shipping containers quotes advice recommendations
So they actually found a Dublin in England to send it to? Madness! Best of luck getting the $500 ransom money back.
It brings me back to a thought I had a while back, about creating some kind of directory for useful/honest/reliable companies that movers can receive recommendations for. I just don't know how we could ensure that only companies who deserve to be there, end up being included.
Yes, and my husband has the original email exchange when booking the arrangements wherein he spotted "Dublin UK" and replied "I stated Dublin, Ireland... this should read "DUBLIN IRELAND"" and they acknowledged the mistake on their end and said it would be corrected. This is all written in emails. All was picked up, shipped before we left, and then weeks later we get an email charging us $500 saying the country needed changed to Ireland and that it was being held in storage in Jersey until we paid the fee. My husband argued the point and said "Is there even a Dublin UK in existence?" to which the account responded with a screen cap of a Dublin UK. We waited 24 hours... really, exactly 23... and then received a DAY'S LATE FEE. For neglecting to pay it *immediately*. So we paid, followed up with a question of what to expect and when it would be here, and never did receive a response. This was two weeks ago. So it is anyone's guess. I am very concerned we were scammed. Or that perhaps it *will* arrive but we will be charged another *ransom* fee before they will allow us to retrieve it (note: we paid for door to door delivery, but I don't pretend for a moment to assume that will happen). I think all in all our fees for three pallets are presently up to $5,000. We intend to attempt to reach them again this weekend, but honestly, every time we call, it causes more trouble somehow. We are pretty nervous.
I'll keep my fingers crossed for you, Megan. Hopefully OSI Shipping will offer up an explanation/apology/refund pretty soon, and you'll get your stuff all in good shape. That change of country fee, and then the late fee for not paying it (is a day late?!!!) is essentially extortion.
All the US shipping companies are regulated by http://www.fmc.gov/. I wonder do they help with disputes like this?
OSI is essentially a middle man. They schedule the transit to port as well as the shipping via sea freight. They were meant to handle all arrangements and paperwork for us (including palletizing and shrink wrapping at pick-up). While they did manage the pallets and wrapping, they've made it clear they intend to do nothing in the way of paperwork once it hits Ireland. I have no idea how I would have managed this differently. I will definitely choose more wisely for our return to the States in four years time. By then I should really only have 1-2 pallets to return (as much of what I've shipped was clothing, linens, and small kitchen appliances that will surely wear down even with a motor converter.
Not sure that FMC can do anything due to the fact they are middle men, but I'm investigating all angles. Obviously our safest bet was to pay and then dispute once it's arrived. I think Better Business Bureau is my first means of disputing charges, but looking at OSI's record with BBB indicates the consumer never wins (and they've had many, many disputes filed).
Moral of the story - read those Yelp, Google, and BBB reviews BEFORE choosing a shipping agent.
Hi Megan - I'm so distressed for you reading about your experience. We left Chicago at the end of July and our container arrived end August, but took almost 2 weeks to be cleared through customs because they are so busy. I found it stressful enough waiting the 5 weeks without my or any of the kids' stuff so i can well imagine how you must be feeling.
It really shouldn't be this difficult. We had a great experience, and i write this not to rub your nose in it but because it may be useful for others who may be reading this and planning a move!
We used Pickens Kane in Chicago - a subsidiary of Allied International - they specialise in international moves and they were excellent. I did however get other quotes, and one of those was from another subsidiary of Allied (they are linked to lots of moving businesses so you do need to be careful) and it was clear the guy didn't have a clue about international moving despite saying they did them routinely. I would say cost is a really good guide, our cheaper quotes were from companies who were not able to answer my most basic questions about the process. Pickens Kane/Allied was actually the most expensive quote, but they included port fees etc so we had no further nasty surprises.
On the Irish end, the moving company was called Move Masters, and again they were superb. If you are reading this in an area where a decent Allied subsidiary is not in operation, I would recommend ringing Move Masters and asking them if they have links to a moving company in your area. They were so professional, but again probably not the cheapest option.
Fingers crossed for you Megan and i hope this may help someone somewhere!
We've unfortunately found with our move that if something can go wrong, it will, lol! It's so tragic, it's almost hysterical. Immigration issues (understatement), home rental issues, schooling issues for the children (as non-EEA students garda insisted they *must* attend private schools and none were in our district), our family dog passed away last Friday, and my husband *just* had a car accident.
We made this move for the sake of adventure, but I think I could do with a bit less adventure at this stage.
Will be posting a blog update once our pallets arrive and will detail how it played out. I'll be sure to drop the link here at that time, in the event it proves useful to anyone else.
Julie - thanks for chiming in with some recommendations.
We finally found a shipping service for our move next month - Schumacher Cargo Logistics. I didn't see that anyone had used them on this forum, so thought I would share what I have found. So far, they seem to be the best we could find - obviously, this may change once we actually move and we are waiting for our shipment 🙂
But, they are based in New Jersey and only handle international shipping. Their closest facility to us in Maine is in Boston, which is only 2 hours away. This is what their quote states as included in the cost - will come to your house and package your items appropriately, as well as log the items with you present, ship your items by truck down to their port facility in New Jersey where it will go on a shipping container, the container will be cleared through England before being sent over to Ireland where they arrange the delivery/deliver your goods direct to your house. If your items are being shipped to a house then there is no additional cost, however if they need to make arrangements to get the goods into an apartment complex where they may be going up floors, there is an additional cost. Insurance is not required, however it can be done.
So, the cost. They only ship a minimum of 100 cubic feet - you don't actually have to meet that minimum but that is what you will pay for. The cost for 100 cubic feet is $1500 - $2000.
They estimate it would take 4-6 weeks...we shall see!
Kate, just be fore-warned that many people I have spoken too, and in my own experience, quoted shipping timelines don't often match with reality. I'm not sure if it's a problem with shipping to Ireland or not, but in many cases it has taken as long as 3/4 months (sorry to open old wounds if you are reading @mcrose).
Also, you may want to get clarification on exactly what is and what is not covered in your expense. As an example of something I wasn't aware of when I paid for my shipping fees, I was charged a fee of 130 Euro by the company in Ireland who received my items (more info). Megan had an even worse example where her items were held hostage until a fee was paid for a change of address (if I recall correctly). The change of address was an error on the shipping company's fault.
I don't want to sound pessimistic, but it's good to be prepared for what may be ahead...