On 18th June we took out a small storage room in Big Yellow, Hanger Lane. We got fantastic service from them – we were very impressed indeed. It cost us about £60 a month for the room and insurance. What we stored were books, CDs, DVDs, boardgames, kilims, clothes – and a few biking bits. We were in and out of there on a fairly regular basis as we transitioned from one address to another due to selling our home, finishing the day jobs, and tying up various loose ends. In late July we packed some huge bags with what we would initially bring with over with us in preparation for flying out early August. The rest was left at Big Yellow, with a plan to have it shipped later in the year once we had all the necessary documents.
Late October we returned to London and took out another couple of suitcases full of things – clothes, pictures and games for the most part. On November 3rd we vacated Big Yellow and consigned the 15 remaining boxes to Soyer’s chosen London agents – Dolphin Movers. Our boxes waited in Enfield until enough boxes belonging to other people had accumulated to fill a container.
We’re not quite sure when our stuff arrived in Izmir, but we were told by Soyer it would be 28th or 29th December. We already posted about our hastily arranged trip to Greece overnight on the 23rd and 24th December, a trip in wild and windy weather necessary because we needed a stamp in our passport showing that we had entered Turkey no more than 30 days prior to the arrival of our goods.
A little over a week ago we went to Izmir, the plan was to meet with Soyer to get our stuff cleared through customs. It went smoothly enough at first, we met, did a load of paperwork, drank tea, had stuff translated and notarised, and headed to customs. So far, so good. We hung around for a while and then were advised to go for lunch, come back in 3 hours – which we did, this was also an opportunity to go and look at motorcycles. Back at customs in the afternoon we hung around for a while, there was some sort of issue going on, not with our stuff but with someone else who was arguing with customs officers. As a result (or maybe for some other reason) our stuff did not get cleared. We were advised us to go home, Soyer kept Hilary’s passport and said they would deal with everything the next day and then organise to get out stuff shipped from Izmir to Selçuk.
On 18th Jan at a little after 10.30 a truck drew up outside, Hilary got her passport back and we got our boxes of stuff. Exactly 7 months to the day from when we took out the storage at Big Yellow and a little over 5 months from when we first moved out. We thought it would take about 6 months, Ashley said right from the start that they would arrive in January, so pretty much as expected.
We have now unpacked. Everything has arrived in great shape – nothing bashed about, missing or broken. So, whilst this was not an express service, it was relatively cheap (total cost of shipping, not including our storage costs before consigning the boxes to the shipper but including all customs costs and delivery to inside our house was just under £1,500). More importantly we had excellent communication and customer service at all points along the way.