In my process of becoming an adult, yesterday, I learned how to pack. So here is some unsolicited advice on packing for a move, whether you’re going down the street or across the country.
- Pack heavy stuff in smaller boxes. Initially (because I’m an idiot), I bought a few big boxes and put all of my plates/glasses/dishes into two big boxes. Then when it came time to move it from the kitchen to the living room, I was having a hard time. I couldn’t lift the box. I somehow woke up yesterday morning realizing that these two boxes would break, and then went to my mom’s and picked up some smaller boxes. Now all of my dishes are in four or five smaller boxes, but they are packed tightly and will be easier to carry.
- Save packing stuff from Amazon/other packages you receive. My mom saved a few boxes and a bunch of the plastic filling (or bubble wrap) for packages she’s received over the past few weeks and it has been perfect in padding the aforementioned dishes and other things that might have a little extra space to move around. And I didn’t have to pay for these boxes or filling.
- Wrap plates/glasses in plastic wrap. This will help prevent things from moving and thus breaking, but if they do break, they are protected by the plastic wrap and you won’t get broken glass all over your stuff. I got this tip from one of my good friends who has done a long-distance move before. For example, I stacked four large glasses together, and put a paper plate on the inside of each glass, and then wrapped the stack tightly in plastic wrap. And I stacked all of my big plates on top of each other and in between each of these plates, I put a single paper plate. Then I wrapped all of them tightly in plastic wrap, and then wrapped them in clothes, which brings me to my next point…
- Wrap fragile things in clothes. This is a lovely tip I picked up from Reddit but after wrapping things in plastic wrap, I wrapped them up further in clothes that I won’t be needing immediately for my drive out there/for when I start work. This means that I didn’t have nasty newspaper covering my stuff (which works, because I also don’t receive a newspaper), and I was able to pack my clothes in some of these boxes as well.
- Label each box with a number, and write down the inventory separately. This was a suggestion from my mom’s boyfriend, which is actually some good advice. I have a notebook full of inventory for each numbered box, in addition to marking the outside of the box, so this will ensure that everything gets delivered and I have everything I packed. It also helped me in figuring out which items I was forgetting to pack.
- When looking for a moving company, shop around. I mentioned it before, but I initially looked at PODS for my long distance move, in addition to U-Box (U-Haul’s version of PODS), U-Pack, and UShip. The first two were right around $3000 for everything; U-Pack was around $2500 (and I’d have to load/unload myself); and when I posted to UShip (carriers bid in an auction to move your stuff via freight load), I never heard back from anyone. While any of these four options may be viable for other people and other moves, for me it was not. I did some research and found (via Reddit, again) a company called Door to Door. For under $2000, I have the same kind of service that I’d get with PODS, except it’s better because they have movers come and load up the container for me, and the customer service representatives there aren’t rude. So, long story short: shop around, because when I did, it saved me $500-$1000.
That’s all I have for now. I’m still finishing up some packing right now but I thought this might be helpful to others.
Door to Door drops off/packs up my container tomorrow, and then it’s on its way to sunny San Diego. It is supposed to arrive the day before I start work, but it may take longer depending on how bad the winter weather is in the midwest. So we’ll see what happens with that.
In other news, it’s 30 degrees here and almost 60 degrees in San Diego. Just saying.
In other other news, Adam and I signed a lease and we’re just waiting for confirmation that we got an awesome place (with a fenced in backyard for Maeby!!). So that’s pretty exciting.