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We recommend the best products through an independent review process, and advertisers do not influence our picks. We may receive compensation if you visit partners we recommend. Read our advertiser disclosure for more info.

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How Much Does Moving Truck Rental Cost?

Average Cost Range
? Cost data include the unit, labor, and demolition, if applicable. All cost data in this article were gathered from RSMeans construction materials and labor database and bids from top contractors.
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$20–$100/day

Find costs near you.

Updated On

December 30, 2023

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It’s no secret that moving into a new home can be stressful, and first-time movers are often surprised at how expensive it can be. If you want to keep things simple and you have the budget to hire professional movers, it’s an optimal choice for giving yourself a hassle-free moving experience. However, if you’re working with a tight budget, you may get more bang for your buck by renting a truck and doing the move yourself.

As a former mover, I know how taxing the moving process can be in both a personal and professional setting. However, renting a moving truck can be a great option if you’re physically fit and set on saving money. In this article, I’ll outline everything you need to know about moving truck rental costs, how to save money on renting a moving truck, and the best moving truck rental companies and professional movers. If you’re ready to learn more, keep reading to understand what to expect when renting a moving truck.

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How Much Does It Cost To Rent a Moving Truck?

Generally, you can expect to pay between $20 and $100 a day to rent a moving truck, the average being $60 per day. The table below outlines the cost based on truck size (not including additional mileage fees).

Truck SizeAverage Daily Rental Cost
Small$20 – $30
Medium$40 – $80
Large$60 – $100

These costs can vary from company to company or state to state, but the above prices are a solid starting point when considering the baseline cost for renting a moving truck. Just know that the actual move will likely be more expensive because of additional fees like gas and mileage. If you’re traveling a long distance to your new home, the daily rental cost isn’t an accurate gauge of the total moving cost.


What Factors Determine Moving Truck Rental Costs?

Moving truck rental costs can vary wildly, affected by components such as truck size, the duration of your rental, the distance traveled, and the time of year. The most significant factors are the mileage traveled and the rental duration, which can greatly increase the price. Be sure to consider how far you’re moving and how long you’ll need the truck since these elements can make a bigger difference in cost than the amount of boxes you’re moving. Below, I’ll explain the different factors and explain why and how these can affect your moving truck rental costs.

How Does Truck Size Affect Rental Cost?

If you’re looking to rent a moving truck, the size of the vehicle and the storage space it contains makes all the difference. A small truck is usually a good fit for studio or one-bedroom moves and can range from 10 to 12 feet long. A medium-length truck is meant for two-or three-bedroom moves and can range from 14 to 20 feet long. Large trucks can be up to 26 feet long and are designed for the biggest moves. Naturally, these trucks have different weight limits and storage capacities, so their prices will differ.

Truck size doesn’t make a huge difference in cost for a one-day rental, but it can add up over a period of several days. For example, the difference between renting a smaller truck and a large truck for one day is only $30 to $80, depending on the company. However, when drawn out over one week, the difference between the two sizes is $280 to $490. The table below shows the average price for renting a moving truck based solely on size.

Truck SizeAverage Cost
Small$20 – $30
Medium$40 – $80
Large$60 – $100

If you’re trying to choose between sizes and you’re only renting for one day, it’s best to go bigger because the price difference between sizes is fairly small. However, if you feel uncomfortable driving a larger box truck around, choosing a smaller truck and making multiple trips could be a better idea.


How Does Rental Duration Affect Cost?

Your daily rental rate may not seem like a huge dent in the overall cost, but those prices compound when adding multiple days. Local companies usually have a daily rate ranging from $20 for small trucks to $100 for the largest trucks.

Not many rental companies offer deals on weekly rentals since not many local moves take a whole week to complete. On the other hand, long-distance moves often charge a flat rate, meaning that the cost is the same whether you use the truck for three days or seven. These flat rates vary by company, so be sure to check the price and details with your company before renting. The table below shows the average cost for a day and a week of renting a moving truck from a local rental company.

Rental DurationAverage Cost
Daily$20 – $100
Weekly$140 – $700

The overall rental price quickly increases when adding extra days, so whenever possible, it’s best to complete your move in one day if it’s a local move. For long-distance moves, it’s better to choose a company that offers flat-rate rentals to cut down on mileage and daily rates.

Local Vs. Long-Distance Rentals

Mileage can make a significant difference in your total moving cost, so it helps to factor in your distance before renting a moving truck. Most companies charge between $0.59 and $1.00 per mile, so if you’re traveling 50 miles to your destination and 50 miles back to return the truck, that adds $59 to $100 to your total bill just in mileage.

Most companies use a flat rate system allowing unlimited mileage for long-distance moves, so the rates can be fairly steep. When considering the daily rental rate, mileage plays a much bigger role in determining the overall cost. The table below shows the average prices for moving locally and long-distance, factoring in mileage and rental costs.

