Moving coast to coast
For a move as big as one from the east to west coast, costs can vary drastically depending on the service you use. The options range from do-it-yourself (DIY) to full-service companies, with “you pack, we drive” options falling between. Let’s take a look at an example to see how much a coast-to-coast move would cost when renting a truck, selecting a self-move option, or hiring a full-service company to do it all.
You may also be interested in reading: How Much Does it Cost to Move Cross Country
Compare the cost of coast-to-coast moving companies
Take a look at how much three major moving companies would charge to move a two-bedroom home from Charleston, South Carolina, to San Diego, California.
Note: This is an example move only — prices will vary based on locations, move date, move size and the date the quote was requested.
As a fully DIY service, you might expect truck rental to be the cheapest. That’s normally the case with local moves, but for coast-to-coast moves, there are other big expenses to consider — like fuel, taxes and basic liability coverage, which aren’t included in the quote. And since many people tow their vehicle when using truck rental, we’ve also selected a 2018 Nissan Rogue to show towing costs.
For the sample move, here’s how U-Haul® breaks down the price:
- Base quote: 20’ truck at $1,313
- Safemove® basic coverage: $140
- Towing: $388
- Towing coverage: $70
- Environmental fee: $5
- U-Haul sales tax: $172.44 (9% in Charleston)
- Rental truck fuel: $967
A self-move company like U-Pack® is on the spectrum between truck rental and full-service. It’s where you do the packing and loading, and we do the driving (a big benefit for a distance this far). Quotes include fuel, taxes, standard liability coverage and highway tolls.
For this sample, U-Pack recommends using two moving containers (called ReloCubes®) for $3,064.
A full-service company packs, loads, transports and unloads your belongings. It’s the most hands-off option, which usually makes it the most expensive. An in-home estimate is typically required for accurate pricing, but Bekins Van Lines® offers a “ballpark” estimate online. The initial estimate includes loading, transportation and unloading for between $5,116.77 and $6,729.39. To add full packing and full replacement value protection, you’re looking at $6,724.31 to $8,906.95. The actual cost is determined when they weigh the shipment after loading.
Which company is best?
Some people select a moving company based on the services they offer, but for others, the price is the biggest factor. U-Pack is ideal for people who want to move cross country affordably, without having to drive. Check out this guide to Moving Costs for more information on how rates are determined.
U-Haul® is a registered trademark of U-Haul International, Inc. Bekins Van Lines® is a registered trademark of Bekins Van Lines, 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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