We are going to share several packing tips that we’ve come across recently, in the hopes that it might help others who are moving long-distance. Even though we’ve moved a few times, we’ve come to realize that our packing methods were less than acceptable. Thankfully we’ve had minimal breakage over the years, but with a 1,295 mile trip, we want to ensure our boxes arrive safely.
1. Start off with having the right supplies. Packing tape, packing paper, bubble wrap and sturdy boxes are four essential items. It is recommended to use clean newsprint for your packing paper, so the ink does not transfer to your belongings. We were able to buy end rolls of paper from the local newspaper company for $2 per roll.
2. Boxes need to be packed tightly. If you pick up a box and can hear things shifting and moving around in there, there will probably be breakage. Fill in all the gaps with packing paper. If you have children who are bringing stuffed animals, they make great filler. It doesn’t add a lot of weight to the boxes, and it prevents needing separate boxes for them.
3. Plastic totes are not necessarily the way to go. If they ship during transit, they could pop open and all your belongings will be scattered in the moving truck. We do have a few that we are bringing but we are going to secure them with wrap and packing tape and hope for the best.
4. When packing breakable items, fill the bottom of the boxes with crushed paper. This is where buying the end rolls of paper really come in handy. You can rip off as much as you need.
5. Books should be packed in a small carton and placed on end (not on top of each other).
6. Plates should never be packed flat; place on end. When wrapping plates, start from the corner and wrap diagonally, tucking in the edges as you go. Fill the bottom of the box with crushed paper, place plates on end, and then separate layers of plates with crushed paper.
7. Bowls will be packed the same way as plates.
8. When packing bowls with lids, first wrap the bowl and tuck paper on the inside. Then place lid on top and wrap entire bowl again.
9. When packing stemware, roll a piece of packing paper and roll along the stem of the glass. Then wrap each piece individually with more packing paper. Stemware should be placed on edge in the box (up–> down).
10. Cups should be wrapped individually and then packed into the box upside down.
11. For odd-shaped items, roll a piece of packing paper around the handle. Then wrap the item using new paper.
12. If you have silver in a chest, there are two possible ways to wrap. You may wrap pieces individually and reposition in the chest, or you can fill in the empty spaces in the chest with tissue paper. Wrap the entire chest in a paper pad or bubblewrap.
13. Vases should be wrapped in bubblewrap and then in a paper pad.
14. Be sure to label all boxes with breakable items as FRAGILE with an arrow pointing up.
15. Mirror boxes are available to wrap mirrors or picture frames, and are adjustable to fit the size you need. Wrap in paper then place in a mirror box. Be sure to tape all the way around the box.
16. Electronic devices should be unplugged 24 hours before you move, to allow the devices to come to room temperature. The same rule applies when you arrive at your home or apartment: allow 24 hours before plugging in.
17. When possible, use the original packing and boxes for TVs and computers. Cut out a piece of cardboard to fit your screen before packing.
This is where we will give a shameless plug for Mayflower. :=) If you visit www.mayflower.com you can view different moving videos (which are also available on www.youtube.com; do a search for Mayflower).
Mark and Jen