Best job I ever had, lots of skill involved. I ponder starting my own company sometimes. Great tips, lots of free stuff, new faces everyday, great workout. I could write a sitcom from all the crazy stories. You get a deep glimpse into people's lives. Imagine rooting around people's attics, digging into forgotten closets. Very stressful and emotional for lots of people as well, leaving houses they've been in for 40 years, divorces, foreclosures, you name it. I started as a grunt and eventually helped pack trucks here and there after a few years. A more strategic, infinitely variable form of 3d Tetris. Furniture moving is one of those unexpectedly "deep" jobs that can be done passably by some college kids and a truck when you're moving out of your first crappy rental, but has a true logistical slant to it when grand pianos and sculptures are involved.
Anyway I have no cultural Japanese basis to look at this from, but they used a ton of disposable packaging. Looks like a lot of unnecessary flash and sizzle in general, e.g. using tablets when a notepad and shorthand is plenty enough to do such estimates. "Protecting" the walls it looks like? Not necessary and would only prevent the most superficial dings, which we would have patched up in the rare event we dinged a wall anyway. That looked like a 2-3 person one day job as well (packing, loading, delivering, and home early) and they looked to have 5-6 people working there. I thought our approaches were pretty wasteful but in comparison it was mostly the bare minimum tape and boxes and wrapping paper. We used furniture blankets/pads much more liberally. All kinds of "origami"-type wrapping techniques (ironically?).
Not to hate! Just noting some cultural differences perhaps.
We had to do the peace of mind thing a few times with certain clients. We would just roll our eyes and bump the bill. One client one time asked the lead that day if we could all bring in chairs one at a time to avoid scraping a narrow door frame, instead of a perfectly safe two-chair carry technique he just saw me execute but understandably looked a little risky. As he was asking the lead he must have sensed something cause he quickly turned around and caught me making a face. He made a point of giving everyone a big tip in private that day except me.
In some ways the cases are standardized around being a quarter, third or half the width of a semi trailer inside width in some dimensions. So once its in a case its usually okay.
Typically the cases are packed in layers based on depth and with, so if you have a set of thirds cases, they will go in a layer, if you have a cases with some odd depth, they will tend to go together. The weight of things is taken into account as well, heavy stuff tends to get packed towards the sides, near load bars (metal bars that keep the load from shifting) or the front sometimes. There are sometimes considerations for how it gets from the truck to the ground, because sometimes you get somewhere and theres no dock, or your in a smaller truck with a gate. So forklifing things is common.
What goes into each case is a complicated subject. Some cases are just full of all cables of some type, or full of lights or speakers. Sometimes a case will be built around being a kit for something, or around "this is everything that goes to Greenroom x". And you have an assortment of special cases, TVs, stuff like that.
You also sometimes have to consider who opens and sets up whats in a case, so rigging gear will need to be kept separate from audio gear, since those may be setup by different teams or different unions, even if that gear goes together when the show is setup.
Odd sized cases and loose stuff is often packed on top or "rides on top" of larger roadcases in the truck. Often this stuff is moved from the truck onto cases before its moved into the building, since pushing a case with some extras on top is not as hard as carrying the stuff all the way in. Sometimes carts are used, not as often as I would have hoped.
In many venues the people who move the cases from the show area (arena floor, stage, etc) are a separate team or separate union. If you start out in IATSE, the stagehands union in the US and Canada, you will often start by pushing boxes and generally doing physical work.
But at the end of the day the truck is loaded by weight, so theres often tons of volume left over when the truck is "full" as its now at its max weight.
Before a tour is initiated, experienced tour managers and roadies will work out plans and schedules for all theses things. My first gig as a stage hand was working a Destiny’s Child concert. The way I got the job is I was at a concert the weekend before, saw the stage hands and roadies working and though “that seems fun” so he next day I called the event company that managed it all. They gave me the number for the manager of all major events, who said I could come in the following day. I figured for an interview, but he meant to work. I signed some papers, got a 30 min or so rundown of what I was going to do and who was to be my primary contact for assistance, and then I was given a schedule and detailed instructions. I had absolutely no idea what I was doing walking into it, but at the end of the night as we were tearing everything down and packing it up for the next stop on the tour, I realized not once had I stopped to wonder what the hell I was supposed to do. It was the most well oiled operation I’ve ever seen, and his goes for all the major events I worked – particularly the American shows were stringent beyond belief. There was never a doubt as to what had to be done, and when. Roles were clear, assignments were handed out and schematics of everything were available. Everything was marked with colors, letters, and numbers and there was a legend you had to memorize before things came in. There was always a system so you could tell what part goes into which box and into which truck and in what order. All of this was prepared long before a tour started, nothing happened Just In Time, it’s pretty much all AOT. (Except for a few artist rider requirements, like Ozzy Osborne requiring something like 20 bars of moisturizing hand soap.)
