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Everything You Must Know Before Renting a Moving Truck

Renting a Moving Truck

So you’ve decided to go DIY for your upcoming move. That’s a great way to save money, but make sure you have all the information you need before renting a moving truck. We compiled this list of frequently asked questions about moving truck rentals to help you gather all the information you need:

  1. Are there are any requirements for renting the truck?

    To rent a trailer or a truck one must have a valid driver’s license. An age limit of 18 and up also applies, although it varies with different rental companies.

  1. Who can drive the rental truck?

    Usually, rental companies allow up to four drivers per truck. All drivers must present identification, and in some cases, a fee is charged per driver. Family members are often allowed to drive at no additional cost. Keep in mind that the person who signs the lease is the one responsible for the truck.

  1. Do you need special insurance?

    To determine whether you need any additional insurance, first, check your current auto and home insurance policies. They may offer coverage for damage to the truck and/or its cargo in case of an accident. If not, you would need to purchase supplemental insurance from the rental agency.

  1. What size trucks are available, and how do you determine the size you need?

    Most rental companies have a wide variety of truck sizes, from trailers and vans to 26′ trucks. Companies usually have an estimate for the number of rooms that can be packed and loaded onto each size of a truck.

  1. Do you need any other equipment (like dollies, pads, straps, etc.)?

    Additional equipment like a dolly, hand truck and padding materials can make DIY moving both safer and easier. Most rental companies will be glad to provide you with it, at a price. Ask if anything is included in the cost of the rental when you compare truck rental quotes.

  1. Do you need a special driver’s license?

    No. Rental trucks are not considered commercial vehicles and a standard driver’s license will suffice.

  1. How is a rental truck priced?

    Rental trucks are usually priced based on the location of pick-up and drop-off, mileage, the number of days and size of the truck. Most rental companies factor in the dates of your move and charge more on busy weekends and around holidays. If you have some flexibility with the timing of your move, it would be wise to get different quotes for different dates. Prices may vary significantly depending on availability.

  1. Are there any additional costs to renting a truck?

    Gas, taxes, and tolls will be your main expenditure other than the cost of rent. Some companies charge a fee for mileage and you may also want to purchase additional insurance. Ask the rental company what’s included in the price.

  1. Can I pick up a rental truck in one state and return it in another?

    Yes, most rental companies have branches in many major cities, so you can return the truck in the city nearest your new home.

  1. How far in advance should I reserve a truck rental?

    It is highly advisable to reserve your truck as early as possible. Make your reservation as soon as you know the date you will be moving.

  1. What happens if the moving truck breaks down?

    Make sure you have the phone number of your agency’s emergency services when you pick up your rental truck. Each agency handles truck malfunctions differently so ask about the agency’s policy when making your reservation.

  1. Do I need a credit card to rent a truck?

    This also depends on the agency’s policy. Some truck rental companies allow payment by cash, debit card or personal check, but not all of them.

  1. What if I need to cancel my reservation?

    Most agencies require at least 48 hours’ notice, and some charge a cancellation fee. Make sure to ask about the company’s cancellation policy before making a reservation.

  1. Do I get a refund if I return the truck early?

    Some agencies will give you more time than you need for a one-way move, so you can return it safely without being pressed for time. In these cases, you won’t get a refund if you return the truck early. However, in local round-trip moves, you will likely be able to get a refund for unused days.

  1. Will I be charged extra fees if I return the truck rental on time?

    If you return the car in good condition and with as much fuel as it had when you got it, no additional charges are to be expected. Some agencies may charge for using equipment that was on board the truck (like blankets or a dolly), or for exceeding the mileage limit stated in the rental agreement. Make sure you read the agreement carefully before signing to avoid any surprises.

Have any more questions? Share them with us in the comments! If you can’t decide between hiring a moving company and renting a moving truck check out this article to help make the decision best for you.


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Unpakt Team