Move TypeAverage Cost
Local (50 miles)$130 – $190
Long Distance (500+ miles)$710 – $2,140

As you can see, mileage makes a real difference in price when viewing the extreme ends of the spectrum. There’s a difference of over $2,000 between the lowest and highest average costs, so it’s important to check what companies charge per mile before agreeing to rent a 26-foot truck for a cross-country move. If you can choose a plan with unlimited miles, it may be cheaper in the long run.

How Does the Time of Year Affect Cost?

The time of year can affect the cost of your moving truck rental, but these price changes aren’t often advertised. They’re largely based on availability, which can vary based on the season. There’s typically less availability in peak season (summer), so the prices go up.

In contrast, there’s typically more availability in the off-season (winter), so the costs may be more reasonable. While these price changes do exist, they’re hard to predict. Each company has different truck availability, and just because you book a moving date in the off-season doesn’t mean the price will be any cheaper. However, the table below outlines the price differences.

SeasonAverage Daily Cost
Peak (Summer)$20 – $100+
Off-peak (Winter)$20 – $100

As you can see, the main difference is the upper limit of the cost. In the off-season, you’ll usually pay no more than $100 a day on average, but it can be much higher in peak season. However,  both the quotes I received from Enterprise and Budget were the same when I reserved a moving truck both in January and in July.

Today’s Homeowner Tips
If you’re a first-time DIY mover, there’s a general order to follow for packing the moving truck. First, pack all your boxes against the back wall of the truck, stacking them as neatly and tightly as possible with the heaviest boxes on the bottom. Then, wall off the boxes by stacking mattresses against them vertically and ratchet-strapping it all in place. After that, slide in your bigger furniture like dressers, shelves, and couches, placing moving blankets around fragile pieces. Finally, fill up the remaining space with whatever items are left, putting soft items like pillows and bags on top.

Additional Costs To Consider With Moving Truck Rentals

In addition to your daily rental rate, several other rental options contribute to your overall moving cost. These factors include fuel costs, additional insurance, equipment rentals, and extra taxes and fees. While these may vary based on your location and chosen company, they’re all important to consider before renting a moving truck. When you’re budgeting for your rental, be sure to account for the following factors:

Fuel Costs

Most, if not all, moving truck rental companies require you to fill the gas tank up to a certain level before returning the truck. For some companies, that means filling it until it’s full. For others, that means filling it up to where the gas gauge was when you picked up the truck. If you fail to do so, you could pay a fueling fee and a price per gallon to fill it up. For example, U-Haul charges a $30 refueling fee and a minimum of $5 per gallon added. Be sure to note any requirements before renting your moving truck.

Insurance

Moving truck rental insurance functions like a mix of auto insurance and moving insurance. Options like collision damage waiver and liability coverage protect the moving truck and anyone involved in an accident, while cargo insurance protects the items inside. Each insurance option comes with an added fee of around $10 to $20 per day per item. It still adds to your overall cost, even if you decide on the most basic insurance package.

Equipment Rentals

If you don’t own any moving equipment, you can usually rent it from the company you decide to rent your truck from. However, these items come at a price. Renting things like packing tape, moving blankets (furniture pads), cardboard boxes, and dollies can add another $100 to $200 to your move. This varies by location and company, but for small moves, it can easily double your overall cost.

Taxes and Fees

Taxes vary on your location, but you should expect to pay a state tax when renting a moving truck. Likewise, you should expect mileage rates of $0.49 to $0.99 per mile during the week and $0.99 to $1.99 per mile on weekends. This can add up quickly, making it one of the most important factors to consider. One-way truck rental fees are also important, as they occur when moving long distances without returning the truck to its original rental location. These one-way moves can add thousands to your bill, so account for them when booking a long-distance rental.


Tips for Saving on Moving Truck Rentals

  • Only rent for one day: Limiting moves to one day is best, as adding extra days can exponentially increase your total moving cost. Most moves only take one day to complete, but if you’re unsure how long your move will take, invite extra friends and family members to help you complete the move faster so you don’t have to add more time to your rental.
  • Don’t pay for extra insurance: While I don’t recommend neglecting rental insurance altogether, you can cut out some additional insurance policies if you’re extremely tight on cash. If you’re involved in an accident, there are risks to this, but only getting the essential insurance can help lower your total bill.
  • Refill the gas tank before returning: If you forget to refill the gas tank, you could be charged a refueling fee. Most companies charge a fee in the range of $20 to $30 plus an additional price per gallon. That can add up quickly, so make sure to fill up before returning the truck.
  • Ask about price matching: Not all companies price match, but it can’t hurt to ask. If you get a quote from another reputable company, there’s a chance a company will match or even beat a competitor’s rate.
  • Ask about discounts: It’s not uncommon for companies to offer discounts to certain demographics, so be sure to ask about available discounts before renting. Members of AAA and AARP can get discounts from specific rental companies, and many companies offer online coupons, so it helps to ask about deals when booking your rental.
Today’s Homeowner Tips

When driving a rental truck, take wide turns and be extremely attentive to what you see in your side mirrors. Always have a friend help you when backing into a driveway or parking space. Box trucks have limited visibility, and although they don’t require a CDL to drive, they can be difficult to handle if you’ve never driven anything that big before.


