Sean Donnelly

Written By

Sean Donnelly

Sean Donnelly

Written By

Staff Writer

Sean Donnelly works to inform, engage, and motivate homeowners to take the reigns in making key decisions concerning homeownership and relocation. He is a content producer covering provider reviews, the homeownership and rental experience, real estate, and all things moving for Today’s Homeowner. Sean leverages his own experience within the moving industry to improve the consumer experience. He studied English literature and creative writing at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst.

Reviewed By

Lora Novak

Reviewed By

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.

Updated On

May 11, 2023

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    International Van Lines has enjoyed a relatively quick rise to prominence over the last two decades. Since the beginning of its domestic moving services run in 2007, it has become one of the most well-known and trusted names in the industry, alongside other power players who have been in the business for nearly a century. Now, International enjoys a sparkling reputation for customer service and ease of booking, which few movers can claim. IVL handles more than 20,000 moves of all sizes each month and enjoys a 4.8/5 average customer rating. Read on to learn more about:

    • International Van Lines’ service offerings
    • How much your IVL move should cost
    • What customers have to say about this premium carrier and broker

    Our IVL Review

    International Van Lines provides leading services both as a broker and a carrier. This operational ability lends itself to a nearly unmatched diversity of service offerings. While it can provide commercial moving assistance, residential clients are better served when going to this mover.

    International’s definite strong point is the customer service it can provide at all points during the moving process. From the start, you’ll be treated to personalized care by a dedicated moving coordinator, who will conduct your moving estimate before walking you through the entirety of your relocation.

    As with any large-scale moving company — especially with moving brokers — your experience can vary from location to location. We at Today’s Homeowner feel that this mover offers one of the best customer experiences available due to its attention to detail and low price points.

    Pros & Cons of Booking with International Van Lines

    Pros & Cons


    • Competitive full-service moving rates
    • Discounts for services offered
    • Excellent reputation for customer service
    • Availability through all 50 states and 150 other countries


    • Has limited U.S. locations
    • Requires high deposits when booking

    How Much Does International Van Lines Cost?

    International Van Lines’ operation as a moving broker allows it to provide some of the lowest relative costs for full-service moving in the industry. When you book with International, your move will be contracted out to the cheapest partner in your area.

    After your free quote for long-distance or interstate moving, you’ll be required to pay a deposit equivalent to 25% of your total move bill. 50% of the remainder will be due upon completion of your load up, with the rest due when your move has been completed. You’ll never be required to pay more than 110% of any written estimate or quoted price if your inventory and service needs remain the same throughout your move. This guard against needless additional costs is standard across the moving industry and should be discussed during any moving estimate you receive.

    Your bottom line will be determined by a few factors, including the following:

    • Move distance
    • Location
    • Shipping weight and volume
    • Move date

    The pricing figures here reflect average costs for different move sizes with IVL:

    <250 mi500 mi1,000 mi2,000 mi
    2 BR$1,400 – $4,400$1,900 – $4,900$2,100 – $5,100$2,400 – $5,400
    4 BR$3,200 – $6,200$5,100 – $8,100$5,700 – $8,700$6,200 – $9,200

    Local Moving

    Per the rates advertised on its website, a general cost of $150 per hour for three movers and a truck is expected. However, these rates from IVL will vary based on seasonality and geographical location. We’ve provided some other general rates here. No matter how small your move may be, you should set aside at least $600 to $800 for even the smallest local moves.

    Most movers will charge minimum fees, amounting to two to four hours of labor. You could be slated to pay a minimum of $300 to $600 for moving help at the above rate, even if you’re only moving to a studio apartment within the same building.

    Movers (with Truck)Hourly Rate

    Packing Costs

    Packing as a standalone service can be costly, but purchasing can save you time and frustration. Movers who provide this service will offer a range of packing-related services. These can include fragile-only packing, single-room packing, or full-scale packing for an entire home. IVL lists the total cost of packing a one-bedroom home ranging between $375 and $625, with prices going up steeply by home size.

    If you can afford it, packing is one of the more valuable moving add-on services to consider. If you’re on the fence about opting for such help, IVL’s average packing costs below should further inform your decision.

    Number of BedroomsFull Packing Cost
    1$375 – $625
    2$750 – $1,125
    3$1,250 – $1,875
    4$2,000 – $2,500

    Storage Costs

    Across the board, storage costs $0.50 per cubic foot per month with International. If bundled with a full-service move, you’ll often be in line for a month of free storage. Beyond that, you will have to file to stop storage fees ten days before the end of your current billing period to cancel your service. If this isn’t done, you’ll be responsible for paying for the next month of storage.

    Extra Fees

    Added costs from International are pretty standard and can be expected in some form from most prominent moving companies. They are thoroughly outlined on its website and include defined fees for extra flights of stairs, long carries, transportation services, piano moving, etc. We’ve outlined the current cost schedule for additional expenses from International here.

