The price of a coast-to-coast move explained

Moving from one coast to another is a big milestone. Whenever you are ready to prepare for this kind of move, you must organize it well and create a specific plan with deadlines and bullet points. Calculating the price of a coast-to-coast move is for sure a big thing on the planning list. Even though this is something that can vary, you can get an idea about the cost after considering some factors that we will talk about. Master Moving Guide is here to explain to you what goes into this price and what you can expect.

Hiring a moving company or doing it on your own?

This is a big factor. Are you conducting a DIY move or you’ve decided to hire professionals? Many people believe that they will save up if they move from coast to coast on their own, but this is not always the case. For such a big move, hiring skilled and trained movers is the smartest thing you can do. Why? Because you are moving your whole home and there are items that are very valuable or fragile, maybe even large. To move these kinds of items, there are certain skills and tricks that movers have that you might not. And not just that, long-distance movers offer the needed equipment to make this move completely safe and efficient.

Woman sitting between the boxes
Deciding to hire professional movers for your coast-to-coast move is the best idea.

Many people that have decided to conduct their coast-to-coast move on their own were later on seeking professional mover’s help. This is usually because an item or property was damaged during the move and replacing or fixing it costed them more than hiring movers. So, when thinking about it in the long run, you can never miss when hiring a reliable, reputable, and professional moving company.

What goes into the price of a coast-to-coast move?

As we have already mentioned, there are different factors that decide this. It also depends on the number or scope of services you decide to pay for if hiring professional movers. Some people like to pack their own items and hire movers only to move the items. Others hire movers for both packing and moving. An option is to also rent storage units were certain items will stay during or after the move. Moving heavy items such as pianos or safes is also a service certain moving companies offer. So, according to which or how many services you require, the price of a coast-to-coast move will be estimated.

Most moving companies can offer you moving quotes as soon as you let them know where you’re moving to and what services you would like to have. When you’re moving alone, there might be fewer individual services you would need, since you are planning it alone. However, you would still need to rent a moving vehicle, buy packing supplies, pay for gas, tolls, etc. All of this can end up costing you the same amount or more than you would pay for professional movers.

A parent and kid packing books
You might want to pack your own stuff or hire movers to do it. That can affect the price of a coast-to-coast move.

What can you expect to spend when moving coast-to-coast?

Keep in mind that it also depends on where are you moving from and to. If you’re, let’s say, moving from the west coast to the east coast, you can expect to spend between 5k and 8k dollars. Moving the other way around or to a different coast can cost you up to 12-15k dollars. Of course, these are not set prices and different moving companies will give you different quotes, but you can consider this a rough estimate.

When you’re calculating the price of a coast-to-coast move, you will ask yourself a lot of questions in order to cut the cost, which is normal. You might wonder if is it worth it paying for packing when moving and what is it that you can do without movers. However, the price comes down to the years of experience, expertise, equipment, supplies, and number of movers and vehicles used for the move.

How can you work around the moving price?

There are ways that you can get yourself a good deal when hiring movers. Here are some tips on what you can do to get the best price of a coast-to-coast move from potential movers:

  1. Talk to different movers. You have to explore your options. Not just because of the price, but because of the services available and the experience of the movers. Speak to at least three different moving companies and see what they can offer. Check out their reviews and feedback from previous customers. This will give you a good idea of the movers’ work ethic, skills, the time they took to execute the move, etc.
  2. Think about having your move off-season. This is probably the best way to cut the cost for your long-distance move. Prices become lower during the off-seasons and the schedule is more flexible. You might get to pick your own date and plan according to your responsibilities. There are a lot of useful tips for off-season moves in the US that you probably never considered. This is an option that can save you money and time.
  3. Save up money by selling unwanted items or having a yard sale. You never know what can happen during the move. It’s good to have some money saved up in case of emergency or unplanned expenses. You can secure this extra money by organizing a yard sale with items you don’t want to keep. You can also sell them online if you don’t have time for a yard/garage sale.
Calendar, markers, and sticky notes use for calculating the price of a coast-to-coast move
Consider moving off-season to save up on your coast-to-coast move.

