customer careQUESTION 1: "When is the best time to start contacting moving companies about quotations on my move and how many quotations should I request ?"

A good time to start is at least two months before your preferred move date. Try to get quotations from at least three different movers to be better able to compare services, prices, shipping schedule, inclusion and exclusion.

QUESTION 2: "How do I select the right moving company for me ?"

Collect movers' information from different resources, e.g. from the HR department of your company, from friends and colleagues or advertisements

  • Call them to get a first impression about their knowledge, experience, capabilities, etc.
  • Select the top movers on your list, that you feel comfortable with from your initial call. Ask them to come to your home for a pre-move survey and quotation
  • Compare specifications and price among the proposals, select the mover who is good at both: expertise and competitive rate
  • Visit the mover's facilities if you have storage needs

QUESTION 3: "Is there a charge for the survey service ?"

No, Continental International Moving China (CIM Mover) provides as part of the customer care free estimates for your move. These quotations are also obligation free.

QUESTION 4: "How long do you usually need for the survey ?"

That depends on the size of your home, but usually no more than an hour.

QUESTION 5: "How long after the survey will you give me the quotation ?"

It will take us about 2-3 working days.

QUESTION 6: "Is there a minimum volume for a move ?"

Yes, the minimum volume for a move is 3 CBM.

QUESTION 7: "When do I need to book the packing date ?"

As early as you can, and certainly no later than 2-3 weeks before the day you want to pack. During the busy moving season from May to October we recommend booking your move at least 5 weeks ahead, in order be guaranteed your preferred packing date. Also, it will be easier to arrange your own schedule for other moving-related issues.
As part of our customer care we from CIM Mover do understand that in some circumstances you have to move at short notice. Please call us and we will do everything we can to accommodate you.

QUESTION 8: "How long will the packing take ?"

It depends on the volume of your shipment. Generally a 20' container shipment takes 2 days and a 40' container takes 3-4 days with four packers. However, Continental International Moving China (CIM Mover) has the flexibility to adjust it according to your specific needs.

QUESTION 9: "Can you deliver some packing materials before the packing date, so that I can pack some goods by myself ?"

Of course, we can deliver boxes and packing materials in advance for you to pack some of your personal belongings by yourself. However, be aware of the potential problems. For instance, insurance companies will not pay out on damaged or missing goods packed by the owner. In addition, Customs officials will be more likely to inspect these packed by owner goods. If you really need to pack some of your goods, leave the carton unsealed so that the packing crew can inspect the contents, annotate the inventory accordingly. That way it will also be easier for us to do customs clearance on your behalf, both in China and in the destination country.

QUESTION 10: "How to move clothes ? Can I pack them in a chest or a dresser ?"

Lightweight clothing- sweaters, shirts, blouses and lingerie may be left in the drawers. Don't fill drawers with heavy items such as books, table linens or sheet.

QUESTION 11: "Are there any things that I cannot include in my shipment ? What are the prohibited items ?"

Restrictions depend on your new residence, but the most common restrictions include:

  • Automobiles
  • Culturally offensive materials (e.g. porn)
  • Firearms, flammable or explosive items (e.g. propane tanks, liquid detergents, aerosol cans, ammunition)
  • Illegal drugs, narcotics and liquor
  • Pets and live plants
  • Specialist electronic equipment (interphones, stereo equipment)
  • Liquor and tobacco products
  • Food
  • Pirated DVDs, VCDs and CDs

Electrical appliances: such as refrigerators, cookers. They may not work at destination due to different voltage. We can advise you on which items might cause potential problems at customs.

QUESTION 12: "Can I ship my car ?"

Yes, you can. But keep in mind that in some countries the import duty on cars is extremely high. Some countries have special regulations regarding emission controls or even have rigorous steam cleaning requirements. In some countries, importing left hand vehicles is prohibited. So before you decide to ship your car, please contact your CIM specialist for more information.

QUESTION 13: "Can I ship my pets ?"

Yes, you can, but only cats and dogs. Please contact your CIM moving specialist or refer to our pet import/export service for more information.

QUESTION 14: "Will the packing crew use the original packing materials for my TV and other electrical appliances ?"

Please show the supervisor the original cartons and packing materials. The supervisor will check the original cartons and decide to use these or CIM Movers packing material. It also depends on the destination customs regulations.

QUESTION 15: "Do I need to provide an address at destination before shipping my goods ?"

It is not necessary for you to provide an actual delivery address before shipping your goods. Of course, we need you to provide which city you are moving to. Sometimes you need time to find a place at destination.

QUESTION 16: "What document do I need for moving to another country ?"

Some countries (e.g. France) require an approval of change of residence when you bring back your household goods. If you are going to work at destination, a work permit is normally required. Please take this into consideration when you schedule the time to ship your goods. Again, please contact your CIM Mover consultant.

