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The Different Types of Moving Agents

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During your move, you are likely to use the services of a moving agent. These agents handle the logistics of the move, such as making the appropriate arrangements and acting as a liaison between you and the moving company. Though you are likely to use moving agents for any type of move, their roles are especially crucial during long-distance and international moves.

Since agents are such an important part of the moving process, it is good to know exactly what their duties are. First of all, there are a few different types of moving agents, each specializing in a different part of the moving process.

The booking agent

The first agent you are likely to interact with is the booking agent. The booking agent can either be one person working independently, or it can be someone at your moving company.

As the booking agent handles the initial steps of the move, he or she is responsible for informing the customer about the moving services available, providing an estimate for the price of the move, and filling out the pre-move paperwork.

He or she will also work with the client to set up the time and date of the move. Overall, the booking agent is accountable for setting up and planning the move and assigning duties to the moving crew.

The origin agent

The origin agent handles all of the planning involved with picking your goods up at your old home. Since the duties are closely related to those of the booking agent, often times the same person will handle both roles.

The origin agent will plan and fine-tune some of the more specific details of the move, such as working with the customer to settle the cost of the move and deciding on the mode of payment. He or she will also prepare the bill of lading and other paperwork. In addition, the origin agent is responsible for setting the time frames for packing, loading, shipping, unloading, and unpacking your goods.

If storage facilities are needed at the origin point, the agent will also make the appropriate arrangements. Should any problems arise on the day of the move, he or she will advise the booking agent and the moving company's customer service representatives so disputes can be settled properly.

The destination agent

Just as the origin agent organizes the duties at the location of your old home, the destination agent takes care of the tasks associated with delivering your goods to your new home. For a long-distance or international move, the destination agent will be responsible for hiring a crew to unload everything off the truck.

If a storage facility is needed close to the destination, the agent will handle the proper arrangements for this as well. It is also the destination agent's duty to mediate and advise on any disputes encountered at the destination. Furthermore, he or she is responsible for closing out the move by taking care of the paperwork after the goods are safely delivered to the destination.

The freight agent

In addition to the booking agent, origin agent, and destination agent, you might use the services of a freight agent. Since the freight agent oversees the transportation of your goods by ship, you will probably only need one for an international move or a long-distance move to an island or other location that isn't accessible by truck.

The main duty of the freight agent is to coordinate and supervise the freight shipment. He or she will collect information about the freight and decide on the best method for transporting it. The freight agent is also responsible for making all of the arrangements and determining the dates and times for pickup and delivery.

Another of the freight agent's duties is to take care of all the customs documents, licenses, and other paperwork. Moreover, he or she must track the progress of the shipment and maintain contact with the customer to provide them with status updates. Once the shipment has safely arrived at the destination, the freight agent is responsible for collecting payment.

Whether you use one or all of the above moving agents, their job is to ensure that your move goes as smoothly as possible. By making the appropriate arrangements and acting as the liaison between you and your moving company, the agents make sure that your move will be handled safely and professionally.

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  Posted by Adam Mandelbaum on August 27, 2009

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