Moving to Saudi Tip: Ship It or Store It

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Moving to another country is daunting no matter where you're headed.  But, moving to Saudi Arabia takes a bit more planning.
When we found out that we were really going, I remember looking around my house and thinking...OMG...what am I going to bring with me??  We could only ship a total of 500lbs.  For the whole family.  That is nothing when you consider the amount of crap (I mean lovely things) that you have accumulated over the years.
The other thing that made it harder for us is that we were renting our home.  Meaning, whatever didn't get shipped was going into storage...for at least two years.
That being said....it was very hard to know what to bring and what to leave behind.  I tried to have my husband scope out the mall and grocery stores and tell me what was there and what wasn't.  But, honestly, send a man to check out shopping?  Yeah, well.
My biggest point about it all is this:  
Purge the crap out of your house.  I'm talking spring cleaning to the nth degree.  Be vicious about what you have, what you need, (or think you need), and what just needs to go.  
Next, set aside things that you HAVE to take with you.  Your "can't live without" items.  One of mine was my dutch oven.  (in hindsight, wishing another would have been my crock pot since I can't find one here).  Fave spices, books, clothes, etc.  
After that, make a pile of things you don't think you'll need, but after a few months you may wish you hadn't put them in storage.  This is the part I WISH I had thought of before I packed away my life.  
For instance...those killer high heel shoes that I just loved and thought there was no way I would need them in Saudi...yeah, well, now I'm back visiting in Vegas and really wishing I had those shoes.  
My advice is this:  if you don't get to keep the house you're in (and actually even if you do) put some things in boxes and either give them to family or friends or put in a special place in your house...this way, if you want someone to send you something or you want to have access to things that you couldn't bring, you won't be killing yourself for the fact that its stuffed away in some storage hole.  Maybe it's some fave shoes, maybe some cooking items, outfits you'd wear on vacation but not in Saudi, etc.  
If you check out the link I have at the top of the blog called: Moving to Saudi, you can find a list of things that are hard to find here or that they don't have at all.  Some days you can go out and buy, lets say a clothes steamer, and then the next they are gone.  And may not be back for months.  So you never know what the stores will have in stock on a regular basis.  The same goes for the grocery store as well.  

So, take your time...go through whats really important to ship.  Be careful about storing everything else away without keep some stuff out for those moments when you say...if only I had my (fill in the blank)...
best of luck with your move and please don't hesitate to email me if you have questions.  :)  


Speed Master

Hi How are u
i reached yanbu
staying n camp near yanbu city center

y no post's very long time
from ur blog i learned lot of information's about yanbu

thank you
looking more from u


My family is on the verge of moving to SA (waiting for one final 'ok') and I'm dividing all our belongings into those catagories: throw away, sell, store, take with us. We have moved once a year for the last three years so we haven't accumulated too much. Still it is completely daunting! The blog is so helpful. :) thank you!

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