    Item or ServiceFee 
    Elevator fee$75
    Extra flights of stairs (beyond the first flight of seven steps)$75
    Long carry (beyond 75 feet)$75
    Shuttle service $350 minimum/ $1 per additional cubic foot
    Bulky item$150
    Piano (upright)$150
    Piano (grand or baby grand)$350

    What Services Does International Offer?

    As one of the most widely-available moving companies in the United States — and globally — International Van Lines provides a nearly-unmatched range of services. Moves of all lengths include plenty in their base total cost, including basic furniture protection, assembly and disassembly, loading and unloading, and released liability coverage. You’ll be able to craft your moving package to include the following:

    • Packing
    • Unpacking
    • Crating
    • Storage services
    • Vehicle and auto transport
    • Special item moving (pool tables, pianos, and similar goods)
    • Debris removal
    • Small move assistance
    • And more

    Local Moves

    International Van Lines’ definite focus is on long-distance and international moves. It is more than capable of providing excellent local service within set areas. Per their website, local moves are provided directly for parts of Florida and Texas. Beyond this, you should call them to ask about local service.

    Long-Distance Moves

    Long-distance moving is International Van Lines’ decided specialty for domestic relocation assistance. International Van Lines offers their full range of services for such moves, with all costs calculated up-front. Whether you need full-service packing for a five-bedroom house or a more straightforward move for a small apartment, you’ll be well-served by this mover.

    International Moves

    International moving is where this provider got its start in 2000, and it continues to shine in this area. With service provided to more than 150 other countries worldwide, your move to almost any other location will be in qualified hands when you book with IVL.

    With licensing through the Federal Maritime Commission, its ocean freight division is readily available to handle all moves, regardless of size. This includes large and special shipping requirements, including cars, trucks, and marine vehicles. Similarly, its air freight capabilities can serve plenty of small and intermediate expedited shipping needs.

    Liability Coverage

    All moving companies carry a basic level of coverage for household goods which is included in your move cost. This released liability coverage provides $0.60 per pound per item if any goods are lost or damaged.

    If you require additional coverage and your renter’s or homeowner’s insurance policy doesn’t provide any, you can purchase temporary valuation coverage from IVL or their local affiliate. The total cost of your coverage will amount to 3.5% of the declared value of your goods, with a $500 deductible.

    Before purchasing this, you should note that the claims process can be lengthy when dealing with any professional moving company. Your best bet for recouping a portion of the total value of any damaged or lost goods will be to file a grievance on or shortly after your delivery date.

    Service Area & Availability

    International Van Lines services moving needs in all 50 states and 150 other countries worldwide. Whether you’re moving down the street or halfway around the globe, IVL’s services can safely help you, your family, and your things reach their final destination.

    Within the United States, you’ll most likely deal with one of this provider’s local partners. Aside from its home base in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, IVL has relatively few brick-and-mortar office locations that it services moves from. This leads to varied quality across different areas but is also the main reason for its diverse array of service offerings.

    How To Schedule With International

    International Van Lines’ superior customer service makes booking a move a relatively smooth process. You can set up your estimate by calling IVL’s phone number or going through the company’s website. Online, you’ll be able to either schedule a personalized estimate or get an instant quote through their quick quote tool.

    Do this around six weeks before your ideal moving date. This will give you the required time to field this company’s offer and competing pricing quotes. Once you have committed to moving with IVL, be sure to get a copy of your moving estimate and contract for your own records. Keep this readily available throughout your move to reference and ensure that your agreed-upon services are being carried out.


    With International, you must put a 25% deposit down ahead of your move. Upon your move’s commencement and eventual completion, this money down goes towards your final total. However, as one of the best moving companies, IVL is well aware that certain life events or circumstances can alter plans. If you cancel with more than 48 hours’ notice, your credit card will be refunded the entire deposit amount.

    If you’re thinking of canceling due to a better competing offer that you’ve received from another company, this provider may be capable of matching your new lower price. In either case, you will have to directly contact the service representative you booked your move with.

    International Reviews From Actual Customers

    International Van Lines deserves its reputation as a top moving company in the commercial and residential relocation space. The reviews below attest to its efficiency and care at all points in the moving process.

    When vetting any moving company, customer reviews are an invaluable resource. It’s fairly easy for any provider to make a positive impression during a moving quote or estimate or through its website and online presence. Client feedback will give you a far more thorough look at any mover’s actual conduct during moves, independent of stated policies. Looking into reviews from Google, Yelp, BBB, and social media can help to determine which movers would be a good fit for your exact needs.

