Welcome to part 2 of our 4 part series on international shipping.
Now that you know who is involved in the international shipping process and what roles they play, you know what to start looking for.
That means the next logical step is to look at how to chose, and more importantly NOT to choose your international shipping company. We’ve made it nice and simple with some do’s and don’ts.
– Shop on price
While this may seem like an attractive option to go for, it’s the quickest and easiest way to run into trouble. The less trustworthy companies in the market prey on people who are too lazy and ignorant to ask questions and shop around – so don’t fall into their trap. If you go to an online mover search engine and pick the lowest rate, you are bound to find a scammer who will cost you more money and trouble than it’s worth.
It’s also worth keeping an eye on what isn’t included in their terms, as this is usually where they will start to cause problems. There will be various expenses not included in the cost, and this is where they will get extra money out of you once you’re hooked into their contract.
– Not get a visual survey
If you hear the phrase ‘You know better than some stranger what you need to ship.’ alarm bells should be ringing and you should be looking elsewhere. Visual surveys are the easiest way to sort the good from the bad in this industry. The inspector isn’t really just looking at what you’re shipping, but also what street you live on, logistics for trucks and all sorts. It also helps you sift through the brokers working from their basement too far away to help. It’s always safer to trust the company who will give you a visual survey.
– Ignore the fine print
The most common question we get asked is ‘Does the price include everything?’ This is a perfectly understandable question, but you would already know the answer if you had read all of the quote. If you had, you’d know that there are certain elements that can’t be predicted and therefore aren’t included. It’s also music to a scammers ears. If you contest a final bill from a scammer, the first question anyone (including the judge) will ask is ‘What does the agreement say?’ Don’t get caught out – always read every word of the quote.
– Get sorting
It makes no sense for you to spend time, money and effort shipping items that are going to be thrown away on your arrival. Get sorting and only ship what you need to ship.
– Get references from knowledgeable people
Find someone impartial and who knows what they are talking about to give you advice on a selection of quotes. Don’t just go with the first option, get a few and then get them looked at by someone who doesn’t stand to gain anything from your choice.
– Get visual surveys
Like we mentioned before, visual surveys help you in a lot of ways, so make sure you always get one.
– Read the entire quote
Again, to avoid getting scammed, losing money or getting a large unexpected bill, make sure you’ve read everything on the quote.
– Get it in writing
If you run into problems, it’s not going to matter what the salesman did (or didn’t) say over the phone or in your meeting. The only thing that will help you avoid getting caught out is getting everything in writing.
– Get insurance
It might seem like an unnecessary expense on top of an already expensive endeavour, but it’s invaluable when it comes to protecting your move. You are pouring a lot of hard earned money into this move- it makes sense to protect it.