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Moving abroad

One of the most popular destinations for British expats is Spain.

Moving to Spain:

The first few years in any new country are the hardest, you will need to get to know your new area, local customs and people. One of the best ways to do this is to mix with as many locals as you can even if you feel uncomfortable at first. They will open many new opportunities for you as well as giving you a real look at how the Spanish live. If you are moving to Spain and you really want to stay there then you must learn to Speak Spanish.

There are many people that are living in Spain and who have less than a basic understanding of the language and it is possible to live this way for many years.

It is a shame if you are moving to Spain long term and can’t understand what your locals are saying, not only that but with some basic phrases you will find that the locals will open up to you and this will speed up your integration and help you live the way you first dreamed of. Many local Spanish people want to learn English so this is a great way for you to help them as they help you, just ask at your local bar and you will be surprised at how many want to learn.

Mix with the locals as much as possible and your stay in Spain will be a permanent one.
The Spanish people live on the street in general rather than being enclosed in their homes in front of the television. This is changing on a day to day basis but is exemplified by the fiestas that every single small village holds at some time in the year.

If you come to Spain and do not learn the language then don’t expect too much back. If you make an effort to learn the language the Spanish are most generous with their time and extremely curious about the expats who come to live here. The secret to having a great relationship with your neighbours in Spain is to communicate because the Spanish love talking and giving opinions.

By David C Wright.

Is moving to Europe easy?

Moving across Europe is easy and Europe owes this fact to the immense connectivity that is maintained between various countries by road, rail and air. At any given time, there are numerous ways to travel between various European cities. Get on a fast moving train or a bus or catch a flight and find out how things get operated here.

Trains run across the whole continent; on land and under the sea as well! The Eurostar runs from United Kingdom (London) to France (Paris) and Belgium and in future, the world will witness the Eurostar connecting rest of the places as well. There are other high speed trains that are part of the European transport network and run between various destinations and provide an exhilarating experience to the travelers.

Traveling by air is another popular way of traveling here, though it may be costly at some places. One may have to shell out more bucks while landing in Paris than landing in other cities. So, what is the way out for traveling to such cities or sending couriers to Europe? Catch a flight to any other city in vicinity of such cities and travel by land or by rail. In this way, plenty of bucks can be saved while enjoying a ride across the beautiful landscape.

Services of European removals operators can be sought to send stuff between different places anywhere in the region. Removal service providers can be of a great help in sending items of personal and office use from and to almost all European countries including Portugal, United Kingdom, France, Spain, Belgium, Luxembourg and the Netherlands etc.

By Ella Gold

12 Moving tips:

1. Prepare Ahead - When moving house, you will have to organise many things ahead of time. Make a list of the things you have to do. Get plenty of packing material, think about the furniture and other belongings that you want to move, and the items you need to leave behind. If you have small children, or pets, for example, you will also have to organise care for them.

2. Moving boxes - You may have already bought your new home, but to get the moving process going, it is essential to get moving boxes and other packing material. You can either buy your moving boxes from your local removal company, or you may decide to get hold of moving boxes from shops in your neighbourhood for example.

3. Communicating with your moving company - It is essential to choose a moving company that is willing to help you whenever you need advice, and with whom you can communicate effectively. Establish the date of moving well ahead, do not be afraid to discuss anything you need to know, and confirm the removal again a few days before the moving day as well, to avoid any misunderstandings.

4. Access for the removal van - Think about how the removal van can access your current and future home, advise your neighbours that the van will be parking outside your house, and get any necessary permits.

5. Decide what to take and what to leave behind - You will not necessarily want to take everything with you, especially if you are moving abroad. Make a list of the things you are definitely taking with you - It is also useful to have an inventory when you are unpacking, and it is a requirement at customs when you are moving abroad. Don’t just throw away the items you are leaving behind. Ask your relatives and friends if they want anything, give the things to charities, or organise a garage sale.

6. Think about your new home - Draw up a map of your new home. If it is considerably smaller than your current home for example, you definitely need to leave some things behind. If you start packing based on how you are planning to unpack in your new home, moving in will be much easier.

7. Packing - You can either order a professional packing service from your removal company, which is highly recommended if you are moving abroad, or if you have many fragile and valuable items, or you can decide to pack yourself. If you will be packing yourself, you should start packing your items a few weeks before the moving day, and go through everything systematically. Label moving boxes clearly, and pack essential items only in the last few days. Don’t put too many or too few items into one box.

8. Notify gas, electric, gas and water companies in advance - As you are changing address, you will have to notify these companies, banks, friends and relatives to send your mail to your new address. Notify your employer, and if you have any children, you will have to take care of changing schools as well.

9. Do not pack personal documents, jewellery and money - You might need these items during the removal, or while they are in storage. Don’t pack items that you will need right after you move in, or always keep track of where you are putting them.

10. Research the area where you are moving - If you are moving to Europe or overseas, it is very important to get to know as much about the new country as you can, before moving there. This way, the transition will hopefully not be stressful for you and your family. Even if you are moving within the UK, it is advisable to get to know as much about the new area and the neighbourhood as you can.

11. Be present on the moving day - To ensure that everything goes as planned with the removal team, it is important to be present on the moving day.

12. Check your old home once more - Check that you have not left any items behind. Also turn off gas, electricity and close all the windows.

By Stuart K Reed

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Imove International Removals Ltd is rated 4.43 stars by based on 81 merchant reviews

4.43 / 5 Rating
81 Reviews
We used this company for our move from London to Auckland (NZ). The experience was really good at first, but when we received our boxes in Auckland, one was missing with parts for our baby's cot. At first they wouldnt want to hear anything as I didnt subscribe to an insurance (I didnt complain about the various things that arrived broken, but i thought delivering all the 25 boxes without missing one was the bare minimum we could expect from a moving company), I then had to escalate and speak to someone higher in the hierarchy, they first told me that they would cover the cost for replacing the cot...and then went silent. After 2 months I had to send them an email every week to have an update and it was always "we ll come back in a few days" (of course they did not) ... more than 2 months after my complaint (and 6 months after they collected the boxes in London to send them to Auckland) we are now left without a cot bed for our 10 month old baby and we have to buy another one for £300 as they cant replace the parts or even refund the cost. Needless to say that I am very disappointed, we paid top money for that move hoping it would go well but not only did they lose a box but the interaction to try and get a refund was very slow and painful. There are so many other moving companies, I would strongly advise to go with someone else.
This company is SHOCKING. Lots of hidden costs - about £1000 - long delays and rude when they don’t ignore you. Which is most of the time. AVOID AVOID AVOID
I wanted to take a few items of new furniture to my house in Spain which I couldn't buy out there. As it wasn't a full move I needed a 'groupage' service. I had several quotes and whilst IMove was in line with the others on price more or less I chose them solely on the basis of their reviews. Whilst there were a few horrors they seemed to receive 5star reviews pretty consistently. There was one poor review in particular which concerned me so I asked Aaron what had happened and he was very happy to give me Imove's side of the story in detail. He came across as very open and transparent and I believed him. There are always 2 sides to a story so if you are thinking of using IMove and are concerned by a bad review my advice is ask them about it. Moving on Aaron and then Michaela were both superb. Professional but friendly and once I was committed Michaela kept in regular touch always updating me when she said she would and generally going the extra mile to keep me informed. The crews at both ends were also friendly, polite and treated my furniture with care. So all in all I would certainly recommend IMove and wouldn't hesitate to use them again. Thanks guys! Ros