Should You Ask Friends to Help You Move?

Sing it with us: “I get by with a little help from my friends”

The classic song by Joe Cocker has the right idea: friends can help you through difficult times. And after moving more than a million families over the last 20+ years, we at U-Pack® know that when it comes to moving, it’s hard to do it all alone. While experienced movers can be best for getting things loaded and unloaded quickly and safely, there are many ways your buddies can pitch in so you can cut back on the amount of professional help needed on moving day. Weigh the benefits below, find out how to actually ask them for assistance, and how to thank them after.

Three women carrying moving boxes, helping their friend move.


Friends can help you save time, energy and money

If you have items that are especially large or heavy or you’re trying to get loaded quickly and efficiently, then we do recommend hiring a small moving crew. But asking friends for some assistance can decrease the amount of professional help you’ll need. In the end, there are many reasons why you should ask your friends for support:

Saving time

  • Whether it’s packing dishes or loading up small boxes, the more people working, the less time it takes.
  • Friends can work outside of business hours. While movers may only work during the daytime, a friend could come over after work.

Saving energy

  • If a friend can do some sorting, packing and lifting, then you don’t have to wear yourself out doing it all alone.
  • Friends can help with your kids or pets so you can focus your mental energy on the move instead of caretaking.

Saving money

  • With hired labor, you’ll typically get a minimum number of movers for a minimum amount of time, then pay by the hour. You’ll need less paid help if your friends can do some of the work.
  • Unlike movers on a time clock, your friends can work for as long as they’re willing to stick around.

How to ask friends to help you move

We know asking someone to do difficult work for free isn’t easy. But as long as you’re considerate of their time and thankful for their effort, most people are glad to help their friends. We think it’s best to talk in person or over the phone, but a text or direct message with specific details can work, too.

Ask early. Talk with them several weeks in advance so they can block the time on their calendars.

Have a clear plan. Know what you need them to do. Ask for specific help: pack your kitchen, watch your dogs on moving day or help load the moving equipment.

Be clear with time expectations. Let them know if you need assistance for a few hours, all day or the entire weekend.

Offer an incentive. Let them know you’ll have drinks and lunch provided and think of something positive you can do together afterward (movie night, dinner out, etc.).

Ask them to prep, if necessary. If your friends are helping you pack or load, we recommend sending them our packing tips to be on the same page with instructions and best practices.

It doesn’t have to be awkward or complicated. Be clear and ask for what you need. For example, you might say, “Hey, I’m moving on November 6. I could really use some help packing up my kitchen the week before. Could you come by for a few hours after work on November 2? I’ll have dinner for us, and then we can start packing. And afterward, we can watch our favorite episodes of The Office one last time before I leave.”

Showing your appreciation

After the job is done, it’s important to say, “Thanks for helping me move.” Whether you send a personalized gift basket with their favorite treats, a gift card to their favorite restaurant or just a heartfelt note, a thoughtful gesture will go a long way.

Need a DIY moving service?

If you’re trying to save time and money on a long-distance move, U-Pack can be the perfect fit. It’s a do-it-yourself moving service where you pack and load (with the help of your friends, of course!) and then we do all the driving. We can even refer you to experienced moving crews to round out the moving day team. Get a free quote online or call 844-362-5303844-594-3077 to talk to a moving specialist.