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Moving and Shipping Your Household to Austria

It’s true that more Americans are opting to move to Austria these days. As for the difficulty level of an American moving to Austria, it can be relatively easy with the right guidance. A crucial aspect of a successful international move is connecting with a top-tier international moving and shipping company that can help streamline the process.

According to the US State Department, there are approximately 17,000 American citizens living in Austria, including both expats and members of the US military stationed in the country. However, this number may fluctuate as expats come and go from the country, and not all expats may be registered with the US Embassy in Vienna. Additionally, it is difficult to obtain an accurate count of expats in Austria, as there is no centralized registration system for foreign residents in the country.


What is behind this trend?

There are several reasons why people choose to move to Austria. Here are some of the top reasons:

Quality of life: Austria consistently ranks high in international rankings for quality of life, offering a high standard of living, excellent healthcare, and a strong social welfare system.

Education: Austria is known for its high-quality education system, which includes free education for citizens and permanent residents.

Employment opportunities: Austria has a stable and growing economy, with low unemployment rates and opportunities in various industries, including tourism, technology, and finance.

Culture and history: Austria has a rich cultural and historical heritage, with cities like Vienna and Salzburg known for their music, art, and architecture.

Natural beauty: Austria is home to stunning natural landscapes, including the Alps, lakes, and forests, making it an attractive destination for outdoor enthusiasts.

Central location: Austria’s central location in Europe makes it a convenient base for travel throughout the continent.

Political stability: Austria is known for its stable political environment, with a strong democracy and a reputation for social and economic stability.

Winter Sports and Activities: Austria is home to some of the best winter sport destinations in the world.  This aspect can’t be overlooked.

Overall, Austria offers a high quality of life and a variety of opportunities, making it an attractive destination for those looking to relocate from the USA or other countries.


What are the top cities in Austria, for expats?

There are several cities in Austria that are popular among expats. Here are some of the top cities and the reasons why they are attractive to expats:

Vienna, Austria

Vienna: Vienna is the capital city of Austria and is known for its rich history, culture, and art. It has a highly developed public transport system and is home to many international organizations and businesses, making it a popular destination for expats.

Salzburg: Salzburg is a smaller city known for its picturesque scenery and rich cultural heritage, including being the birthplace of Mozart. It has a vibrant arts scene and a strong tourism industry, making it a popular destination for expats.

Graz: Graz is the second-largest city in Austria and is known for its vibrant student scene, diverse cultural offerings, and strong economy. It is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site and has a high quality of life. Graz is also the hometown of former California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Linz: Linz is a city located in Upper Austria, known for its modern and innovative industries, including technology and research. It is a culturally diverse city and is home to many international organizations and businesses.

Innsbruck: Innsbruck is a city located in the heart of the Alps, offering stunning natural scenery and a range of outdoor recreational activities. It is also a university town and has a strong economy, making it a popular destination for expats.

Overall, these cities offer a high standard of living, good employment opportunities, and a range of cultural and recreational activities, making them attractive destinations for expats in Austria.Top of Form

The answer is that it can be relatively straightforward, as long as you’ve done some research, made the decision, and are partnering with an experienced, trustworthy, and responsive international shipping company that specializes in moves to Austria. At SDC, we’re dedicated to supporting you every step of the way, from start to finish.


What to Look for in a Top-Tier Door-to-Door International Moving Company

Expertise and Experience

It goes without saying that the shipping company you choose should have extensive experience and expertise in handling all the nuances involved in completing a smooth and stress-free shipment from the USA to Austria. Failing to partner with a knowledgeable and experienced company can lead to unpleasant and negative outcomes. At SDC, we have been successfully moving household goods and personal effects to Austria for over 20 years. With our wealth of expertise, you can rest assured that your move will be in good hands.

A Dedicated Support Team Working with You from Start to Finish.

