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Moving....across the country, ocean, planet

141
b3tadine[sutures]

packing is the last thing i'd want to do, professional packers know how to economize space, and know where and how to pack - it's honestly like a 3d jigsaw puzzle, they can walk into a home/apartment and size up what you have and know exactly how to load a truck. not to mention they are quick as hell, and can do it faster than you and a bunch of friends, believe me i was amazed at how quick it happened...

Mar 26, 07 11:46 am  · 
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glutisolator615

Flatrate moving is the terrible company I was talking about.

I chose them based on CitySearch reviews and because I know a friend who had a good experience with them. If you choose to use them fine, but be careful and don't be honest, that's what I learned from dealing with them. When they come to evaluate your volume only tell them the minimum you think you will bring, and if you end up bringing more don't tell them until they figure it out on the day of the move. The dickhead liar who did our price estimate convinced us to overdeclare when in doubt and that if we decided to take anything off the estimate we could just contact him with the info. He was lying. Once they had the high estimate they didn't want to hear from us. He also promised us that our stuff would be moved across the country and then stored for up to a month. This too was a lie. They stored our stuff in Jersey and we didn't end up seeing our stuff for ages.

Also note that the movingscam website warns you directly against companies like Flatrate that go by volume estimates (which can't be verified) instead of by weight (which is required by law to be verified).

Regardless, note that moving is a stressful time for people. It is easy to miss some of the fine print because your mind is on all the other things that need to get done. Take your time to read all the paperwork though, and don't believe anything unless you have it in writing, and even then be sceptical. The law is on the side of the movers thanks to all the lobiests in DC.

Mar 26, 07 12:15 pm  · 
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snooker

gin: I'm no expert about NYC....but I do have some contractor friends who from time to time do work in the City and I't is always
a pain to park for any period of time, and then there is also restricted hours for use of the elevators. Nothing like having your moving van booted, then hauled off to the outbacks of New Jersey.

Mar 26, 07 12:24 pm  · 
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Starland Vocal Band

Well, here's what I'm thinking I will do.

Get one of those companies that estimates by weight and have them deliver the box thing to my door. They leave.

I pack up all my crap in the box, lock the box (ha ha, a lock box), and then hop in my car, and start driving.

Sometime either before or after I leave, the company comes and takes the giant box full of my stuff. They then deliver it to my new address. This giant box shows up at the new address sometime before or after I arrive.

I unload my lock box (with help). Company then takes lock box away.

I think this is a reasonable plan, right? If I go with one of these companies, how long should I expect my lock box to take to get to my new address?

Mar 26, 07 12:27 pm  · 
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Living in Gin

snooker: Yeah, the whole moving thing in NYC is a bitch. Been there, done that. I think I still have one or two unpaid tickets from when I didn't move the truck for street cleaning. At least Chicago has alleys for that purpose, but in NYC you're usually stuck out on the street.

Mar 26, 07 12:40 pm  · 
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Living in Gin

Oh yeah, the other joy of moving in NYC: Having my U-Haul truck searched by the NYPD before they let me drive through the Brooklyn-Battery tunnel, at 3 AM the night before the 2004 Republican National Convention was set to open at Madison Square Garden. Good times.

Mar 26, 07 12:43 pm  · 
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chupacabra

perfect time to have had a trailer full of feces...oh well, chance missed.

Mar 26, 07 12:45 pm  · 
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b3tadine[sutures]

i think that movingscam advocates against weight too, because while you are right it is verifiable, it happens only after you load on the truck. what happens if your estimator is completely off the mark? your estimate is way low, just so they get the job, now they have your stuff on the day you move...a big wtf! with ABF - look i don't get anything for pushing them, in fact i don't know you and you don't know me - and others like it, is that you pay for linear feet, so if you need another foot or two or three take, and pay the extra $73 dollars or whatever for the space you need, this is the reason you hire professional loaders, they will get the best use of the space you accounted for. go with weight at your own risk, and be leary of low ball a-holes.

i am done with this topic.

Mar 26, 07 1:17 pm  · 
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aquapura

Settle WonderK, my "duffle bag" comment was slightly sarcastic.

