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Cheaply Move Across Country

Updated on August 11, 2013

Moving Across The Country For Cheap

Moving across the country can be a timely, stressful, and expensive experience. However, it doesn’t have to be that way if the time is spent in advance researching what different cross country movers have to offer. Packing, storage, unpacking, setting up at the new home, and rate comparison are all important points to consider. The most important question is:

Are you going to be moving yourself of hiring cross country movers?

Packing For A Move Across The Country

Packing can be done by the individual moving or by the professionals. Many try to keep it cheap by doing it themselves, however time, effort, damage, and possible health issues may contradict the savings.

Professionals are experienced allowing them to pack at a much faster pace. Additionally, because they pack valuables almost daily, they will know how to pack properly to avoid damage during the move. They are also trained to pack and move items without causing physical injury.

Conversely, most individuals have never moved long distance. Everything in the home will likely be moved in one trip rather than several small trips that are common in short moves. This takes a larger effort and time commitment. A lot more work is being done in a short period of time. This often leads to back pain and other possible injuries.

Tips For Packing Up Yourself...Cheaply!

  1. Use newspaper or junk mail to wrap your glassware and ball it up for good box stuffing and extra padding. Don't waste unnecessary money buying packing peanuts or paper when you can recreate them easily for free.
  2. Don't buy moving boxes! Get free boxes for moving from local grocery stores or department stores. Costco, Walmart, Target, and any grocery store around has a lot of excess boxes lying around daily. Go ask an employee or manager if they can give you some of them for free. Most stores have no problem with this at all as long as they aren't too busy.
  3. Sell off all of the stuff you don't need. Take your extra items into pawn shops or sell them online on Craigslist or Ebay before your move. If you can't sell them and they aren't worth the hassle of moving across the country, you can always donate your things to a charity like Goodwill or Salvation Army. Try to make some extra money before you move by selling your things and lightening your load as much as possible.
  4. Use your blankets, sheets, towels and clothing for extra wrapping and padding for your breakable items and furniture. If you want to cheaply move your furniture across the country by yourself, then you should definitely make sure its properly padded and protected for the long trip!

For more great tips for planning, packing, and moving across country, visit this website:

Storage Companies

The household is packed up and on the truck before the individual or family. Many families prefer to make their trip across country a vacation and therefore take several days to arrive at their new home. It is important when comparing rates to ask the charge for storage.

If possible, find a company that will store items up to a month for no additional charge. This can be easier to negotiate than one may think. Often the moving company has more than one household on the truck. By transporting two or more households on one trip, the company saves money and therefore is happy to accommodate by storing items for a reasonable period of time.

Moving Across The Country On A Small Budget

Unpacking & Setup After Your Cross Country Move

As with packing, be sure and find out the rates for the company to unpack the household items. Often it isn’t as cost effective as packing. Unpacking boxes can be done in a more relaxed timeframe. Also, damage and physical injuries are less likely.

However, having the professionals set up the furniture may be worth the cost due to the physical work involved. By having the furniture put in place, the new house will feel like home and unpacking the boxes may be a bit less of a daunting task.


Cheap Cross Country Moving Companies

Compare prices from multiple cross country movers to find the cheapest deals. Make the movers compete for your move across the country and save big!

Cross Country Rate Comparison

By far, the way to get the cheapest rate for a long distance move across the country is to compare the rates among different movers. Obtain a detailed estimate that includes every possible fee including packing supplies. Also make sure to ask about discounts. Being a member of an organization often allows for significant savings. Don’t be afraid to ask for a price match. If a certain company is preferred, but they are going to charge more, they may be willing to do it cheaper in order to get the business and potential referral.

Cheap price is important, but be sure each company contacted has been in business awhile, is insured and has referrals available. It is crucial to find out before signing a contract with a professional moving company, what will happen if any of the household items end up missing or damaged. The bottom line is to make sure everything is in writing.

Moving across the country is an exciting journey. It can also be done cheap and stress free with a little negotiating and proper planning.

I recommend this site for comparing prices from up to 6 qualified cross country moving companies for free!

Other Things To Consider

  • Moving prices are considerably higher in the summer months due to high demand. If possible, move over the winter months if you want to save money hiring a cross country moving company to move you.
  • Always check your cross country moving company's reputation on the website to make sure they are doing good business.
  • If you are moving yourself across the country without any electronics or large furniture, then you should look into for shipping your belongings. They offer the cheapest prices on shipping up to 150lbs of clothes and small belongings.

Tips For Moving Across Country Cheaply

Hopefully the tips and information in this hub will help you significantly lower costs on your upcoming move across the country. Moving yourself is always the cheapest dollar amount, but the risk of things going wrong is a lot higher.

If you have the extra money, I recommend hiring a cross country moving company to relocate you. Either way though, there are great tips here to help you cheaply move across the country. Good luck & happy moving!

- David Johnson

Cross Country Movers Reviews

© 2013 David Johnson


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    • cheapmoving profile imageAUTHOR

      David Johnson 

      6 months ago from Phoenix, AZ

      Wow that's awesome! Haha that's wild if you actually used 125 boxes. That's one way to get your workout in. But if you have 6 kids then I'm sure you get random workouts on a daily basis. Thanks for the great tip!

    • profile image


      4 years ago

      Another way to get boxes on the cheap, actually free is I found this out by accident. I needed 5 biggish boxes for items i sold on ebay, put 5 in the quantity and received 125 boxes! (They come in groups of 25, which i didn't realize) Now i have nice, sturdy uniform in size moving boxes, that are made to withstand abuse! :) with moving myself, my husband and our 6 kids from Ohio to Nevada, I may have to order more...

    • cheapmoving profile imageAUTHOR

      David Johnson 

      5 years ago from Phoenix, AZ

      Thanks for the comment Taylor! I'm glad some of this information was useful to you. Amtrak and Greyhound are definitely great options for shipping clothes for cheap. Best of luck on your move!

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      Thanks for the amtrak tip. I am moving from Battle creek Michigan to San Diego California in June and I am trying to decide the cheapest way to move all of my clothes.

    • cheapmoving profile imageAUTHOR

      David Johnson 

      5 years ago from Phoenix, AZ

      Thanks for the comment! Yeah that Amtrak limit is a pain but its good for people who are moving REALLY light. Air Transport is a good way to do it. I know United and Continental airlines both have air cargo services. That will be a cool trip though if you do go. Living in New York will be an unforgettable experience no doubt!

    • Californialaw profile image

      Tiffany K. 

      5 years ago from San Diego, CA

      Never knew about the Winter tip! But supply and demand rules all doesn't it? Thanks for the tip- ive considered moving to New York and I was always wondering about what would be the most cost effective way.

      One thing my friend did when moving coast to coast was fly across and check in large boxes as extra luggage for $50 each large box. I don't think there was a size limitation, only weight up to 80 lbs or so

      And that Amtrak limit is killing me...150 pounds. That's my shoes! Sigh.


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