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Long Distance Removals

Preparing for a long-distance removal, whether it’s to another part of the UK or across the continent, can be daunting. But fear not! In this guide, we’ve got all the tips and tricks you need for a smooth relocation, including budget-friendly hacks. From choosing the right movers to the ins and outs of moving long-distance we’ve got you covered. Let’s get started on your journey to your new home sweet home!

Estimated reading time: 8 minutes

How Much Are Long-Distance Removals to Europe?

The cost of European removals can be very significant. Indeed, the distance to be travelled is variable and unique for each situation, between your departure city and your destination country. The average cost of an all-inclusive European removal is estimated between £1,000 and £3000. The price is calculated per m³ and varies between £100 and £200 /m³ for example, depending on the mode of transport and the provision of moving services. Check out the table for a rough idea of moving costs from the UK to the top 8 European countries:

Country 20ft Shipping Container 40ft Shipping ContainerAirfreight
Spain£434 - £737£649 - £2,155£2,669 - £2,948
France£424 - £661 £633 - £1,256£1,555 - £1,719
Germany£979 - £1,082 £1,860 - £2,056£2,545 - £2,813
Netherlands£350 - £559£583 - £936£1,250 - £2,950
Ireland£378 - £418 £718 - £794£980 - £1,273
Belgium£632 - £926£1,273 - £1,638£1,826 - £2,236
Italy£826 - £1,236£1,632 - £2,173£2,384 - £2,538
Portugal £1,038 - £1,336£1839 - £2,347£2,650 - £3,376

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How Much Are Long-Distance Removals Within the UK?

The services of long-distance movers can be more cost-effective than you might have expected. Although prices can vary across the UK, most relocation firms will offer you a fair quote based on a typical move. They usually base their quotes on the number of bedrooms in your current place as an indication of how much stuff you need to transport.

So, as a general rule, here’s the ballpark that you can expect to pay:

Number of BedroomsApproximate FeeExtra Charge for Packing
1£400 to £450£150
2£500 to £575£225
3£750 to £825£275
4£900 to £950£350

The cost tends to level out with five or six bedrooms, but keep in mind, that large houses with unusual or particularly bulky items (like sculptures or gym equipment) might incur extra charges. Besides the standard cost of lifting, loading and moving your stuff – you can expect surcharges for additional services, like:

Extra Services Typical Cost
Packaging materials supplied £100
Use of a temporary storage facility£125
Taking furniture apart and reassembly£150
Long-distance surcharge (eg over 200 miles)£175
House clean after the move£250
Professional piano moving£375

What Defines the Cost of Long-Distance Removals?

The costs of European removals and cross-country moves in the UK vary widely and are unique to every household. While there are many cost variables, below are the main ones to consider:

1. Shipping Method

The transport method you select will significantly affect the cost. You can choose between sea, land, or air freight depending on what makes the most sense for your move. For instance, if your departure city or your country of destination is near a port, sea freight can be a very practical option. For the nitty-gritty on transport methods, visit this guide to learn more about your options.

2. Size + Weight of Your Cargo

Generally, the more stuff you bring, the more it’ll cost. If you’re planning on shipping your items via sea freight, you have two main shipping container sizes to choose from, 20ft and 40ft.

3. Total Distance + Transport Route

This one is highly dependent on your end destination and which route makes the most sense. Your removal company will be able to best advise you on this one.

4. Time of Year

Shipping your belongings during the peak season vs. low season will impact the cost. If shipping during the low season, It can be an opportunity to save money.

Moving to another UK Region? What to Expect

When it comes to domestic removals, you might think there’s much less to think about compared to relocations to distant corners of the world. Although this can certainly be true to most degree, long-distance removals within the UK, say from England to Scotland or Northern Ireland, come with their own set of considerations.

Explore our dedicated pages for in-depth advice, tips, and insights on what to expect when moving to different regions in the UK:

Procedures for Long-Distance Moves to Europe

Thinking about making your big move to Europe? Well then, let’s dive right into the essential steps and get you on your way to your new home sweet home:

1. Check Your Right to Move to the EU

Much to the dismay of many Brits, heading to work, study and live in another European country is not as easy anymore after Brexit, as it was under the free movement rights of the EU. Since the expiration of the Brexit transition period on 31 December 2020, British citizens now need to refer to their EU host country’s visa and national immigration rules to determine their eligibility to see if they can move and settle there.

