How to Move Across the Country Without Losing Your Mind!


Moving your home is stressful in itself; however, moving across the country can be a lot more daunting than your average move. There’s so many things that need to be done before a large cross country move can occur. Everything needs to run to schedule in order for the process to run as smoothly as possible.

Long distance moves are more demanding than across town moves because of the distance involved. Once the moving process has started, you don’t want to have to return back to the home because you’ve missed something or left something behind. This is why it’s important to get it right the first time. This expert guide will give you advice on how to make your cross country move as easy as possible.

What to Do When Making a Cross Country Move

Limit What You Take

Over the years we tend to accumulate many things that, in reality, we don’t really need or have a use for. When packing your items into boxes, remember you don’t have to take everything with you. Moving a home is a great opportunity to unclutter and throw non-essential items away.

If you don’t like to “throw” away items, why not sell or donate some things to a better cause? A good rule of thumb is: If you haven’t used it in 1-2 years, then you don’t really need it. In limiting what you take with you by decluttering your items, you’ll have more room to place other items and furniture into the truck. Think of the declutter process as a new start to your new journey. This will also limit the need to make too many trips across country from one house to the next.

Keep an Item Inventory

Staying organized is key when it comes to making a move across the country. To stay organized, keep an inventory list of your remaining items. This will help you to determine the number of boxes you’ll need or give your hired movers something to work on. The inventory list will also allow you to pick up anything that may have gone missing before or during your travels.

When compiling an inventory list, don’t forget to place more valuable items in their own list so you can pack them and take them with you in the car. Any smaller, valuable items shouldn’t be left for the movers to pack.

Pack Your Items Tightly

When packing your moving boxes, it’s important to pack them tightly. Some moving companies will charge by the box and not by weight, so the fewer boxes you have, the better it is for you. Packing your items tightly with newspaper or bubble wrap in between each item will allow minimized breakage from any rubbing or moving that may occur en route.

Label Everything

When moving cross country, it’s important to label everything to make the move easier. Some tips when labeling include:

  • Fragile items should have “fragile” written on them, along with an arrow about how the box should be positioned.
  • Clear instructions on how to handle any really delicate items.
  • A description of the contents in the box.
  • The address or a phone number should be written on the box in case it goes missing during transit.

Prepare Contact Details

Moving across the country requires some contact between the homeowners and the moving company. It’s always advisable to prepare different contact details and exchange them with the moving company drivers. Some things include:

  • Keep your mobile switched on and charged throughout the drive.
  • Supply the drivers with as many contact details as possible to ensure you can be reached if needed.
  • Supply a friend or close family member’s phone number in case they can’t get in touch with you.
  • Give them your email address and check it regularly in case they can’t reach you by phone.

Be Flexible on the Day

On the moving day, be flexible with the schedule. Be prepared for something to go wrong, like a late truck, breakdowns, train derailment, road closures, etc. You can’t control the entire move, but you can make it as stress-free as possible. Although things may not go to plan; remember, it’s all about the experience.


Moving with Young Children

Moving across the country with children can be a demanding thing. Some tips to help make the transition easier when moving across country with young ones include:

  • Get them to pack their own special box of items that they can take in the car with you.
  • Give them some coloring books and other items to play with on the car journey.
  • On the day, allow them to help pack the car, but make sure they keep out of the movers’ way.
  • Give them a special task to do while the truck is getting packed. This may be watching over the animals if you have any.
  • Remain positive and show minimal signs of stress or anxiety about the move, as this will help them to stay calm as well.
  • Feed your children at the same time and try to keep on schedule with their normal daily routine as best as possible.
  • Pack a few snacks for the road trip, along with some water bottles.
  • Make sure they use a toilet before you begin your trip, as this will limit the need to stop earlier on the trip for a toilet break.
  • Play games such as I spy with them while the packing is going on. This will keep their minds occupied away from the actual move.


Moving across the country is a big thing, but by taking these tips into consideration you have a higher chance of making the move the least stressful as possible. Remember to take a break on longer trips during the drive to revive and survive. Even a toilet break, or a break to get something to eat, is great for stretching the legs and waking you up.

If your move is longer than a day, make sure you have accommodations sorted before leaving, to make sure you have somewhere to sleep for the night.

So are you ready for your cross country move?