How to negotiate with international moving companies

Moving is very expensive. Especially moving to another country. If you decided to move abroad, you will need the help of international movers. And you will have to know how to negotiate with international moving companies if you don’t want to break your bank. But even if you are not moving, international movers can help you to ship your project cargo, exhibition cargo Japan, or any other kind of shipment across the sea. However, people and corporations who frequently use services of such companies know that there are many fraudulent moving companies on the global market that you need to watch out for. Here is how to negotiate with international moving companies so you could avoid scammers and get the best deals.

Moving industry is a fertile ground for scammers

Moving frauds are a common thing. There is a lot of money in the game. People who entrust their belongings to movers are vulnerable. And laws and regulations that should be protecting customers are weak. All of that combined is a fertile ground for scams. That is why you need to be extra careful when deciding which international moving company to hire. Only when you are sure that you are dealing with professional and reliable air sea forwarder you can enter negotiations. But how to make sure that you are dealing with trustworthy and responsible movers?

Illustration of a man using laptop with fraud alert sign on it
Watch out for fraudulent movers. They are a real threat.

Before you negotiate with international moving companies, you need to make sure that they are reliable professionals

There are thousands of moving companies around the world. Most of them are trying to do their job professionally. But there is a huge number of fraudulent movers that are just waiting for naive customers to rip them off. If you want to avoid scammers, you will need to do a background check before you decide to hire them. Of course, some moving companies from some countries are easier to check than others are. But you will mostly have to rely on the internet.

How to check US-based companies?

If you are looking for a US-based moving company you can inspect them using the Better Business Bureau’s website. Or even better, you can use the website of the American Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. And check them through their DOT number.

How to check moving companies from other countries?

If you want to check movers from other countries, you will need to find local websites and forums. Or websites that offer international overseas moving companies reviews. But the best thing is to make sure that the moving company that you plan to hire is a member of international moving associations. Only after you make sure that they are doing their business honestly and responsibly, you can start your negotiations.

Laptop and hands
Use the internet to check moving companies.

How to negotiate with international moving companies and deal with their quotes

One of the ways to check whether you are dealing with frauds is through their moving quotes. When you are preparing for a move, you will need to ask a moving company to give their estimate. And you need to make sure that they give you an accurate estimate. But how do you that? When you ask for a moving estimate, a moving company should send their representative to your home to estimate the size and weight of your moving inventory. Only then, you can get an official estimate. If a moving company offers to give you an estimate over the phone, without knowing how many items you actually have, you should skip hiring their services. One of the ways that you can beat this is to prepare an accurate moving inventory list. A moving company could use this to calculate its price.

You will need to have something to negotiate with

Of course, you will need a point of reference to which you can compare it. So when you want to negotiate with international moving companies you will need to have quotes from several different sources. So, find at least three reliable international moving companies and get their estimates for comparison. If you find that some estimates are considerably lower than others are, you should definitely skip hiring those movers. One of the most common ways that scammers use to lure customers is by offering very low quotes. But if you have estimates from several different sources you will have something to negotiate with.

Woman using tablet
Ask for estimates from several different companies. Then you can compare their prices.

Think about additional fees when you negotiate with international moving companies

One of the things that you will need to watch out for when you negotiate with international moving companies is additional fees. Moving companies will give you their quotes but if something unexpected happens or you decide to use some of their additional services, they could charge you more than you agreed upon the beginning.  So your job is to make sure that everything that they are charging is stated in the contract. Here are the most usual situations:

  • A moving company could change their price if they have to transport your goods to a longer distance than expected.
  • Sometimes movers will have to carry your items from high floors, inaccessible places, you have heavy lift cargo, or they cannot come close to your home with their truck. When you negotiate with international moving companies, make sure that they are aware of everything.
  • It can happen that your large furniture cannot get out of your home, or they cannot bring it into your new home so they have to disassemble and assemble it. If that is the case, they will charge you extra.

People who move frequently know that all of those things are negotiable. But you need to make sure that everything is stated in the contract. Reliable professionals are easy to work with. And you should get no surprises with them. The hardest part will be to identify them.

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