Monday, May 22, 2017

Packing to Move Halfway Across the Country with Only Your Car

Now after my last move with just a car, I can honestly say that I have become a pro at fitting what I need for 6 months besides furniture into a car. My rotational program provides furnished apartments for me but the rest I have to supply or use whatever the previous tenant left behind. Here are 5 tips and tricks that I have learned in this process and I hope that they can help you move in a minimalist way.

1. Do a large scale purge before leaving your site. I try to go through clothes and beauty products before leaving as well as anything else that you might not need any longer or do not use at all. I then send whatever I will not use to friends who will use it or see if any women's shelters in the area can use the unopened items or tall women's clothing.

2. Use a mixture of soft sided items like bags and hard items like totes to pack your stuff. I keep things like shoes or small houseware in totes and clothes or accessories in soft sided items. This make it easier to pack the car. I pack medicine or makeup into hard sided bins.

3. I prefer to pack in a way that optimizes space. First I place suitcases in the trunk of the car and fill in any extra space. Then I place larger bins in the back seat and smaller totes behind the passenger seat. The soft stuff fits everywhere else. I only pack enough things that I can see out of all of my mirrors! This is for your own safety while driving or if staying in a hotel overnight.

4. Always do a good car maintenance before the trip. I like to go get my brakes checked, get the oil changed, fill the tires up 1 psi higher than recommended in the car, and start the trip with a full tank of gas. A car full of stuff is not the time to figure out that your brakes are bad or that the oil is full of gunk.

5. Do not buy any more food or products one month before leaving the location. I try to cook all of the food I have left so that I do not have to pack it in the car. I give the extra food to the food bank if it is not expired and throw away the rest. I also really suggest not buying anything new that is liquid because shampoo or shower gel can be heavy to travel with in the car.

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