Queens -> Bergen County, NJ

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canydavid
Posts: 11
Joined: Wed Jul 19, 2006 10:33 am

Re: Queens -> Bergen County, NJ

Postby canydavid » Fri Mar 16, 2007 3:07 pm

The revised Hall Lane estimate:
Hall Lane United:
1 van
4 men
9 hrs (160/hr)
3 hrs travel
Total: $1920
Fuel Surcharge: $2.25/hr
Tolls: $26
Probably Cost: $1968.50
(No Gyarabteed not to exceed given
Insurance: $205/$30000 ($250 deduct.)

Just helping
Posts: 82
Joined: Wed Mar 30, 2005 1:36 pm
Location: NYC

Re: Queens -> Bergen County, NJ

Postby Just helping » Fri Mar 16, 2007 5:34 pm

ok, so now they are all about the same... go with the one that you feel more comfortable of doing business with…

Diane
Posts: 15824
Joined: Tue Oct 07, 2003 12:18 am
Location: Los Angeles

Re: Queens -> Bergen County, NJ

Postby Diane » Sat Mar 17, 2007 1:22 pm

Hall Lane's estimate does indeed sound weird for a local move. Personally I would use All Star or (if you want to get another estimate) Delancey Street-NY.

canydavid
Posts: 11
Joined: Wed Jul 19, 2006 10:33 am

Re: Queens -> Bergen County, NJ

Postby canydavid » Thu Mar 22, 2007 10:48 pm

Just helping wrote:I am looking at the numbers and the first two are almost the same, the third one is kind of wired 3 men only and less hours while the others want five men and 8-9 hours… I didn’t get the 3 hours travel time… (it should really be close to an hour only – local move) I don’t want to comment on fuel charge on a local move or $26 tolls on a $12 toll tunnel…

I can’t tell you who to use but go with your feeling, they are all good according to people on this board, and the price seems to be close…
Good luck
I spoke to United about the travel time and toll, and they told me it's a "fixed" minimum. Seems it's a handy way for them to generate a little extra income.

All Star is booked up for the dates I wanted, so I'm going to try Shea then United, if need be.

To everyone: Thanks for the input!

-David

canydavid
Posts: 11
Joined: Wed Jul 19, 2006 10:33 am

Re: Queens -> Bergen County, NJ

Postby canydavid » Fri Mar 30, 2007 12:37 am

We finally moved, and here are the results:

I first tried to hire All Star, but they were booked up for my possible move days. Next I considered United (Hall Lane), but was put off by their 3 hour travel time charge, which I was informed was their standard charge. Shea was available, so I hired them.

The men showed up promptly at 9 am, and were pleased to find that I had "reserved" a spot for the truck with our cars. They were incredibly efficient at loading the van and finished around noon. (It also helped that I guided them on how the larger furniture had made it into the apartment so the wheel didn't need to be invented twice.)

Problem #1: The van was too small. While there was nothing substantial that didn't fit, a variety of small objects and boxes had to be left behind. Fortunately we DO have continued access to the premises.

Problem #2: Poor communication. After I gave them directions, the van and companion car departed, followed by my wife and I a few minutes later. We arrived at the destination 30-45 minutes later, with no van in sight. Close to an hour later (around 1:30) I called Shea's office to find out what happened. (While I suspected they stopped to eat, they didn't tell me they were going to, and after having spent some time here, I was a bit nervous.) I was informed that they had stopped, but were now en route, and would arrive within 10 minutes.

Unloading the van went relatively smoothly.

Problem #3: Sloppiness. Either because they were tiring, or because moving into a multi-level home is harder than out of a first floor apartment, more walls were dinged and handprints left at the destination than I would have liked. They did touch up one spot that was particularly bad. (It helped that the paint was lying around.)

They finished at around 3:30, subtracted 30 minutes for lunch, coming to only 6 hours! (They had estimated 9, the shortest estimate I had gotten was 7.) Add in $30 for tolls, 1.5 hours travel, and $36 for 6 used wardrobe boxes (which they would have loaned me, but I wanted to keep), and the grand total was $1416, 25% below their estimate ($1890), and well below All Star's estimate ($1795.35 + tolls), too.

Problem #4: Tips. At the end of the move, the leader came over to me and said something along the lines of, "It's customary to tip 15-20% depending on how much you liked the job." I had not intended on tipping anywhere near that much. He also implied that since they had come in so far under the estimate, I should be more than willing to fork over a big fat tip. In the end I gave the 5 of them $100. He verbalized his displeasure to me and the group.

The summary: Overall I was pleased. No substantive damage seems to have been inflicted on my furniture, and in our unpacking efforts we have only uncovered one broken item, which probably had more to do with packing than moving.

If not for the whole #4 situation, I would have given 5/5 stars - even with problems 1-3. But problem left a sour taste in my mouth. As many others have voiced here (and elsewhere):
Tips are not required. Tip only if you are so inclined and only for work that was good to excellent. ... Good drivers and their crews appreciate tips, but should never insinuate they are expecting one. Those that do are the ones to keep an eye on.
Bottom line: 4/5 stars.

Any comments?

-David

Diane
Posts: 15824
Joined: Tue Oct 07, 2003 12:18 am
Location: Los Angeles

Re: *Queens -> Bergen County, NJ

Postby Diane » Fri Mar 30, 2007 8:53 am

We have been round and round on the topic of tipping in New York City. What is reasonable advice in other areas of the country - for example, what you have quoted - may not be so reasonable in an area where the cost of living is extremely high. Although this is the first time we have heard about Shea's workers asking for a 15-20% tip, it has been reported for other companies.

I guess I feel that since you paid around $475 less than you expected to pay, maybe you could have been a little more generous with the tip - say, $200 rather than $100. I think it's possible that the workers hustled in the hope that that would occur. Still, it's never pleasant to be ASKED for a tip.

Despite this unpleasantness, it sounds as if the move went well overall.

ArchieWhite
Posts: 2942
Joined: Thu Mar 25, 2004 11:38 am

Re: *Queens -> Bergen County, NJ

Postby ArchieWhite » Fri Mar 30, 2007 10:43 am

This fits the stereotype that most of us have about practically any service in NYC, that the tipping is so intimidating...I can assure you that in my service area, a shipper giving each worker $20 would be King or Queen for the day, the crew would wash their car, mow the lawn, wash the windows and walk the dog for a tip that size, yet in NYC workers turn up their noses......unreal


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