How much is a U-Haul®?
You may have seen the graphics on the side of a U-Haul advertising $19.95 per day. But while that price applies to some local moves, it doesn’t apply to one-way moves. Instead, the cost is calculated based on things like equipment size, where you’re moving from and to, and some extras, like fuel and liability coverage. Understanding what you might expect to pay for a one-way U-Haul can help you make the best decision for your move and budget. Get the details below and see how prices compare to U-Pack — an alternative where you don’t have to drive a truck full of your belongings.
Breaking down U-Haul pricing
For one-way moves, where the truck is picked up at one location and dropped off at another, prices are based on several things: equipment size, mileage, the number of days U-Haul estimates the move will take, fuel, extra miles (if needed), liability/damage protection and sales tax. Take a look below at how these things can impact the price.
Though we’re not focusing on local rentals here, it’s interesting to note that local rentals usually have a base rate per day for the truck, plus a per-mile fee. We've seen base rates range from $19.95 to $39.95, and miles costing between $0.69 and $1.99 each, depending on location and truck size — but rates can vary.
Things that can impact the cost of a one-way U-Haul move
Price per mile
If you go over the miles included in your one-way rental, extra miles are $0.40 each no matter your location or equipment.
U-Haul price per day
For one-way moves, the base price includes a set number of days. If you need additional days, U-Haul recommends planning those before the move (or calling as soon as you need them for approval). The price per day for extra time is:
$40 for U-Haul trucks
$20 for U-Haul trailers
$20 for towing equipment
Fuel isn‘t included in the price, and depending on the distance, it could be one of the largest additional costs. Keep in mind that rental trucks don't get the same gas mileage as a personal car, and fuel use may be higher than what you expect. Also, the truck has to be returned with a full tank. See more about how gas prices can impact your moving costs.
While damage protection is elective, U-Haul recommends it. Two levels of coverage are available for an additional charge which ranges from $70 to $279 (prices vary based on equipment and location).
If the coverage is declined, and damage occurs (including vandalism), the person on the rental contract is responsible for the cost of repairs and lost revenue during repairs.
Taxes and fees
U-Haul quotes do not include taxes (which are based on local tax rates) or the $5 environmental fee. Also, there is no cancellation fee for cancelling a U-Haul rental.
Additional equipment or services
If your move requires these additional services, here’s what you might expect:
Towing equipment: Car trailers and tow dollies are available for an additional charge based on location and equipment type. Some sample rates range between $99 and $200. Compare towing costs between U-Haul and other truck rental companies.
Cargo trailers: For these small pull-behind trailers, we’ve seen prices that range from $100 to $871, but of course, rates change based on equipment and locations. Learn more about U-Haul trailers.
Moving supplies: If you need things like boxes, moving supplies or loading equipment, the cost would be added to your overall price (these prices vary based on what is needed).
Loading or unloading help: The cost for moving crews varies depending on the number of loaders, amount of time and location.
Storage: If you need to store your items, you’ll have to move them into a storage unit and then back into a truck to take them to your new home. Storage rates are based on the space, location and duration of the service.
When do you pay for the U-Haul?
Most of the payment is due when the equipment is picked up. And some charges, like fuel (if it’s not returned full) or extra mileage used, may be due when the truck is returned. If storage is selected, it’s billed monthly.
Want to know more about how U-Haul works? Here are seven things you should know about U-Haul before renting a truck.
Compare U-Haul prices to U-Pack®
So how does all of this impact the price of an actual long-distance move? We got a sample U-Haul quote and compared it to a U-Pack quote. U-Pack is a DIY moving service where you pack and load, but we do all the driving. When you compare prices for your move, you may find that it’s more cost-effective (and convenient) to go U-Pack!
These quotes are for a two-bedroom home, going from San Jose, CA to Phoenix, AZ in October 2020.
For this move, a 20’ U-Haul was $1,804, including 837 miles and four days to complete the move. Then, around $150 for fuel (based on current fuel rates and 10 mpg), $70 for Safemove® coverage, $166.87 for local tax (9.25%) and the $5 environmental fee. The total is $2,195.87.
You have options with U-Pack. You can use two ReloCube® containers for $1,604 or three for $2,254. Or, for equipment more like a U-Haul truck, 13 linear feet in a moving trailer was $2,232. U-Pack rates include the equipment, liability coverage, door-to-door delivery, fuel and transportation.
So, with this move, for around the same cost, you wouldn't have to pick up, drop off, or drive the equipment at all. With rates comparable to a rental truck and the ease of not having to drive a large truck across the country, many people find U-Pack is a better way to move.
Want to compare costs for other truck rental companies? See how U-Pack prices compare to other rental truck companies like Budget and Penske.
How much will your move cost?
U-Haul® is a registered trademark of U-Haul International, Inc. Use of third-party trademarks or registered trademarks does not imply any affiliation with or endorsement by such third-party.
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