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Rental Trucks for Moving Out of State

December 20th, 2017 - 12:57 PM

Should you rent a truck to move out of state?​

The time is coming to plan your move. You’ve likely put a lot of thought into details like where to live, when to start packing and how much money to budget. If you haven’t, you should also take time to research how to move. For someone trying to save money on an out-of-state move, a rental truck may seem like the best option at first glance. But, it may be worth a second look. For some, the hardships that come with driving a rental truck across the country may outweigh the benefits. The good news is that there are affordable alternatives that are designed to make it easier.


renting a truck to move out of state


Which companies offer rental trucks to move out of state?

You may know friends who used a U-Haul® rental for a local move, but can you rent one for an out of state move? Most truck rental companies offer two types of moving: local and one-way. With a local move, you pick up and return the truck to the same location. This is typically for short distances or “local” rentals for just a day or two. With one-way moves, you pick up the rental truck at one location and return it to another, typically in another city or state. All of the major truck rental companies — including U-Haul, Budget® and Penske® — offer state to state moving.

Understanding rental truck prices for state to state moves

The first hurdle in renting a truck is understanding the cost. Of course, you can check prices online or over the phone, but that’s often not the entire picture. For companies like U-Haul, Budget or Penske, unless you request pricing for the extras when you get a quote, the price is solely for renting the equipment. We’ll get into the extras in a minute, but first, it’s important to understand what’s included in that initial price. For a long-distance move, most companies give you a set number of miles and days for the rental, based on the distance between the origin and destination. If you need more days or miles, there’s normally an added cost. For example, if you get U-Haul prices from state to state, they’ll offer a set number of days and miles. So, for a U-Haul move from Boston, Massachusetts to Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, you would get six days and 2,005 miles. This is the time and mileage allowed for loading, driving, unloading, and then returning the truck.

As mentioned above, this cost doesn’t include extras like damage coverage (which can cover damage to the equipment and everything inside it), city and state taxes or fuel. While damage coverage and taxes may not add a lot to the cost, if you’re moving long distance, fuel costs can have a big impact. For the same move from Boston to Oklahoma City, the rental truck fuel calculator estimates that fuel can add over $600!

If you’d like to check into an alternative, consider U-Pack®. It’s a “you pack, we drive” service that’s often comparable to truck rental in terms of price (especially after you add fuel and damage coverage to rental truck rates). And since you don’t have to drive, many people think U-Pack is an easier, lower stress option. Compare rates with a free moving quote— U-Pack rates include the equipment, fuel, liability coverage, transportation and taxes.

Things to consider before using a rental truck for moving state to state

In addition to fuel costs, there are several things to consider before using a rental truck to move.

The long drive

Driving long distance in a large, unfamiliar truck isn’t for everyone. If you go that route, it’s important to prepare for the road ahead of you. In some states you’ll need to stop at weigh stations along the way. And it’s always a good idea to have a plan in place for what you’ll do in the event of a breakdown. Some companies offer repair hotlines, but check to see if there are limited hours or coverage. You don’t want to be stuck with paying for roadside repairs, or  waiting for it to be fixed, so ask those “what if” questions ahead of time. And on top of these concerns, there’s also the issue of overnight stops. Avoid hotels (or other stops) higher crime areas, as rental trucks are often targets. Park in well-lit areas and if possible, back the truck up to a light pole or building.

Your family

Rental trucks have, at most, three seats, and you can’t place a car seat in them. Depending on the size of your family and the number of vehicles you own, you’ll need to formulate a plan for getting everyone and everything to your new home town. This could mean driving the rental and a personal vehicle and possibly towing one (or more). Keep in mind that towing equipment is an extra cost, has some specific vehicle requirements, can increase the difficulty of driving and decreases fuel efficiency.

U-Pack: the affordable alternative for moving out of state

If you’re looking for an affordable way to move that’s also easy, customers say U-Pack is a great option. Rates are based on where you’re moving to/from, when you’re moving and how much you’re moving. With those few details, we can provide a moving quote. And since we do the driving, you’re free to travel however you want — which many find a great alternative to driving a U-Haul state to state. If you’d like to learn more about U-Pack and how it compares moving in a rental truck, check out these blog posts:

Moving Truck Rental Unlimited Mileage

Cheapest One-Way Moving Truck Rental

7 Things to Know about U-Haul before Renting a Truck

What is the gas mileage of a U-Haul rental truck?

For questions about U-Pack pricing or how U-Pack works, leave us a comment or call 800-413-4799.


U-Haul® is a registered trademark of U-Haul International, Inc. Budget® is a registered trademark of Budget Truck Rental, LLC. Penske® is a registered trademark of Penske Truck Leasing Co., L.P. Use of third-party trademarks or registered trademarks does not imply any affiliation with or endorsement by such third-party.