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Home // New Shluchim // Handbook For New Shluchim
Part 2 - Moving

Moving on Shlichus

This section will cover:
• Going out: the mindset
• Contracts: what to include
• Choosing the right moving company & packing tips
• Moving across the border: to Canada

Going out: the mindset 
The Rebbe spoke many times about the importance of “asei licha rav”. He stressed its importance by calling it a “bakasha nafshis”. Having a mentor/mashpiah is essential especially when one leaves an established community and/or when one teaches others. Aside from the field experience a mashpiah has to share, he can help tremendously with the personal challenges a young couple face while living outside of a community.
Shlichus is not a stress-free, worry-free and all expenses-paid job. Like many demanding careers, finance and deadlines play large roles. “Obstacles” do not work nine to five; they follow you home. It is important for any young couple to have a mashpiah.
You live and learn, and will probably make your own mistakes along the way. Why make someone else’s too?  A mentor’s experience can help a lot. Order one now.


       (Submit at bottom of this page)

Contracts: What to include
Firstly, if you will be working on a salary base, find out if the shliach can really afford you - beyond the first year. Money will not magically appear when payday approaches.

Shluchim are looking to lower expenses, not augment them. There are terms and conditions that you will have to bring to their attention.
Who pays moving expense? It is not uncommon for an employer to cover the moving expenses of his employees.
Also, some Shluchim subsidize, or partly thereof, their employees home, car, gas or phone. Though, such generosity is usually for a limited time.
Although you and your employer are on the same team once on the field, while negotiating your contract you may be facing off against each other.  Some suggested books on employer-employee relations and principled negotiating strategies are: "Getting to Yes" by Fisher & Patton, and "Difficult Conversations" by Fisher, Stone and Patton.


       (Submit at bottom of this page)

Choosing the right moving company
Not all movers are professionals; some are just shleppers. Choose the best, not the cheapest. Check out their history at
Smaller companies can not always guarantee their delivery date.
Experience has told us to avoid Israeli companies (they are notorious for messing around).
• When you get an estimate, find out how much they can go up in price (if they underestimate boxes or weight etc.), and get it in writing.
• Check if they accept credit card payments. (This way if they hold your things and/or demand higher rates, you have leverage and/or can cancel the payments – such horror stories really happen!).
There have been stories about the money for the insurance NOT actually going to the insurance company and hence the owner never was covered. (This seems to be standard for some movers who just "take a chance" and pocket the money). To avoid such problems tell them that you will be making out a separate check made out to the insurance company in the amount that they tell you is the portion that goes for insurance and this part you are wiling to pay up front.
Another suggestion is to pay by Credit Card (some companies actually won't take CC for this reason).

Companies that we’ve used:
United Van Lines:
UPS: (best for light items such as clothing. for heavier items –furniture- it can get expensive)
North American……800-823-0392
Yoske Shtrasberg…..917-805-7757
Mazel Tov Movers…212-627-7780
→You can get additional feedback from the Better Business Bureau @

Some have suggested renting your own truck and hiring “freelancers” to help loading. You will save money (IF no damages occur). Although, this method is at your own risk, if the travel is simple, it may be worthwhile. 

When dealing with movers, here are some things you should know:
• Although you may feel more secure packing your own things (especially dishes and other delicate items) you are generally NOT insured for things you pack yourself. Have the movers pack.
• Take full insurance; dents and scratches are almost inevitable.
• Make sure to double check that all items are marked off (on their sheets as well).
Beware of insurance scams. Some companies offer insurance at minimal or no fee, but you can never collect! On the invoice sheet they record all of your belonging as damaged or scratched. This way, even if they scratch something, they present an invoice [that you probably signed] that says it was already damaged.
What to do? When the movers are packing and loading, make sure to constantly check the invoice and check the notations the foreman is making.

Helpful Packing Tips
• The more newspapers the better. For dishes and glass “News Print” paper is best (as the black ink of a newspaper can stain). It can be bought at public storage stores.
• Never have glass touching glass.
• Movers charge for every extra piece of material. You will need your own boxes and tape too. Shluchim can get free boxes, tape, bubble wrap etc. from Zalman Chein at B & C Industries (718) 417-023355 located in Flushing, NY.

Also, tipping them after they finish loading the truck, and/or making it known in a nice way, that if everything arrives on time and in shape they will be compensated, can really work wonders.
As well, the key to a good experience is the driver, since the driver is really the one that does everything for you. If you get a nice guy that cares, you will have a good experience. Unfortunately you can't pick your driver. So pray for him (flattery works well too!).

Unloading when you arrive
When they unload, use their sheet as well as yours, to mark off item by item. If anything is missing or damaged, make note of the missing items in detail on the actual landing sheet, and everywhere you sign make sure that you write: Damaged and missing items. NEVER sign the release paper that all came intact, without adequately checking. Unseen dents and scratches will probably arise later. To satisfy the movers write a note on the paper that you are NOT signing until you finish your inspection and you will then notify the company. Do not believe the “you have 30 days to file a claim” gibberish.

Comments: – who did you use? What was your experience?

       (Submit at bottom of this page)

Moving across the border: To Canada
You need to have the following:
• A Canadian work visa and confirmation of residence status for each family member traveling with you.
• Valid passport or birth certificate for each family member traveling with you.
• Two copies of a detailed inventory list of all items being shipped and their value.
• Two copies of a list of items that are arriving at a later date and their value (if applicable).
• Letter from new employer indicating validity of transfer.
Your employer should arrange the legalities of it. Follow up with him.

How to ship a vehicle: to Canada
• Copy of vehicle registration/title must be presented to customs 72 hours prior to the vehicle entering Canada.  The original registration/title must be given to the driver at the time of loading.
• Depending on your port of entry, requirements for documentation may vary. Duties and taxes may be assessed on your vehicle. We recommend that you contact Canada Customs prior to shipping or driving your vehicle to Canada.
Contact references:
Government departmental phone numbers change on a regular basis. We have provided the best online references available. Phone numbers posted on these sites will be the most current.


 or click here for part 3


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