You might be skeptical about the moving off-season tip. It’s normal that you would want to plan to move when most people do. However, if you choose to move off-season, be aware that many people have done it and it was beneficial for their budget. Look for tips when moving cross-country in the winter and plan your off-season move if that is something you think is right for you.

What other tips are useful when figuring out the price of a coast-to-coast move?

There are some more useful tips to help you work around the moving price. Even though services provided by the movers will have a set price, there are things you can do to make that price lower. Here are a few things that you can benefit from:

  • Don’t overpack. Pack the items you believe are essential and get rid of, give away or sell those that are not necessary for this move. Don’t forget or leave behind anything that is important, though.
  • Hire a moving company, not individual movers. This is the best way to save up if you’re already hiring movers. Moving companies have teams of skilled movers and the latest equipment. Individual movers most likely work alone and are not as equipped.
  • Talk to your employee and ask if you can exchange vacation time for moving expenses. This is an out-of-the-box idea, but it doesn’t hurt to try. Some employees do offer this option and it can come in clutch more than you know. A few days of “extra work” can be a big contribution to your budget for this move.

How do you get an estimated price of a coast-to-coast move?

Getting different quotes is very easy and you should take advantage of that. Almost every moving company is able to provide you with a free moving quote based on the details of your move. However, you have to make sure you let your movers know about all the details so there are no changes or surprises at the end. For example, if you are moving to a building with no elevator and you are on a high floor, your movers should know.

If you prefer to be moved at a certain time of the day, they should also be informed about this. Most moving companies will ask you these and other questions anyways, to make the best plan for you. However, reminding them or sharing information you think is beneficial is also a very good idea.

Map of the USA with pins on it
Getting an estimated price for your coast-to-coast move depends on the location and other important factors.

Once you’ve shared all the needed details, moving companies can offer quotes. If you’re happy with the offer and you want to “lock it”, it’s best that you go for a binding estimate. There are three different types of estimates, but this is the best one. If you’re wondering what is a binding estimate, we will shortly explain each one so you can get the idea.

The three types of estimates

We have already advised you to go for a binding estimate, but here are the three possible estimates you can go for:

  1. Rough estimate – This is the basic estimated price. For this estimate, movers will most likely just ask about the location you’re moving from and the location you’re moving to. This is not the most reliable price as many factors can change it and you can end up paying a very different price than what your rough estimate was.
  2. Non-binding estimate – Even though this estimate is a bit more accurate than the rough estimate and requires more information, it is non-binding, which means that it can also change. It is just a reference price that can end up being higher or lower.
  3. Binding estimate – This is the most accurate price and it won’t be changing. Once you have agreed on a binding estimate, you don’t have to worry about additional fees or extra expenses that were not discussed. Much more information will need to be provided in order to determine this price, but at least you will know what you can plan on spending.
Moving company and customer agreeing on the price of a coast-to-coast move
A binding estimate is the best option when agreeing on the price of a coast-to-coast relocation.

Look around until you find the best binding estimate

Don’t be afraid to ask for multiple moving quotes. This will help you find the best estimate. Having a binding estimate will allow you to plan your budget accordingly. You will know exactly how much money need to put aside for your coast-to-coast move. If a company is not offering you something like this, you might want to keep looking. Full transparency is one of the characteristics of a professional and reliable moving company.

If you are talking to a moving company and they are not giving you precise and honest information, it’s an indication that their movers and services might not be on a professional level. That is why recognized movers are a much better and safer choice.

What happens when you hire movers for your coast-to-coast move?

Researching the right moving company is more work than hiring one. Once you have found the best match, everything is pretty much set. You will communicate with the movers and they will explain to you how everything works. Movers in our network will guide you through the whole process of moving and what you can expect to happen. Your movers will tell you how long it takes to move from coast to coast, how much you would pay, and offer you useful advice on what you can do in the meantime.

People leaning on boxes and smiling
Once you have found the best price for a coast-to-coast relocation, you can plan other activities.

Once you have planned your move, you can take the needed time to focus on other moving-related tasks. When professional movers are taking care of your relocation, you can use that time to deal with certain paperwork, your lease, your old apartment, or anything else that needs to be handled personally. Once you have your binding estimate and you’re aware of the price of a coast-to-coast move, the rest of the move should be stress-free and smooth.

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