Moving On A Budget: The Truck Rental

Planning for the truck rental may be one of the most dreaded things about moving (besides of course the packing and actual moving!).  The truck rental seems to cost the most out of all the moving expenses.  Not only do you have to pay for the truck fee, but you also have to pay for the mileage and the gas.

Well, I’m here to let you all in on a little secret.  It’s called price-matching and competition.  Did you know that most of the major truck rental companies will actually price-match each other?  So if you find a company that is closer to your location (thus saving you on mileage and gas), but they charge more per mile than a company that is a little farther away, you can usually get the closer company to price-match.

But not only can you price-match, sometimes you can actually get these companies to compete for your business.  Many years ago my family did a move that took us across five states.  The truck-rental price for a move like that is not cheap!  Since it was such a big move, we were able to get two companies competing for our business.  Company A gave us a price, and Company B beat it.  So we went back to Company A and asked them to beat Company B.  This went back a forth a few times until we knocked $400 off of the original cost.  That is quite a significant amount of savings.

Now this move we are getting ready to do on Tuesday is not as big as that move was.  We are only moving twenty minutes away from our location now.  But with price-matching we are able to get a better quality truck from a better company, and from a location that is closer to us.  This saves us in the milieage/gas department.

And one further tip for truck rentals.  The companies will try to up-sell the extras like furniture dollies and furniture pads.  If you have  family or friends that have  furniture dollies, ask to borrow them.   For furniture pads, use blankets and sheets that you have on hand.  Borrow extras from family and friends if need be.  And sometimes you can get companies to throw these items in for free.  Just use your walk-away power and price-matching to get them thrown in for free.

Do you all have any tips for saving in the truck rental department?  Have you been able to get a great deal by price-matching?  I’d love to hear about it!

crystal collins signature
  1. My family all has four-wheel drive pickups. My brother also has a couple of livestock trailers. Usually we use the pickup beds. Once we used the livestock trailer (cleaned out, of course). Truck rental is foreign to us.

  2. I just moved my house 3BR/2BA about 2 miles away. I called and reserved the Uhaul 14′ $19.95/per day. I called Penske just to see if they would work with me and although I didn’t go with Penske, they did drop their price from ~$99 to $37.

  3. Another little thought of packing material aid – pool noodles and blow up toys. You can put some air into blow up toys/rafts/floats…etc and use them to pad fragile or treasured items. We used pool noodles (those long foam float tubes) to pad either side of a large flat screen TV and then wrapped a quilt over it, secured by packing tape. Worked like a charm.

  4. Crystal, we always use ABF U-pack when we move across country. They are always way more competitive than renting a truck and driving it across country. You pack your stuff into a portion of a semi-truck and then secure it with their instructions and then they drive it across the country for you. They usually have 2-3 people using the same truck to move their stuff across country and it takes about 7-10 days to get your stuff but the savings were terrific. They can found here:

    We have used them twice for two cross country moves and they were always at least $1,000 less than renting a truck ourselves and driving our stuff.

  5. I went on the websites of various truck rental places and found GOOD deals that I would not have gotten in person. Use Google to type in something like moving truck rental coupons or something. You never know what might come up.

  6. Move in winter rather than summer. Holiday weekends are good deals too. We have moved twice, out of state, the weekend after Thanksgiving and our truck rental was about $200 cheaper than it would have been if we moved in summer.

  7. Be careful about the insurance they offer you. It can be VERY expensive and often your current auto policy will also cover the rental. You DO need to check with your insurance company to be sure of this before you move.

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