Moving abroad: How do I get my books there?

Okay, I’m moving to Paris from the US in a week, and I’ve got a lot of books. I’m not talking hundreds, only about twenty that I want to bring with me. It’s probably twenty pounds.

I’m wondering if anyone knows the best (cheapest) way to send these books, because I’m having a lot of trouble deciding which one’s are imperative and which one’s I’ll never use. It was hard enough narrowing from about 200 hundred books to about 10 that I’ll pack and another twenty that I’ll ship.

It doesn’t matter if it’s slow, I don’t need the books to meet me in Paris. Even if it takes a month or two, that’s cool.

Thanks. Have a good one.

Send them media mail. It’s super cheap. Mail them to your future address. If you’re leaving in a week, you’ll certainly get there before you books will. I mailed my books ahead of me when I moved to the Midwest and it worked very well. As I recall, a large box of books ran about $11. I imagine sending them overseas would be more expensive, but…you gotta have your books!

How long are you moving for? Are these books necessary for work/study purposes? I just ask because I have moved overseas for a year or so, thought about bringing some, but ended up bringing nothing except a couple of travel guides and a cookbook. Been here 3 months and have not regretted this decision (nor the decision to leave behind bedding, electric blanket, rollerblades etc…) I have joined a library should I need some reading, (this will be trickier for you in Paris, but I imagine you will find some reading material somewhere). Just suggesting you really think about whether you will need these books or not.

OK, so you do want them? Shipping them via sea freight is an option, but check your baggage allowance on your flight - flying NZ via US to UK, I was allowed 62Kg, which is a sizable amount - might be able to take many of them with you. Otherwise a small book box may be cheap to include as unaccompanied baggage through your airline - check with them.

The U.S. Postal Service has a special rate for sending books in what is called an M-Bag. Basically, you take your books in a box down to the PO, they stick it in a canvas bag, and it should arrive at your destination in 1-3 months. The rate works out to about $1 per pound; this I have found is the cheapest way to send books. I use it all the time as I buy lots of books for our library over the internet.

Pack the books well, perhaps in bubble wrap; the box gets knocked around a lot. Don’t try to stick anything else in it; this special rate is only good for books and sheet music.