Westlock Movers

Packing Tips

Each year, nearly one in five Canadians will pack up and move. You can probably expect to do it yourself an exhausting 11 times during your lifetime. Whether your moving to change jobs, retire, improve your health or to be closer to family, anyone who has done it knows that moving is a lot of hard work. Our tips can make this big job a little easier and more hassle free. For those of you wishing to save a few dollars and would like to do their own packing we offer the following suggestions.

Packing Basics

You should start packing as soon as the moving date has been established. Moving is too big of a job to leave until the last minute. Begin packing with out of season gear and other things you don't use often and go from there.

  • Pack in sturdy corrugated cardboard cartons. It can be tempting to collect cartons from the supermarket and the liquor store. Professional movers swear by boxes designed especially for moving. These boxes are guaranteed to be tough enough to hold up. These supplies can be purchased from us at Westlock Movers.

  • Pack heavy items in small boxes and lighter items in larger boxes. Close the lids the way you would a case of soup. Do not crisscross the tops. Seal with a single piece of packing tape. Do not use freezer tape.

  • Use a heavy marker to number each box, write the name of the room it's to go into and a list of its contents. Use a separate notebook with a record of each box and what is in it.

  • Use unprinted newspaper for most wrapping, since stains from newspaper ink can be almost impossible to remove. Pad the bottom of each carton with crumpled paper before you begin.

  • Pack boxes full but not too full Sealed tops should be flat. Try to keep the weight under 30lbs.

  • Pack your cups carefully. Place a cup on a stack of packing paper handle to the right. Wrap two sheets of paper over it. Add second cup handle to the left. Wrap and tape.

  • Make dishes break proof. Place the first plate on a stack of unprinted newspaper, lightly beyond the center of the sheet. Starting at a corner, fold two or three sheets of paper over the place to cover. Place a second plate on the first and cover, third plate on top and cover it with the rest of the sheets of paper, wrap stacked plates in two more sheets of paper and tape. Place stack of dishes into carton on edge.

  • Keep delicate glass and stemware safe. Place a glass on a corner of the stack of packing paper, base to the right. Pick up a double thickness of paper and roll diagonally two full revolutions. Add second glass base to the left. Continue rolling, folding in outside corners. Tape closed. Note: wrap very fragile or expensive stemware individually after stuffing bowls with crumpled tissue.

  • Clothes can stay in dressers, but any lose of heavy items should be removed. Do not tape drawers closed (may harm finish).

  • Clothes in closets can be packed in wardrobe cartons. A specially designed box that allows clothes to hang during the move. Available through Westlock Movers.

  • As the boxes develop, try to stack the boxes as close to the anticipated exit as close as possible. A great place may be behind a couch along a wall.

  • Children's plush toys, bedding, etc. can be packed in large plastic bags. These make great stuffers for the load.

  • Freezer items can be made easier to pack into the truck by putting them into plastic bags before the mover arrives. He can remove them, put the deepfreeze into the truck and replace the bags into the deepfreeze. Freezer food can remain frozen for several days in the truck even during the heat of summer.

What Should NEVER Go Into the Moving Van

Live animals, important papers such as car ownership, medical/dental records, school records, insurance policies, passports, birth certificates, and documents pertaining to the move should always be with you. So should your cash, credit cards and jewelry. Keep these items in your purse on concealed money belts. DO NOT PUT EXPLOSIVE OR FLAMMABLE GOODS IN THE VAN. Such items include:

  • Paints (oil or water based), lacquers, or Enamels

  • Gasoline, Kerosene, Oil (of any weight)

  • Propane bottles of any size

  • Matches or Lighters

  • Aerosol Cans (paints, hairspray, cleaners)

  • Bleach or Cleaners with any discolouring agents

  • Lawn mowers, etc which have not been drained of their fluids

  • Fertilizers

  • Fire Extinguishers or any other contents under pressure

  • Firearms and ammunition

  • Alcohol/Contraband

What to Pack Last and Take With You!

  • Enough clothes and toiletries to last till the van is unpacked

  • First aid kit and prescription medicines.

  • Live plants that can suffer in the heat and cold of the van

  • Snacks, paper plates, and cups

  • Children's travel toys and activities, baby supplies.

  • Pets, pet food, dishes, cat litter box

The "Open Me First" Box

This is your survival pack, Mark it well and ensure it is the last box to go in the truck so it will be the first to come out.

Be sure to include: light bulbs, cleaning supplies, paper towels, soap, tool kit, flashlight, canned food, can opener, instant coffee, kettle, toilet paper, towels, and a few dishes & flatware.

Also, 3-4 oz. of 40% alcohol if moving to Zama Lake, Red Earth, or anywhere north of High Level!

Countdown to Moving Day!


Choose a moving company. We sure hope you would choose WESTLOCK MOVERS. Get solid references (any qualified mover will be happy to supply this), talk to your mover about insurance costs, delivery, payments, etc. Get a floor plan of the house to preplan layout of the furniture and dispose of any unwanted items. Be wary of "hidden expenses" and be careful: Just because you have been quoted the cheapest it does not mean they're the best choice.


Start packing. Ask Doctors and Dentists to recommend colleagues near your new home. Get copies of prescriptions, Transfer school and insurance records.


Arrange to have utilities disconnected in your old home and connected in the new one. Mail change of address cards.


Close bank accounts. Keep enough money to pay van driver if needed. Discontinue delivery services.


Pack and lable open me first box. Empty safe deposit box. Plan to carry with you.


Defrost and dry out fridge. Professional packing will probably be done today. Finish your own packing. Remove mirrors from dressers.


After a long day of moving the first thing you are going to want is your bed. When you get up in the morning pack the bedding from each bed into large plastic bags. Mark each bag from which bed it came from so it will be easy to find once the truck is unloaded. Heck, if you like... we will even make up the bed for you!

Smile! Your On Your Way!

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