Many or all of the products featured here are from our partners who compensate us. This may influence which products we write about and where and how the product appears on a page. However, this does not influence our evaluations. Our opinions are our own.
U-Pack is a moving container company that specializes in long-distance moves. Loading and unloading aren’t included in its service, making it relatively inexpensive. For those moving cross-country without much to pack, it's an attractive choice. The company offers broad geographic coverage, with locations in all 50 states, Canada and Puerto Rico.
Here's what to know before booking.
U-Pack is a moving container company, not a full-service mover. That means you’re responsible for loading and unloading your items onto a moving container or trailer, or paying extra for a third-party service to do it.
Here’s how it works:
U-Pack delivers a container or trailer to your residence or storage facility.
You have up to three days to load it up. If you're using a moving container (called a "ReloCube"), you’re responsible for getting a lock, locking the container closed and holding onto the key.
U-Pack transports the container or trailer to your destination.
You generally get three business days to unload.
U-Pack specializes in long-distance interstate moves, including military and college moves. It generally doesn’t provide quotes for moves less than 200 miles or within the same state. It’s possible to ship motorcycles in these containers and trailers, but U-Pack doesn’t ship cars.
How to get a quote
Unlike some moving companies, U-Pack offers instant, easy-to-get quotes online for most long-distance interstate moves in the U.S. You just have to say which cities you’re moving to and from, when you’re moving and the size of your move. There’s no walk-through required.
If you don’t get a quote immediately, according to U-Pack, it might be because your move is within the same state, less than 200 miles or outside U-Pack’s service area, or you’re requesting a quote too close to your move date.
What’s included in the basic price?
The basic quote U-Pack provides includes the cost of:
The use of a ReloCube or moving trailer. This is delivered to you before the move, and you have three days to load it.
Transport. U-Pack transports your ReloCube or trailer to your destination.
Some liability coverage. This is fairly limited, though.
You can pay extra for add-on services, such as loading and unloading (which is available through a third-party company), storage and additional liability coverage.
If you’re moving to Canada, Puerto Rico or Hawaii, additional taxes and fees — which aren’t included in the basic quote — will apply.
U-Pack accepts credit cards, so consider paying with a card that's ideal for large purchases — for example, one with a big sign-up bonus or a long 0% APR period. Unlike other movers, U-Pack also accepts PayPal, an option that could be especially lucrative if you’re paying your PayPal account with a credit card that offers bonus rewards for such purchases. (PayPal is frequently a rotating 5% bonus category on certain cards). It’s also possible to get a personal loan for moving expenses.
Loss and damage protection
Unlike full-service moving companies, moving container and pod companies like U-Pack aren’t subject to the same liability coverage requirements as full-service movers. It’s not surprising, then, that the liability coverage offered by U-Pack isn’t as robust as some policies offered by full-service movers.
Here’s the protection U-Pack includes in its basic quotes:
Catastrophic liability: This covers your items at $3 per pound per piece, up to $60,000 per trailer and $75,000 for only certain catastrophic events, such as a trailer or ReloCube fire.
Carrier negligence liability: This covers your items for 10 cents per pound per piece for loss or damage caused by carrier negligence. (You can purchase add-on coverage to increase this to as much as $3 per pound per piece, with a maximum of $60,000 per trailer and $7,500 for a ReloCube.)
But because your belongings are contained in a locked ReloCube or trailer during the move, this limited coverage might be less of a concern for you. There may be less of a risk that individual boxes would go missing, for example.
Keep in mind that U-Pack's liability policies — including the add-on coverage — don’t cover damage caused due to loading or unloading mishaps, even if you paid extra for a loading and unloading service.
Changes and cancellations
You can change details about your move online or by phone, but certain changes — for instance, changing your destination or move dates — could affect your quote.
You can cancel a move with no penalty if you notify U-Pack more than seven days before your scheduled move date. After that, fees generally apply. You’ll pay:
$50 if you cancel within seven days of your move date.
$150 if you cancel on the same day of the move.
In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, U-Pack is making some exceptions to this rule, though. If you're in a high-risk group as defined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, you'll be able to cancel up to 24 hours before your move, according to the company.
Overall, though, U-Pack's cancellation policy is still more stringent compared to other major moving services, which generally don't charge such penalties.