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Moving with Guitars

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petkar
7/18/2019 11:39 EST

We are beginning to sort through our belongings for a move from the US to France in 2020. I am American, my wife French.
I have ten guitars that I would like to keep, but have been reading about the CITES agreement, concerning restrictions on types of wood used to make guitars.
I know that importers and exporters need special permits, but I can't find a definite answer as to whether or not I may need any permits. My oldest guitar was built in 1965, my newest in 2007, and I don't know what woods were used, or if it is even an issue.
I spoke with moving companies, and they don't think it is a problem. We plan on shipping our belongings in a container, and I am hoping that, since this is a permanent move, and these are our personal belongings, there will be no problem.
I am hoping to hear from someone who has been in the same situation. Any help/ advice would be appreciated,
Thank you,
Peter

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traceyspada
7/18/2019 16:55 EST

We moved last year from USA and my husband who is a professional musician shipped his guitars and other instruments without any problem. Make sure you contact the French consulate to declare your move and that it is permanent otherwise you will be paying duty on the shipping. You must get a letter from them declaring they are your personal belongings and it is a permanent move. They may xray your belongings, but doubt they will open all your containers to check.

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petkar
7/19/2019 16:45 EST

Thank you for the response!
I'm so glad to hear that you had no problems. I hadn't thought about contacting the consulate, it's the first time I've heard that. We will do that, declare to them that they are our personal belongings, and that it is a permanent move. That would make me feel more at ease.
Did you have to give the letter to anyone (the shipping company or customs)?
I assume you didn't get any permits that show when the guitars were built and what type of wood was used.
Did the shipper have to go through any particular ports in the US and France?
Do you have a company to recommend?
I'm sorry to ask so many questions, but This is the first time I've come across someone in a similar situation, and any information would be useful.
I was hoping to also get any advice on taking items that require electricity (and buying a few transformers to run them). I have audio and video players/recorders, a turntable etc., but the big items are the guitar amps.
I'm sure I can find the newer amps in stores there, but probably not the old ones. I have two old Fender amps from the 1960's and a Marshall from the 70's. I can probably find something new that is similar over there, but these are rare amps and it may take a while to sell them (for a fair price).
Any advice?
Also, have you had any experience with guitar and amp repair persons there?
I'm done, thanks so much for any information you can give me,
Peter

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