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For Americans who've moved to the UK - what did you take?

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 

I'm moving back to the UK after 7 years in the States, I love it here but after being widowed recently I have to go back as I don't have a Green Card.


So, for those who've moved from the US to UK were there any appliances/other items which were a "must have"? I'm planning on taking my Vitamix and dehydrator (and buying a transformer) as I know these are ridiculously expensive in the UK.


I "think" I'll be shipping most of our furniture but still not 100% sure (the dog's definitely coming though!!)...


Any tips or do and don'ts will be gratefully received



post #2 of 5

Hello- I'm sorry for your loss.

We moved from US to Germany and then to UK. When we left the US we sold or gave away almost everything, and only shipped books, toys, clothes, personal items/mementoes/pictures, towels and sheets (which I wouldn't bother with again, those are easy enough to buy), and some kitchen utensils. Before we knew it our house was overflowing with stuff again, and I really don't miss anything that we left beind.

Unless you are really attached to your furniture, or have some antiques or one-of-a-kind pieces, it may be better to leave it all behind and buy everything once you get here. With so many charity shops, antique stores, IKEA and freecycle it is not hard to furnish your house for very little money - probably less than it costs to ship it.

The same goes for dishes and kitchen ware (other than appliances). If you have really nice cookware, ship that, but leave behind run-of-the mill dishes and glasses and such. Oh, and bring American measuring cups and spoons if you like to follow American recipes.

good luck with everything! Where in the UK will you be living?


post #3 of 5
Thread Starter 



Thanks for your reply. MY DD and I will be moving to a small town in Devon - which is why I'll probably take some furniture/kitchenware etc - the nearest Ikea is in Bristol (2 hrs away... does Ikea in the UK do delivery? They didn't in 2004 but that may have changed) and there are very few "cheap" furniture shops nearby. Most of the furniture we bought here is pretty good quality and to replace these items in the UK (of a similar type) would be more expensive even considering shipping, I would have thought? Still considering this...


I won't be taking our bedroom set - it's gorgeous but would never fit into a tiny UK bedroom!! I will definitely miss the space over here but Devon is beautiful and is where my family is.


Thanks again


post #4 of 5


I'm nearish Bristol in Cheltenham. You might want to check the voltage / wattage of your electronic things because transformers can't be used with everything without wear and tear. I found out my sewing machine was a no go :( Also you might see if there's a freecyle in your area. I've gotten lots of useful things from there  for free (small trampoline for kids, breadmaker, decent leather recliner). Our family has missed graham crackers the most - go figure.

You should look into all the paperwork for the dog now if you haven't all ready. DEFRA is a bit crazy. For our cats we had to get them microchipped, rabies vaccine (had to be after the chip), then wait a few weeks for a blood draw titre test. That test had to be back with a good result something like 6 months before we moved in order to avoid quarantine. This paperwork also had to be signed by the USDA. http://ww2.defra.gov.uk/wildlife-pets/pets/travel/


Hope your move goes smoothly.


post #5 of 5
Thread Starter 

Thanks Faith - I think I've found a new home for my sewing machine, it's really my Vitamix I don't want to re-purchase in the UK :) Guess it's not "on" as much as a sewing machine would be...


The dog is all taken care of - I started the Pet PAssport process in December so he's good to go! Got a bit of a shock when BA Cargo told me how much it would cost to fly him!!


I'm slowly finding homes for a lot of big stuff but don'e want to sell it all - I checked a few UK websites for prices and it 'll definitely be worth taking some stuff back. Thanks for your help!

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