Figure out the right size moving truck with these helpful tips
Does comparing moving truck sizes have you feeling like Goldilocks? You don’t want a truck that’s too big — you'll pay for wasted space. A truck that’s too small? You may run out of room. Find the option that’s just right. Compare the sizes and capacity of each rental truck type, then see how you can move without worrying about space at all.
Use this chart to quickly compare box truck capacity
Each truck rental company provides specific equipment capacity, but it’s often easiest to decide what you need by using the number of rooms in your home. Use the chart below to see what truck size fits your needs. Note that recommendations are typically based on individual rooms. For example, a 2-bedroom house could have five total rooms (living room, kitchen, bathroom, two bedrooms).
Here’s what each truck is advertised to hold:
|What size moving truck do I need?|
|Comparing the advertised maximum capacity of each truck rental company.|
Take a look at the actual dimensions of each truck in these articles:
Note: We previously compared Ryder trucks as well; however, Ryder no longer rents trucks for personal moves.
Get details about the different size options
Smallest moving trucks: 2 rooms
The 10’ U-Haul®, 12’ Budget® and 12’ Penske® trucks are the smallest trucks available to rent. These trucks typically hold a studio or a small one-bedroom apartment. Budget estimates theirs will hold up to 120 medium boxes or 1-5 pieces of medium furniture.
If you’re considering the smallest truck, you’ll want to make sure everything will fit. For example, the 10’ U-Haul has internal dimensions of 9’11” x 6’4” x 6’2”, and the door opening is 5’11” x 5’7”. So, furniture larger than that may be difficult to load.
If you’re thinking even the smallest truck is too big, check out how U-Pack compares to small equipment options like cargo van rental.
Medium-sized trucks: 3-6 rooms
The mid-sized category is significantly broader — sizes range from 15’ to 24’. Choosing the right medium size can get complicated. A lot depends on how many rooms and how heavily furnished the home is. If you have an above average amount of belongings, you may want to move up a truck size to ensure you won’t run out of space.
Note: Both Budget and U-Haul previously offered 24-foot trucks, but they no longer list them as options.
Biggest trucks: 7-8+ rooms
Large rental trucks are 26’, but they can vary in internal dimensions, so check all the details when deciding on equipment. If you run out of space in the biggest truck, you’ll either have to leave stuff behind, rent a second truck, or use an enclosed trailer for extra space.
It’s also important to remember that the bigger the truck, the more fuel it will use. Since you pay for fuel in a rental truck, the impact of a large truck’s mpg can add up.
Consider other factors beyond capacity
While choosing the right size rental truck is essential, there’s more to consider.
First, you want to make sure there's room for all the passengers. Some trucks can hold two passengers, while others hold up to three (there are no 4-passenger trucks). Know who all needs to ride in the truck and who can drive separately.
Lastly, check out their policies, like those for mileage (unlimited or per-mile fees) and rental locations (one-way or round-trip). While their truck size may work for your move, their policies might not.
Want to move without worrying about size?
U-Pack is the perfect solution!
U-Pack has flexible space, so you can use the space you need. Our moving trailers are 28’ x 8’ x 9’ (similar in size to a 26’ truck plus a 10’ truck). Here’s how it works: fill the truck with your belongings and then install a divider wall. The rest of the truck gets filled with commercial goods going in the same direction.
So, for example, if you think you need 10-linear feet of space inside, but end up needing 12, no problem! Or if you don’t need all that space, just use less. Your price goes up or down based on the space you actually use, so you’ll never pay for wasted space.
And the best part? With U-Pack, you don’t have to drive. Prices are comparable to truck rental (especially after you factor in fuel) and they include door-to-door delivery. Learn more about how U-Pack compares to truck rental, and then get a quote online to estimate your space and check rates.
Have questions about choosing the right option for your move?
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. 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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