Still, moving is a great time to get rid of your shit. Only move the bare essentials. Honestly, a giant Ryder or UHaul truck for someone going to grad school? If you have a family and all kinds of kids stuff, ok. Or have a massive collection of family heir loom furniture, sure, but otherwise it's a great opportunity to start over. Furniture is cheap and moving it roughs it up pretty bad no matter who packs or handles it.

Mar 26, 07 1:27 pm  · 
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that's my plan, and I may even sell my car as well, which is why I'm trying to find the smallest (and thereby hopefully least expensive) possible moving option. I was really sad to see that the UHaul trucks and are only for in-town moves, but now I'm going to start looking at van rental places, because that would be the perfect thing for me really. I'll let you guys know if I find anything that looks good.

Mar 26, 07 1:32 pm  · 
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liberty bell

I wasn't happy with my movers, but it wasn't a big deal. They opened the drawers of the dining table and used the hand-woven napkins and placemats they found in there as padding around the table legs, taped(!) them in place, and that sure pissed me off, though no real damage was done. And they put a big scrape across the custom pinstriping on my son's hotrod. But that was my own idiocy in trusting them.

That said, my husband packed every bit of our art and ceramics - frankly I wouldn't trust anyone to move them that wasn't wearing white gloves. We moved the precious things in an uncle's van, the more typical furniture went with the movers.

It sucks and is stressful and expensive, unless you ARE in fact a duffle-bag only grad student, in which case it's really fun! I love roadtrips!

Mar 26, 07 1:38 pm  · 
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weAREtheSTONES

just moved about 6 mths ago from NYC to San Francisco - what a nightmare
-looked at pods...the most expensive option we looked at.
-Uhaul and other rental trucks were a close second.
-the option we exploered and adventually went w/ was hiring a moving company to pack up the apt move it into the moving trucks and drive it to SF. and thats where the nitemare began.
-first they estimated our load as a certain cubic footage and told us that they take apart all the furniture and put it back together in the new apt. - on moving day the company showed up 4 hrs late and were extemely rude b/c somehow it was my fault that they could not find a parking spot for their moving truck in brooklyn...WTF? - then they wouldnt take apart any of the furniture - after finally packing up the truck we were ove the estimated load by 100 cubic feet...more dollars. then we made our way to the left coast in my own pick-up - the moving comp. estimated the would be in SF a week from the pick up date...they showed up 3 days later! WTF? then they had this 18 wheeler and were trying to get into SF...they said they couldnt get the truck in to the city and its my fault i didnt tell them they wouldnt get an 18 wheeler into the city. they rented a Uhaul at my expense, pack up the Uhaul and made way for my apt. They got there and said they were going to charge mor cause i had an elevator in the building...the only way they wouldnt charge an extra was if i lived on the first floor of the bldg. then the truck was unpacked and and the duesh bag movers were gone...half of our dishes were broken and our dressers leg was broken off.
-SO DONT EVER HIRE MOVERS ... THEY SUCK!!!
-The next time i ever move further than 1 state i will sell almost everything i have except for the computer, and clothes.

Mar 26, 07 3:50 pm  · 
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cmu268

damn Stones....i didnt know all that shit went down

go MINIMAL!

Mar 26, 07 4:07 pm  · 
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snooker

