not shipping anything, taking it all on the 'plane... has anyone done this?

(40 Posts)
ArabellaBeaumaris Mon 25-Mar-13 13:12:22

I'm starting to look at costs for our proposed move overseas so we can get on budget...

We would be moving into furnished accommodation. 2 adults & 2 kids (5 & 2 yrs), taking general clothes/personal gubbins/some toys.

We'd have 80kg allowance on the flight, which seems like plenty <remembers setting off backpacking with 10kg of stuff>

Is this absolute crazy talk?

ChunkyPickle Mon 25-Mar-13 13:16:10

It's not crazy, but it's tough - 80kg will disappear immediately with 2 adults and 2 kids.

I've done it a couple of times now, but each time swung extra baggage allowance by going premium economy (5 suitcases 30kg each, for 2 adults and 1 bump/toddler)

You will need to be brutal about what you take and what you buy there - and even more brutal when you eventually move back if you do it the same way again.

BlameItOnTheBogey Mon 25-Mar-13 13:21:10

I think it depends where you are going...

ChunkyPickle Mon 25-Mar-13 13:27:50

Blame - very good point - 20kg goes a lot further in shorts and t-shirts for a tropical country than it does in jumpers and jackets for the wastes of Canada..

If you're moving somewhere first world then you'll be able to get loads of stuff when you get there, if you're moving to an isolated Caribbean island then you'll have to take everything you'll need.

For one of my moves I had a spreadsheet where I worked out what was worth shipping, and what was cheaper to buy there, and I left some stuff with relatives who were planning to visit later and could bring it then.

ArabellaBeaumaris Mon 25-Mar-13 13:29:30

It's 23kg per person! So 92kg total - well, that makes all the difference grin

yes, the accumulation of stuff to bring back is a thought. I suppose we could always ship stuff back if we decided that was something we wanted to do/was financially viable.

The idea of dragging 90kg of stuff around the airport etc is pretty off putting. But so is the cost of the container!

Looks like you can take "sporting equipment" for free... I wonder if I can swing the kids bikes in under that...

bogey it's South Africa.

slipshodsibyl Mon 25-Mar-13 13:29:55

It won't be enough unless you are having bedding etc include in your rental and intend buying a lot of new things. There will be a lot for the children to adjust to. It is helpful for them to have familiar items around them. You will regret leaving too much behind I think. I have given this advice to many people and though not everyone took it at the time, they agreed later!

ChunkyPickle Mon 25-Mar-13 13:34:35

Dragging the stuff around the airport is no problem - load up a trolly and away you go (fitting 5 suitcases in the car was fun though... I won't deny it)

Unless the place I was moving was totally furnished my first stop in a country was Ikea (we bought the same cheap furniture in each country - gave us a kind of continuity) - but I see SA doesn't have one.. I don't know anything about day to day living costs in SA..

ArabellaBeaumaris Mon 25-Mar-13 13:37:15

SA is quite expensive. I'm just not sure that the cost of replacing the bits & pieces we would need to replace is going to equal the £2k of shipping costs. I need to do some serious research on shopping websites, I suppose.

We spent three months with DD1 in India/Nepal when she was 2, & just had our backpacks there. That was fine, but I suppose it was much more transient than this would be (expect to be there for 1-2 years).

LayMizzRarb Mon 25-Mar-13 13:39:53

Do Emirates fly to your destination? You have a 30kg allowance in economy. In any case, I would ask your airline if they have special allowance for those emigrating. Many will add on a few kilos. Also enquire about the cost for paying for excess baggage in advance, but it goes on the same flight as you.

juneau Mon 25-Mar-13 13:44:52

I think I'd check that 'sporting equipment' includes bikes. Usually bikes have to be put in special boxes and won't be accepted without.

You know you can share a shipping container with someone else too, right? You can do a 'part load' of a few boxes if you want to. Might be worth it so you can take some more clothes, bikes, toys, etc.

I reckon you could do it, but it's basically one suitcase each. That's not a lot for 1-2 years.

ChunkyPickle Mon 25-Mar-13 13:47:15

Ah, see! You've done it before smile

Yes, read all the regs, make sure that you use your full carry on allowance too (coat, laptop bag, blanket for the kids, etc)

I think you'll be fine - it's more stressful weighing and packing suitcases than getting a hoard of movers come and wrap everything up and ship it, but it is so much cheaper, and kinda freeing to do it. Especially just for a couple of years.

You can always sell a load of the bits (if you can be bothered) before you come home, to recoup some of the cost at least.

We moved back to the UK with 8 pieces of Luggage. That included bed linen and towels, and 4 bikes!

If you go to Evans cycles, they may give you a bike box. You can manage to fit more than one bike in!

juneau Mon 25-Mar-13 13:48:40

P.S. These holdalls from Amazon fit TONS of stuff and weigh almost nothing when they're empty, so you can use your whole allowance for 'stuff'.

