Self-Moving companies Like U-haul and Penske

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TEEJ

Self-Moving companies Like U-haul and Penske

Postby TEEJ » Sun Nov 07, 2004 4:37 am

There is some good advice at this site. I am new here.
I came across a recommendation here to move yourself if possible but I'd like to point out a few potential hazards with that too. Obviously it's not nearly as risky as having someone else schlep your stuff, but the experience will have some pitfalls so heres a few pointers based on my experience... I move a lot and I have enough belongings, it would equate to about a 7br house probably.

U-Haul.
- I use u-haul because they are cheap and they rent trailers. They are the only national company to rent trailers one way.

- There has only been 2 times that the U-haul truck did not break down or require emergency roadside service, and those 2 times I didn't have this trouble, it was for a small van and a pickup truck. U-haul has the oldest equipment of any truck rental fleet.

- U-haul reservations may be reservations to you, but to u-haul they are merely a suggestion. Just about every time I book a 1 way move for specific equipment, the day I am due to pick it up, they do not have the equipment available. Tough luck Mr. Customer. Give yourself a couple extra days to secure the trucks. The worst that happens is you get where you are going a couple of days early.

- Getting a really low rate from uhaul...
Call to get a quote from their main sales office in Arizona. Do this at least 30 days ahead of the move, preferably sooner. Leave them your name and phone number and tell them you will think about it because you're still shopping around. Eventually, they will call you and ask you if you want to book the reservation. Tell them you got a quote from Penske (currently their only competitor) that is half the price they originally quoted you. Say it with a straight face, you won't believe what they'll say next. They beat the fake price by about 10%. By the way, Penske is never cheaper. The bottom line... U-haul is only worth the lowest price they will go. Negotiate and you will find the headaches acceptable for the low price you paid.

-U-haul only has one competitor in the United States.... Penske. In case you were wondering, Ryder no longer rents trucks to consumers for household moves but more on that in a bit.

-Make sure your truck has a ramp before you leave with it. A lot of times, the ramp is broken. So roll it out to check if you need the ramp.

Penske...
-Penske has the newest equipment. They have a limited range of trucks and a car carrier but no trailers.

-They have trucks with power liftgates however they are only guaranteed for in-town moves. These liftgates would allow someone to easily roll heavy furniture onto a platform that raised like an elevator to the truck deck. Try to get that if you can.

-Penske has the highest rates and they do not negotiate. This is why I never use Penske and therefor can not tell you more about them.

Ryder...
-Ryder no longer rents to consumers for household moves. This doesn't necessarily mean you can't rent a truck from them, it means you can't rent a truck for a one way move. Great if you are in town... You are assured a late model truck with a power liftgate.

-The way this works is you call them up and you wind up talking to a sales rep who wants badly to hear that you may likely rent from him often. You don't have to lie to him just say you don't know for sure and have to see if it works out financially. For good measure, tell them you are doing a corporate move or running some deliveries for your business.

Enterprise, Idealease and Avis Truck Rental
-See Ryder (above)


ABF U-Pack Moving...
-Almost as risky as hiring movers in terms of security and delays.
-The trailers they offer are 26' and that's the size of the largest trucks U-haul and Penske offer so you aren't getting more space.
-You may get to pack it, but don't think they aren't securing the load for safety reasons... Better take an inventory of your stuff.

I've heard some horror stories about movers. I know I will do a better job of moving the stuff even though it's extremely hard work. I have a system in place now to load all my stuff quickly now but the bottom line is I think it's a worthwhile thing to try to move yourself. You can always hire a reputable driver and some helpers from a temp agency.

One more thing... If you haven't loaded a cargo truck before and you haven't moved yourself recently, don't assume you know what size truck will do. One of the biggest mistakes I made with self moving was I reserved the largest truck I could and 2 of the largest trailers. This was still not enough room for everything. On part because they didn't have the largest truck available at the time even though I had a reservation so I had to deal with one a few feet shorter. Then I had to go all the way back and get an additional trailer for one of my other cars.

Summary: Give yourself a rediculous amount of spare time to plan the move and allow for problems. The stress and excitement of moving may make it difficult for you to address problems when they come up. Even if it costs a lot of extra money to take longer to move, it's worth it because it will reduce stress and the problems can be dealt with. Your self move should be planned at least 1 month in advance. You should give yourself at least a 2 week window for you to get your equipment and get loaded.

Estimate your fuel bill to be very high if you have a large truck. Realize that 5-7 miles per gallon is all you're likely going to get if you packed your truck like a can of sardines. Don't wait until you need gas to fill up. Especially with the diesels, you can never find a diesel station when you need one and the truckstops have a different nozzle. Can you tell, I've run out of gas with a uhaul before?

If you have a large truck packed tightly, your speed should be kept to a maximum of 60 miles per hour if you don't have experience driving large trucks. This means it will take you longer to get where you're going.

I am planning my next move now because I know in a couple of months it will be that time again. This time around I am going to investigate an expedited truck load shipment by a large freight line. I think my move will go much quicker loading everything with a forklift.