    Rachel R. had this to say about her IVL moving experience:

    “I had a good experience with IVL for my move from C.A. to C.O. I was able to receive a reasonable quote from Ken after a phone conversation regarding my possessions/inventory. I contacted IVL and updated my inventory a couple of times and continued to receive updated quotes. One of their carriers, Y & O Moving, showed up at the time I was told they would (Trish provided me with their arrival time). These four movers were efficient and overall did a good job packaging up/protecting our furniture. Approximately 10 days later I was told my possessions would arrive in a couple days. Shortly thereafter, I was given a more concrete arrival time, and Bobby and one other mover showed up exactly when they said they would. Both were incredibly kind and hardworking. Special shoutout to Bobby though for being very committed to giving his all to the job! He was efficient, professional, and motivated. After unwrapping our possessions, only three items had some damage. The items that were damaged were old and/or had weaker structural integrity to begin with, so that was to be expected. In general, I am quite pleased with the communication, decently smooth process, and the wonderful movers hired.”

    Clarence H. gave this review for an IVL move from the summer of 2021:

    “I moved from M.E. to C.A. last summer. I found the experience from start to finish brilliant. I found this moving firm was quoting me the best price by a considerable margin but felt completely at ease after speaking with Howard explaining he would be putting all my goods into storage at the other end. There were no letters and flyers being sent out to me which I was very happy about, unlike many other firms. On the day of the move, they arrived early and got straight on with the job. They packed the truck well so all my goods were secure for traveling and used blankets to protect furniture. Completed the loading promptly and then set off to my destination not wasting any time. The unloading was swiftly transferred into the storage rooms and throughout they were hard-working and courteous. I would give their name to anyone for all your moving needs.”

    Meg Sarwick reported an excellent experience for her cross-country move with IVL:

    “International Van Lines is highly rated so we chose to call them first. This is the 3rd time I had to hire movers and I learned from my last experience not to look for the cheapest price. I’ve been burned by a “low baller” in the past and I was not about to go through that nightmare again. My relocation guy Mike J. Did not try and force me to pay a deposit. He actually spent a lot of time with my husband and myself talking about options and a game plan.

    IVL Mover’s were nice, polite and did more than we expected. The whole experience could have been very stressful had I picked the wrong mover. Anyhow, the guys did the needful and all went well. I’d like to thank Mike, Lisa and Jason who were all involved. I’d use them again without a doubt.”

    The Good

    International Van Lines’ positive customer reviews heavily report its customer service and care to be among the best. With this mover, clients are afforded individualized attention before and through their moving dates, leading to more stress-free experiences.

    The Bad

    IVL’s broker status is a double-edged sword. On one hand, you as a consumer are likely within the effective operating distance of an International Van Lines local partner. When you book with this provider, it will often broker your move out to the lowest bidder in your area. All of the movers IVL deals with are fully licensed and insured, but exclusively opting for the lowest-cost provider can lead to shoddy service.

    Negative reviews report inadequate protection for furniture, damaged goods and a lengthy and uncertain claims process, and more. Before confirming your booking with International, you should research its affiliates in your area. All quotes are free, whether they’re done over the phone or in person. Request a list of associated companies from your moving coordinator prior to signing a contract.

    Today’s Homeowner Rating Methodology

    At Today’s Homeowner, our primary goals are to be a reliable source of information and to be totally transparent to our readers. With that in mind, we’ve developed the following formula to render objective ratings – on a scale of 10 points – for the moving companies we review.

    • Transparency (3.0): Communication and being fully straightforward regarding company policies and licensing are incredibly important. A given mover’s willingness to display these, to supply quick quotes, and to provide clearly-worded moving contracts all factor into the three points within this single rating criteria.
    • Cost (2.5): A mover’s cost relative to industry averages, as well as accessibility to cost data play a role in the customer experience as much as anything else. We know that being sure of what you’re paying – and being confident that you’re not overpaying – will ultimately make for a positive move. We’ve weighted cost factors accordingly in our ratings.
    • Customer Service (2.0): Establishing an easy line of contact with your movers during the booking process or during the move itself is a huge asset for any moving client. The stress of moving, in general, can be greatly eased by knowing you can talk to a licensed professional whenever you need to, which is why we’ve listed this as a key rating category. This is where customer reviews come into play; since the majority of complaints stem from poor customer service, feedback from BBB, Yelp, Google, and other review platforms factor into this criteria.
    • Services Offered (1.5): This rates lower on our priority list than many would think, simply due to the fact that many movers provide a similar line of services. However, breadth of service offerings does still vary to a degree.
    • Customization Options (1.0): Having the autonomy to fully customize your move should rate highly on any moving checklist. Here, we’ve taken moving package customization ability, as well as pricing for more involved add-ons. Steep pricing for such services can provide something of a soft barrier for clients looking to add to their move, and we’ve taken this into consideration.
    Editorial Contributors
    Sean Donnelly

    Sean Donnelly

    Staff Writer

    Sean Donnelly works to inform, engage, and motivate homeowners to take the reigns in making key decisions concerning homeownership and relocation. He is a content producer covering provider reviews, the homeownership and rental experience, real estate, and all things moving for Today’s Homeowner. Sean leverages his own experience within the moving industry to improve the consumer experience. He studied English literature and creative writing at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst.

    Learn More

    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.

    Learn More

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