Moving long distance was not the fun adventure I was hoping it would be. A few months ago, we made the big move to Timmins, Ontario for a fantastic new job Kenny landed. While we were so excited to move somewhere more remote than the busy Greater Toronto Area that we were living in, the long distance move up north turned out much harder to navigate than expected. By no means was it a success, however, we discovered what worked and what didn’t. Here are 5 things I learned from our long distance move.
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1. Start Decluttering Early
2. Google Maps + Instagram Hashtags
3. Invest in the Best Moving Option
One of the first things I did when we found out we were moving was to research the most cost-effective moving options. When we moved in the past, it was always within the same area, which made the options easy – U-Haul rental or friends and family. This time we had a lot of logistics to consider such as pets, our car, and the ever-present time factor. The trip up to Timmins was a 10 hour (630km) drive with a moving truck. We had to decide whether we wanted to rent a moving service or go the DIY route with U-Haul again. We ended up going for the cheaper option which was U-Haul. While I can’t find fault with the company, this option was incredibly stressful coupled with the time constraint and the long drive (especially when exhaustion sets in). Next time we move long-distance we’re DEFINITELY going to research more moving companies and invest in the extra cost.
Note: I really loved the U-Box option U-Haul offers, it would’ve been perfect and a cost-effective option but unfortunately they didn’t cover our moving area. Maybe next time!
4. Create a Packing Organizer:
Creating a packing organizer was the most successful thing I did for the entire move. I realized that once we were in Timmins we would have to unpack the truck by ourselves. After the long drive, we would be far too exhausted to immediately start unpacking our boxes. In order to make life easier, I created a system where I coded every room by colour and itemized each box which allowed me to know exactly what was in each one. This was all kept neatly in a binder that was easily accessible. It seemed like a bit of work while I was packing, but in the end, it worked out perfectly! I loved being able to know where everything was and not have to rummage endlessly through boxes.
*I would 100% do this next time. Because it worked out so well for me, I’m sharing it with you today! (Anyone already subscribed will be sent theirs automatically).
*EDIT: We actually did another long distance move recently, and I used this Packing Organizer again. It really made a difference and helped with the overwhelm of unpacking – I hope it can help you as well!
5. Take a Minimalistic Approach – BEFORE You Pack the Truck
Moving is an excellent opportunity for starting afresh. It’s the part I absolutely love about it! When we started packing our U-Haul truck, I was so sure everything was going to fit in beautifully and there would be a ton of room – well that didn’t happen. I never knew we had so much stuff! We were half-way through packing our moving truck (which was a fair size) when it became very clear there was not enough room for all our belongings. In the end, we had to throw out a lot of our furniture. It was very hard to get rid of things that we had an emotional attachment to. However, this negative situation became quite positive in the fact that we learned to detach ourselves from our possessions (well, most of them), and it ended up being a very healthy practice for us, one that we’re still trying to apply to our lives now.
If I could go back in time, I would have taken a minimalistic approach from the get-go. From now on we try to only keep the things that bring joy and value to our lives.
Do you know of any great moving tips for long distances? Let me know in the comments below.