Shipping household goods and personal effects to Austria from the USA is often confused as being “simple.”   If all your T’s are crossed, I’s dotted and you are working with a very experienced shipping company, it can be.  From door to door, including navigating customs in Austria, SDC International Shipping guides you every step of the way.   We stay in communication and advise you on the paperwork and documents we need in order to make sure we clear customs for you at the port of entry in Austria.  Further, we deliver to your new residence (or delivery location).

Superior Online Reviews

Online reviews are an important and effective way to better understand the sort of company with whom you are considering working.   It is our advice to only work with companies who have 4+ star ratings.

Visual Survey / Question and Answer Meeting (meet your shipper)

To accurately quote a client, it is critical for any international moving company to thoroughly understand both the volume of items being shipped, as well as any other important considerations.  To do this, a virtual or in-person visual survey, conducted by an experienced shipper and estimator, is usually necessary.   This critical step ensures that the quotation is based upon the actual volume estimate as well as all the client’s needs.

Things to Watch Out for When Choosing a Shipping Company

• Caution: Are You Working with a Genuine International Moving Company?

Unfortunately, some companies pose as actual moving companies, claiming to specialize in moves to your desired location. However, this is not always the case. Such brokers may gain your trust and booking, only to hire a third party for the lowest possible cost to them. Avoid brokers posing as true international moving companies. To ensure a smooth and successful move, engage only with a genuine International Moving and Shipping Company that has been engaged in this process for many years and makes it their primary or sole business.


• Caution: Bait and Switch (Low-Ball)

Beware of the very low quote. The “bait and switch” or “low-ball quote” is a real thing, and you should understand it. At SDC, we know that too often the lowest quoted price may ultimately end up as the costliest. It may be a red flag when a shipping company provides a quote quickly, often a lower quote than others, but doesn’t take time to understand all the inventory, let alone the client’s needs. Those “surprise” costs add up! We strive to thoroughly understand all your needs and expectations to provide a clear, professional quotation, which is as low as our many years of experience, shipping relationships, and efficiencies allow.


• Caution: Up-Front Deposits

Be cautious of any company that requires an up-front deposit. While a credit card authorization as security is fine, an actual deposit could be a red flag. At SDC Intl. Shipping, we do not require up-front deposits, nor do we charge a credit card up-front for 99%+ of our jobs.


• Caution: Consistently Poor Online Reviews

When considering an international moving and shipping company, it is essential to look for outstanding online reviews. Conversely, consistently poor online reviews are a red flag. Check Yelp and Google to understand what others have to say about the company you are considering.


• Caution: Lack of a Professional, Comprehensive Quote

It’s important to be cautious of any international shipping company that does not provide a professional, comprehensive quote for your shipment to Austria. At SDC, we understand the importance of transparency and will provide a detailed proposal that outlines exactly what services are being quoted, whether it’s door to door, door to port, or port to port, and clearly states all included and excluded elements. If a company cannot provide such a proposal, it may be a red flag and best to proceed with caution.


The SDC Shipping Process                                         

SDC International Shipping is your best choice when it comes to selecting international movers to Austria.  We take extra time to first fully understand our client’s needs.  This helps to reduce or even eliminate “surprise” charges and/or other potential troubles.  From there, the process, depending on desired level of service (e.g., door to door, door to port, port to door, port to port, air freight, etc.) is handled by SDC Intl. Shipping.  That is from your point of origin all the way to desired destination. As an example, let’s consider a full household move, using ocean shipping, from door to door, including full professional packing, wrapping and protecting of all household goods.


  1. First, it is a great idea to conduct the Visual Survey in order to get to know each other better, and for SDC to understand the client’s needs and inventory. This is also an opportunity to answer any questions the client may have.  ß Very important   Sometimes a visual survey isn’t possible.  In that case, it is still important for SDC to understand your needs.  Sometimes we use pictures; or in certain cases, we agree on an amount and service.  That said, for most shipments of household goods from door to door, a visual survey is an important part of the process.


  1. After the survey is complete and analyzed professionally, SDC Intl. Shipping will then provide a Professional Quotation. This quote will clearly explain all elements of the move that are included as well as those which are not or may not be.


