In case nobody’s mentioned it yet, you’ll get here by plane, but your stuff comes by boat. That takes about 8 weeks, maybe more. So you’ll be glamping for a while until your kitchen whizz clears customs.
Otherwise, it’s mainly just about timing. So here are some key packing tasks and the best time to do them. See The World Famous Working In New Zealand Timeline & Checklist for the full range of other things to consider (like immigration, banking and finance, employment, etc.).
8 months to go
Start with getting rid of your house: put it on the market. You might want to think carefully about a final settlement date!
6 months to go
Book your flights! This moment may be accompanied by alternate bouts of hysteria and celebration.
Then get quotes from 3 moving companies. It’s best to get quotes for as much packing as possible. You can always scale it down later. Here’s how to choose a good moving company.
LINK to “Choosing a moving company” Page does not yet exist.
3 months to go
Get rid of anything you know you’re not taking with you. This can take longer than you’d think. Watch out for ambush reactions of “you can’t sell that!” from sentimental family members.
If you know what house you’re going to be moving into, plan where everything’s going.
Start swapping your appliances’ socket plugs over to New Zealand ones. You can get a bunch of travel adaptors to see you through till departure, if necessary.
1 month to go
Start packing non-essential items.
Confirm your travel bookings and your removalists (who probably need at least a month’s notice).
2 weeks to go
Get rid of your car, and everything else you’re not taking with you.
1 week to go.
Organise your transport to the airport.
Weigh your luggage, and check it against the surplus luggage threshold on your flight. Double check the flight’s surplus luggage rate to avoid surprises.
Finalise your packing. If removalists are packing for you, try and be there to supervise. Even if it’s just to say goodbye to your stuff before it arrives in its new home.
1 day to go
Change some cash into New Zealand dollars.
Double check your hand luggage, kiss goodbye to the place you call home, turn out the lights and enjoy the ride!