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Important Safety Tips When Moving Alone

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Planning an upcoming move by yourself? The overwhelming planning and endless tasks moving requires makes tackling it alone difficult and exhausting. However, moving alone can also be unsafe. If you're packing up and hitting the road solo, read on for tips to protect yourself during your trip.

Use proper packing methods

Improperly packing your belongings into boxes can actually cause painful injury. Make sure not to over-pack your boxes, and mix heavy items with lighter ones to keep weight manageable. You should be able to lift all boxes without straining--don't pack anything too heavy for you to handle alone. Always remember to follow proper lifting and carrying methods for heavy boxes and items--bend at the knees, not the waist, and keep the object you are carrying close to your body at all times.

Get moving help

No matter how strong you thin you are, moving heavy furniture and appliances requires a little assistance. If you have no friends or family available to give you a hand, you should hire movers to handle the weight. Even if you don't want to hire full-service movers, moving labor can help you with the heavy stuff and load everything into your rental truck for you. However, when moving alone, it's certainly ideal to have full-service movers load and drive for you while you drive your personal vehicle--especially for a long distance move.

Driving a rental truck?

If you are driving a rental truck for your solo move, it's important to exercise caution and always drive slowly and carefully. Be aware of weight and overhead clearance restrictions. Also, remember rental trucks are conspicuous when stopping at gas stations, rest stops, and hotels. Be sure the truck is always securely locked to avoid theft and park in well-lit areas.

Make sure you car is serviced

If you are driving your personal vehicle for your move, take care of basic maintenance like wiper and fluid level checks, an oil change and tune up. Check tire treads and air pressure, check the battery, and make sure to get a full tank of gas. Ensure you have all necessary emergency supplies in your vehicle, such as road flares, a spare tire, and an ice scraper if traveling during the winter.

Plan your route

Map out your route before hitting the road and look over it in advance so you are familiar. Stick to main roads and highways whenever possible. Use a GPS device or app on your smartphone if you have one, but always keep a printed copy of directions in your vehicle as well. Set a schedule for driving and map out planned stops for food, sleep and fuel. Avoid stopping at rest stations that are desolate, especially at night.

Hide your valuables

Whether you are moving in your personal vehicle or a rental truck, make sure to keep valuables tucked neatly out of sight. Don't leave your laptop, tablet, or jewelry case in plain view on the passenger seat. Keep these items disguised in a case, concealed under other items (such as clothing), and stowed away in the backseat--out of sight for anyone outside the vehicle, peering in the window.

Drive during the day

Hit the road first thing in the morning to get as much driving done as possible during daylight hours. It is safer to be on the road during the day--visibility is better, and gas stations and rest stops are more populated. Stop for dinner and check into your hotel before dark, and get back on the road as soon as the sun comes up the next day.

Be aware of your surroundings

Being self-aware is often the best protection when traveling alone. Always scan your surroundings before getting out of your vehicle, and never text or talk on the phone after getting out and walking to the rest stop, hotel or service station. Keep in contact with a friend or family member on the road, and notify him or her of your whereabouts each time you stop.

Don't leave your door open when moving in (or out)

Once you arrive at your new home, park your vehicle as close as possible to the front door. When unloading your belongings, avoid leaving your door open as you trek in and out. If possible, you should move in during the daylight hours, and get some pals or movers to help you with the task.

Nicole La Capria  Posted by Nicole La Capria on July 3, 2014

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