If you’re preparing for a cross-country move, the excitement can be overshadowed by the moving logistics.
Don’t get overwhelmed by the scale of your move. With a little organization, you can move from point A to point B efficiently. Whether you’re leaving the Great Plains of Oklahoma for the golden West Coast or the bustle of the Northeast, these long-distance moving tips will help you and your belongings get there smoothly.
Consider Moving During the Off-Season
May through September is the most popular time for people to move. Off-season discounts, or at least pricing, may be available during downtimes in the fall, winter, and early spring. If possible, explore the possibility of moving when the roads are less crowded with fellow travelers.
Take Inventory of What You Need to Bring
Moving is a great excuse to de-clutter and simplify your life. While you want to take your favorite furniture, heirlooms, and kitchen essentials, you don’t need to keep dragging around old clothes and unwanted knickknacks.
Take time to decide what you want to take with you to your new house and what needs to be sold, donated, or thrown away. We recommend using the one-year rule. If you haven’t used or worn something in the last year, it’s time to toss it. Any items or clothing in good condition can be sold or donated.
Have Quality Moving Supplies Ready to Go
Invest in sturdy moving supplies, especially if you plan to pack yourself. This means durable cardboard boxes that are easily stackable and come in a variety of sizes.
While it’s tempting to raid your local grocery store or other businesses for leftover boxes, it’s best to make an investment in professional packing supplies. Pre-used boxes that aren’t intended for packing heavy items could bottom out, be prone to further damage, or be hard to fit together once packed in a car or moving truck.
Decide Whether or Not to Hire Packers
If your moving budget allows for it, you can save an incredible amount of time and stress by hiring professional packers. They have the expertise to move fragile or special items with care. From kitchen appliances to paintings, they can help you with the logistics of getting everything organized.
Make a Packing Plan
Packing up an entire house takes time. The demands of daily life leave little spare time for moving prep. Instead of waiting until the very last minute to pack up, set designated packing days for certain rooms of your house.
If you choose to pack your belongings yourself, go room by room and start with the items you know you won’t need to access every day, like out-of-season clothing or décor. Then move on to bigger projects like your closet or the bulk of your children’s toys. Leave the essential items you need for your daily routine for last.
Pack a Suitcase to Keep with You
Have a suitcase of clothes, toiletries, and other basics ready to take with you as you travel to your new home. If you’re moving with small children, it’s a good idea to set aside a few of their favorite toys and activities from moving boxes. These can help keep them occupied on moving day.
Finalize Travel Plans
Long-distance moving can involve multiple days of traveling. Decide whether you’ll be flying or driving to your new home. If driving, determine if you need multiple cars and who will be driving. Determine what needs to be packed in each car. Also, map out directions and plan stops along the way.
If flying, buy your tickets well in advance of moving day. You’ll need to plan what will go in your luggage and how many bags in total you’ll need. It’s also great to have rides to and from the airport arranged beforehand.
Make Moving Plans for Your Pets
Pets require special planning. If you’re driving, you’ll need to make sure your pet has enough food, water, and potty breaks planned. You also need to have any essential supplies with you and ready to go.
If flying, communicate with the airline on how to best travel with your pets. Chances are you’ll have to check the pet supplies you’ll need after landing or make plans to purchase supplies at a store once you’ve arrived at your new home.
Visit with your vet before you move to see if any special accommodations need to be arranged to keep your pets comfortable during the move.
Book Arrangements for Multi-day Moving
If you’re driving across country, you’ll want to have sleeping arrangements made, especially when you have over-night stops on your route. Choose hotels and pre-book rooms that can accommodate your family and allow you to have a good night’s rest before you hit the road again. Waiting until the last minute to book arrangements may prove disastrous if hotels are full for the night.
Give Yourself an Adjustment Period
You may be travel weary once you get to your new home. If you’re able to move at least a week before starting a new job or before your kids start school, do so.
A calm week to unpack and arrange your new home will allow you to settle. Take a day to drive around town, find a grocery store, pharmacy, or gym. Drive by your new workplace or your children’s new school. If you have time, check out coffee shops or other unique features that will make your new town feel like home.
Let ACE Move You
For moves down the street to across the country, ACE is there with miles of experience. Contact us for a moving quote today!