Australia Migration, Immigration Australia, Migrating to Australia
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Registration Number 1971 and 2748
Registered to Provide Migration Advice
MARN numbers:
0208366, 0426675, 0641256, 0742456 and 0640237
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Planning your move - 8 weeks countdown

countdown prior to moving to australia

 Eight weeks before the move

  • Decide whether you will use a professional mover or move everything yourself.
  • Set the date for your move. Consider timing your move to coincide with 'off-peak' moving periods. Generally Mondays, Fridays and first and last days of each month are the busiest times for professional movers and truck rental.
  • If using a mover, obtain estimates from at least three professional moving companies as well as recommendations from friends before making your selection.
  • If moving yourself, obtain estimates for the hire of removal trucks, etc. Make a booking to hire your selected vehicle/s for the moving day/s.
  • Sketch a floor plan of your new home. Photocopy this plan and then draft onto it the layout for your furniture. Will everything fit? Perhaps some furniture may need to be sold or given away.
  • Start using up food from your freezer to save it spoiling during the move.
  • Clean out clutter. Perhaps hold a garage sale or donate items to charity.
  • Start developing a list of all the people who will need to learn of your new address. As mail is received, check that the sender is on your list of people to inform. This will include friends, relatives, banks, any subscriptions or catalogues, etc.

 Six weeks before the move

  • Discuss the moving details with your mover, including all costs and insurance cover. When you are completely satisfied with the details, book the mover for the day of the move. Also collect as many packing boxes as the moving company is willing to provide.
  • If you are moving yourself, start collecting boxes. You could gather used boxes from supermarkets or friends but make sure these can withstand the rigours of moving. Alternatively buy or hire sturdy moving boxes from professional moving companies.
  • Develop an inventory of all your possessions. This will come in handy not only for organising your move, but also as a record of your assets for insurance purposes.
  • Arrange for the transfer of your children’s school records to their new school.
  • Send out furniture or drapes, etc. to be cleaned.
  • Start notifying others of your forthcoming change in address. This is especially important for any businesses you may deal with as it can often take time to update your address on their systems. Why not produce a moving notice and photocopy this for distribution?
  • Fill in a form at the post office to have your mail redirected. You should elect to have your mail forwarded to this new address for at least two months following your move.

 Four weeks before the move

  • If you need to organise storage, do this now.
  • Using your inventory list, start organising how you will pack your possessions. How many boxes will you need? Which items should be packed last and unpacked first?
  • If you have pets, consider how these will be moved. Perhaps ask your vet to recommend companies who specialise in the safe transport of pets.
  • Arrange for final readings of your services, e.g. gas, water and electricity, to be performed just prior to your move. Also organise for these services to be connected in your new home prior to your arrival.
  • Make sure that your telephone is connected at both your new and old addresses during the move. This will allow for communication between the two places should this be necessary. Alternatively, borrow two mobile phones if you don't have them.
  • If you are going to need temporary accommodation, make the necessary hotel/motel bookings.

 Three weeks before the move

  • Gather together all the packing materials you will need. This includes:
  • Packing tape
  • Bubble wrap
  • Styrofoam ‘beads’
  • Old newspapers
  • Scissors
  • Utility knife
  • Packing string
  • Rope
  • Labels
  • Marker pens
  • Hand truck and/or dolly
  • Plenty of boxes
  • Start packing the items that you will not need over the next few weeks, e.g. extra linen or spare crockery.

Handy tip

Be aware that items you pack yourself are unlikely to be insured for breakage. Therefore, it is a good idea to leave the packing of fragile items, such as glass and china, to the professionals.

 Two weeks before the move

  • Transfer all your bank accounts to new branch locations.
  • Cancel all deliveries, e.g. newspaper, milk.
  • Check on the arrangements for the new telephone service and other connections.
  • Consider storing jewellery and valuables, including certain legal documents, at your bank during the move. Alternatively, set these aside to carry with you on the day of the move.
  • Ensure your possessions will be fully insured during the move. If not, arrange for extra insurance cover.
  • Contact the council where you are going to reside to find out about garbage pick-up, local regulations and other information.

 One week before the move

  • Return all library books and rented videos. Also don't forget to collect any dry-cleaning, shoes from the repairer or lay-bys.
  • If necessary, arrange a babysitter for the day of the move.
  • Tidy up the garden and outside area.
  • Arrange for new locks to be installed on the house you are moving into.
  • Defrost your refrigerator and freezer.
  • Finalise all packing. Number each box and take notes on their contents. Also, keep items from different rooms in separate boxes.
  • Keep in mind that heavier items deserve smaller boxes.
  • Mark any items that should be handled with care.
  • Pack bags of clothing and toiletries to take with you rather than send with the mover.
  • Have the carpet steam cleaned.
  • Also put together a box of items which could be useful for the day of the move. This might include such items as scissors, a utility knife, paper plates and towels, toilet paper, drinks, cups, soap, bandaids, headache tablets, tea towels, rubbish bags and small toys for children.

