When you’re in the planning stages of moving abroad, comparison websites can be incredibly useful. Whether it’s simply because you don’t have the time, inclination or bandwidth for dozens of individual tabs to be open at once, they make the research part of an international move pretty straightforward, doing all the legwork of finding trusted suppliers and services on your behalf.
However, while it can seem easier to plug your requirements into their deceptively simple bars and dropdown boxes, comparison websites can have some downsides.
Are they worth it, then? Here are some pros and cons of comparison websites to help you decide.
PRO: You have options.
Comparison websites are great in the sense that they typically give you a wide-ranging set of options to narrow down and choose from.
Do you want to get to your destination quickly, cheaply or with as much luggage as possible-y? The choice is yours, and you can rule out possible airlines, routes and fares as you go, essentially tailoring the transport experience to your moving abroad needs.
CON: You have too many options.
On the flip side, there can simply be too many options for your overworked, overstressed brain to handle, a factor that can really come into play if you don’t have a preference on what kind of flight you’re looking for in the first place.
E.g. you honestly don’t care about it being expensive, having multiple stops or low baggage limits — you’re totally ambivalent to it all, which makes a decision hard to come by.
SOLUTION: Use comparison websites when and only when you have at least a vague idea of the kind of service you’re looking for. Otherwise, it can all just be too much!
PRO: You can save some serious money.
Moving abroad is expensive business and the serious upside to most comparison sites (but, admittedly, not all) is that you can save a good chunk of cash thanks to their knack for finding great hidden deals.
This is especially true over at Buzzmove, an international removals comparison site, which lets you click and compare between several trusted and experienced moving companies and get the best deal for you.
If you’ve ever moved abroad before, you know that removals can cost big bucks, so this one is a serious godsend!
CON: Some sites charge fees (yuck).
Again, on the other hand, some comparison sites charge fees for using their service which, unless you’re browsing from some truly big ticket items and they can find you a bargain bin rate, doesn’t really seem worth the investment.
You might not even save what you pay to use the service!
SOLUTION: This one’s easy — don’t use comparison sites that charge you for using their service. In fact, if you can, use them to do all the searching legwork, then go and hunt down the deal they found instead of booking through them! It could be that their price was an exclusive (and, therefore, the fee was a must), but if you have the time and are working with a budget, what’s the harm in trying?
PRO: It’s easier and less time-consuming than hunting for deals yourself.
Very, very true. Time is money, after all!
And when you’re moving abroad — possibly selling your house and relocating your family in the process — you don’t want to waste any more unnecessary time searching for a good offer for your insurance or temporary car hire.
Comparisons websites, on the other hand, have all the time in the world to do the searching for you, spitting out the best deals that fit your needs.
What could be easier?
CON: Comparison sites can be great procrastination fodder in and of themselves.
Yes, this is also true, especially for the perpetual procrastinators amongst you, as you might very end up in an infinite comparison loop.
Picture the scene: there are three big name websites that compare hotel room prices — you’ll need a hotel room when you first arrive to your new country and don’t yet have a flat/bedroom/house.
So, you end up hopping from website to website, all while searching for the same things over and over again to see which site gets you the best deal.
Result: total time wasting.
SOLUTION: Get a hold of yourself! Pick a site and stick to it!
What do you think? Are you sold on comparison sites? Whatever the case, we hope you’re at least feeling like you don’t need to do more ‘comparisons’ (badum tsh) between the pros and cons!