I should add, we each had maximum hand luggage, so 4 small roller suitcases for the flights.

Halfords may also give you a bike box.

When the bikes were in, we stuffed it full of shoes and stuff, filled it up totally! grin

aimum Mon 25-Mar-13 14:54:04

We've done it twice (and taken bedding/towels). We made sure we used our maximum weight allowance. Kids both had hand luggage and we filled the pram pockets. We also took car seats. It was a bit of a struggle at the airport but we also got given lots of help. I think everyone is a bit more sympathetic when you are on a one-way ticket.

PopeBenedictsP45 Mon 25-Mar-13 18:40:24

Have you thought about taking as much as you can physically carry and just paying for the excess baggage? I've done this twice (but I was just moving myself) - once I had to pay (can't remember what it was but it was cheaper than it would've been shipping the stuff) and the other time when I had 20kg extra I was nice and polite and said I was moving overseas and would it be possible to get a discount - and they waived the fee.

Obviously I don't know what will happen in your case though as it depends on the airline though.

thanksamillion Mon 25-Mar-13 19:16:28

YY to the holdalls. We always use them and you feel like you get your full weight allowance. My DCs also like to ride on them in the airport and if you fill them really full they don't fit on the luggage weighing bit properly so you can get away with a bit extra grin

If you can afford to ship it I would do so. It was very comforting for us to have our regular stuff around us at home when everything else was strange and different.

anonymosity Tue 26-Mar-13 03:15:01

You could mail yourself some things, in advance. We did that once. Posters for the kids bedrooms, kids books etc.

soapnuts Tue 26-Mar-13 03:58:31

if you know who you're flying with check their excess luggage policy because it varies widely - i always try and fly with BA because the first extra bag (and another 23kg) for each person is only £32 - so for £100 I can get 7 suitcases - 161kg plus car seats and pushchair (one per child if you like!) for two adults a three year old and an infant (infants cant buy extra luggage)...... even I don't usually bring that much very often !

thelittlestkiwi Tue 26-Mar-13 04:00:59

We initially shipped a few boxes- 10 I think for a few hundred quid. Was defo worth it. Included extra clothes, IT equipment and a couple of boxes of kitchen stuff. The kitchen stuff in particular was so worth it. You can fit a lot of stuff in a box and it costs a bomb to replace it all.

We took all our documentation and a laptop each on the plane. It was bloody heavy and we could not have managed any more than our allowance. Pre kid too.

glastocat Tue 26-Mar-13 04:15:18

Can't you shop around for cheaper shipping? We shipped 30 boxes from Ireland to Oz six weeks ago for €750 euro, we fitted in a hell of a lot of stuff, pretty much everything but furniture. It arrived last week and we are waiting for it to clear customs (another $185 au). We have loads of new bedding, crockery, clothes etc packed and looking at the prices here I am glad we do! Although I do wonder what I was thinking bringing a box of jumpers...

notfarmingatthemo Tue 26-Mar-13 09:30:27

We have just arrived in NZ. We had 40kg each. Nearly 2 weeks in the kids are fed up with the stuff we have with us. Our container will arrive in a few weeks. We have mainly cloths with us a all the bits people gave us after container left. Kids school bags, their few soft toys, colouring and all the bits and games they had in hand luggage.
We have 2 kids 11 and 7 and would not of managed at the airport check in if my sister and her dh hadn't come. We needed three trolleys and I was on crouches.
I would look at sending some of the kids stuff and some kitchen stuff out. Apart from the cost shopping in a new country for lots of stuff even if its for them is boring for kids.

mercibucket Tue 26-Mar-13 09:42:54

I can't believe that is the cheapest cost for shipping! We did this for years with 2 small kids and it is fine, but you do end up spending at the other end instead, usually we bought second hand then sold on again before moving. We wouldn't get away with it now - the kids would be devastated! We also went BA and took extra suitcases, sometimes for free

mercibucket Tue 26-Mar-13 09:42:54

I can't believe that is the cheapest cost for shipping! We did this for years with 2 small kids and it is fine, but you do end up spending at the other end instead, usually we bought second hand then sold on again before moving. We wouldn't get away with it now - the kids would be devastated! We also went BA and took extra suitcases, sometimes for free

notfarmingatthemo Tue 26-Mar-13 09:45:04

Dh just said bikes are extra. We air freighted his bike so we only need one car. Also the carseat for you two year old will be free but probably not your 5 year old. We bought this l-Protection-Seats-Black/dp/B005PK1EI2/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1364290697&sr=8-1 bag for our car seats and I got 2 maxi cosy high backs in one. You may be able to get a high back in with your 2 year olds seat. Those bag are big and not quite rectangular. We bought 2 as I was'nt sure how big they were and fill 1 up with stuff.

notfarmingatthemo Tue 26-Mar-13 09:55:54

sorry link went wrong this is the link

ExpatWifey Tue 26-Mar-13 10:06:30

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

ArabellaBeaumaris Tue 26-Mar-13 10:24:22

Thanks for the feedback.

