International moves are anything but simple. The back-and-forth that comes with traveling for interviews and then finding a new home is rarely without its challenges. Adding to that are all the government forms and additional paperwork you’re required to file.

Unfortunately, the far-reaching effects of the recent government sequester could extend all the way to international moves, making the process even more trying at times. As you may have seen in the news, the sequester has cut funding for a long list of government agencies including the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) and U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP). This could mean fewer TSA and CBP agents to help with airport security and customs inspections.

How could this affect your move? Longer wait times – either at the airport or waiting for your possessions to clear customs.

The TSA is predicting wait times at airports to double at many of the largest airports due to a decrease in staff levels. Peak wait times could reach three to four hours at some gateway airports.

CBP crossing activities will also be affected by the automatic spending cuts. Peak border crossing times are likely to increase by 50 percent. If you have to cross a border to get to your new home, expect to spend four to five hours waiting to be processed.

Once you’re ready to transport all of your belongings to your new place, shipping your items could take up to an additional five days.

While the full effects of the sequestration on travel may not be felt yet, they will be noticeable as early as Memorial Day. You should plan ahead for longer delays and stressful experiences. To reduce your wait time at airport security, check to see if you are eligible for TSA Pre✓™. As always, if you’re moving with Hilldrup and have questions, please contact your move coordinator who can help you navigate these issues.