couple at airport with luggage

Moving can be stressful, especially when your new home isn’t within driving distance. Sometimes, flying might be your only option for long distance moving, or you may be in a time crunch and need to get to your destination as soon as possible. No matter the case, whether you’re moving across the country or across the globe, knowing how to move your belongings is probably top of mind. After all, when moving via air travel, how do you pack an entire house or apartment without the space offered by moving trucks and cars?

To help you get ready for your big move via air, we’ve created this post on how to transport your belongings when traveling by plane. From the planning stage to the day of travel, below are our top tips for moving via air travel.

Plan and Get Organized

As with any big project or event, it’s important to plan ahead and get organized. This is especially true for any type of move, whether it’s to another neighborhood in your current town or a long distance move thousands of miles away. There are various moving parts to plan when it comes to moving via air travel, which we’ll dive into below.

Research Plane Tickets

If you’re moving your belongings via airline travel, you’re going to need a ticket. Most airlines allow you to bring one carry-on bag and a personal item, such as a backpack. While this is convenient for short excursions like weekend getaways, a simple carry-on isn’t enough to pack all of your belongings. This means in addition to buying your plane ticket, you’ll need to purchase one or two checked bags, which go underneath the plane. In most cases, airlines require checked bags to be under 50 pounds—anything over will come with an extra fee.

As you look for a flight on your departure date, research various airlines to compare their policies and prices. During peak travel seasons, such as during the summer and winter holidays, airlines might restrict the number of bags you can check. So, do your research and compare the prices and policies of various airlines, so you can get the most bang for your buck.

Find Alternative Shipping Options

If you can’t fit all of your belongings in your checked bags for your flight, you may need to find alternative shipping options for the rest of your stuff. For example, if you have certain furniture pieces you just can’t live without, a new car, and any other items that won’t fit on an airplane, you’ll need an alternative shipping method. Some available options include:

  • Moving company: Moving companies have been around for decades, helping people transport their belongings to their new homes. When working with a moving company, they’ll be able to move large and fragile items, and schedule the delivery for any time after you make it to your new home. Depending on how much inventory you’re moving, it can be costly, so research different moving companies in your area for the best price.
  • Cargo shipping: If you’re moving overseas, moving your belongings via rail or truck isn’t possible, which means you may need to transport your belongings via cargo. For this method, you’ll have to work with an international moving company that will move your belongings via sea freight.
  • Rail: Some railroad companies, such as Amtrak, offer express shipping to cities within their reach. Most have weight limits and varying costs, so contact various railroad companies to ensure they can get your belongings to your destination.
  • Shipping couriers: Shipping couriers like USPS, FedEx, and UPS can pack and ship your belongings to your new home. However, this means you need to pack them and get them to the store first, which can be challenging in itself.

As you get ready to move, it’s important to plan how you’re going to move any items you can’t bring via air travel. Once this step is sorted, you’ll be able to begin packing.


man sealing a moving box

Now that you have the logistics sorted out, it’s time to declutter. As you move, you’re going to have to go through all of your belongings. This is a good time to declutter and get rid of clothes, furniture, and any other items you no longer need. Not only will you have a lighter load to travel with, but you can actually make some money to help fund your move.

For items like furniture, home decor pieces, appliances, and other related items, take advantage of online marketplaces like OfferUp, Facebook Marketplace, and Craigslist. Here, you can post your belongings to sell, and someone in your area will take them off your hands while putting some extra cash in your pocket. For unwanted clothes, apps like Poshmark and Depop allow you to post your fashionable pieces to sell online and ship to buyers.

Once you’ve sold as much as you can, donate the rest of your items to charities and thrift stores like Goodwill and the Salvation Army.

Pack Efficiently

As you gather your boxes and suitcases, it’s important to pack efficiently. Rather than throwing random items together, take the time to neatly organize everything for shipping. For example, sensitive items like rechargeable batteries should always be stored in carry-on luggage, as short circuits can cause fires in the underneath cargo hold. While packing, it’s important to keep scenarios like this in mind to prevent hold-ups at the airport and other delays.

To pack efficiently, put similar items together, such as winter clothes in one suitcase and lightweight clothes in another, along with separating household objects by room, such as kitchen, living room, dining room, etc.

Time For Takeoff

Now that all of your belongings are packed, it’s time for takeoff. As you prepare for your departure date, it’s important to minimize stress where you can, and organizing, planning, and packing efficiently are all ways to reduce stress. To ensure a worry-free move, make sure to have all necessary documentation, such as your driver’s license, passport, and credit cards, and to pack some travel snacks, so hunger doesn’t make you irritable during your big move!

Samantha Rupp

Samantha Rupp holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration. She is the managing editor for 365 Business Tips as well as runs a personal blog. She lives in San Diego, California and enjoys spending time on the beach, reading up on current industry trends, and traveling. This post gives information for All Around Moving’s blog readers about moving long distances by air.

We hope you found this blog post How to Move Your Belongings via Air Travel useful. Be sure to check out our post Tips For Airline Travel for more great tips!


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