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 FORT WAYNE, Ind., Aug. 2 /PRNewswire/ -- If you're going to be moving to another country, you can make relocating overseas a "moving memory" by choosing an experienced international moving company and planning as far in advance as possible.
 An experienced mover can provide you with specific guidelines and facts about your destination. However, it's always your ultimate responsibility to learn the requirements of your new host country. Be sure to check with the consulate of that country in the U.S. when planning your move and again before you depart.
 Here are the basic elements of an international move:
 1. Choosing an experienced mover.
 When you move internationally, the size and experience of your mover is extremely important. The volume of a moving company's business will dictate the most reasonable rates with steamship and airline companies.
 Make sure that the international moving company you choose has door- to-door responsibility for your shipment. Your possessions are on the line and they must take that responsibility very seriously. Larger international movers maintain technologies to track your shipment and provide timely information which can be quite comforting during an international move.
 2. The Pre-Move Survey.
 A pre-move survey will be made by the company agent assigned to pack your household goods. The survey is needed to determine what packing materials are required and what type and size of shipping container is needed. The estimator making the survey will need to see everything you plan to move.
 3. Packing.
 Professional international packers are trained to pack for the best possible protection, using specialized wrapping and packing materials designed exclusively for the international move.
 The cost of an overseas move is determined by both the weight and cubic volume of the shipment, which in combination is called "density." Cost savings from owner packing are minimal, and in addition to the risk of damage, it could actually increase your cost by not achieving the best packing density.
 4. Containerization.
 Once your valuables are packed and wrapped, they'll be carefully containerized for export. Your shipment may be loaded into special containers at your residence or at a warehouse depending on your individual circumstances.
 Large shipments moving by ocean carrier are often packed into steel steamship containers. Small ocean shipments are loaded into water- proofed crates or liftvans, specifically designed for household goods shipments. Once loaded, the liftvan will be sealed shut and wrapped with several steel bands. Liftvans are generally constructed so they can be consolidated with other shipments in a steel steamship container for additional protection.
 Your international mover will choose a container best suited to your needs.
 5. Destination Services.
 It is important to choose an international mover who maintains solid long-term partnerships with a worldwide network of agents. This way you will have a full range of delivery services and relocation assistance available to you.
 Upon arrival at your new location, register immediately with the nearest U.S. Consulate, and then contact your destination agent right away. They may have updated information, and there will likely be customs and other documents you will need to complete. Most important, the agent needs to know where you can be reached.
 6. Customs Clearance.
 Customs clearance generally takes between three days to two weeks, depending on complications. It is important to stay calm and cool through this process, as customs officials can become somewhat difficult, if pressured. Your international mover wishes to deliver your shipment as soon as possible, and will do everything they can to assist you.
 7. Delivery.
 When your shipment is delivered, station yourself near the door of your new home, and as items are carried in, the delivery crew should advise you as to the number of the item so you may check it off against your inventory. In the unlikely event of damage or missing items, be sure to note this clearly on the inventory and report it to the destination agent immediately.
 Remember to keep these seven elements in mind when asking questions of any prospective mover and your international relocation should result in a "moving memory."
 -0- 8/2/93
 /EDITOR'S NOTE: This release was written by Leet Zwepink, regional sales development manager/international, North American Van Lines, Inc./
 /CONTACT: Leet Zwepink of North American Van Lines, Inc., 219-429-3706/

CO: North American Van Lines, Inc. ST: Indiana IN: TRN SU:

LV -- NYFFNS1 -- 8117 08/02/93 06:46 EDT
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Aug 2, 1993

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