I’d say if there’s a program to be written that compiles these packing manifests, schedules, and instructions, it’s a constraints solver. It’s all prepared ahead of time, and honestly most of the job anyway is figuring out all those constraints in the first place. The actual compilation isn’t that tricky, it mostly comes down to experience and a bit of trial and error – i.e. is this thing gonna fit there if we also put that there, and will they move when on a bumpy road or on a flight?
I honestly think it’s one of those few jobs that aren’t really helped much by technology, but mostly by experience. I mostly worked shows that had already been planned, but did a few sessions with managers that tried to work out how to pack the show. Those were mostly a waiting game to see what the current plan was, test it and then evaluate. Testing meant packing up a show, and then unpacking and building it back up. It was timed, and we noted things that were trickier than they had to be. If there ever was an issue where you thought “they’ll figure it out on the road” or “it’s someone else’s problem” you knew to flag it, and then they had to reconsider and they did. I have heard horror stories of bad managers, but I always worked with good ones that took the time to listen and care to fix things. In the end, a minute aged is a minute earned, and venues and workers are expensive so tours really wants things to be as efficient as possible.
ex-lampie here, good to see I am not the only one. I went in IT to have better working hours and less stress, that was a rude surprise.
My hours are better these days, but man the stress...
It also reminded me of a weird life moment for me. I was moving once, and I was watching the senior moving guy dictating how the boxes should be arranged in the truck, and I said "wow, you must be amazing at Tetris," and he replied, "you know, everyone tells me that. What the hell is Tetris?"
The sheer brutality of doing something you don't really want to do, for up to 9 or 10 hours a day, sometimes 6 or 7 days a week, causes physiological changes in the body. For example, by the end of it (something like 500 moves) I was completely flat-footed (my arches fully recovered eventually) and no longer distinguished between hot or cold weather. A 110 degree day didn't really feel any different than a 10 degree day, I just wore different layers. I could pick up an overstuffed chair and haul it up several flights of stairs, but felt a tremendous indignation if I had to bend over to pick up a stuffed animal.
For a while I came up with what felt like one new invention a day that would alleviate much of the physical labor and danger from the job. Pretty much everyone just scoffed at them though, because moving furniture is generally a job you walk on to, not a job that you improve or automate.
So this video was very refreshing to me, to see some of the most basic techniques, like padding the entryway to prevent damage, actually being applied.
Edit: also remembered, some of the protection is also noise abatement for the neighbors. Soft padding to absorb the noise.
Edit edit: also notice the moving guys aren't wearing their shoes inside. They are taking them off upon entry, carrying stuff (sometimes really heavy stuff) and putting their shoes back on when removing stuff. That's the part that shocked me.
I've worked granite installation. Some customers demanded we take off our shoes. It's terrifying carrying a piece of stone with someone that weighs several hundred pounds with nothing but socks on. It's also fun trying to get your shoes off while holding said piece of stone. Normally, we'd put it down on the steel toes if we neesed to. Can't do that while you're taking your shoes off. I hated those customers.
The difference is that we would pad up the furniture itself if need be before humping it out, rather than the walls. We'd always eventually pad up the furniture but it's easier to do it on the truck. There are also techniques for literally using your fingers/hands/arms as padding between the wall and the piece you're moving. You can also always have a third guy holding some cardboard or padding against a wall or doorframe too for a tight squeeze. I didn't consider the cultural differences with the noise or shoes though, thanks for that!
Lovely attitude for someone handling other peoples' belongings.
The neighbor across the street from my wife's parents was a mover. That job requires a mastery of physics and geometry, the strength of a weightlifter, and the endurance of a marathoner.
I've used the pack and move services in the US, and they came a week or two before to review and get an idea of the work then book a date. This meant they arrived with the correct number of men, trucks, and packing equipment. Specialist boxes for TVs, crockery, wardrobes, etc.
They packed everything (including everything in the fridge, bathrooms, etc). Even the years-old pickle jars at the back of the fridge, old bars of soap by the guest sinks, etc were carefully wrapped and packed.
The guys doing the job were incredible about moving heavy, complex furniture quickly, and efficiently. This included a couple of large (>100g) saltwater fishtanks. They broke it all down and put it back together with minimal oversight.
I've found movers typically offer a range of services - the full (pack, move, unpack), or just pack and move, or just move.
A colleague hired the very same company for their move (they had bought a house, so it was not part of an agreement for starting a new work contract).
They sent a team of workers, no one spoke more than a few words of German (my coworker is a kind and open-minded person, he was surely not exaggerating). A lot of things didn't make the trip as a whole. All losses were covered by the companies insurance, but it was a pain making all the claims.
I used United for my last move, who were also good.
I was a while back, but moving a 1 bed apartment was $1-2K, I think.
