Preparing your transferees for Peak Household Goods Shipment Season can be the difference between a make or break relocation.

Why does Peak Season matter?

Peak Season is also the season where a transferee is more statistically likely to experience delays, poor service, damage or all three. Think about it this way. During the non-peak months, your transferee will get a team of three professionals helping them with their relocation. During peak season, teams get stretched. Rather than getting three professionals, you get two students and one professional. This isn’t to take away from the students, but they are less experienced, and their packing choices or choices of moving your furniture simply are not as sharp as those of the seasoned professional. Delays are far more likely during Peak Season as well. With all those moves tightly packed together, you have a greater likelihood of a domino effect of small errors and planning problems adding up to delays. Those delays cause teams to speed up their work and possibly take some short-cuts that are not recommended.

My shipment is only 500 kms, why are you giving me spread dates of 10 days?

Even though your transferee’s shipment is only from Kingston to Halifax, it is unlikely that his/her goods fill that truck. There are multiple loads on that truck. That shipment from Kingston to Halifax may drop goods in Montreal, Trois-Rivières and Quebec City, before heading onto Halifax. And each of those stops is another possible cause of a new delay and an increasingly pressured moving team. Delivery spreads of 30 days on small shipments (usually defined as 5000 lbs. or less) are really “pick and hold” which means that the moving company has to pack and load the shipment on the truck and then put it in their warehouse until a long distance driver comes by to get it.

What can be done to mitigate the worst of Peak Season?

All Points always recommends to people to close their home sale and home purchase in the middle of the month. Human Resources professionals can also make this recommendation. The worst of Peak Season challenges do happen around the end or beginning of each month. Even changing your move from the beginning or end of the month by a few days can mean the difference between a good move and a bad move.

Manage expectations

It is important to manage expectations. Explain the key concepts of Peak Season and explain that delays are far more likely during this time period and that transferees will have to accept delivery spread dates.

Special note: Cross-border and US relocations

Cross-border moves and intra-American moves have serious capacity issues this summer. We strongly recommend that moves be booked early and that people be flexible on their move dates. If you know that there is going to be cross-border or American relocations, make sure that your relocation company gets the move solidly booked as soon as possible. And, right now in the United States, delivery spread dates are increasing. We have seen delivery spread dates on small shipments reaching up to 30 days.

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