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Everything You Need to Know About Renting a U-Haul Truck

Renting a U-Haul Truck

We live in an era where there are so many options for every choice we make — and renting a moving truck is no different. U-Haul is a prevalent name in the moving truck industry, and you may be considering renting one of their trucks or trailers for your upcoming relocation — so we broke down everything you need to know about renting a U-Haul truck so that you’re fully prepared.


There are a few types of trailer options that will allow you to tow your belongings behind your vehicle.

  • For those with a fairly light load, the aerodynamic and lightweight enclosed cargo trailer comes in a variety of sizes and can be towed by a wide range of vehicles. Less bulky means easier travel and better gas mileage, so this trailer could make your move simple and smooth.
  • Utility trailers are larger and more heavy-duty, intended to haul bulkier items like large furniture, landscaping items, or building supplies. These trailers are also capable of supporting heavier loads, so may be better suited if you have a lot of bulky stuff to transport.
  • If you need to transport an additional vehicle, rent a U-Haul car trailer. You can choose between a tow dolly, which is better for shorter moves, an auto transport trailer (all four tires are off the ground), or a motorcycle-specific trailer.

With many sizes of trailers to choose from, it’s important to know how much space you’ll need. Here are your options:

  • The 4’x8’ cargo trailer is the smallest of the enclosed trailers offered. It protects your belongings from the elements and can handle up to 1,600 lbs, making it a great choice for smaller moves — like college students moving into a dorm with a limited amount of stuff.
  • The 5’x8’ cargo trailer is one of the most popular U-Haul trainer sizes, and one of the most economical to rent. This size is perfect for moving basic furnishings for a studio apartment (though it won’t fit a queen or king sized mattress), or if you’re out furniture shopping and need a way to get your new furnishings home. Trailers have lockable doors to protect your belongings while you are out and about.
  • The 5’x10’ cargo trailer will be better suited for a larger bed, couch, chairs, boxes, and more. This size has 230 cubic feet of space, so your one bedroom apartment should fit just fine.
  • The 6’x12’ cargo trailers are the largest trailer option, and these trailers are designed to meet the space requirements for those moving long distance. A 2,500 lb weight capacity means you can load this trailer with several rooms’ worth of furniture no problem, so long as your vehicle has the tow capacity necessary!


Whether you drive a small car that can’t tow a trailer, don’t have a vehicle, or you’d prefer to put the mileage on a rental truck, renting a U-Haul truck is the next option on your list of choices. Everyone needs to have the experience of renting a moving truck and making the trip cross-country, so here is your chance.

Break It Down by Rooms
There are a few sizes of U-Haul trucks available, so here is how to decide which kind will work best for you. Remember that these estimations are based on what is “typically” in a home this size, and what you need may vary slightly.

  • Cargo van to 10′ moving truck: studio apartment. If you don’t have a lot to move but can’t use your own vehicle, a Cargo Van might be an excellent method. The next step up, the 10’ moving truck, will, of course, fit more furniture – and potentially be easier to load with the larger door.
  • 15-foot moving truck: apartment, two bedrooms or less. Unless you have packed a lot of stuff into your two-bedroom apartment, you should be able to manage with a 15-foot truck. Think two beds well packed against the back, then your furniture and boxes.
  • 20-foot moving truck: house, two to three bedrooms. Five extra feet makes a big difference when you’re adding another bedroom of furniture.
  • 26-foot moving truck: house, four or more bedrooms. This is the largest size you can rent and drive as a civilian mover. Beyond this? You need to have your moving company bring in the big truck to move your belongings!

How much will it cost?

How much it costs to rent a U-Haul will, of course, vary depending on which type of trailer of truck you decide to rent – but there are also other factors to consider. For in-town moves, U-Haul offers a set amount for the rental period plus mileage fees. For long-distance moving, the rates are calculated using a combination of truck size, the point of origin, destination and the date of the move. An allowed mileage is included in the rate, so any additional side trips may cost extra. Truck rentals also require a time-frame, and this information will be taken into consideration for your rate. Returning a truck late will mean additional charges.

Considering renting a truck? Make sure you’re on the lookout for the hidden costs of renting a moving truck as you prepare your moving budget!


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Unpakt Team