Diane
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Re: Self-Moving companies Like U-haul and Penske

Postby Diane » Sun Nov 07, 2004 1:44 pm

TEEJ wrote:ABF U-Pack Moving...
-Almost as risky as hiring movers in terms of security and delays.
-The trailers they offer are 26' and that's the size of the largest trucks U-haul and Penske offer so you aren't getting more space.
-You may get to pack it, but don't think they aren't securing the load for safety reasons... Better take an inventory of your stuff.

You make many good points. I hesitate to disagree with anyone who moves the equivalent of a 7-bedroom house as frequently as you do, but I do want to comment on this part of your post.

I myself moved with ABF in June 2003 and I believe that ABF is a good alternative to low-balling scammers for people who are concerned about cost and don't mind doing a little work. I have also read all of the 80 or so reviews of ABF on Epinions.com and the dozen or so additional reviews posted by readers on this site. Finally I have a contact at ABF (the director of customer service) who helps me answer questions that arise from consumers here.

With regard to security and delays: if the comparison is between ABF and a rental van, then you are correct that there is more security and less possibility of delay with a rental van than with ABF. If the comparison is between ABF and scam moving companies, then clearly ABF is light-years beyond the scammers in terms of security and delays. If the comparison is between ABF and reputable moving companies, then I believe that ABF is equal in terms of security and probably a little better than equal, overall, in terms of delays during the busy summer months. The reason is that with ABF, your goods are never transferred out of the truck to a warehouse to wait for a truck and driver but are delivered on the same trailer you loaded them on.

In all the 80 or so reviews of ABF on Epinions, there isn't one instance of a person complaining of pilferage, nor have I ever heard of one on this board. ABF may check at the terminal to see that the bulkhead has been installed correctly, but their workers have better things to do than take a bulkhead down and steal people's used household goods. Not that they would do it, but there is commercial freight on ABF trailers (which are 28 feet long, not 26) that would be much more valuable.

The reviews of ABF indicate that any delays in delivery of the trailer at origin have been limited to a matter of hours, not days. There were some delays of up to a week at destination this summer, especially in Florida. In cases of delay of more than one business day beyond the spread, ABF compensated people at the rate of $50 a day. I believe that amount may be slightly higher now.

For your particular needs, U-Haul may be the best choice, but I wouldn't want people to rule out ABF for a smaller move without knowing all of the facts.

TEEJ

Re: Self-Moving companies Like U-haul and Penske

Postby TEEJ » Sun Nov 07, 2004 2:18 pm

Thank You.
I'll clarify by saying that ABF does look like a great alternative to conventional moving companies AND especially sleazebag moving companies as they have a pretty good reputation for freight transportation.

However, like you pointed out, I find discomfort when my stuff goes out of my sight- period. The potential is there for missing articles and delays too but I haven't heard of either happening myself.

I think using a freightline for a truckload shipment is a good concept and I'm glad ABF has created a consumer friendly service for this and hope others will follow but the simple fact is if you can fit your stuff in a single ABF trailer, you can fit your stuff in a 26' moving van and for the less than the cost of ABF, you can hire a professional transport driver, follow them in your own car and never let the stuff out of your sight.

Diane
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Re: Self-Moving companies Like U-haul and Penske

Postby Diane » Sun Nov 07, 2004 2:40 pm

Hi - I appreciate your responding and I don't want to be a pain, but I am not at all sure that it would cost less to rent a van and hire a driver than to simply use ABF. Probably we need more data on this. Also, because of differences both in actual measurements and in the way the length is measured, a 28-foot ABF trailer holds much more than a 26-foot rental van. Goods loaded into the available space in a 26-foot van (1538 cubic feet) would fit into 21 to 22 linear feet in an ABF trailer, according to the ABF website at www.upack.com.

Just a head's up - there are a bunch of U-Haul bashers on this board and you are probably going to hear from them! If you do, don't let it keep you from posting, because we are glad to have you here.

adamschneider
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Re: Self-Moving companies Like U-haul and Penske

Postby adamschneider » Sun Nov 07, 2004 7:54 pm

My experience was that the cost difference between ABF and a rental truck (e.g., Penske) was negligible. But, if we'd rented a truck, we'd have had to tow our car behind it, and that would have added $150 -- not to mention that it would have hurt the truck's gas mileage, making the fuel cost more.

Besides just the cost, though, there's another important factor: for a long-distance move, we were MUCH more comfortable driving our own car than a big fat truck that would get blown around in the wind, would be hard to maneuver and park (especially with a car towed behind it), and wouldn't have room for our cat (or much of anything else) in the cab.

VickkiStead

Re: Self-Moving companies Like U-haul and Penske

Postby VickkiStead » Tue Nov 09, 2004 12:21 am

The alternatives sound great.... what about those of us who live in BFN (um, politely the middle of nowhere) and those sources are not available. Anyone have any other suggestions?

Diane
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Location: Los Angeles

Re: Self-Moving companies Like U-haul and Penske

Postby Diane » Tue Nov 09, 2004 12:27 am

ABF can deliver a trailer most anywhere in the U.S., and Broadway Express can for sure pick you up in Chico. If you would consider doing a self-move, I suggest that you look at the reviews of those two companies on the sticky at the top of the messageboard.

