U-Pack is a highly-rated moving company for the budget-conscious consumer. Those who like control of packing and loading will appreciate U-Pack’s DIY approach. Pack yourself, lock up your belongings, and take the key. Get your cube delivered to your new address. And save a bundle while you’re at it.
Service Area: 50 states
Can Pack For You: No
Licensing: USDOT 914011
- Predictable per-linear-foot pricing
- On-time pickup and delivery
- Their model offers the greatest peace of mind and privacy
- Garners glowing reviews on the BBB and other platforms
- Can refer you to packing services
- No local moves
- Does not have in-house packing and unpacking services
- Some reports of leaky transport cubes
- An additional moving company may be required at one end of the journey
What We Think About U-Pack
When we saw the 4.05 stars out of 5 for U-Pack on the Better Business Bureau (BBB), we were intrigued.
Most moving companies are lucky to get three stars because, let’s face it, most people only leave reviews when they are upset.
As it turns out, people really like U-Pack’s model. It all but removes surprises from the process. From pricing to timing, you know what you’re getting with U-Pack.
First, self-packing is popular. While it’s more work, strangers aren’t entering your home or accidentally banging your grandmother’s hope chest against the doorjamb. You load U-Pack’s “ReloCube®” yourself, lock it up, and keep the key. No one has access to your things during the entire journey.
Second, pricing is simple. You pay by container and only pay for what you use. The company even encourages you to reserve more containers than you need. You don’t pay for any unused cubes.
If cubes aren’t enough, you can reserve a trailer. In this scenario, you pay by linear foot. If you use 15 linear feet (U-Pack trailers are 28 feet long), you pay for only 15 feet. Trailers are 8x9 feet, so you can cram a lot of items in one linear foot. When you’re done packing, lock a dividing wall in place. Again, no one has access to your part of the trailer.
A semi comes and picks up your cubes or trailer and delivers it to your new residence. You unpack. It’s that simple.
This DIY approach can save you serious money. One customer reported saving about $10,000 over a full-service moving company for a 2,500-mile move. What’s more, this same user raved about customer service, despite rescheduling four times due to home sale challenges.
This model resonates with many customers so much that you have to do some significant digging on BBB’s website to find a negative review. The rare bad review did reveal some downsides.
U-Pack is about the closest thing to a perfect moving company that we’ve come across. Still, some customers had issues.
One customer would have needed to hire a second moving company for the last leg of the journey because U-Pack did not deliver to his future address. He ended up booking a regular moving company that could perform the job door to door.
There were two reports of porous cubes. One customer reported a cockroach infestation upon receiving the cube. Another reported water damage. While the cubes are supposed to be watertight, the company needs to do a better job of regular inspections. Base coverage is only 10 cents per pound, which likely isn’t enough to replace damaged items. Still, these reports were few and far between, indicating this is not a widespread problem.
The company also does not perform local moves. Find a reputable local mover if you’re just moving a short distance.
U-Pack Pros and Cons
- Transparent, predictable pricing
- Pay only for what you use
- Customers report superior service
- Better privacy and security than full-service movers
- Supports moves to Canada and Puerto Rico
- No local moves
- Must pack within a 3-day window
- Does not pick up and deliver everywhere
- Inadequate base property coverage
As its name suggests, U-Pack’s model is all about self-packing. You pack up a container or trailer and the company moves it to the new location. It’s that simple.
Long Distance Moving
The company only performs long-distance moves. It uses its network of 240 service centers to deliver your cube or trailer to most locations within all 50 states, plus Canada and Puerto Rico.
Referrals to packing/loading companies
If self-packing isn’t your thing, but you like U-Pack’s model, the company can refer you to local packing services. You can hire a separate company to pack up your home into the ReloCubes or trailer, then hire another company to unpack at the new destination. U-Pack can help you source this labor.
- Senior moving: U-Pack can refer seniors to local packing, loading, and unloading crews. It can also handle moves to senior living communities or assisted living.
- Student moving: The company can drop off the ReloCube at on- or off-campus housing.
