Read this blog post for a review of removals from the UK to Spain now we are at Brexit + 5 months.
published May 2021
Horror stories from January
Back in January, just 15 days after Brexit, I reported our experiences and understanding of life in the removals business now that the UK is an independent country. It is now 5 months further on, so I thought it would be good to review things. This is to see if my thinking was right, and to update you on how things are going under the new rules. Our original article from January is here ‘Brexit horror stories & the future of removals to or from the EU’.
During the last 5 months since Brexit the Indalo Group (Transport, Removals, and Storage) has changed beyond all recognition. As we planned for Brexit for over a year, we prepared for some changes. However, the pace of change has surprised us. What has pleasantly surprised us most, though, has been the increased demand for our services.
In January, we adjusted our pricing and procedures, and reviewed our legal standings. Our pricing now reflects the added costs of administration and customs procedures.
We adjusted our timescales to allow more time for customs checks and border procedures. We have also found that we cannot now guarantee delivery dates. This is purely because there are now parts of the removal process that are totally out of our control.
A review of removals UK to Spain must be carried out very often when there are big changes. We are still reviewing the business, to ensure that we are fully legal, efficient and compliant with every aspect of serving clients who want to move internationally. Removals from the UK to Spain now demand an expert service, and we have reviewed all parts of our processes, to meet the challenge.
Complete re-set for Removals UK to EU
Broadly speaking the European removals industry has now gone through a re-set.
Several decades ago, before the UK joined the Common Market, removals from the UK to Europe needed the services of a specialist removals company. That company would assess the size, value, weight, and nature of the removal. Then they would give a quotation and plan how to carry out the removal. The plan would include things such as packing, export and import restrictions, and of course customs procedures. When we joined the EU this ended, making removals as easy as moving within the UK.
This is no longer the case, and the need for specialist removers for European relocation is back with a vengeance. This re-set back to ‘pre EU’ procedures has been the main factor in our increased demand.
Specialist removers – the new normal for UK to the EU
The need for a specialist removals company is now vital for a successful move to or from Spain, France or Ireland. This is especially true for Spain, where bureaucracy is a hobby for civil servants, and a way of life for many. We help clients by dealing completely with the new Spanish paperwork requirements. We also take care of the Inland Revenue in the UK andd in Spain. This is all provided as a free service. This is solely to make things as easy as possible for our clients.
Man and van – ‘a geddon’
At the beginning of the year we thought that smaller operators would struggle in the post-brexit world of removals. Sadly, we are correct. The cost of legal compliance and the extra admin is proving too much for many. The number of UK registered vans on the roads of Spain has reduced. Those that have survived have bought new vehicles to be able to continue. Even then, these admirable survivors are struggling to find customs agents, as it is far better to have the regular work from a specialist removal company. We have helped several smaller operators continue their businesses by using our trade services.
Of course, there are always those willing to take a chance. 5 months in and we are still hearing of people struggling to get their belongings across borders.
One Horror Story from March 2021
Here’s one recent horror story. A family have their worldly belongings stranded in a storage company’s warehouse in the UK. The man with a van simply cannot complete the job. The removal, collected in Northern England in December, was put into storage in Kent. No paperwork was completed. The family moved to Spain and were promised their furniture would follow soon after. The family paid a fee of £4,000 (cash of course). Well, the removal didn’t happen. The complete removal now needs to be itemised and assessed for tax. The client is also now being charged £300 a week for storage. Unfortunately, we can’t do anything to help this client as they are in dispute with the existing mover.
The new Europe for all of us
As we move into the spring the public are really beginning to take notice of the changes brought about by Brexit. Many expats in Spain have had extra charges on their on-line shopping from the UK. Parcels are held waiting for duty payments. In most cases, because of this, people have simply changed their shopping habits. A less welcome change is that Facebook has seen a surge in fully fledged ‘customs advisors’, who appear to know more than us regarding the new documents and processes required. These are probably the same people who are already expert COVID 19 virologists!!