I am leaning towards shipping a few boxes of stuff & taking everything else on the plane. I hadn't really considered that it was possible to do that - was hung up on the container option. Apart from anything else we will be living hours away from major shopping centres so it will be a pain in the arse having to shop for stuff at the other end plus pretty dear, might as well spend the money at this end.

ExpatWifey Tue 26-Mar-13 10:25:25

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Mutley77 Tue 26-Mar-13 11:50:15

I think you are brave! We have just emigrated as a family of 4 (for 2 years initially) and were allowed 120kg on the plane, which didn't go very far at all! I managed 8 weeks worth of clothes, a few toys, and a few other personal items.

We didn't bring car seats but have never had any problem taking those or pushchairs as extra items not included in the allowance - excluding flying with easyjet.

What about your kitchen items and towels, bedding etc? We also didn't bring any of that as we are in a fully serviced appartment until our container arrives.

I also think it would have been very hard for my kids to leave all their toys behind - and expensive for us to replace them all here plus presumably you have to store all your things somewhere until you return?

Rupeomatic Tue 26-Mar-13 11:56:44

We moved to another country with just 80kgs and hand luggage when our 2 DCs were 3 and 5. Its doable, cheaper - but you will definately need to be RUTHLESS as a previous poster said. If things are easily available where you are going my choice would be to sell up and replace when you are there - but that wouldn't be right for everyone.

I quite liked getting rid of most of our stuff and taking the essentials - and if you have family/friends who are likely to come and see you, they can always bring things gradually for you as well?

slipshodsibyl Tue 26-Mar-13 14:58:14

Aspects of your decision depend upon the ages of your children I think. If they are older than toddlers, please read some literature about third culture kids and the effects of moving and ways you can support them. This move will not have been their decision. I'd they are still very little, be prepared for disturbed sleep and clingy behaviour for a while and take items to amuse them. As a previous poster said, shopping in a new country is usually a dismal memory for children. Mine have lived in 5 different countries. It is very easy to forget their feelings and experiences in the excitement. Hope you have a successful move. Good luck

ArabellaBeaumaris Tue 26-Mar-13 16:52:16

Any recommendation for books slipshod? Might start a new thread for that actually.

Thanks to this thread & further pondering I think I will budget for shipping some boxes of toys, kid books, bedding & kitchen appliances. We are moving ourselves so can't afford to be extravagant on the matter but do want to make it easier for ourselves too!

thanksamillion Tue 26-Mar-13 17:47:30

This book by Marion Knell is quite good, and I think we've got this one too (although I don't think I actually got round to reading it blush

slipshodsibyl Tue 26-Mar-13 18:48:02

Yes the
Dave Pollock/ Ruth Van Reneken one that Thanksamillion has linked it the most well known.. Also some free resources and useful links may be found on , although the site is being wound down. The children will benefit enormously, but do need special consideration to make it easier I think.

Alligatorpie Tue 26-Mar-13 18:48:50

Raising Global Nomads. By Robin Pascoe is good.

We didn't ship stuff, but took extra bags so had 9 bags between the three of us. We wanted to recreate dd's bedroom so pretty much took everything. we also had 3 sets of grandparents visit in the first year and they all brought an extra bag of stuff out. And everytime we go home we bring loads back. Since arriving, we have had a baby, so I don't think we will get away without shipping when we move on from here.

ChasingSquirrels Tue 26-Mar-13 18:52:49

Went we went we took everything on the plane - but we were only 2 adults.
We had 2 x 20kg allowance - and had 3 suitcases, one of which I was fully prepared to ditch.
People in front of us were charged excess baggage and it was such a faff (15 years ago), we were thinking "oh fuck".
Put our bags on, 80kg+ total "double fuck".
Check in looked at it, looked at our tickets - UK: Papua New Guinea - 1 way, and just booked us through.

I can't imagine doing it now, and definitely not with 2 kids - but part shipping, part plane sounds like a good idea.

nooka Wed 27-Mar-13 05:50:49

We used our full baggage allowance just on the stuff we needed for the first six weeks whilst we waited for our container to arrive (dh and me and our 7 and 8 year old). Having our own stuff was for us hugely important. I pared down a lot so we could just use a half container, but rebuying everything I'd given away wasn't at all cheap. Might well have been cheaper just to ship everything. But we do have quite a lot of stuff (especially books smile)

slipshodsibyl Wed 27-Mar-13 11:26:21

I agree that having ones own familiar things around is important to the family - especially children- but if going for only a year or so then it is trickier to move a lot of stuff. Moving with children is vastly different to travelling and moving as a couple.

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