Hiring Movers Vs. DIY With a Rental Truck

Considering whether you should hire professional movers or rent a moving truck to do the move yourself can be tough. Renting a moving truck is typically the most cost-effective choice and allows for more flexibility with your moving situation. However, it can still be pricey, depending on the distance and duration of the move.

It also leaves more room for error, as you’ll likely be the one to drive the truck and move your belongings. Hiring movers is easy and stress-free, but it can get expensive, depending on the add-on services you purchase. However, in most situations, the pros of hiring movers outweigh the cons, and it can be a better alternative to planning a DIY move.


So, Is Renting a Moving Truck Worth It?

In some cases, renting a truck can be a more affordable moving choice than hiring movers. However, in most situations, hiring professional movers is a better option for keeping your items safe and maintaining a stress-free move. The price difference usually isn’t excessive, and moves tend to run smoother when the professionals handle the heavy lifting. If you’re unsure whether to plan for a DIY rental or hire movers, I recommend searching for professional movers to give yourself a better moving experience.

Our Top Pick
Best Full-Service Mover

4.4

One month of free storage included with your move

Provides moves in all 50 states

Offers air & ocean freighting

VISIT SITE
Most Transparent Pricing

4.0

Flat rate pricing for all moves

Offers price matching

Expedited moves between big cities

VISIT SITE
Best Cost Estimation Tools

4.2

Top-notch packing services

Nationwide partner network

Comprehensive moving calculator

VISIT SITE

FAQs About Moving Truck Rental Cost

What is the cheapest truck rental company?

For most moves, a truck rental from Budget Van Lines is almost always the cheapest option. Its average rates are lower than the competition, and it’s especially affordable for local moves. The average price for local moves with Budget is $80, much lower than the competition. Although U-Haul has more affordable insurance options and Penske has great rates for one-way moves, when it comes to rental fees, Budget is the best cost-effective option.


What is the best day of the week to rent a truck?

Weekdays are usually when truck rental companies have the most availability and, in turn, the lowest rates. Weekdays can also have cheaper mileage fees, with average rates of $0.49 to $0.99 per mile during the week and $0.99 to $1.99 per mile on the weekends. Of course, these aren’t hard-and-fast rules, but they can help you get a better rate if you book on a less busy day.


How far in advance should I reserve a rental truck?

You should book a rental truck at least two to four weeks before your moving date. Booking a truck early ensures that your preferred company will have a truck in your ideal size available for your moving date. Otherwise, you may have to compromise on truck size, pick a different day, or pick a different company. When in doubt, earlier is better. Many companies let you book trucks up to six months in advance, so book as soon as you can.


Is a pickup truck cheaper to rent than a cargo van?

In most cases, renting a pickup truck is cheaper than renting a cargo van, but it depends on the size of your move. Pickup trucks typically have lower daily rates, and they tend to get better gas mileage than cargo vans, but they also have less room in the bed for transporting belongings. If renting a pickup truck means you’ll have to take multiple trips instead of doing it all in one, a cargo van rental could make more financial sense, especially if you’re traveling a long distance. However, pickup trucks are usually more affordable in terms of daily rental rates and gas mileage.


Is it cheaper to rent or buy moving blankets?

Although the price difference between renting and buying is usually not much, renting moving blankets is almost always cheaper. If you only plan to use them once for your move, renting will be more affordable. However, the price difference is so small that buying makes more sense in the long run if you plan on using them in the future. Moving blankets vary in quality, so renting thin, worn-out blankets isn’t worth the money, but buying thick, new ones can be. It all depends on your finances and preferences, but in most cases, renting blankets is the cheaper option.


Editorial Contributors
avatar for Mitchell Layton

Mitchell Layton

Mitchell Layton is a former professional mover who currently lives in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Mitchell spent years packing and moving for REAL Rock N Roll Movers, a commercial and residential moving company based in Los Angeles that’s primarily staffed with up-and-coming musicians. That gave him plenty of experience navigating box trucks up and down the winding streets of LA. In addition to moving hundreds of happy customers into new homes and apartments all across Southern California, Mitchell has also performed corporate moves on company lots for Nickelodeon, Warner Bros, Universal Studios, Paramount, and more. After pouring blood, sweat, and tears into his profession, Mitchell has all the helpful tips you need for your next move.

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photo of Lora Novak

Lora Novak

Senior Editor

Lora Novak meticulously proofreads and edits all commercial content for Today’s Homeowner to guarantee that it contains the most up-to-date information. Lora brings over 12 years of writing, editing, and digital marketing expertise. She’s worked on thousands of articles related to heating, air conditioning, ventilation, roofing, plumbing, lawn/garden, pest control, insurance, and other general homeownership topics.

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