Frequently asked questions about moving abroad

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I have been given three quotes for my move. How do I know which one is the most competitive?

There is a great deal of variation in what is included in a quote given by different service providers. There is also variation in the quality of service provided by different moving companies. You should go through the quotes carefully and pay particular attention to the following aspects affecting the price:

  1. Make sure that the request for quotation has been understood correctly and locations (departure and destination addresses) are correct.
  2. Check that all the service providers offer the same form of transportation. You should also check the timing (week, date) of the move.
  3. Pay attention to the assessed volume of goods (m3). Remember that it is always a moving company representative’s assessment of the goods to be transported. There may be variation in the assessed volume between different service providers.
  4. Is the level of service the same with all service providers (defined on a case-by-case basis depending on the customer’s needs)? Which services and materials are included in the total price? Which services will be charged as “additional work” (e.g. packing service, packing materials, floor protection, storage service, cleaning service, customs clearance, moving insurance)?
  5. Does the service provider give information on additional costs arising from moving conditions? Check which aspects have been taken into consideration in the total price and which ones will be charged separately (e.g. parking and traffic arrangements, parking permit, need for a crane etc.).
  6. Check the insurance coverage of your belongings. Moving companies offer separate moving insurance policies. Check if the insurance is included in the quote. You should also compare the contents of the insurance, for example in terms of the deductible.

 Finally, you should check that the quote includes at least the following aspects:

  • information about schedule (loading and unloading)
  • contact details of the moving company’s contact person
  • validity of the quote
  • terms of payment
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How much does a move from Helsinki to Hamburg cost?

The mode of transportation and the distance naturally affect the price, as does the amount of goods to be transported. The amount of goods is assessed thoroughly during a free assessment visit. We will also determine the need for protecting your belongings as well as the extent of the packing service, i.e. whether we will take care of packing and protecting your belongings or will you do it yourself. When moving to another country, it is usually recommended that the moving company packs the customer’s belongings because otherwise problems may occur in terms of import clearance. Other aspects will also be taken into consideration during the assessment visit, like the floor on which your property is, whether there is a lift, how close to the property can the moving van drive, can a sea container be brought near the property so that items can be packed directly into the container etc. All these aspects affect the price of the move.

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What are the modes of transportation available?

The mode of transportation usually depends on the location. Within Europe cargo is usually transported by road. When moving outside of Europe, goods are generally transported by sea freight. Air freight is used for small amounts of goods or if the shipment is urgent. We also offer courier services in Europe.

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Can I pack my own belongings?

We always recommend that our customers use our packing service. Packing is a lot more challenging when moving abroad than when moving within one country. When goods are transported abroad, they have to withstand varying conditions, for example rough seas. In some cases it is not even recommended to do the packing independently to ensure a smooth import clearance. Especially in connection with sea and air freight you should let the moving company’s packers do the work because of various liability issues.

However, if you do decide to do the packing yourself, check out our packing and protection supplies and their use on our online store’s website. We would also like to remind you that if you pack your own belongings, it is common practice in many countries that an independent packer will then also be responsible for insuring their movables. You should always check the policy with your insurance company.

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Do you provide packing materials?

We offer an excellent selection of packing and protection supplies to be used by our professional packers as well as customers. For example, we offer cardboard boxes in different sizes, allowing you to choose a suitable one for different purposes (dishes, clothes, books etc.). The boxes used for international moves are always cardboard boxes because the plastic moving boxes we rent to consumers and companies are not suitable for international moves. Protection supplies should also be chosen carefully for different purposes.

For more information about our packing and protection supplies and their uses, please visit our online store.

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How long is the transportation time from Finland to Brussels?

When using Niemi’s own moving van, the cargo will be in the destination country approximately 3-4 days from loading. If the vehicle is shared, the schedule depends on the destinations of the other goods transported at the same time. Generally the goods will reach their destination within 1.5 weeks from loading.

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I am moving from Budapest to Finland. Do you have partners in Hungary?

Yes, Niemi has an extensive partner network, including several partners in Hungary.

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Which official documents do I need?

The documents required depend on the destination country. Moving within the EU is easier with regard to documents. You need fewer documents and export/import clearance is generally not required.

Non-EU export/import shipments, which include relocation shipments, require export and import clearances. When moving from Finland to a non-EU country, a copy of the customer’s passport as well as an export clearance form are required. The forms required for export clearance are available from Niemi. Import clearance will be carried out in the destination country and the forms required depend on the country. Our partners are happy to help you with the import documents.

When moving to Finland from a non-EU country, our local partner in the departure country will assist you with the required export documents. For the purposes of import clearance in Finland, the customer has to provide a copy of their passport as well as the Finnish Customs import clearance form 45. The forms required for import clearance are available from Niemi.

Further information about importing relocation goods is available on the Customs website.

You should, however, always contact our specialists to check the documents you need.

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Am I allowed to transport food or alcohol when I move?

It is recommended that alcohol is not included in relocation shipments because the exemption from customs duties and taxes does not apply to alcohol products (e.g. wine cellars), tobacco or tobacco products, irrespective of whether one moves within or outside of the EU.

If the shipment includes the above-mentioned products, they must be classified using tariff headings and the duties and taxes levied on them must be paid when imported.

Certain types of food products can be transported when moving, depending on the mode of transportation. You should, however, always check the restrictions of your mode of transportation together with our specialists.

The regulation on relief from customs duty does not exempt an individual from the applicable import restrictions. For example, the import of live animals, animal products, plants, plant parts, firearms and ammunition is only permitted under certain conditions. More information about import restrictions is available through the Customs Information Service or on the Customs website.

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How can I get my extensive wine collection back to Finland?

Please contact our specialists.

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I am moving abroad, but I will only take some of my belongings with me? Do you also take care of small-scale international moves?

We offer services for all relocation projects, irrespective of their size, and we tailor the transportation solutions according to the amount of goods.

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I am moving to Finland. Should I order my moving services from you or a local moving company?

Niemi provides services to anyone moving to Finland, so all you have to do is contact us. We will ask our local partner to carry out an assessment and inform us of the conclusions. Our quote will then be based on this information. We can give our quote either in Finnish or English.

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My friends will help me carry my belongings in the destination country. Is it possible to just order the transportation from you?

Yes, it is possible to just order the transportation. However, please note that this service is not available with overseas moves.

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Can I contact you by email?

You can, of course, contact us by email. However, we recommend that you use our contact form. It ensures that we will have all the details required to give a quote and that foreign names and addresses are correct. You should always make sure that addresses and the spelling thereof are correct so that all documents are completed properly right away – and the driver will also be able to find the right place without difficulty.

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Useful links

Finnish Customs instructions:

Information about Finland as well as public and other services:

Notification of change of address to Posti and/or local register office:


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