- Storage: If you’re not ready for your things at the new residence, U-Pack can hold them at their facility. Note that you are not able to access the cube or trailer until it is delivered to the final destination.
How Much Does U-Pack Cost?
Cost is where U-Pack really shines. That’s the whole point of DIY, right? As mentioned above, one customer reported saving $10,000 on a 2,500-mile move using U-Pack instead of a full-service company. That certainly got our attention.
According to the company, it costs around $2,500 to move one ReloCube door to door. Each ReloCube is 308 cubic feet, measuring 5’ 10” long x 6’ 10” wide x 7’ 9” high on the inside. You will need about one ReloCube for each room in the home.
Here are quotes from U-Pack’s website for a 1,700-mile move. Compared to full-service movers, the company is quite affordable.
|Home Size/Transport Option
|Cost for 1,700-mile move
If you want to save even more, here are tips:
Service center delivery. Choose to have your ReloCube delivered to a U-Pack service center instead of the exact address. This could save hundreds of dollars, according to U-Pack.
Use discount codes. Book online and get a $25 discount. Use coupon code BLOG25 for an additional $25 discount. Look around for other discount codes for your situation (military, time of year, etc.)
Reserve more cubes than you need. You are not charged extra for cubes that you don’t use. But if you run out of space, you’ll be charged a delivery fee for the company to drop off extra cubes.
Getting a U-Pack Quote
You can get a fast and free quote online at U-Pack’s website. Just enter your starting and ending locations and the size of your home. Some quotes will require a manual review, so be prepared to enter your email address and be contacted by a rep.
U-Pack Vs. Other Moving Companies
|Can Pack For You
|United Van Lines
|Best Full Value Protection
|JK Moving Services
|Best Full-Service Packing
|North American Van Lines
|Most Predictable Pricing
|Up to 50%
|International Van Lines
|Most Flexible Mover
|Best DIY Mover
|American Van Lines
|Best for High-Value Moves
|Best Moving Broker
|Required, amount varies
Is U-Pack a reputable company?
U-Pack is licensed with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) and has been in business since 1997. It has an A+ rating with the BBB.
What is the relationship between U-Pack and ABF?
You can think of U-Pack as the moving company that organizes logistics, and ABF Freight as the company providing the actual transportation. The two companies have been partnering for 20 years.
Is U-Pack licensed?
U-Pack is licensed with the FMCSA under USDOT 914011 as a freight forwarder, meaning it uses a separate company, typically ABF Freight, to actually move your items, although U-Pack oversees and arranges the moves.
How big is a U-Pack ReloCube?
Each ReloCube moving container has an internal size of 308 cubic feet, about big enough to hold one room’s worth of furniture and items. Internal dimensions are 5’ 10” long x 6’ 10” wide x 7’ 9” high. External dimensions are 6' 3” (length) x 7' (width) x 8' 4” (height).
Should You Use U-Pack For Your Move?
If you’re a budget-conscious and hands-on person, U-Pack is a fantastic moving option. Those seeking more control over the moving experience will love this service as well, since you oversee packing and loading, and can lock up your belongings for the duration of the move. Get a quote from U-Pack to see how much you can save over the traditional full-service mover.
Research Other Moving Companies
At Money.com, we prioritize providing our readers with thorough, trustworthy reviews.
In order to give you the best recommendations for moving companies, we’ve reviewed more than a dozen companies using these metrics:
- Services: We analyze each moving company based on the types of services and features they offer, comparing them to other providers in the industry.
- Availability: We also factor in each company’s state availability, highlighting the areas in which they’re licensed to serve.
- Pricing: In our analysis, we also zero in on pricing and compare quotes across multiple moving companies. That includes evaluating how transparent a company is about its cost structure, additional fees, and cancellation policy.
- Reputation: We pay close attention to each moving company’s brand reputation by reading third-party reviews and checking for proper licensing and accreditation through the DOT’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration database.
- Customer experience: We reviewed dozens of negative reviews from real customers for each moving company. We incorporated comments into our ratings and addressed common themes in each review.