NWR — Moving Across Country?!

posted 3 years ago in The Lounge
Post # 2
9527 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper

If you only have a few extra boxes of stuff that do not fit in your car then just ship them to yourself in California. The drive should take 3-4 days. Have music. Audiobooks make the time shorter. Don’t chance it on gas. Refill before the light pops on. There are many stops but when you are almost empty there will not be one for miles. Stop and take breaks and see what looks interesting, you never know when you will be back on the road

Post # 3
5107 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: December 2014

sarathemermaid :  Honestly, with just smaller stuff like that, I’d keep whatever I could fit into the car and then maybe mail some stuff. Long distance moves are soooo expensive. I’m not sure what your quote was, but when I was looking at moving stuff from Maine to Florida it was in the thousands just to rent a small truck. All my clothes combined aren’t even worth that much. Another time, I just took what I could fit into a few suitcases and flew, then had the car shipped (I think that was maybe ~$600). 

Post # 4
7430 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: February 2013

We have moved across country twice (California to NC and then back to California). We didn’t have a ton of stuff, so we used one of the companies that do pods and it was pretty cost effective. We then sold one of our cars and drove across country with the car we kept.

Post # 6
9595 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2015

I have done this many times and… my advice is to sell or donate as much as humanly possible. Push yourself. Anything in poor condition, any duplicates, anything ill fitting, anything you dont like that much. Also label every box on the outside with its contents, or numbers then keep notes on what is in each numbered box. It makes life easier on the other end.

For moving companies… call and get lots of quotes. Consider the pod thing.

Post # 7
458 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: City, State

Before you start most of the packing, prepare a small duffel bag/suitcase with all of your essentials– a few days to 1 week worth of stuff (bras, underwear, shoes, casual clothes for moving/unpacking, toiletries, hairbrush, and anything else you will need for your first week). That way when you show up at your hotel or your first night in your new place, it’s easy to pull out that bag and know you have everything you need for a few days while you take a breath and start sorting through all your boxes. There have been so many times where I didn’t do this and I ended up packing my hairbrush in a box or other silly things like that! 

Also, if you are able to mail things to your new place ahead of time, I have had pretty good luck using media mail/very slow (Standard?) post office shipping to mail large boxes of book for pretty cheap (NY to GA). 

Post # 8
5954 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: May 2014

sarathemermaid :  If you ARE going to hire a movnig company make sure you sign a closed contract versus an open contract. Those were the terms used when I moved. Closed meant they could only upcharge me like 10% more of the original estimate. Open meant they could charge whatever.

Here’s what happened. They moved our stuff from FL to MN and when they arrived, the movers said their boss needed another whatever $$ (can’t remember the amount) for gas. I said, sorry, big burly scary intimidating dudes, I have a closed contract and you can only charge me $100 extra (or whatever it was). They called their boss and backed down. It was not a good experience because they were definitely trying to intimidate me and hold our stuff hostage.

Also, these larger companies will subcontract out to smaller, crummier companies. That’s what they did to us though we didn’t know it at the time. So I would try to make sure you are getting who you actually hired.

I’m jealous, CA is my homeland! LOL!

Post # 9
10953 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: City, State

theatrejulia :  

In the winter, it’s best not to let your gas tank get below half.  Condensation can wreak a lot of havoc if it gets in and you sure don’t want to risk being stranded.

Buy one of those metallic looking blankets, they’re only about $20.  In an emergency, you can huddle under it.  Be sure to have supplies like flashlights, car phone chargers, etc.

What can I say, I’m an old Bee, I worry.

We moved from California to Tennessee in 2015.  Found that Budget rentals was $1000 cheaper than U-Haul.  Also found that we would never DIY another move.

Post # 10
10953 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: City, State

RedHeadKel :  

Oh yes.  Movers.  Read all of the reviews you can find.  Check Rip off Report online and the BBB.  Use extreme caution when hiring movers.  So many of them are just plain crooks.

We used movers when we bought our Forever Home early this year and had a great experience, but I did my homework.  And it didn’t come cheap.  But they stuck to their original estimate.

Post # 11
10953 posts
Sugar Beekeeper
  • Wedding: City, State

sarathemermaid :  

Purge without mercy.  Anything you could possibly live without gets donated or sold.  Set a rule–mine is if I haven’t worn it or used it in six months, it’s history.  A lot of stuff is cheaper to buy new than to move.

Post # 12
7751 posts
Bumble Beekeeper

I used movers in my recent move from the East Coast to the midwest. It’s about a 13 hour drive and I paid $2500 for them to move my furniture (bed, sofa, bookshelf, coffee table, rocking chair, lamps, etc.) and about 20 boxes from my 1 br apartment. This was the best deal I could find with a reputable company.

I used a local moving company in my origin city and could not be more pleased with the service. They came to my apt about a week before the move to survey my belongings and finalize the quote. The quote they gave me was the same as what they billed me–no surprises. Also they arrived to pack me up exactly when they said they would and also delivered my things exactly on time (down to the minute). Three dudes showed up and painstakingly wrapped all my things in blankets and plastic wrap so it would be protected during the move. The whole experience was a dream…minus the expense!

I would suggest going on Angies List to find local movers in your area who do long distance moves, and have at least several dozen reviews (and an A rating). Using a smaller, local company gets you more personal service and better communication, in my experience. If you can be flexible with when your stuff gets picked up and delivered that will also help. For my move, the company just happened to have a truck going to the same city I was moving to a few days before my move, which significantly reduced my bill…but it meant they had to pick up all my stuff about 5 days earlier than I would have preferred. Luckily I could make it work.

Post # 13
2680 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: September 2014

We moved from Philly to LA almost 4 years ago. We had a TON of stuff and price shopped various options. We wound up going with PODs as that was the cheapest. We rented the largest POD available and were shocked that it fit (almost) all of our stuff. I don’t remember the exact price, but it was a few $1000. However, since you have much less stuff and are moving a much shorter distance it will probably be considerably less expensive for you. 

A few tips if you go the PODs route:

-everytime one of those containers enters the state of CA it must have an agriculture declaration completed for the contents. We did not realize this, because we were not transporting any agriculture type items, and PODs didn’t make this clear to us, until our POD was en route to CA. As a result of not having the form filled out in advance our delivery was significantly delayed (over a week)

-do not put anything in the POD that could be damaged by extreme temperatures. This seems obvious, but we stupidly packed a candle or 2. They melted in transit and subsequently destroyed a jacket and damaged a very expensive pair of boots. 

-check with the locations you are moving from and to in advance to find out about rules for dropping PODs. Philly did not allow them on city streets (makes sense) and our HOA in LA did not allow them anywhere on the property (including in your own parking spaces) They have their own warehouse facilities in a or of major cities, and since you don’t have a ton of stuff, it shouldn’t be difficult to pack/unpack at their facility if need be. 

-when we booked they stated a delivery date. This is not really a firm date. Assume that something will come up and they may not deliver it until several days after the delivery date. So make sure you pack a suitcase or 2 to take with you of anything you may need. 

Good luck! Long distance moves are stressful, but in hindsight if we had planned a little better, things would have gone more smoothly. 

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