Wednesday, February 03, 2010

R2I : What to bring and what not to bring

In recent times there has been a flurry of friends who are seriously planning to move back to India. One of the most common questions I get is "What should I bring? What did you guys take with you?". Other than ones like what is the cost of living in Bangalore (which I have another post for, look in the R2I tags), how much do I need to earn to live comfortable in Bangalore, where are the good schools in Bangalore etc.

Well, here is my take on what to bring back with you..

We limited the things we shipped to really very little. Rest what we could sell, we sold. The cot, the Yamaha digital keyboard, the LaZboy recliner, the TV, the home theater all this we sold. Most of my clothes, ones which I hadn't used in the past 3-4 months, I gave in charity. Kitchen entirely I gave away to friends. What we could sell we sold, rest we gave away. That is the summary.

What we got with us were limited to clothes, printer, miscellaneous kitchen items (one Farberware kadhai being something I just couldn't give up and still use to date), our Bose sound dock, smallish electronics like iPod, camera, wireless router etc. Of the bigger items that we shipped was our iRobot Roomba vacuum cleaner (which again needs a step down transformer since it doesn't work for 220V)

We didn't want to haul any major electronics like big-screen TV etc because of 1) Voltage issues and 2) Warranty issues.

We got out laptop for example and now its been having some issue. It is still in Fry's warranty period but we haven't been able to send it there. Although its just a laptop and a light tablet at that, we still haven't found anyone who can ferry it to California for us. If we had purchased something bigger I'm sure it would've been stuck with us all the same.

I wish I could have shipped at least my LaZboy and the digital keyboard but these are not exactly things that I miss today. Just nice-to-haves. I would also have liked to get some Corelle stuff because it is a lot more expensive here. Again, I don't miss it, just nice-to-have. I highly doubt I'd find much use for it, it would be more ornate than essential.

But in general you get everything here (including LaZboys), only they are slightly more expensive. So it will always be a case of shipping cost vs. selling + buying fresh here. I would say if you get a good price, sell it if you don't need it in the immediate future and you can always buy it back slowly out here. But if you are anyways shipping, makes sense to ship as much as you can. Only be careful with electronics that will need transformers to work here (non110/220V universal ones) and ones where there is a chance they will break during shipment. Rest of the stuff you can safely ship :)

This is all I could think of, if any of you has specific questions, please leave a comment, I will answer to the best of my ability. I am sure I have missed a lot of things :)


Anonymous said...

This was very helpful blog. Could you also let us know the top reasons on why you choose to go back to India? Also what has been the bigges adjustment that your family had to make after the return?

DivSu said...

@Anonymous - Reasons to go back were plenty

-Never liked US life
-Didn't want to have American citizens for kids
-Ageing parents who need some amount of moral support that someone is around in case they need.
-A better lifestyle

And so on and so forth.

Since my husband and I were pretty clear that we wanted to move back, we hardly needed to "adjust" to anything. A few months down the line we had to be constantly reminded that yeah we were living in the US not so long ago.

That being said, initial few months I was constantly falling sick (cold, cough, sneezing types) because of differing allergen levels in Bangalore, other than that once the bodies adjusted, we were on a roll.

Rachna said...

We came back from the US too after 2 years there. I loved my life there but there was a certain vacuum. My reasons are pretty similar to yours. I lost my mom while there and live with the regret that I could have spent more time with her before she passed away if I were here. She was not ailing and was pretty young too.

DivSu said...

@Rachna - Yeah, I didn't want to feel guilty later in life. Also I gathered from your blog that you never intended to go there but went because your hubby was keen, our case is also similar except for that my husband moved to the US because I was not prepared to move back just yet :) We spent two of our married years there before moving back :)

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