  1. If everything looks good, the next step would be for your SDC Intl. Shipping Relocation Specialist to provide you with an Order for Service. This is the actionable booking document which initiates the shipping process.   The order for service will clearly spell out not only the price, but also all details, including what is included, what is not, etc.


  1. Internal Support and Logistics Team gets involved- Once your job is booked, an internal Support Expert for Austria is assigned. This Specialist will provide constant communication, guidance, request the proper documents /paperwork that might be required, and stay with you from start through finish.


  1. Packing, Wrapping & Protecting and Pick-Up- Sometimes this (packing and pick-up) is done on the same day. Sometimes, for larger and more complex jobs, professional packing (if part of your requested service), wrapping, protecting and prepping could be 1-3 days prior to the actual pick-up / loading.


  1. Shipping– The next step is to ship your household inventory.


  1. Customs– Unless otherwise requested, SDC Intl. Shipping will clear customs at the destination port of entry. Long before this point, your SDC Intl. Shipping Specialist will have taken care of all of the necessary paperwork.  This way, clearing customs at the destination port of entry should go smoothly.


  1. Final Delivery– Unless otherwise requested, SDC Intl. Shipping then delivers your household goods to your destination residence or desired delivery location. All furniture is reassembled (if applicable), unwrapped and placed where you would like it.  All boxes are delivered to the room or area of your home that you wish.  We then clean up all trash and depart.


Necessary Documents

SDC International Shipping’s Logistics and Support Team works with you and helps with the documents necessary to ship your household goods, clear customs and deliver to your residence in Austria.


What Can’t I Ship from the US to Austria with My Household Goods?

Restricted and Prohibited Items

It is important to note that when moving to any foreign country, including Austria and the EU generally, there may be restrictions on what items you can bring with you. Some common items that are often restricted or prohibited when shipping household goods internationally include:


  • Firearms and ammunition
  • Explosives
  • Illegal drugs
  • Plants and plant products
  • Endangered animal decoration
  • Ivory
  • Soil
  • Food and food stock
  • Liquids
  • Dangerous chemicals
  • Pornographic materials
  • Loose gems
  • Large amounts of precious metals
  • Large sums of cash or marketable securities


Please engage with your SDC International Shipping Relocation Specialist for further information regarding what may not or should not be sent along with your household goods and personal effects.

Here is a helpful link for more information-  Customs Guide-  Austria


Packing and Protecting Your Household Goods


  • Standard Service (protecting your larger items / furniture)- SDC International Shipping, by default will wrap and protect all of your furniture items.  This would include items which would not normally be boxed.  For example, desks, sofas, dining tables, credenzas, beds, etc.  All furniture items will be protected in a manner necessary to ensure transit from door to door, with complete protection.
  • Special Enhanced Protection for Delicate and/or Specialty Items- SDC International Shipping will always provide the appropriate level of protection for your different inventory items. Items such as glass and marble tops, statues, glass china cabinets, etc., will receive the appropriate level of enhanced protection for the shipment.  At SDC, our mandate is to do everything in our power to ensure your items arrive in the exact same condition in which they left.  We are experts at making this happen.
  • Packing of Boxes There are basically 3 options when it comes to packing your boxes.


  1. Full Professional Packing Service by SDC– When it comes to boxes, the client may elect to have SDC International Shipping professionally pack all boxes, or only some of them, and create a professional inventory list. This is often helpful with customs at the  port of entry in Austria.
  2. Self-Pack- Alternatively, the client may elect to self-pack (or partially self-pack) boxes for the shipment. In this case, it is important for you to create an inventory list.  SDC Intl. Shipping will help.
  3. Hybrid- This is an option when the client would like to self-pack most of their boxes but leave some delicate items to be packed by the agent (SDC Intl. Shipping). Example- client will pack most boxes but would like SDC to pack the framed wall art, TV’s and fine china.  This is a common arrangement.


