

There are two main transport types for international removals: door-to-door and door-to-port. The choice depends on whether you prefer pickup and delivery directly from your residential address or a port.

1. Door-to-Door Transport

Your removal company is in charge of managing customs clearance in both the UK and the country you move to in America. When possible, it is recommended to opt for door-to-door service to avoid unnecessary logistical stress.

2. Door-to-Port Transport

Otherwise, with a door-to-port type of service, your agent at the destination will need to provide the documents required for customs clearance as well as pay the necessary taxes and duties.

Practical Add-on Services for Your Move to America

When planning your relocation to America, you might want to consider some extra services to make the process smoother. These can include packing, cleaning, furniture dismantling, storage units, and specialised moving for tricky items like pianos.

The table below lists cost estimates for each of these additional moving services:

Service Details Price
Packing and Unpacking Expert packing and unpacking of items and furniture £425 – £1000
CleaningCleaning of old and new house. Price depends on the size of your home.
£130 – £285
Dismantling and Assembly Disassembling furniture to prepare for packing and re-assembling in the new homeStarting at £125
StorageUse of storage facility for 1 month. Price is dependent on the storage unit size.£30 – £265
Safe Removals of Delicate ItemsProper care and specialist equipment for safe removal, such as pianos. Varies widely depending on the value of your goodsStarting at £120

Start Your American Adventure Now

Our Top 5 Tips for Your Move to America

1. Removal Scorecard

Check to see if your removal company provides something like a ‘scorecard’ system. It’s a useful way to keep tabs on how they’re doing in terms of service quality and costs. This handy tool allows you to keep track of any extra costs, whether they’re sticking to the pickup and delivery schedule, their customer service response times and more.

2. Before Packing

Consider which household items justify the shipping cost for moving them to America. Keep in mind that some UK electrical appliances might not work in North or South America because of the different plugs and voltage over there.

3. Valuable Belongings

When moving, it is advisable to keep your most valuable possessions separate and with you rather than among the rest of your things inside the shipping container.

4. Prioritise Essential Belongings

If you’re shipping your belongings via sea freight, you will most likely arrive at your new home a while before your belongings. So, don’t forget to pack your must-have items separately or consider using air freight for those essential things. It’s way faster, and it won’t break the bank for a few important items.

Remember, if the USA is your destination for your move to America, it’s crucial to assess your eligibility along with which type of visa is suitable for your situation. Here are some key visa options according to the U.S. Embassy in London:

1. Visa Waiver Program

As a British citizen, you can enter the United States for up to 90 days as part of the ESTA Visa Waiver Program (VWP). Remember, that ESTA is for short-term visits. If you intend to live in the United States for an extended period, you will need to explore other visa options.

2. Sponsored Employment

If you have a job offer in the USA, you may have the chance to obtain a sponsored employment visa. There are different work visas that employers can sponsor you for, for example, H-1B or L-1.

3. Nonimmigrant Visa

If you want to live and work in the US temporarily, you will need to have a valid nonimmigrant visa. Depending on your specific circumstances, options include E-1, E-2 and other visa categories.

4. Permanent Residency (Green Card)

If you’re planning on spending more than 90 days in the US, you’ll need to be a Green Card holder which allows you to permanently live and work in the country and settle with your family. The most common types of Green Cards include family-sponsored Green Cards, employment-sponsored Green Cards, returning resident Green Cards, and Diversity Visa Green Cards.

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