Moving Tips from a Packing Guru

Editor’s Note: Even though I’m cruising around the Mexican Riviera this week, per my recent resolutions, I didn’t want to neglect my blog. So I asked the very talented Vicki Boykis if she’d be willing to lend her time and thoughts to me and my readers. Vicki and I met at a tweetup last year, if you can believe it. She is an international trade analyst and product manager in Washington, D.C. and just like me, is a twenty-something Russian Jew trying to figure it all out. Below, Vicki shares some really great tips for moving.


Everyone I know, including me and Julie seems to be moving these days.  I’ve been moving around ever since I went to college: first between dorm rooms, then to Israel on an internship, then back home, then to Philadelphia, then to DC.   In the meantime, I’ve become a packing guru.  Here are some tips I’ve picked up during and between moves.   (Clever with the acrostic, eh?)

1. Make sure you forward your (low-tech) address
Luckily, the easiest way to do this now is online.  I like to do this at least two weeks before I move and after I’ve signed a lease; that way, you can still pick up any spare mail still coming to your old address.  Also, change all your addresses for things online like Netflix, credit card bills, and anything else you don’t want to miss in your mail.

2.  Old packaging-keep as much of it as possible
Lots of apartments don’t have tons of storage.  However, what storage we did have in ours, I used to keep boxes because I knew I’d eventually need them for moving again.  I especially kept things like boxes from silverware and glasses, our TV box, and packaging for kitchen items like blenders.  This automatically makes it easier to put boxes into a bigger box and you don’t have to worry about how to wrap.

3.  Very carefully choose movers
Even if you don’t have a lot of stuff and tons of friends, it can still be a good idea to hire movers.  Last time, my husband and I moved from Alexandria, VA to Bethesda, MD (about 35 minutes each way), and it was a huge hassle.  This time, we’re hiring movers from Craigslist, but we made extra-sure to check them out online through references and making sure they responded on time.  A friend pointed me to Moving Scam, which has a list of tips to avoid when you’re looking to move.

4.  Evaluate: In my post, I mentioned that I as struggling to get rid of things.  Emotional attachments are huge blocks to moving more simply with less clutter, and we all struggle with getting rid of teddy bears from when we were 11.  The best tip I recieved on my blog was to take pictures of things I was especially attached to and keep the pictures, but to also keep a number of things you can still look back on.  The fact that there are tons of blog posts on this issue signifies that it’s a big one.

Good luck!  I know I’ll be needing it this weekend.