Things to Know about Lifts:
There are two sizes for shipping containers- 20' and 40' length. For a small family with a 3-4 bedroom house, a 20' container will probably be sufficient. It basically will fit a few beds and bedroom furniture and clothes, living room couches and dining room table with 6 chairs, buffet table/entertainment unit, kitchen stuff and some miscellaneous items. A representative from the shipping companies will come to your home and assess your personal situation. They will add up the volume for all the items you wish to ship and recommend a shipment size that fits your needs.
The price for a 20 ft container is around $7,000 and 40 ft is around $10,000. The price includes import taxes and shipping your household door to door. They even bring packing materials and pack everything for you. The only additional fees is insurance which is about 3% of the value of your lift and tips (which was estimated at about $200). It is highly recommended to get good insurance on your shipment.
If one does not think they will fill a whole container there is an option for a partial container. For this option, the company would pack all your items, consolidate them and measure the package in cubic feet. The price would depend on the size of the package. I was told that if you think your package will be more than around 800 cubic feet, it is already worth it price-wise to get a 20 foot container.
These prices are for shipments leaving New Jersey. Pricing will vary based on proximity to a port. Other additional costs depend on ease of delivery. One may be charged to deliver to an apartment more than two flights up without an elevator or a home that is more than 75 feet from an accessible road. There are also additional charges to move in the Northern and Southern parts of Israel.
Companies offer double pick ups if you need to add things to your shipment on two separate dates. Some companies have storage options if you need to store your belongings prior to shipment. Note that you have to be at the port in Israel to accept your shipment, so you cannot send the lift too far in advance of your aliyah. Estimated time to ship your lift is around 5 weeks.
Some companies offer a live load which means they bring the actual shipping container to your house and load everything into it on the day of the move. Other companies bring a standard moving truck to your home and transfer the items to a shipping container at the warehouse.
Tip: If you plan to purchase new items to place on your lift, have them delivered directly to the shipper's warehouse. If items are being sent directly out of the country, you may be able to save on the sales tax.