What Moving Truck Size Do I Need?

Avoid the too much/not enough conundrum  

With the many different sizes of moving trucks available and little consistency between what companies offer, it might feel like you need a degree in advanced math to figure out the right one for your long-distance move. And selecting the right size feels important — you don’t want to overpay for space you don’t need, but you definitely don’t want to run out of room on moving day. Don’t stress; we’ve been helping people move household goods for over 25 years and have gathered the necessary information to help you select the correct size. We’ll also look at moving with U-Pack® — a DIY moving option where you only pay for the space you use.

Inside of an empty moving truck.

Choosing the right size truck for your move 

While each of the major rental truck companies offers a variety of truck sizes, keep in mind that the actual dimensions and loading capacity differ slightly for each — in other words, there’s not a “standard” size across the board.  

As you’re considering the best size for your specific move, click through the link to see how they stack up against each other. 

Note: While you could still see Ryder® trucks on the road, the company no longer rents trucks for personal moves. 

Now that you’re familiar with the sizes, here are some things to consider while you determine the best truck size for your move:  

What’s the size of your home? 

The number of bedrooms in your home makes a difference when choosing what size truck to rent. Most rental companies offer suggestions based on the answer to this question, and the chart below is a general guide. Keep in mind though, if your home is heavily furnished, you have items in storage (outbuildings, an attic or a basement), or if you have large pieces that exceed the internal dimensions of the equipment, you’ll likely need a larger truck.  

For example, it can be difficult (or impossible in some cases) to fit a king-size mattress into a 10’ or 12’ rental truck due to the door opening measurements. And a 3-bedroom home with a fully furnished basement will require more space than a 3-bedroom home with no basement. This also works in reverse. If you have a larger home that is sparsely furnished, you may be able to fit your things into a smaller truck.   

Home size  Recommended truck size 
Studio or 1-bedroom  10’ - 16’ 
2-bedroom  17’ - 20’ 
3-bedroom  22’ - 26’ 
4-bedroom  26’ 

Have just a few things to move? Consider renting a cargo van

Do you need to tow a vehicle or trailer? 

If you plan to tow a vehicle or small enclosed trailer with a rental truck, choosing a size that’s large enough to allow it is crucial. Most smaller truck sizes don’t allow for towing of any kind. For example, Budget, Penske and U-Haul’s 10’ and 12’ trucks are the right size to move a studio apartment, but they won’t work if you need to tow a vehicle, so you would need to rent a larger truck.   

How many passengers need to ride in the truck? 

If it’s important for passengers to be able to travel in the rental truck, you’ll want to select a size that can accommodate your needs. While no rental trucks can seat four people, some larger trucks can hold up to three passengers. The smaller 10’, 12’, 15’ and 16’ trucks only have room (and seatbelts) for two. So, regardless of your home size, if you need three passengers, you’ll need a larger truck.   

Is there a way to do a DIY move without worrying about selecting the proper size truck? 

Absolutely! With U-Pack, you can get an affordable and flexible DIY move without worrying whether you picked the right size. And you can travel with your passengers in the comfort of your own vehicle — without driving a moving truck or purchasing fuel along the way! 

With U-Pack, you pay for the space you use down to a minimum of 5 linear feet. Here’s what we mean by that: U-Pack moving trailers are 28’ x 8’ x 9’ (similar in size to a 26’ rental truck plus a 10’ rental truck). When you request a quote, we’ll send a price based on your home size. If you find when you’re loading that you can fit into less space or you need more, it’s no problem! Your final cost is adjusted up or down based on the per-foot rate listed on your reservation. It’s that easy. 

Note: We also offer ReloCube® moving containers if a moving trailer isn’t a good fit for your move. 

What’s best for your move?

Get a free, no-obligation quote from U-Pack today and compare us to truck rental. We think you’ll be pleasantly surprised. If you have any questions, please let us know in the comments or call us at 844-362-5303844-594-3077. We’re happy to help!

Budget® is a registered trademark of Budget Truck Rental, LLC. Enterprise® is a registered trademark of Enterprise Holdings, Inc. Penske® is a registered trademark of Penske Truck Leasing Co., L.P. Ryder® is a registered trademark of Ryder System Inc. 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.