5 bed house was roughly $7K to move 100 miles.
I was just there and I managed to get an item which was triple wrapped: It was a small tray which came wrapped in cellophane already, which the shopkeeper (very beautifully) wrapped in a paper bag and then put the whole thing in a plastic bag before handing it to me.
I didn't beat triple wrapped anywhere else, but 7-11 did sell me an "eco bag" which they wrapped in a plastic bag for me, before I had time and the presence of mind to tell them I didn't need the "fukuro" (plastic bag).
 : https://www.ftc.gov/tips-advice/business-center/guidance/ftc...
 : https://support.google.com/youtube/answer/154235?hl=en
I think this is the relevant part for this scenario:
>I have a YouTube channel that focuses on hunting, camping, and the outdoors. Sometimes I’ll do a product review. Knife manufacturers know how much I love knives, so they send me knives as free gifts, hoping that I will review them. I’m under no obligation to talk about any knife and getting the knives as gifts really doesn’t affect my judgment. Do I need to disclose when I’m talking about a knife I got for free?
>Even if you don’t think it affects your evaluation of the product, what matters is whether knowing that you got the knife for free might affect how your audience views what you say about the knife. It doesn’t matter that you aren’t required to review every knife you receive. Your viewers may assess your review differently if they knew you got the knife for free, so we advise disclosing that fact.
In this case the youtubers in the OP did disclose that they got the service for free in the video. Perhaps they should have mentioned the fact in writing in the video description/pinned comment as well.
If they ship you a knife on loan, and you have to give it back in a reasonable period of time, then generally no.
Ars Technica, for example, notes when a car manufacturer gives them airfare or accomodations. Obviously they don't get to keep the car, but they still received value.
"We asked our agency if they could find a moving company that would give us permission to film. They did one better and found a moving company we have permission to film AND they're moving our stuff for free. They're the most famous/popular moving company in Japan."
: https://youtu.be/90ujbJdRKXI?t=20m (20 minutes in)
I have to say that the quality of this move was unreal by American standards.
I was extremely impressed that they are able to employ staff solely dedicated to arranging the home. I'm still trying to work out how they are able to use a crew that large and keep things economical.
There were also several pieces of packing material I hadn't seen before. Some of which looked reusable, which is a good thing to see. There is a fair amount of waste in the profession.
It's one of the rare occasions I've stiffed someone on the tip. If attempted theft and extortion isn't a reason to reduce a tip, nothing is.
edit: Why is this down-voted?
Sure, you can run into problems and have a bad experience this way. But the movers my company paid for didn't do such a great job either. On the other hand, the guys the Army sent were amazing.
I have a toy U-Haul truck on my bookcase, because wanderlust.
I really like the idea they could help you buy Appliance through them along with delivery and installation. Assuming you are not picky with Appliances ( Japanese Home Appliance are one of the best in the world. ) and they have a wide selection, if saves you tons of hassle. Not only that they help you throw away your old stuff, knowing the Japanese, those will likely get recycles or properly disposed instead of being dumped somewhere.
Do not put your books in small boxes. Do not put your books in medium boxes. For the love of god, do not put your books in large boxes.
Yes, if you have a lot of books you'll end up with 50 or 100 book boxes. No, that's a good thing.
Experienced Mover (eyeing large box): What have you put in there?
Newbie Me: Books
Experienced Mover: You can fucking carry that one then.
edit: small here meaning 1.5 ft^3.
It was more expensive and time-consuming that we initially expected, but in the end we were very glad we did it. Even packing 90% of it ourselves, the movers still packed a ton and did a great job moving it... Especially up the interior stairs at the new location.
I don't think I'll ever even consider moving my stuff myself again.
Like the people in this video, there were some things we moved ourselves, such as the TV and computer. I doubt I'll ever change that.
When I moved from an apartment to a house, the house was between my apartment and my office and I had a couple weeks where I owned the house but was still living in the apartment.
Each night after work, I'd pack 2 or 3 small boxes and load them into my car. Then on the way to work the next day I'd stop by the house and unload the boxes.
By the time the moving company came, all that was left for them to move was furniture and a 61" DLP TV. The cost, which had been estimated at $1500 when it included moving all my stuff, ended up being $150.
I saved a bit of money this way, but not much.
Plumbing? Doesn't that usually stay with the house?
It was fairly dark in the first few days in my unfurnished apartment until my light fixtures arrived.
I've noticed the same type lighting in four 'furnished' apartments I previously stayed in.
They will actually consider the first 2 R's much more than Americans do.
Maybe for small items. Counterpoint:
1. in the video they got new whitewear (would their old whitewear get sold second hand? Feels unlikely.)
2. "Raze, rebuild, repeat: why Japan knocks down its houses after 30 years" https://www.theguardian.com/cities/2017/nov/16/japan-reusabl...
Never heard this one before.