How to move non-allowable items?

During a move, many people prefer to have help from reliable movers. Knowing that professionals are handling your items makes people feel a bit relaxed and ready to tackle other relocation problems. However, you might encounter a problem if you want to move non-allowable items. Many moving companies follow a lot of moving and packing guidelines and a lot of them prohibit moving some items. If you’re wondering what these non-allowable items are and how to move them, continue reading.

What exactly are non-allowable items?

Some of the items you plan to bring with you to your new location international movers will refuse to carry. To avoid any problems and inconveniences, it’s best that you find out what these items are. “Non-allowable items” is a broad category and it includes anything that has a certain level of risk during transit. There are many standards and guidelines that prohibit movers to pack and move non-allowable items. Of course, different companies have different sets of standards, but usually, all hazardous and perishable items are considered non-allowable. If you are wondering if a certain item is a non-allowable item, see if that item:

  • Has a chance of exploding (fireworks, ammunition)
  • Spoils over a short period of time (food, plants)
  • Has a chance of starting a fire (cleaning supplies or other flammable items)
  • Might leak during transit (any containers holding liquids)
  • Is susceptible to changes if there’s a slight shift in temperature (candles and wax items and any liquid that freezes easily)
A woman talking to a mover, asking if they will move non-allowable items
There are a lot of items movers will refuse to move

If you are having second thoughts about an item, ask the movers. However, this set of ideas will give you a rough picture of which items movers can and cannot move. On the other hand, just because an item falls into this category, it doesn’t mean that it’s out of the picture. Many companies categorize non-allowable items into three subcategories:

  • Personal items – Movers can bring them, but will advise you to move them yourself
  • Perishables – Movers will agree to move these items under certain rules and circumstances
  • Hazardous items – Movers will always refuse to move them

More on these subcategories in the rest of the text.

How to move personal items?

Many people get surprised when movers return their jewelry and electronics, stating that they won’t transport non-allowable items. Although these items don’t seem to pose any major threat to workers or items around them, they are still considered non-allowable. Movers don’t like to feel responsible for valuables, mostly because there’s a chance that they might scrap or nick the items. This is why movers will refuse to relocate non-allowable items such as jewelry, art collection, and some electronic devices.

When looking for packers and movers near me, almost all will refuse to carry medicines, documents, and even photo albums. You should always carry sentimental and important documents, like research projects, financial documents, and medical records with you.

Two people packing items
If you need to move non-allowable items, pack them adequately

How to move perishable items?

Perishable items are also items that at a first glance have no issues with transit. However, you have to keep in mind that these items change over time, most times in negative ways. Many movers will refuse to carry any food, frozen, refrigerated, or fresh. Sometimes, the movers will gladly move food from the pantry, but you’ll have to ask them first. However, even though movers don’t usually move perishables, there are a few exceptions.

If you adequately pack and store some items under certain conditions, movers just might accept to move them. Some of these specific conditions are that the items won’t require any servicing during the move, that the traveling route is under 150 miles, and that the items will be picked up within 24 hours of arrival. One of the best ways to show appreciation to movers is to tip the. If you’re wondering how much to tip movers, the common amount is 5-10% of the total move cost.

How to move hazardous items?

If you’re looking for help from movers when moving these items, you won’t find any. And that’s for a good reason. Moving hazardous items poses a big risk. These items are a health threat to movers as well as to other items around. They can be toxic, flammable, and even explosive. When talking about items like cleaning solvents, ammonia, acids, nail polish, and similar, sometimes it’s best to get rid of them.

You can leave them behind for the next inhabitants, or throw them away in designated places. If you really need to move these items with you, which isn’t recommended, make sure that you properly close the lids and containers. Place them in an air-tight plastic container, so that any liquid or gasses won’t escape. Also, don’t accidentally expose them to any high temperatures during the move, and always keep an eye on them.

When moving explosive items, like propane and scuba tanks, always drain the tank first. Transporting an empty tank or cylinder is easier and a whole lot safer. A filled pressurized tank can explode and cause heavy damage to its surroundings. As for firearms (always unloaded, of course), ammunition, and gun reloading supplies, it’s best that you turn to a federally licensed firearm dealer. They will send your dangerous belongings to your next location.

A box of cleaning supplies
It’s better to discard cleaning supplies than to move them


If you are planning a relocation, keep in mind that a lot of moving companies will refuse to move non-allowable items. Also, sometimes the definition of a “non-allowable” applies to seemingly random items. Movers follow strict guidelines and rules when it comes to this. They might move some items, like perishables, but only under strict conditions. On the other hand, no mover will agree to move hazardous items. You should not give some items with sentimental or monetary value to movers. Sometimes, it’s best that you move these items on your own. This way, you will always know where they are.

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