VickkiStead

Re: Self-Moving companies Like U-haul and Penske

Postby VickkiStead » Tue Nov 09, 2004 2:01 am

ABF U-Pack does not offer service to CHICO, CA on a direct basis. We regret that we are unable to offer a price quote on your move at this time. :x

Teej

Re: Self-Moving companies Like U-haul and Penske

Postby Teej » Tue Nov 09, 2004 3:16 pm

Bashing u-haul isn't going to hurt my feelings one bit so go right ahead, I'll join you. :D

Last time I moved from GA to FL, I got the 24' truck for $199. Drove straight through and the stuff didn't get out of sight.

ABF wanted $1500 for the same thing and I seem to recall they needed about 4 days to get to the new location. I think what they really needed was a double to take down with it.

Am I missing something here?

About cubic feet.. Cubic feet would matter to me if I was loading nothing but small boxes that can be stacked from floor to ceiling. But that's never the case when you have fragiles and furniture.

Vikki, If you are moving from a remote location or small town to another remote location, you're going to have some problems. But if you're moving to a city you could first go to the city, pick up the truck and go back for your belongings.

twalker
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Re: Self-Moving companies Like U-haul and Penske

Postby twalker » Tue Nov 09, 2004 6:46 pm

Hi Teej,

I would agree that moving with ABF is not the right choice for every move and, to be honest, we have always recommended that consumers move themselves first if at all possible.

On that note I would like to point out that Ryder was purchased by Budget Truck Rental several years ago. They do still rent to consumers for one-way moves (see www.budgettruck.com), and they maintain a fleet of vehicles that are no more than three years old. You are right about the trailers however, they do not rent those; only car carriers.

I just wanted to clear up the confusion about which companies consumers had to choose from for completely self-moves.

Tim Walker
MovingScam.com

IMP
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Re: Self-Moving companies Like U-haul and Penske

Postby IMP » Tue Nov 09, 2004 7:47 pm

I hate to bring anything other than smiles into this picture - but for anyone considering a self-move, a 7BR house, even a 7 ROOM house, is not going to fit in a 24' trailer. Just don't want someone considering self pack/self move to think that this will work for them.

Teej

Re: Self-Moving companies Like U-haul and Penske

Postby Teej » Tue Nov 09, 2004 11:26 pm

Tim, you're right. I forgot all about budget. I must have a mental block because I don't consider Budget car or truck rental an option for me because of a horrible experience I had with them. I had a reservation with them to rent a car and had to walk about 2 miles to the rental place. They refused to rent to me because I had more traffic violations than they allow. They did not mention this when I made the reservation and that could have fouled up some major travel plans. That is when I had a temper tantrum in public and broke my first glass door! It had to have been a year prior, I had rented from them and was promised some special deal. I don't remember the specifics, but upon turning in the vehicle, they refused to honor the deal. I think it dealt with mileage. Yeah I was supposed to have unlimited miles. That turned into a very expensive rental.

IMP wrote:I hate to bring anything other than smiles into this picture - but for anyone considering a self-move, a 7BR house, even a 7 ROOM house, is not going to fit in a 24' trailer. Just don't want someone considering self pack/self move to think that this will work for them.

It wasn't a 24' trailer, it was a 24' truck plus 3 of the largest trailers they had available and two pickup trucks. I had to leave a little bit behind with the last move too. It did not all fit.

twalker
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Re: Self-Moving companies Like U-haul and Penske

Postby twalker » Wed Nov 10, 2004 12:51 am

I have to say that on my last move, I used Budget and had a brand-new truck (no, I didn't tell them who I was and it was two and a half years ago). I reserved a 15' truck and it was ready on the day that I reserved it for. My car wouldn't work on the tow-dolly, so they gave me a car carrier for the same price. At the time they offered a loading service so I hired two men to help me load the truck. They did an excellent job and I had no damage at all when I unloaded the truck. I do wish that they still offered the load/unload service but unfortunately that may be a thing of the past.

Tim Walker
MovingScam.com

adamschneider
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Re: Self-Moving companies Like U-haul and Penske

Postby adamschneider » Wed Nov 10, 2004 5:11 am

Someone correct me if I'm wrong, but it seems that with ABF, the cost is much less dependent on the distance. I.e., you don't pay that much less for a 500-mile move than for a 2000-mile move. Certainly not 1/4 as much.

Whereas with the rental trucks, it's all about the distance traveled and the time spent (especially when you add in the diesel that you have to buy along the way). So obviously Penske, Budget, etc. are going to be cheaper if you're only moving one state away...

cowboygc1

Re: Self-Moving companies Like U-haul and Penske

Postby cowboygc1 » Fri Nov 12, 2004 9:28 pm

teej,

Last time I moved from GA to FL, I got the 24' truck for $199. Drove straight through and the stuff didn't get out of sight.


i checked w/ uhaul for a nyc to arkansas move and they wanted close to $1500 for a one way rental(plus of course gas and tolls.) were you renting in the 1950's?


steve


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