Packing for the Philippines – Plattsburgh New York
We moved to the Philippines from Upstate New York. We packed all our things in big cardboard shipping boxes (balikbayan boxes) and smaller file storage boxes, both of which we bought at our local Sam’s Club. We shipped a lot of books. If you have specific reading preferences, bring the books with you. Except in Manila, finding the books you want is difficult and prices are high. We used file storage boxes for books because a big balikbayan box filled with books is just to heavy to handle.
We hired a rental truck to take the boxes to Albany where they were packed into a 20′ container. The container went from Albany, New York to a friend’s house on Bohol Island in the Philippines. Once we decided we would stay in Iloilo City, we had to find a firm to pack and ship our things from Bohol to Iloilo City.
At the recommendation of our landlord, we used Fast Cargo (and associated Fast Pak) to move our things from Bohol to Iloilo City. We were very satisfied with their services. They built wooden shipping containers for fragile items. During our entire move from New York to Iloilo only two small things were broken and that’s because we had not packed those items very well. Their Iloilo offices are in Lapuz Norte. Phone 033-336-4207. Check your local phone book for offices near you
Our things arrive in Iloilo City
There are differing opinions about what you should ship to the Philippines and what you should leave at home. One school says just bring a few personal things such as family photos and buy everything in the Philippines. Others want to take furniture, appliances and almost all else. If you don’t have a prearranged place to live or store your things in the Philippines, shipping a container is problematic.
Here’s a few of our thoughts. If you’re going to ship a container, bring as much as you can. Big ticket items such as flat screen TVs are much more expensive here. Good exercise equipment such as treadmills are also expensive. Beautiful furniture is available in the Philippines, but if you’re shipping a container, bring it with you. Quality kitchenware is hard to find. Computer equipment and cameras cost as much as twice as much in the Philippines as in the USA. Bring quality bath towels and bed linen. Don’t bring your 110v refrigerator, dryer, toaster. You can operate these off of a step-down transformer but that that will waste more energy than you’ll save. Lesser used appliances like food processors can be used with step-down transformers but if you (or your maid) slip just once and plug it into a 220v outlet, the appliance will be damaged.
If you’re an audiophile, be sure to bring your speakers. In the Philippines outside of Manila, selection is limited and prices are high.