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Moving to Puerto Rico

December 8th, 2014 - 12:53 PM

Planning a move to Puerto Rico?

(post updated 12/8/14)

It’s no surprise that so many people move to Puerto Rico from the U.S. each year. With pristine Caribbean beaches, sun-filled days, and warm, tropical nights, who wouldn’t want to move there? If you see yourself living on the Island of Enchantment in the future, you probably have some questions about moving there, including requirements, logistics, and cost.

moving to Puerto Rico

Is a passport required to move to Puerto Rico?

Since Puerto Rico is a U.S. territory, a passport isn’t required for entry from the U.S. mainland (although some sort of government issued ID is required). Custom fees also don’t apply.

What’s required for moving household goods to Puerto Rico?

If you’re moving household items, you may be required to complete an Electronic Exportation Information Form (EEI). The export declaration form must be filled out for shipments when the value of the commodity classified under each individual Schedule B number is over $2,500. Remember, there are no custom fees. Instead, household goods are subject to an excise tax (the current rate is 6.6%).

What are the Puerto Rico tax clearance forms required for customs?

In order to clear your items at the local tax office, you’ll need certain documentation, including:

  • Original power of attorney
  • Bill of Lading (click here to see an example BOL)
  • An inventory list in English and signed by the owner (must include dollar values)
  • Electronic Exportation Information (EEI) form (for commodities valued over $2,500)

If any items are new, you should list the exact value and have the receipt for the item. If the tax officials feel like the value you’ve indicated is incorrect, they’ll research the cost themselves. If there’s a discrepancy, you can be penalized with fees.

What’s the best way to ship to Puerto Rico?

U-Pack® is a great option for moving your household items to Puerto Rico. Here’s how it works:

  • You pack and load a moving trailer or moving container stateside.
  • U-Pack drives your shipment to the port in Jacksonville, South Chicago, or Philadelphia, depending on where you live in the U.S. and the type of equipment you use.
  • Your belongings sail to the port in San Juan. This usually takes about a week.
  • Your items are then taken to the service center in Guaynabo.
  • You clear your items at the tax office in San Juan with the documentation listed above.
  • Once your items are cleared, U-Pack will deliver to your new home in Puerto Rico.

U-Pack also offers an option where you can load at the service center closest to you stateside and unload at the service center in San Juan. Customers that choose this option save on average $300 off their total move cost.

What’s the difference between the moving trailer and moving container?

The moving trailer is 28 ft. long and ideal for almost any size move because you only pay for the space you use inside of it (down to a 5 ft. minimum). If you use less space than you were quoted, you pay less for your move. And if you need more space, simply add the per-foot adjustment rate for each additional foot you use.

The moving container is 6’ x 7’ x 8’ and is ideal for smaller moves, such as a studio-size apartment. You can reserve as many containers as you think you’ll need but only pay for the ones you actually use.

Both the moving trailer and moving container can be delivered door-to-door to most areas in Puerto Rico.

Can I store my items in Puerto Rico?

Yes, U-Pack offers storage at the service center in Guaynabo. Or you can store your items stateside until you’re ready to move.

How much does it cost to move to Puerto Rico?

It depends on a few different things, like how much you’re moving, when you’re moving, and where you’re moving from. You can get a free moving quote online and we’ll email you a quote within 24 hours, or you can call a Puerto Rico moving specialist at 800-413-4799 and we’ll calculate your quote instantly over the phone.

And as an added bonus, if you’re required to present the Electronic Exportation Information form for customs, we’ll file it on your behalf at no additional cost.

What other questions do you have?

We have a few related posts that may be able to answer any other questions you have about moving to Puerto Rico:

How much does it cost to move to Puerto Rico?
Moving to Puerto Rico with Pets
What is the best way to move to Puerto Rico?
Moving to Puerto Rico with Kids
Moving to Puerto Rico from the U.S. (info on housing market, currency, language, etc.)

If you have a question about your Puerto Rico move that’s not answered above, we’re happy to answer. Be sure to check out the comments section below with hundreds of comments posted by our readers (and answers by Derek).