Top Cheap Ways to Move Cross Country

Industry Observer

We can already see the cringed, frustrated look on your face as you try to look for cheap ways to move cross country. If it is any consolation, you are not alone. Moving houses is absurdly expensive not to mention downright frustrating. The plethora of boxes, costs involved, packing and unpacking, the risk of breaking valuables, hiring movers is all just too much to handle for anyone.

The good news is that there are indeed ways to save money moving cross country. Ignore the ridiculous price estimates on your email that almost made you go crazy. To make things easy and smooth for you, here are 8 of the best options on moving on a budget according to Minneapolis AAA Movers.

Hopefully, by the time you are done reading this piece, you will have adequate and practical information about how to haul your worldly possessions across states at a reasonable price.

Without further ado, let’s get to them.

Ship some goods

It is highly likely that your items won’t fit in your rental truck. If this happens, don’t freak out. Don’t hire a second truck and break your bank in the process—at least not when there is a cheaper solution for such a predicament. Instead, consider using a shipping service such as DHL, FedEx, UPS or the U.S. Postal Service for such items. Sure, this service is perfect for smaller and lighter items but you will be surprised to know how much you can save by using such a shipping service to send even bigger items.

Fly with some suitcases

Fly? Really? That’s right. This too might come as a shocker to you but there are certain airlines that charge rock-bottom rates for excess baggage. If you do your research well enough, you can bag an airline that charges up to 10 heavy suitcases (50 pounds each) for only $25 per suitcase. The trick here is to stay within the weight limit for each suitcase so you can bring with you as many suitcases as possible. While at it, remember to take advantage of any moving tax credits if you are eligible to any and see how cheap the whole process will be for you.

Find free moving supplies

Moving supplies, especially boxes, can be quite costly. If you are looking to do away with the cost of buying them, all you have to do is look for free ones. This applies for other supplies like bubble-wrap and newspapers. There are a ton of places you can look including local liquor stores, Craigslist, bookstores, offices, grocery stores, Freecycle local schools, big-box retailers and neighbors/friends.

Consider renting a portable moving container

The full-service moving company may seem stress-free but with their sky-high prices, wouldn’t you rather hire a portable moving container instead? Look at this: on average, a good portable container company will charge anything from $2,000 - $3,000 per month. This cost compared to $4,000 - $6,000 charged by a professional moving company is actually much more manageable. Apart from saving money, a portable container can also double up as storage space both before and after the move. If you have ever moved houses before, you know this is a major plus.

Avoid peak seasons

Unless you have to ship your family during the weekends and other major holidays like Labor Day and Memorial Day, think of moving when the traffic is low. Additionally, avoid moving during the first and last weeks of the month as these have been known to be a favorite of many movers as well. To be on the safe side financially, try to plan your move in the middle of the day, during the second and third weekday of any month from October to April.

Ask your employer to chip in

Employers nowadays pay for at least half if not all of the moving expenses for their employees. This is especially true if they are responsible for the move in the first place. Ask the HR department if the company has such a policy, and if they do, be sure to keep all receipts for the relocation for proper reimbursement.

Hire a freight company

Using a freight company is yet another way to cut costs while moving cross country. How does it work? The company will bring a freight trailer at your old house and leave it there for three days. You are expected to load it with your belongings after which they will pick it up and haul it to your desired destination. They have guidelines of loading items on the trailer including fastening and weigh balancing; adhere to them. The cost of this service depends with the company on question but on average, expect to part with approximately $3,000.

Move by bus or train

There’s absolutely no need of hiring a moving company if you have a few worldly possessions. Instead, hop into a train or bus with them and pay as little as $100 for the entire move! You are in luck if your possessions total 150 pounds or less. Amtrak and Greyhound are two of the most reliable companies you can consider. When you contact them, they will be able to tell you their weight limits as well as the cost per pound of an item.

You don’t have to go bankrupt after a big move across the country. Be smart in the way you spend your money using the tips above. If you need more information about moving on a budget, ask Minneapolis AAA Movers; they will help make the process smooth and affordable for you.



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Tom Evans

Real Estate Counselor and Investor
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