New type of Client
We have noticed that many clients now take the time to look beyond the price of a removal. Most want the best service available for their budget. And they also need assurance that the remover can take care of everything competently, legally, and in a timely manner. In this respect we can say that we work extremely hard at giving the best possible service and making things as easy and stress-free as possible, for a fair price. Our tips for choosing your removal company can be found here
Best placed to help you since brexit
As we mentioned earlier, we spent over a year planning for Brexit. This review of Removals from the UK to Spain shows that our approach has worked. Our service has always been of the highest standard that we could achieve, and has always included many things as standard.
We have now expanded on these ‘Indalo standards’, and can highlight the following.
Free storage in Spain for 3 months
We realise that there needs to be a degree of flexibility with international removals. Therefore, we have increased our offer of a month’s free storage, to give you up to 3 months’ free storage – at our huge storage facility in Palomares – if you should need it. This is a link to a video tour of the warehouse
Free packing materials
For every international removal we now offer free packing materials. We supply you with the best quality boxes and other materials necessary, based on our survey of the move. These materials are the same as we would use if we were to provide a full packing service for your removal. Watch the video above to see the ‘self-pack store’ or visit the Self-Pack Store here.
Professional packing service
During the last year we have packed and wrapped for many people who have been unable to travel due to the pandemic. Our staff are highly trained and will pack your belongings as if they were their own. Because we are completely legal within Spain, Ireland and the UK, we have been able to cross borders, making collections and deliveries for those who have been stranded due to COVID. We can add a packing service to all our removals if necessary, at a cost which is dependent on the work involved.
Customs management service
This review of Removals from the UK to the EU – now we are Brexit + 5 months, has highlighted that we are very well placed for customs clearance. We have a network of customs agents able to clear our consignments quickly and without fuss. Our reputation for getting things right first time has helped us improve these relationships, which benefits you. We have dedicated staff in Spain and the UK that will obtain the necessary authority for your removal to cross borders. We make all applications to get you relief from paying VAT, where applicable. Our one-off customs fee covers all necessary customs requirements, regardless of the size of your removal. It includes inventories, packing lists, export declaration fee, import declaration fee, and transit document fees.
Indalo standard protection
We have a very basic ‘Indalo Standard’ level of protection, that is probably higher than the best available from some competing companies. Sofas travel in specially designed quilted sofa covers. Mattresses are put in heavy duty plastic bags. Televisions have purpose designed covers. All pictures and mirrors are packed in export grade bubble blanket and may be given extra cardboard protection if we think it’s necessary. Bicycles are also bagged to stop any grease or oil damaging your furniture. All removals are loaded on to specialised removal ‘vans’ using high quality removal blankets and quilted removal pads. All this protection is standard at no extra cost. Examples of the indalo standard picture wrapping can be seen here.
Move Assured membership
Indalo Transport are accredited and verified members of Move Assured in the UK, the trade body best suited to the needs of professional independent movers. We are able to call upon a wealth of experienced, trusted and vetted trade contacts to help us whenever needed. This gives us the power of a national organisation, but with the service levels only found in a dedicated family business.
Trading Standards approved
We are now one of only a handful of international removal companies that are UK Trading Standards Approved. This reinforces our commitment to the very highest service standards. It means you can be assured of a hassle-free removal, and can have total confidence that Indalo Transport will deliver everything that we promise.
This review of Removals from the UK to spain now we are Brexit + 5 months is almost complete. From shaky beginnings in January this year, we are confident that the new procedures we now have will become second nature sooner rather than later. The partnerships we have made this year will hopefully last for years and enable us to continue to thrive. We are one of a very select group of companies that are able to flourish in this new world order. Helping people realise their dreams of a new life in a different country is a privilege that Indalo Transport has always been proud of. That we will do it for many more years to come is an excitng prospect.
Indalo Transport continues to operate regular trips between the UK, Ireland, France and Spain with storage hubs in Gosport (UK), Dublin (Ireland), and Almeria (Spain). Our service and processes include all dealings with HMRC and other regulatory authorities in all countries, on behalf of our clients
Indalo Transport and Indalo Storage: The only names you need for a stress free European removal.