  • Framed Art- SDC can pack framed wall-art for our clients. Alternatively, the client may choose to pack themselves.  SDC can provide everything from standard wrapping and boxing of art, up to acid-free wrapping and soft crating, all the way up to creating full, custom hard crates for your fine art. 
  • White Glove Service-  If needed, SDC International Shipping’s teams of expert packers and un-packers are happy to provide full white-glove service.

Art, Pianos, Billiard Tables, Sculptures to Austria

When shipping your Piano, Billiard Table, Fine Art, and other specialty/collectable items, they must be handled properly by an experienced, knowledgeable and capable shipping and relocation company.   If you need to ship a musical instrument, oil painting, a pool table, collectable pinball machines or any other high-value specialty item, our team has the knowledge, experience, skills, and equipment to handle any specialty shipment, door to door.  


Shipping Your Household Goods to Austria by Ocean or by Air 

Household shipments to destinations outside North America are usually shipped by ocean freight.   A benefit is that ocean shipping is a more economical mode.  The downside however is that the total transit time is longer.  SDC Intl. Shipping is expert in both shipping by air and shipping by way of ocean.   Often, a combination of both may be utilized.


Shipping Your Car to Austria  

Shipping your car from the USA to Austria is a relatively easy process with SDC’s help. As an experienced international moving and shipping company, we ensure that your vehicle/s are considered part of your household goods shipment, possibly exempting them from duty. However, it is important to follow certain regulations and requirements when importing your car into Austria. SDC can ship your vehicle inside a container, which may also contain your household goods (subject to limitations), or arrange for separate shipping via container or roll-on, roll-off (RoRo) options.

Firstly, you will need to ensure that your car meets the technical requirements for driving in Austria. This includes ensuring that your car is equipped with the appropriate safety features and meets the emission standards. You may also need to have modifications made to your car to comply with Austrian regulations.

Secondly, you will need to find a reputable international moving company that offers car shipping services. They can provide you with information on the necessary paperwork, customs clearance procedures, and fees that are required for shipping your car to Austria.

Please reach out to SDC International Shipping to engage with a Relocation Specialist to help you navigate the process of importing your car into Austria.

Some Helpful Links for you-

SDC Vehicle Shipping


Importing Your Motorcycle to Austria

Can I ship my motorcycle to Austria?    Yes, it is possible to ship your motorcycle from the USA to Austria, but there are several regulations and requirements that you will need to follow in order to do so.  SDC International Shipping is here to guide you through the process and explain the details.


Here’s the general process:

Check the technical requirements for motorcycles in Austria. Make sure your motorcycle is equipped with the appropriate safety features and meets the emission standards. You may need to have modifications made to your motorcycle to comply with Austrian regulations.

Prepare your motorcycle for shipping. Drain the fuel tank and disconnect the battery. You may also need to remove certain parts, such as mirrors or windshield, to protect them during transport.  These are all things that SDC International Shipping will help with and ensure have been done.

SDC Intl. Shipping  will transport your motorcycle to the port of departure in the USA, where it will be loaded onto a container or other suitable transport vessel.

Your motorcycle will be transported to the port of entry in Austria, where it will go through customs clearance. You will need to provide the necessary paperwork and pay any fees or taxes that are required.  If SDC Intl. Shipping is sending your motorcycle as part of your used household goods shipment, and provided it meets the requirements, there may be no duty whatsoever.   As always, your SDC Intl. Shipping Relocation Specialist will be able to help and walk through each step.

Once your motorcycle clears customs, it will be transported to your final destination in Austria.


Pet Relocations to Austria

Can I bring my furry best friend to Austria?   Yes, you can bring your pet with you when moving to Austria. However, there are certain regulations and requirements that you must comply with in order to import your pet into Austria. Austrian government requires that all pets entering the country have a valid import permit, which can be obtained from the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (DAFF). In addition, your pet must be vaccinated against rabies and have a valid health certificate issued by a licensed veterinarian.

