Expatriation: move preparation

This post is part of a series describing an expatriation from Belgium to Ukraine. The goal of this series is to demystify the expatriation, tell our story and all the challenges we faced.

We took the decision, compared costs and now come the move preparation.
Should we move furnitures ? Clothes ? Sell/donate everything ?

Here is how we decided
Moving preparation decision flow

The clean-up opportunity

Since the main question when moving is “Do you need it ?
It’s an amazing opportunity to clean-up your life of useless Stuff ! Stay open-minded about changing the way you live. Renting or sharing something with neighbor is saving time & money !

Moving costs

Since it’s not within Europe, there are a few possibilities : by car, by plane/train, sending boxes

Move by car

It’s a 1300 miles trip, since I’m the only driver and the roads in eastern Europe can be awful, it would require 4 nights, 10 meals on the road (as it’s a company car I have to bring it back)
470$ of gas, 130$ for room/hostel, 100$ for food, 2 day of unpaid vacation 300$ : 1000$

Move by plane/train

train is too long & expensive (more than 3 days of travel)
Plane is feasible using Wizzair which allow 3 luggage of 70 pound per person. (so above 400 pound of luggage) for 500$


Sadly Ukraine being out of EU make it very expensive to send anything. Fedex/UPS end up in hundreds for small boxes, total would be above 1000$ for a few crate (flying by plane is way cheaper at equal weight)

So our choice was between car & plane, favoring car as it would allow us to carry nearly all our stuff (with the exception of big furniture)

What to move ?

One of the main constraint is that the flat we are moving to is smaller than our current one (we will share a flat with family until we find something adequate). What we own is mostly IKEA furniture (worth a couple of thousands euros), so the move of furniture would cost us much more than what we could buy locally… So we decided to sell all furniture, rent a furnished flat & decide later what we really need.
It leave us with moving all our clothes, all baby stuff and a bit of kitchen ware.

Did you move recently ? Did you favor making it cheap or with the least trouble ?

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