Removals & Storage
Moving to Italy?
Italy is most certainly beautiful but like all countries it has it peculiarities when it comes to moving there.
Firstly, a relatively small percentage of the population speaks English, or any other language other than Italian. So that can create some barriers to start.
But primarily, each area is unique unto itself. Laws are interpreted differently from location to location, so the requisites for importation of house hold goods and relocation operations are different from city to city.
For instance, it takes about 4-5 days to obtain a parking permit in Milan, with a cost that can go from Euro 400 to Euro 800. While a parking permit in Rome takes 50 calendar days to obtain and the cost starts at Euro 1000 and can go anywhere up to Euro 3000.
Another example is the documentation requirements for importation into each port: every port (or airport) wants a different set of documents. Indeed every customs broker in the same port may have different requirements. Fundamentally, Customs want proof that you are moving to Italy on a permanent basis and want transferees to apply for and obtain a Residence Certificate before the shipment arrives. But that can take up to 12 months, by which time the house hold goods have already arrived at the port or airport. So what do you do? Well the shipment has to be imported under bond. Which means Customs is accepting an insurance policy (which the mover arranges, it’s invisible to the client) instead of taking the money that would technically be due for VAT and Taxes in lieu of the fact that the transferee has to do all the motions necessary to obtain the Residence Certificate (which is not an easy matter, before you can get the certificate you need to apply for and provide other documents first) within 12 months of arrival.
But wait, there’s more: brokers and moving companies may have to ask for supporting documents as well, such as a letter on headed paper from the transferee’s Employer stating why he is moving to the country.
Basically it is one big headache, but with the correct assistance from your mover or relocation agent things will be smooth. Labour intensive… but smooth.
Then let’s not forget the beautiful winding narrow streets. Pretty right? Not so pretty when you have to move a full house worth’s of furniture and personal effects. Over the years we have had to come to the rescue of many European movers whom show up to the address indicated by the client with a large vehicle, only to discover that they cannot get anywhere near the address. For that, you need small vans which need to be sourced locally or at least from a city nearby.
Or even more common, European movers tend to forget (or may not know) that many Italian cities, even small ones, have what is called a Zona a Traffico Limitato (ZTL) or a Limited Traffic Zone which prevent vehicles whom do not have the correct authorisation from entering the city centre. And these are not authorisations that you get overnight. In Rome, for instance, these authorisations are only dispensed to Italian companies with the correct credentials, are yearly, are tied to specific small vans and…. cost Euro 2800.
Depending on the reasons you are moving to Italy you may or may not be purchasing or entitled to (if your company is paying) a relocation package, which will iron out most of the issues relating to obtaining documentation to live in Italy or assist you in getting a domicile. But quite honestly, for those of you whom are only going to be in Italy for 2 or 3 years: a relocation package is highly recommended. Without one, it may take you 2-3 years just to get all the paperwork resolved correctly. By which time you are about to pack-up and make your way to your next destination.
Please don’t let our words scare you from moving to Italy. The “Bel Paese” is arguably one of the most interesting and beautiful places on the globe. Full of amazing people and life enriching moments. But like with all good things there has to be some give and take, a price tag if you will. The best advice is get some local help, or indeed get Bolliger to do the move for you.
Most removals to Italy from the UK will travel by truck. Some air-shipments do take place in certain situations, but even small shipments can be serviced quickly by road. Fortunately, this means that there is no customs procedures between European borders, but this does not mean a transferee moving from the UK is exempt from obtaining the necessary documents to live in Italy. And technically importation rules still apply, so please be weary when importing wines, only small quantities are allowed.
For client’s transporting artwork with your house hold goods: if the value of your paintings and sculptures is substantial, you may wish to consider getting an Import/Export Licence for them when you bring them into the country. Admittedly this does have a cost and you will be needed to provide quite a bit information (including pictures), but it will relieve you of any headaches later on. As Italy is very “art conscious” and, given certain circumstances, may require your paintings to be examined when moving away and in some cases may block paintings that are of “national interest”. You have been warned.
Bolliger has three fully operational companies in Italy, two in Rome and one in Milan. We also have an warehouse facility in Florence that we use as a “jumping off point” to serve the Tuscan area, although we will generally use Roman or Milanese crews there.
But we also have a very tight and trusted network of local agents in all areas of the country that assist us in providing the best service in any corner of the nation. The local agents are considered part of our team and we accept full accountability for their successes and drawbacks, so there is no fear that we will just leave you to it. When we cannot service a location within the budget constraints set by the client we work together to make sure you still get the best service you can desire. Basically the local agents act as our arms and legs, but we are still the thinking brain behind it all.
If we can assist, please call us todayon 0203 384 0916
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Bolliger UK Ltd
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Unit 23 Olds Close
Tel: +44 203 384 0916
Fax: 0843 532 6053
Freephone: 0800 012 4426 UK only
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