The cost of moving — a life lesson

The goal was simple: bring the stuff I need to Amsterdam, the rest to a storage space (courtesy of a friend).

Initially I contacted several moving companies. The high price they asked for caused my attention to shift to the (well-intended) advice I was receiving from friends: organize the operation by my own means. In the end, I realize it was a misguided choice…

The costs added up quickly:

  • subscribing to a post forwarding service
  • buying cardboard boxes
  • renting a small vehicle to carry some stuff to storage space
  • offering dinner to the two friends helping
  • renting a larger vehicle to carry most of the stuff to Amsterdam
  • filling a gas tank
  • feeding the 3 people on board during the trip
  • offering dinner to 3 friends for help afterwards
  • hiring some help for the washing machine
  • buying train tickets for 5 trips
  • storing some stuff at the station
  • asking a taxi to help on the last way between my old place and the train station

Note: I do not own a driving license nor a vehicle of my own.

For a grand total of approximately 1200€ — not counting:

  • the stress of the organization,
  • the time and energy spent packing, unpacking, unbuilding and rebuilding of the furniture,
  • the sweat and energy spent carrying bags, boxes and other things on my own back,
  • the time spent thinking and acting the move (nearly a work week),
  • the strain on the relationship with my friends.

Retrospectively, delegating the entire work to a team of experienced movers would have amounted to around 1000€ without worries…

And yet, I do not feel frustrated. The physical exercise I performed was worth the effort, as it does help me feel healthier and overall more confident in my physical abilities. Involving my friends in my moving may have helped make the transition for them, smoothing their realization that I am actually leaving their usual surroundings for the foreseeable future.