There are also specific requirements for certain types of pets, such as cats and dogs. For example, dogs must be microchipped and have a negative blood test result for rabies within 30 days of travel. Cats must be microchipped and have a negative result for feline leukemia virus (FeLV) and feline immunodeficiency virus (FIV).It is important to note that there may be additional requirements and fees for importing pets, and the process can take several months to complete. It is recommended that you consult with Austrian authorities and your veterinarian well in advance of your move to ensure that you comply with all regulations and requirements for importing your pet into Austria

.SDC Intl. Shipping- Your Pet


Marine Insurance for your Household Goods

SDC International Shipping offers both Total Loss as well as Full Coverage insurance options which cover your possessions from door to door.  Please contact SDC International Shipping at 888-779-3962 for details.

SDC Maritime Insurance


Healthcare in Austria     

As an expat moving to Austria, you can obtain health insurance to cover your medical expenses while living there. Health insurance is mandatory in Austria and all residents, including expats, must be covered by a health insurance plan.

There are two main types of health insurance available in Austria: public health insurance (Gesetzliche Krankenversicherung) and private health insurance (Private Krankenversicherung).

Public health insurance is provided by several different insurance providers and covers a range of medical services, including hospitalization, doctor visits, and prescription medication. The cost of public health insurance is based on your income and is deducted directly from your salary.

Private health insurance is an option for those who prefer a higher level of coverage or who do not qualify for public health insurance. Private health insurance plans are offered by various insurance companies in Austria and can provide coverage for a range of medical services, including hospitalization, doctor visits, and prescription medication. The coverage and cost of these plans can vary depending on the provider and the level of coverage you choose.

It is recommended to research different health insurance options and consult with a healthcare professional or insurance agent to determine the best plan for your needs and budget.


Electrical Standard in Austria      

The electrical standard in Austria is 230 volts AC (alternating current), 50 Hz (hertz), which is the standard voltage and frequency used in most of Europe. The electrical outlets in Austria are Type F outlets, which accept two round prongs. These outlets are also compatible with Type C plugs, which have two round prongs as well, but are not grounded.

If you are moving to Austria from a country with a different electrical standard, such as the United States or Canada, you may need to bring a power adapter or converter to use your electronic devices in Austria. It is important to research the specific voltage and plug types of your devices before traveling to ensure that you have the necessary adapters or converters.


Top Winter Resort Destinations in Austria 

St. Anton am Arlberg: St. Anton is one of the largest and most popular ski resorts in Austria, offering over 300km of ski runs, a lively après-ski scene, and excellent off-piste skiing.

Kitzbühel: Kitzbühel is a charming town located in the Tyrol region, known for its challenging ski runs, elegant boutiques and restaurants, and lively nightlife.

Ischgl: Ischgl is a popular ski resort located in the Paznaun Valley, offering over 200km of ski runs, excellent snow conditions, and a vibrant après-ski scene.

Saalbach-Hinterglemm: Saalbach-Hinterglemm is a large ski resort located in the Salzburg region, offering over 270km of ski runs, a range of accommodation options, and a lively village atmosphere.

Lech-Zürs: Lech-Zürs is a high-end ski resort located in the Vorarlberg region, offering excellent skiing conditions, gourmet restaurants, and luxury accommodation options.

Mayrhofen: Mayrhofen is a charming ski resort located in the Zillertal Valley, offering a range of ski runs for all levels, a lively après-ski scene, and a variety of winter activities.

Overall, these ski resorts offer world-class facilities, stunning mountain scenery, and a range of winter sports activities, making them top winter resort destinations in Austria.



In conclusion, Austria offers a multitude of benefits for those considering a move from the USA or other countries. With its high standard of living, excellent education system, stable economy, rich cultural and historical heritage, stunning natural landscapes, and central location in Europe, Austria provides a unique and desirable lifestyle for individuals and families alike. Moreover, its political stability and reputation for social and economic stability make it an attractive destination for long-term residence. And let’s not forget the world-class winter sports and activities! Whether you’re seeking adventure, cultural immersion, or a peaceful retreat, Austria is a great choice for your next move.

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International Moving From USA to Any Destination

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