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The Best Moving Containers of 2020

Two storage pods in parking lot
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Planning a move and need extra storage? Moving container rental might be your best option. Moving containers are portable storage units used to transport or store your household items. Think portable shed, and you get the idea.

While moving containers obviously cost more than asking a friend for help, they’re still more cost-effective than hiring a full-blown professional moving company. You simply order your container to be delivered to your home, load it, and then have the company deliver it to your new home to unload.

Need more time to unload or store your items? Some companies also offer temporary and long-term storage during the moving process. If you need extra space while moving, renting a moving container may be a great option. Read more about some of your storage options below.

Top moving container companies

This list was compiled after conducting extensive web research on pricing, availability, storage options, convenience, and business ratings and reviews. 

U-Pack ReloCube®

Better Business Bureau A+ rated U-Pack makes the top of our list for long-distance moves. U-Pack has been in business for 22 years and has more than 240 locations nationwide.

U-Pack will deliver your unit within 3-5 days from when you order. You have three days to pack your cube on the front end of your move and three days to unpack at your destination. Reserve as many cubes as you need but pay for only the ones you use. They pick up the extra cubes for you at no additional cost.

U-Pack offers storage options if you need more time. U-Pack will deliver your unit to its secure service center until you are ready for it to be delivered to your new location.

All U-Pack ReloCube® units are constructed of weatherproof steel frame with aluminum siding.

How much does a U-Pack ReloCube®moving container cost?

The average for medium-length moves is approximately $1,600, and for long-distance moves is roughly $2,400. Use the U-Pack instant price quote calculator to determine how much your particular move will cost.

U-Pack ReloCube® sizes

Capacity  Weight Limit Dimensions
U-Pack ReloCube® (one size) One room of furniture 2,500 lbs 6’3″W x 7’H x 8’4″L

U-Pack has more details on their website.

1-800-PACK-RAT

Better Business Bureau A-rated 1-800-PACK-RAT makes our list for every length of move: short, medium, and long distances. 1-800-PACK-RAT has been in business for sixteen years, with more than 60 locations nationwide.

1-800-PACK-RAT schedules deliveries at your convenience seven days a week. They deliver your storage unit to your final destination or store your unit at one of their 60+ secured warehouse storage facilities available throughout the United States until you’re ready for delivery.

How much does a 1-800-PACK-RAT moving container cost?

Average prices range from approximately $750 for short distances moves to $3,500 for long-distance moves. 1-800-PACK-RAT claims they will beat any portable storage container price. Calculate the cost of your move by using their quote calculator.

1-800-PACK-RAT moving container sizes

Capacity  Weight Limit Dimensions
8-foot container 1-2 rooms of furniture 4,000 lbs 7.2’W x 7.8’H x 8.5’L
12-foot container 2-3 rooms of furniture 6,000 lbs 7.75’W x 7.5’H x 12’L

Find more details about their containers on their website.

PODS® (Portable on Demand Storage)

Arguably the most well-known company serving the “you pack, we deliver” target market, the Better Business Bureau, gives PODS® an A+ rating. PODS® has been in business for 21 years, with more than 230 locations in the United States as well as the United Kingdom and Australia. PODS® services any length move, including their international locations.

When you get the pod, you can load it, keep it on your property, or store it at a PODS® storage center. PODS® will also pick up the moving container and transport it for you.

All PODS® containers are made of aluminum and steel waterproof materials.

How much does a PODS® moving container cost? 

Average costs range from approximately $338 for a local move to $3,400 for a long-distance move. Use their cost calculator to determine the cost of your move.

PODS® moving container sizes

Capacity  Weight Limit Dimensions
7-foot container 1 room of furniture 4,200 lbs 7.2’W x 7.8’H x 8.5’L
12-foot container 2-3 rooms of furniture 4,700 lbs 7.75’W x 7.5’H x 12’L
16-foot container 3-4 rooms of furniture 5,000 lbs 8’W x 8’H x 16’L

Learn more about PODS® containers by visiting their website.

U-Box® by U-Haul

The most ubiquitous of moving and storage companies, UHaul has been around since 1945 with more than 2,000 locations nationwide. Their latest offering is a service of moving containers called U-Box®. Suitable for long-distance moves, U-Box® offers multiple delivery options. Load and unload at your own pace, U-Box® picks up and drops off at your beginning and ending destinations including international locations. They will also store your goods until you’re ready to have them delivered.

Each container is constructed of heavy-duty plywood with a weatherproof covering.

How much does a U-Box® moving container cost?

On average, the cost of a long-distance move is approximately $2,800. Use U-Box® easy to use cost calculator to determine the cost of your move.

U-Box® moving container size

Capacity  Weight Limit Dimensions
U-Box® moving container (one size) 1 room of furniture 2,000 lbs 7.5’W x 5’H x 8’L

U-Box® has provided more details on its website.

SMARTBOX

SMARTBOX has been in business for 21 years and is located in over 41 metro locations nationwide. Suitable for local and long-distance moves, SMARTBOX offers loading and unloading flexibility by renting their units by the month.

Each SMARTBOX container is constructed of wood covered by a weatherproof canvas.

How much does a SMARTBOX moving container cost?

On average, the cost of a long-distance move is approximately $2,800. Use the SMARTBOX easy to use free quote estimator to determine the cost of your move.

SMARTBOX moving container size

Capacity  Weight Limit Dimensions
SMARTBOX moving container (one size) 1-1.5 rooms of furniture 3,000 lbs 5’W x 7’H x 8’L

Find more details on the SMARTBOX website.

Go Mini’s®

Go Mini’s® has been in business for 17 years, with locations in more than 200 locations in the United States, Canada, and Mexico. They also have 79 franchise locations in the United States. Go Mini’s® was recognized by the Franchise Business Review as a Top Franchise in 2017.

Each GO Mini’s® container has a galvanized steel exterior that is coated with a baked paint that prevents the containers from sweating.

Load at your own pace, keep the container for as long as you want, then they pick it up to deliver to your new location or store at one of their facilities.

How much does a Go Mini’s® moving container cost?

On average, the cost of a local distance move is approximately $570. Use the Go Mini’s® instant quote estimator to determine the cost of your move.

Go Mini’s® moving container sizes

Capacity  Weight Limit Dimensions
12-foot container 1-2 rooms of furniture 3,000-4,000 lbs 8’ W x 8’ H x 12’ L
16-foot container 3-4 rooms of furniture 4,000-6,000 lbs 8’ W x 8’ H x 16’ L
20-foot container 5-6 rooms of furniture 6,000-8,000 lb 8’ W x 8’ H x 20’ L

Go Mini’s® containers has more details on their website.

Tips for packing a moving container

Make your move even more manageable by following these packing tips:

  • Use as many of the same size boxes as possible to ensure you maximize the container space.
  • Don’t overload your boxes.
  • Make sure your boxes have sturdy bottoms, and we recommend you reinforce all bottom closures with duct tape for added stability.

The bottom line

Whether you’re moving or just need some extra storage, moving containers offer cost-efficient and flexible moving options.

Frequently asked questions

How much do moving containers cost?

Although container costs vary based on size and move, we have seen on average prices range from $560 for a local move to over $3500 for a long-distance move.

Are storage containers better than self-storage units?

It depends on your needs such as the amount of storage time and space needed as well as your budget constraints.

Does the container lock?

Yes, you can lock your moving container by using an outside padlock.


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