In Jan 2022, I moved from Singapore to the UK without shipping any of my belongings. To help you maximise your baggage allowances as I did, I have come up with this guide to share my best packing tips with you.
I have categorised the things that I would like to bring and the names of the categories suggest their priority level:
Priority 1: Essential
Priority 2: Good to Have
Priority 3: Luxury
I even weighed the things that I wanted to bring. The weight helps me to eliminate the big-ticket items to free up space for more light items. I ended up removing things from what I thought were essential like the Xiaomi Cleaning Robot which was a whopping 3.6 kg (10% of my check-in luggage allowance).
Weighing the things take up quite a significant amount of my time (e.g. 2-3 hours) and I recommend doing it for things that you really like.
Step 2: Research the cost of things in the country that you will be moving to.
With the advent of online shopping, you can easily find out the cost of things that you need in the new country. This is an excellent way for you to prune your to-bring-list.
我甚至把称重器拿出来称一称想带的东西的重量。这帮我列出太重的物品，腾出空间容纳更多轻物品。比如，我把重达 3.6 公斤（我托运行李限额的 10%）的小米清洁机器人腾出来后，能多放一些衣服和被单。
Rule of Thumb: Bring things that are expensive to buy and chuck out things that are cheap to buy.
Step 3: Prune away 90% of the things on your list in Step 1.
Yup, just chuck most of the things and put in your favorite food like Laksa, Korean Instant Noodles, and Kaya!
Airline companies usually only impose a weight but not volume limit on your check-in baggage (except for odd-sized items such as a bicycle). Therefore, your main objective is not to bring things that are heavy. However, do note that you may have trouble ferrying bulky things alone in a foreign country so it’s also a good idea not to pack big items into your luggage.
Tips to reduce Weight
1. Avoid heavy things like Metal (e.g. pots and pans, utensils).
2. Instead, bring things that are made of plastic as they are light and are usually priced around the same as heavy metals like Ziplock Bags and Containers. (I love transparent plastic organisers and storage boxes.)
3. Use cupboard boxes with a dolly trolley or those Jumbo Plastic Canvas Bags, instead of luggage as they are lighter by at least 1kg. You can wrap the boxes with bubble wraps (for cushioning function) and cling wraps (for waterproof function) to protect your boxes from crumbling. I know it may be embarrassing to be using these cupboard boxes or Plastic Bags instead of luggage but being stylish comes at a cost.
Tips to reduce Volume
Vacuum pack clothes with good quality transparent trash bags. Forget about those Vacuum pack bags, they are expensive (S$2-10 each). A cheaper alternative is to use trash bags. I find that Diaso trash bags are pretty good quality and are usually sold in packs of 10 each for S$2-3.
我建议用优质透明垃圾袋真空包装衣服。比起真空包装袋（每个售价 2-10 新元，使用垃圾袋计较实惠。我觉得 Diaso 的垃圾袋质量不错，通常以十个一包的价格出售，每包售价 2-3 新元。
Other things that I am glad I brought
- A set of washed bedsheets
- Some clothes as it takes time to buy new ones that YOU LIKE
- Some recycled bags as plastic bags are chargeable at 40-60 cents each in SG dollars in the UK
Relocating forces you into a minimalist lifestyle and makes you reexamine what is essential and what is not.
I spent quite a lot of time buying the things that we need in a house (e.g. scissors, pots and pans) but this also gave me an opportunity to learn about the new country.
However, if you are busy working a full-time job, go ahead and engage the relocating agent that your company will reimburse. If like me, you do not have a budget, then follow my tips. It is not worth shipping your things or paying for extra baggage charges. Just buy whatever you need in the new country if you can, especially if you are moving to a developed country.
Still fretting over how and what to pack and need someone to guide you along? Check out our relocation personal consultation services here.
我花了很多时间 (大概两个月左右) 购买我们在新家园里需要的东西（例如剪刀、锅碗瓢盆），但这也给了我一个了解这个新国家的机会。