Moving house over the Christmas holidays is very common in Australia.

Because the Christmas break also falls at the end of the school year, which is when families with school age children find it most convenient to move house.

Relocating interstate is stressful enough, especially when children are involved but throw into the mix Christmas celebrations, end of year parties, family get-togethers and preparing for a new school year – you may find the thought of the whole thing just too overwhelming to deal with!

The good news is, lots of people have done it before you and many will do it after. If you can take some advice from people that have already been through the process, you will hopefully have a much smoother and stress free interstate move.

Moving tips for the holidays

There are many things you can do to make your holiday move go smoothly. While it may seem like a huge hassle moving (especially around Christmas time), it can actually be a blessing in disguise – just don’t forget to send a change of address card to Santa!

Advantages to moving at Christmas:

  • The kids are on school holidays

    • Moving during school term is never easy. It can be very disruptive to the child to be uprooted mid year and adjust to a new school’s curriculum.

  • You will be more likely to be able to have time off work

    • A large percentage of the work force takes time off at Christmas or as many businesses are quieter over the holiday period, it may be easier to request time off to pack and prepare to move.

  • There may be more help available

    • If you are moving interstate the cheapest way – using a self pack shipping container - it’s always handy to have a few extra hands to help load it up. A lot of people take time off over Christmas so you could entice them to help by offering Christmas drinks at the end of a day’s packing!

Preparing for an interstate move over the holidays

The most important thing during any move – but especially when you’re moving during the holidays – is to be organised. Because so many people do move at this time, interstate removalists are generally flat out so it’s great to book in your move as early as possible to ensure you can move on the days you choose.

Download a moving checklist two months before you plan to move. A good checklist will itemise what you should be doing 2 months out, 1 month out and so on. To be able to tick items off the list gives you a feeling of being under control and not feel overwhelmed with tasks when you can see them written out.

Start packing early. It seems obvious but the more you can pack early on, the better you will be off, come moving day. There are so many items around the house that are not regularly used and getting these things, (like out-of-season clothing, rarely used kitchen equipment, keepsakes), packed and stacked away a couple of months before you move will make all the difference in the final weeks before you move. If you have a spare room, or a spare spot in a shed, stack all your packed items together so you can keep track of where you’re at with your packing.

Get your paperwork done early. Once the silly season descends in December, the last place you want to be is in a never-ending line at the post-office, waiting to process a change of address request. If you’re able to tick off your list – change of address forms, contacting utilities companies, getting  your Christmas cards written and ready to post and completing new school documentation – you’ll appreciate your efforts when you’re caught up with Christmas parties and packing, come December.

 Top tips for moving over Christmas with kids

  • If your usual Christmas day celebrations are going to be different due to moving house, prepare your kids for this. Whether it’s a reduced amount of decorations or not being around your family, it’s much easier on children if they are made aware of what is happening and why.

  • Pack smartly. If you’re moving with a self pack shipping container, make sure you pack your most essential items in last of all (so they are first out at the other end). Whether it is the Christmas decorations, everyone’s swimmers and beach toys or maybe even the Christmas pressies – the last thing you want to be doing is hunting through endless boxes for what you need.

  • Shop online. If you are worried about transporting Christmas presents for the kids, consider shopping online and having it delivered to your new home. You can even rent a post office box to hold your packages if you’re not sure of your arrival day. That way, you can pop to the post office on Christmas Eve and grab your pressies, and you’re good to go!

  • What a great way to keep the kids busy during the Xmas school holidays by moving interstate. It would be a huge adventure


  • Great tips, thank you for sharing.


  • Companies often transfer their staff from one state to another between Christmas and New Year.
    Looking for housing to move into when you arrive needs to be done in advance. If you have children see if somebody can mind them for a couple of days while you travel and do this. Some companies will allocate you finds to stay in a motel or rental if you have to look after you arrive. Bear in mind though if you have a Freezer and Fridge they need to be last things put in the load and first taken off. Check instructions as some need to sit for a mininum legth of time to let refrigerant gas in them settle before switching them on. label all boxes with contents. If using a removalist label boxes which room you want them put in. Those that items are fragile and could be damaged if a lot of heavy weight in others put on top, label them “fragile top load”. That way they should put them above not below heavy ones. Make sure the PO is going to hold parcels, not just letters. Friends of ours had mail re-directed and checked that parcels would also be re-directed. I went around to their place to check because of rough weather and discovered a card for a parcel, took it to the PO……and they expected me to take a huge box…….One, it wasn’t mine, two they didn’t ask for ID…..and they sent a Final Notice from the local Post Office to the redirection address the same day as I watched them write the re-directed slip and stick to the parcel.. but the card had a local later time stamped on it than the parcel did. They admitted they didn’t check the re-direction list at all, even though they knew there was only a parcel there, no letters. I might had the box was from overseas. Were they actually going to return it as stated on the card??


  • All great tips for you need to move,thanks.


  • I’m taking these tips on board for my next move


  • These are great tips for whether moving interstate or just to a different town. Thanks for the tips


  • We moved in December (not even interstate) and it was the most stressful move we ever experienced ! We hardly had any help because everyone was busy and had their own plans and holidays this time of the year.


  • I hate moving at any time of the year…


  • We moved form WA to Tassie with a baby during the Xmas holidays. Hubby packed up the house, put it on a truck and that was it. I didn’t stress much at all


  • Moving at anytime is extremely stressful – when we have had to move we always opt to move before christmas before we had school aged kids, now with school aged kids we tend to move after christmas/ new year.

    All the tips you have said in this article are very helpful, if I was to add one it would be to take some natural stress supplements to just help naturally keep the stress levels balanced.

    • Thanks! And a great idea about the supplements. Feeling fit and healthy is always a great idea.


  • It is a hot time of the year for moving but I do see the benefits of moving at this time.

    • Yes, the heat is a downside, but at least better than rain!

      • Fair point – rain is unpleasant when moving.


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