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Moving to Puerto Rico

When you move to Puerto Rico you will want to engage the services of SDC International Shipping, a company experienced in sending both commercial and residential shipments to the island.

Moving to Puerto Rico

The Commonwealth of Puerto Rico is a very attractive destination for Americans. Most importantly, Puerto Rico is a part of the United States. You don’t require any visa or special permissions to move there. You are allowed to work there, retire there, or purchase a second home there as you please if you are a citizen of the United States. Puerto Rico could even be considered a tax haven by some, and there are taxation reasons you might want to make Puerto Rico your permanent residence while maintaining your old home as a second residence.

If you speak Spanish, you should not expect any problems on the island, as it is comfortable and considered safe. If you don’t speak Spanish you will probably prefer moving to the nearby US Virgin Islands, where English is spoken but you will be able to enjoy the same weather and tax advantages.

However Puerto Rico is still an island over 1100 miles from the closest point in the US in Florida.  This means that when you move there, your personal belongings will be moved on a ship. Though this is a domestic move and not an international move per se, it is still an intricate move with many steps more than a typical relocation from one state to another. You should only use the services of a shipping company licensed by the Federal Maritime Commission. This is the US government body that regulates sea freight companies and ensures that you will be getting a fair service. SDC International Shipping is licensed by this commission, our license number is # 02238N. Make sure anyone you talk to about this move is licensed.

Moving to Puerto Rico

Household Moving to Puerto Rico

There are no real restrictions to what you can and cannot bring to Puerto Rico. As an intergral part of the United States, whatever is legal in the US is legal there.

You are moving to a tropical island, so make sure that the furniture and equipment that you are sending is appropriate.

We are sure that you are moving to Puerto Rico at least partly to enjoy the tropical weather. Make sure that you are sending along whatever you will need to facilitate this. While you can get a lot of things on the island, the selection available to you now is greater, so you should send appropriate things like furniture, grills or fire pits and equipment for an outdoor kitchen if you want it.

One of the things that you should keep in mind is that when moving to Puerto Rico, your cargo will be sent on the sea, and much movement should be expected on the journey. We recommend that you use our professional packing service for your move. They are experienced at packing fragile items in order to reduce damage as much as possible. Special packing materials are used, depending upon what you are sending. For instance, if your shipment includes mirrors or framed art, our movers will bring special boxes for these. If you are sending items that are breakable or of particular value, we will build customized crates for them. If you will need this, please let your SDC International Shipping relocation specialist know about this so that necessary supplies will be sent when our movers come to pack your belongings for shipment. Other items that require special packaging include TVs and large monitors, bicycles, and some exercise equipment.

BTW, don’t worry about sending exercise equipment, if you are sending an entire container, your weight allowance is very high, and you will be able to send things like this without a problem.

The professional packing service is a prerequisite for purchasing insurance against damage to your property. You are always able to purchase insurance against the total loss of your shipment, but if you are sending anything that may incur damage and would like to insure this, only professionally packed shipments are insurable.

International Car Shipping to Puerto Rico

You are allowed to send your car to Puerto Rico. Almost all makes and models can easily be serviced there, so instead of selling your car and buying a new one in Puerto Rico, you can just send yours. If there is room, you can send it in your container. Most cars take up over half the room of a 20’ container, so in some cases you can send a 40’ container instead. This is a more affordable option than sending your car using a special car transport service.

Puerto Rico Customs and Regulations

As the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico is a part of the United States, there are no customs charged. Your shipment will not have to pass through customs clearance, but it might be x-rayed inspected.

For certain new items that you send, you might be charged the Puerto Rico sales tax. In such cases, you should be able to have any sales tax that you paid in your state of origin refunded.

There are not many regulations. If you are sending a dog, there are a few breeds that can’t be brought, and you will have to provide a certificate of recent rabies vaccination. You can send horses, please contact us for details.

Make sure not to send anything illegal in your shipment.

Moving to Puerto Rico Checklist

You have probably visited Puerto Rico many times, and already know where you are going to live.

 Some of the things that you start doing before your move include:

Downsizing – if you are moving permanently, start disposing of things that you don’t need early. Things like furniture left behind can be a pain to get rid of at the last minute.

Supplying – if you are setting up a second home, get whatever you will need to supply it. This includes full sets of cooking and dining equipment, bathroom and bedroom linens, and household tools.

Health insurance – the health insurance in Puerto Rico is a little bit different than the rest of the United States, they have something similar to universal health care coverage but you still need to pay. The overall cost to you will probably be less than what you are currently paying. If you plan on maintaining a second home, consult with your current health insurance as to coverage while living in Puerto Rico.

Make sure that you have all of the right clothing for a tropical climate. You will not require any winter clothes.

Your mobile phones will continue to work in Puerto Rico, and you more than likely will not have to switch plans. However, you will be looking at different internet and TV service providers. ATT services the whole island, but most clients will be shifting to new service providers. Make sure that you cancel or transfer your contracts.

Schools in Puerto Rico teach in Spanish, even though English is taught to all ages. If you are moving with school aged children who don’t yet speak Spanish, you will need to register them in special English, you should try to make early arrangements, as places are limited in these schools.

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