moving 101: PODS vs. UHAUL

Let me begin by saying, THANK GOD this move is over, and I don’t envy anyone who has to start this particular epic freaking journey anytime soon.  Good thing we like our new house, because I don’t plan on packing it up anywhere in the foreseeable future. 😂🙅‍♀️

That said, at the risk of sounding too flight attendanty, “you have plenty of choices when you move.”  Allow me to help you choose or not choose PODS.

Shipping your belongings vs. driving them yourself.

My first bit of advice when doing anything you haven’t done before is, do your research. A little bit more extensively than I may have.  I think the heavenly glow of not having to move the container 1000 miles ourselves may have tipped the scales in PODS’ favor.  What I had gathered in my quick skim of the U-haul website was that, well, you haul it.  The drive from Wisconsin to Connecticut is about 17 hours when we go over the speed limit.  With a U-haul tethered to your rear end, you have to drive ten miles under the speed limit (and probably no higher than about 55mph at any given time) in order to keep the container from getting all wobbly on you while sharing the road with a bunch of ruthless semi drivers who will literally try to drive over you before giving you time to pass them as they merge into your lane.

U-haul does offer a U-box option which is similar to PODS in the delivery aspect, however the boxes are all one size, so we would have had to order multiple, which felt like it was getting too complicated, especially with trying to stay organized in packing.  PODS offers a variety of container sizes to choose from.

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Price

So, alas, we (I) chose to go with PODS and went ahead with setting all of that up.  Some nice lady named Barbara helped me through the process and by the end of the order, I was prepared to pay the $2695 and change to get the pod, transport the pod, and delivered it to our final destination that was TBD, as we had just started seriously looking for a place to live.  So it would be sitting at a storage facility within a 50 mile radius of Anthony’s parents’ house for the time being, until we knew where we were going to end up.  This also meant a monthly rental fee of $290.  Also reasonable, since now you’re basically renting a storage unit. This price would be the same if you had it sitting in a driveway or in a facility.

It was a total of three months of rental fees, as the previous owner of our house was perfectly fine with taking her sweet-ass time getting out & therefore costing us three months of Pods and hotels, but I’m not bitter or anything. 🙂

The grand total so far was looking to be about $3565, plus whatever the re-delivery cost was.  To my understanding this fee was going to be anywhere up to $400-500.  All dollar amounts we were mentally prepared to pay.  Especially since Anthony’s company was kind enough to bless us with a relocation package with reimbursement up to a certain amount. 🙏

U-haul is pretty comparable for the initial pricing, but I couldn’t get that deep into the process without actually starting a relationship with them.  So unfortunately I can’t break down their prices for you.

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Foresight

So up until this point, all was well.  For 2.5 months of hotel hell, we were billed by PODS but otherwise heard nothing from them, which is how I like my storage.  Shit started to hit the fan though in our last week at the Ramada Boston.  We were inches away from freedom, and it was time to schedule delivery.

Remember how I said back when we left WI we didn’t know exactly where we would be living?  Well as it turns out, that kind of sucks, because the facility our pod was in was literally FOUR MILES outside of their delivery “radius” for them to be able to just drop it off at our house.  Wut?

Basically we were penalized for not having a future address yet.

One time we flew to Wisconsin and in order to get back to Connecticut, we had to fly to Atlanta first.  That’s basically what happened with our pod.  It was in western Mass.  Our new home is in central Mass, and they had to move the pod to EASTERN Mass, driving PAST our town, and dropping it off, only to have someone else pick it up and bring it BACK to kill our grass for a week in central Mass.  This absurdity would have been met with a relaxed “ok… you do you 👍” if it didn’t add 750 Cumberland Farms coffees worth of dollars to our overall bill, bringing the final bill for drop off from $500 to $1250.

Oh, and to top it all off, the purposefully scheduled delivery on our closing date was pushed from that Friday to the following Tuesday because we got some snow that previous Wednesday.  So in addition to our total bill going from $4050 to $4800, we also weren’t going to be able to move in until the following week.  In the end it felt like we paid more to wait longer.  I know no one  can help the weather, but PODS could have probably had a little sympathy instead of just slapping a bunch of upcharges on our order.

All in all, I don’t necessarily think we would have been better off with a U-haul, and most of the irritation, I think I could just write off as moving-related frustrations.  So I think objectively, PODS was the right choice for us, even if there are some things I think they could have been more understanding about and a little less “oh well 🤷‍♀️“ about charging us an arm and a leg for something unforseeable.  I don’t think customers” wallets should be at the mercy of where they decide they will deliver from one location to the next.  If you’re told they service that area, they should service that area, without an extra charge to you, especially when we are talking about F O U R  M I L E S.

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