 Moving day

  • Remove all remaining food from your refrigerator and freezer.
  • Clean out cupboards, sweep the floors and ensure the house is tidy for its next inhabitant.
  • Double check rooms, cupboards, drawers, shelves, outdoor areas and the garage to make sure you’ve taken everything.
  • Turn off all services, including the mains switch and taps.
  • Lock all windows and doors securely.
  • Leave the old house keys with the real estate agent for collection by the new inhabitant.
  • Check to see if all the services are on and appliances are working in your new home.
  • Check off each box as it comes off the truck.
  • Register for voting in the new electorate.
  • Visit your new post office to see whether they are holding any mail for you.

Q. What are quarantine requirements?

The Australian Quarantine Service has strict requirements for the importing or exporting of cargo. These requirements are very strict and must be adhered to. Breeches of quarantine not only incur stiff fines, but they may threaten Australia's flora and fauna, and primary produce industries.

For example, a breech of quarantine that resulted in the establishment of a major disease like foot-and-mouth would devastate our sheep, cattle and pig industries.

We recommend you contact the Australian Quarantine Service directly for further information on your particular requirements. Otherwise, give one of our consultants a call. World Wide would be happy to help.

Faster clearance of freight containers

Australia needs your help to protect its important agricultural industries and unique natural environment from exotic pests and diseases. By meeting quarantine requirements you will ensure the fastest clearance of containers and help Australia keep out exotic pests and diseases.

You can clear freight containers quicker by following these steps:


  • Determine if you need an import permit before shipping goods to Australia.
  • Depending on what you’re bringing into Australia you’ll have to meet certain import conditions. The Australian import conditions are available on the import conditions database (ICON) or from your local AQIS office. (Note: cargo and packing materials in containers are cleared through quarantine separately).
  • Provide AQIS with a packing declaration to facilitate clearance of containers. The packing declaration should provide details of container cleanliness and whether straw and timber have been used as packing materials. If you don’t provide this information the container will have to be opened and inspected at an AQIS approved premises.
  • If a container has to be directed to an AQIS approved premises for unpacking and inspection, delays will occur and costs will be involved.
  • Ensure your container is free of contamination by soil, grain, snails or plant and animal material. The inside and outside of the container should be cleaned before shipment to help facilitate clearance on arrival in Australia. A cleanliness declaration is required for all containerised cargo imported into Australia. All contaminated containers and cargo detected entering Australia are treated before release.
  • Have all timber used as packaging in the container treated by an AQIS approved method. If timber dunnage has been used in the loading of the containerised cargo, accredited persons must have a valid treatment certificate to satisfy AQIS clearance requirements. Timber must also be free of bark.
  • Offshore treatments may facilitate faster clearance of the packing component of the cargo container.
    However, an AQIS approved treatment provider must perform the treatment.
  • Use acceptable alternative packing materials such as synthetic foam, plastics, metal frames, inflated dunnage, woodwool, shredded paper, and other similar materials.
  • Be aware that serious pests and diseases exotic to Australia could be introduced into Australia on containers, cargo and packing. Thorough inspections for these pests and diseases are carried out on consignments from high risk countries.


  • Don’t use straw packing. It’s prohibited. Straw could carry insects and diseases exotic to Australia. Containers in which straw, rice hulls or similar plant materials have been used as packing has to be unpacked at a AQIS approved premises and the straw removed for treatment or destruction at the importer's expense.
  • Don’t pack your goods in fruit, vegetable, meat or egg cartons or second-hand bags. These pose a high risk because they could carry pests and diseases. These types of cartons and bags will be removed and destroyed under quarantine supervision.
  • Don’t use timber with bark attached. Bark is prohibited and needs to be removed and destroyed.

Some of the most commonly imported goods that must be inspected are:

  • agricultural machinery
  • motor vehicles
  • bamboo and straw articles
  • nuts and seeds
  • canned meats
  • rice
  • cheese
  • scrap metal
  • foodstuffs, coffee beans
  • skins fruit — dried or fresh
  • herbs and spices
  • stock foods — plant and animal
  • household and personal effects
  • matting — straw and seagrass
  • vegetables — dried and fresh
  • mining equipment

Cargo subject to quarantine inspection includes:

  • Unprocessed agricultural produce
  • Timber including articles made of timber or that have timber included in the manufacture, such as footwear with wooden heels or wedges
  • Articles of straw Goods likely to be contaminated - especially with soil and animal and plant material, such as vehicles and machinery.


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