Check out the European Commission’s resource here for all the details on national residence schemes available to UK nationals for each EU country.

If You Moved to the EU Before 1 January 2021

The Citizens Rights Agreement provides the details of the agreements in place for UK nationals already living or planning to move to the mainland countries of the European Union and with the European countries.

2. Residence Registration

As a British citizen, you typically have to register in your new host country and your municipality of residence. This registration process is necessary for your taxes, working, opening a bank account, registering for social security and other administrative procedures.

The British Citizens Living Abroad Register

Finally, don’t forget to sign up for the British citizens living abroad register with the consulate or embassy near you. This guarantee allows voting during national elections and can be safe in case something unexpected happens.

3. Social Security and Healthcare

In most EU countries, you will likely be required to join a social security system, especially if you stay on national territory for more than 3 months. The request must be made in due time as delays may cause penalties depending on the country. It’s a good idea to check directly with your host country’s regulations, which can usually be found on their official .gov websites.

4. Double Taxation Convention

Moving to Europe requires you to inform your country of departure and your host country of your tax situation. While tax rules can vary across European countries, many, including the UK and EU nations, have double taxation treaties in place. Their purpose is to prevent citizens from paying taxes twice on the same income. To navigate the tax maze between two countries, it’s best to check with tax authorities in your UK homeland and also your new EU location.

Exchange of Tax Information

As part of the fight against tax evasion, it is mandatory to declare any bank account abroad. Find out about your rights and obligations and how to determine your country of tax residence on gov.uk.

5. Your Bank Account

Before your departure, make an appointment with your bank advisor to discuss your future situation and the possible consequences on your contract and bank accounts. For example, you might not be able to maintain certain financial products if you establish tax residence in another country. Also, don’t forget that you’ll depend on the currency exchange rate between the Euro and the Pound for your bank transfers.

6. Your State Pension after a Long-Distance Move to Europe

Regardless of Brexit, if you decide to retire in the EU, EEA, or Switzerland, you can continue to receive your UK State Pension and make your claims from your host country.

5 Tips to Save on Your Long-Distance Removal

As with any move, preparation is key to a successful move – but also to saving you as much of your hard-earned cash as possible. This is especially important if you are moving to another European country due to the language barrier and different system from what you’re used to in the UK. So, being well prepared helps you approach your move smoothly and anticipate the costs of your long-distance removal.

1. Pre-Move Survey

It is strongly recommended to survey your removal by the company of your choice, to receive a precise quote depending on the volume and specifics of your move.

The appointment is free of charge and without obligation on the part of the moving company, but it’s a useful tool to make sure you’re going with a professional removal provider. It’s also an opportunity to interact face-to-face with the movers and ask practical questions.

2. Reduce the Volume of your Move

Choosing what to bring is important for long-distance removals, as the international shipping cost goes up by volume. So, depending on your given situation, consider if want to take everything or could repurchase some stuff in your new country. Think about stuff like:

  • Are you keeping a residence in the UK?
  • Are you selling your current home?
  • Do you have kids and want to bring their items for an easier transition?

3. Long-Distance Movers Insurance

Opting for insurance can seem like a hit or miss. After all, there are plenty of things out of anyone’s control that may cause problems. As you never know in advance if you’ll need it, our advice on moving insurance tends to be “Hope for the best, plan for the worst”. It’s just best to spend a bit of money on ensuring your belongings so you can tackle your move without worrying about your prized belongings.

In general, international moving insurance averages only 1% to 3% of your long-distance removal cost.

4. Leave Your Relocation to a Specialist

Long-distance removal costs vary significantly based on the unique characteristics of every move. As such, removal companies’ quotes vary as well. That’s why preparation is so important for removals to Europe and across the United Kingdom. It really doesn’t have to be expensive if done the smart way! Our broad network of professional moving firms offers you the fantastic chance to get fair tailored quotes for your unique relocation.

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5. Compare Your Personalised Quotes

To maximise your savings, compare the quotes from our trusted partners and choose the one that fits your budget and wishes best. That way you can even save up to 40% on your long-distance removal cost!

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