QUESTION 17: "Do I need moving insurance for my goods ?"

Continental International Moving China (CIM Mover) uses quality packing materials and experienced crews to pack your goods. However, the journey may be covering thousands of miles, through different weather conditions, wide variations of temperature, and multiple handlings, not to mention the fact we cannot eliminate the risk of fire, flood, and ship sinking, which is precisely the reason why you need transportation insurance. CIM Mover provides all clients with a comprehensive all-risk insurance meaning it coverage catering for all eventualities and therefore protecting your personal effects in the unlikely event of damage or loss.

QUESTION 18: "Can I store my goods at CIM Mover's warehouse ?"

Yes. Continental International Moving China (CIM Mover) has its own storage facilities with 24 hours a day, 7 days a week security. The storage charge is based on the volume of your shipment. Alternatively, CIM Mover can arrange to store your goods at the warehouse of our overseas agents. Contact your CIM moving specialist for your storage needs.

QUESTION 19: "What documents do I need to provide (in China)?"

Your passport and employment permit is generally needed for customs clearance in China. However, for different kinds of shipments, different documents / certificates are required. We will inform you in advance of the requirements for your shipment.

QUESTION 20: "How to move my goods to destination? How long does it take ?"

Generally, a door-to-door air shipment takes 16 days after it leaves China. For sea shipments it depends on where you are going, but a reasonable estimate is: China to USA 6-7 weeks, China to Europe 6-7 weeks, China to Asia 3-4 weeks, China to Australia 6-7 weeks after the shipment leaves China. Continental International Moving China (CIM Mover) will provide you with a shipping schedule.

QUESTION 21: "What documents do I need to provide at destination ?"

There are different requirements in different countries. We will advise you during the survey of the relevant customs regulations at destination.

QUESTION 22: "What happens when my goods arrive at destination ?"

Please contact CIM Mover immediately upon your arrival to make sure that we have your contact details, so that we can contact you as soon as your shipment arrives. With sufficient customs paperwork the CIM Mover destination agent will clear your shipment through customs and arrange delivery to your new home. Please make sure that you are present upon delivery to check the goods quantity and condition. In some countries, you may be expected to be present if your shipment is inspected by customs.

QUESTION 23: "What happens if I find some damaged items at the time of the delivery or after unpacking ?"

The insurance company allows 45 days to report damage. However, it is better to check the condition of all packages as soon as possible and report damage or loss to your moving company CIM as quickly as you can. The sooner it's reported or make a claim, the easier it is to follow up on any lost or misplaced items.

QUESTION 24: "When do I pay for my move ?"

If you are paying the move by yourself, you will need to pay the full amount before we dispatch your shipment. If your company is responsible for payment, then we can offer extended payment period after packing.

QUESTION 25: "What will cause an increase of the final charges for my move ?"

Additional charges can occur for any of the following reasons:

  • The insurance premium, which is based on a percentage of the declared value of the goods you insured. These costs are not known until after you have provided the valued inventory costs
  • relics inspection fee when you have old Chinese style furniture
  • Increase of volume.
  • Hand carry, long carry, such as no lift, stairs above 2nd Floor.
  • Shuttle service
  • Customs inspection Fee.
  • Duty or taxes, quarantine or fumigation costs or other charges collected by government
  • Destination storage or demurrage charges caused by invalid customs paperwork
  • More than one delivery or to more than one delivery address
  • Delivery at weekend Holiday

QUESTION 26: "What documents do I need to provide in order for CIM Mover to clear my household goods through Chinese customs on my behalf ?"

Please kindly provide the following documents which are required to do the customs clearance.

  • Your original passport with one year valid residence permit
  • work permit
  • customs declaration form and customs clearance authorization letter with your signature

QUESTION 27: "How long will you keep my above mentioned documents ?"

Normally we can return you original documents within three working days unless your work permit and residence permit are issued in another city other than the destination city.

QUESTION 28: "Do I need to pay duty for my personal effects ?"

Yes. Chinese customs regulations says that all furniture and appliances are dutiable. Customs duty for furniture is 10% of the declared value and for appliances is 20% of the declared value.

QUESTION 29: "How do I declare the value of my household goods ?"

For the dutiable items, Chinese customs officials have their assessed value list. Take a one single bed for example, customs assessed the declared value at around RMB 3,000, so the estimated customs duty is RMB 300.

QUESTION 30: "How many books/CDs/DVDs may I bring to China in my household effects shipment ?"

According to the rules of Beijing customs, each foreign expatriate is allowed to import no more than 500 pieces of books, 300 CDs, 200 DVDs in the shipment. But the books and DVD/CDs shall not be in the same title in order to avoid suspicion of commercial intention. But for different port of entry, different rules might apply.

We hope, that these frequently asked questions (faq) were useful for you, to get an overview about how to move. Your moving company: Continental International Moving China(CIM Mover).