Relocation Services

If you’re arriving with more than a suitcase, you’ll need to send your belongings by air or by sea. Air freight is faster but more expensive. Sea freight takes longer but it’s cheaper, and containers can hold a huge amount.

Most relocation companies will take care of the paperwork for you and also deal with the procedures at customs so you don’t need to be present when your goods arrive. Just be sure that you have booked and paid for a ‘door-to-door’ service and your boxes will be brought directly to your new home. Many companies specify that the quote they provide only covers your move to the first floor – in Dubai you could be on a much higher floor, but if there’s elevator access then you shouldn’t be charged any extra. Advise your security guard and check for any parking restrictions. One popular relocation company is Al Futtaim Logistics, who are specialists in international removals, with more than 80 years’ experience.

If you have only paid for delivery of your belongings as far as Dubai customs, then you’ll need to go to Cargo Village in Garhoud to collect air freight, or Jebel Ali Port to pick up sea freight. Take a copy of the inventory so you know what is in each box. And be patient.

Once at Cargo Village, head to the warehouse and fill out the customs information, and pay any applicable fees. You will then have to go across to Customs where you will pay any duty, plus a processing fee. Once this has been done, you can go back to the warehouse and collect your shipment. Before you can leave, you will have to head back over to Customs to have your goods x-rayed.

The process for sea freight is a little longer. Once your sea freight is ready for collection (you’ll get a call or letter), go to the agent’s office and pay the administration and handling charges. Keep these documents. The Bill of Lading number must be marked on all paperwork and entered into the customs computer system.

Then go to Dubai Customs House, on Al Mina Road. The staff are helpful and the procedure is straightforward. Ignore the touts outside. When the papers have been stamped and the Port Clearance received (there are fees) head to Jebel Ali Port.


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