Ahhh the shuttle. The single biggest fly in the moving ointment.
Shuttles are OK when they are known about in advance...but when they pop up last minute you know there are gonna be fireworks!
A shuttle is called for when the large over the road tractor/trailer can not get close enough to the residence to allow for easy walking/carry of the household goods onto or off of the truck. The items are then "shuttled" to a smaller vehicle that can get closer to the home and then into or off of the truck.
A couple of things to remember. 1. There is no consistency to size of truck that is coming to pick up your things. The driver is generally an independent owner/operator. So, he may have a HUGE tractor, you know the ones that are like mini-motor homes, pulling a 53' trailer or he may have a small cab over with a 48' trailer. Like Gump said "You never know what you're gonna get!" The driver ultimately has the call for safety reasons and so the estimator may see it one way, but the driver another. 2. The driver does not want to shuttle. The extra fee for the shuttle in no way makes up for the headache of having to handle the goods twice. A shuttle is a Pain in the ***. 3. Even if a shuttle is called for, you do not have to pay for the shuttle on the spot. New regulations call for the van line to have to deliver and then bill you 30 days after delivery for the additional charges. Get your things off the truck, don't create a conentious situation. 4. Be fair. The driver is doing what he thinks is best for your pick up or delivery. Don't take it personally...it's not you and they're not trying to rip you off...see point 2 above. 5. It does not matter about others previous pick ups or deliveries...I don't care how many times you've seen other deliveries done in your apartment complex...it all gets down to the size of the rig and the skill of the driver. Yours is different from theirs.
Now, most movers will have a provision on the estimate to "approximate" shuttle charges...should they occur. Basically it's the movers way of saying...we don't think you'll need it, but if you do...here are the charges...you've been warned!
As they say...shuttle happens!