I had one of those late summer moves from Tucson To Phoenix a number of years ago. My lady friend was living in Phoenix and I was in Tucson, burnt out on school and the place I was working. So just before registration for School I pulled the plug. Quit my job, went up to Phoenix stayed with her and looked for a job. That didn't take long but I had to go down to Tucson and empty out my apartment and make the move. She dropped me off at the Phoenix Bus Station, where I caught the bus to Tucson. One of my friends picked me up in Tucson, we went and tossed a beer at the Congress Hotel.
Drove over to the "U-Haul" rental place took a look at what they had for trucks and reserved the smallest on they had, seems like it was an extra twenty bucks to move up to the next size truck. So I just didn't want to spend money I didn't have. We then headed off to the Foothills to another friends house warming party, where we enjoyed ourselves to the max. The next morning extremely hung over my friend dropped me off at the U-haul place to pick up my rental. I'm sure I looked liked warmed over death. I drove it to my place, parked it went inside and surveyed what I needed to load into
the truck and felt like I wouldn't have a problem getting everything inside of the truck. Then I went outside opened the back of the truck and to my surprise the wheel wells projected up into the bed of the truck. So I started packing in the Late August Arizona heat, and before long realized there was no fricking way I was going to get everything to fit. So I pulled the ole Jed Clampite, I broke down a kitchen table and tied it to the top of the truck with my chairs turned upside down. Headed off to Phoenix in the blazing heat with a truck with a broken air conditioner, crap tied to the top with a prayer that everything would stay inplace and that I wouldn't run into an Arizona State Trooper. Some two and a half hours later I pulled up to me newly leased apartment and started the unload.....just enough stuff
that I could leave everything else secured in the truck for the next morning. The next morning I unloaded the rest and returned the truck to the U-haul place. The following morning when I got up to go to my new job, I had a bag of trash in my hand and I sat it down outside my front door as I was locking the door. I bent over to pick it up....and my back went out.....So to make a long story short I was flat on my back everynight when I came home from work and on the weekends for the next month. Even the horse pills the doctor had perscribed didn't touch the pain. So the moral of the story is hire a professional to do your moving or get a bigger truck and don't go out slamming beers and whiskey the night before you move.

Mar 26, 07 6:52 pm  · 
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George Jetson

Hello there friends!

anyone have an experience, good or bad, with Door to Door Storage and Moving?

I'm moving 1000+ miles in 5-6 weeks, but also need to store my stuff for a bit while I look for a place (and a job) in my new location (NYC). Door to Door has containers that they drop off, you pack 'em, and they store 'em for $3 a day per container (indoors/air conditioned). They can store them locally and then deliver within 5 business days of the request. Provided that their shipping is reasonable, this may prove to be the best arrangement for my situation.

I've looked into ABF, but they cost just over $1,000 for the move alone, and I would have to pay for storage in NYC (or more likely in Brooklyn or other borough, 'cause according to ABF/UPack, PODS and Manhattan do not mix, no questions asked).

Another option is Penske or Budget truck, but at $600ish for the truck, plus $250-300 for gas, it's not much cheaper than ABF, and probably more of a hassle (since I would be driving the gear - Judi Jetson can barely drive a 2-door coupe, let alone a moving truck, so no help there)...

I'll have a better idea once we get the shipping quote from Door to Door...but in the meantime, if anyone has any horror stories about them, or a praise report, please share.

Thanks!

Mar 26, 07 9:09 pm  · 
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liberty bell

Ah, snooker, Club Congress...I had both euphoric and devastating experiences there...

Mar 26, 07 11:49 pm  · 
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bowling_ball

My socialist country strikes again!

Got calls from movers today regarding quotes. Turns out, according to Canadian law, that the movers can't charge you any more than 10% over your original quote (in writing, of course).

That's good news. Still lots of decision making to do between now and then, but it's a start.

Mar 27, 07 1:53 am  · 
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George Jetson

well...Door to Door wants $1500 to ship my POD 1000ish miles.
Budget truck it is!

Mar 28, 07 6:50 pm  · 
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hmmm, does anybody know a company that lets you rent a cargo van for inter-state drives? I can find cargo vans, but only for local stuff.

Mar 28, 07 7:21 pm  · 
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snooker

I made a move from Wyoming to Arizona with a U-haul truck. When I went to pick up the truck they didn't have the size of truck I requested so they upgraded me for the same price. I thought , oh well gives me more room to pack things. I was also towing a car behind the thing so I got the tow package along with the truck. Loaded everything up and headed for Moab, Utah to pick up a friend who was coming off a Summer working as a non-motorized River Rafting Guide. I took a short cut somewhere outside of Grande Junction Colorado and ended up at a tressle bridge with a sign with a low limit weight limit on the sign. I stopped along side of the road to try to figure out how damn much my u-haul truck weighed with my car in tandam. After about five minutes, I said hell if I don't cross the bridge it will have lost a whole half a day back tracking....so I wen for it. Driving very slowly is inched myself across the bridge with na a problem. I followed the Colorado River on into Moab where I met up with my friend. He was wise enough to pick up a bottle of
Kicking Chicken, so we went an had dinner and made our way to the local watering hole with our bottle under our arm. We drank and danced the night away and the next moring loaded in his belongings and headed South to Tuscon. He didn't have much exept for what he had arrived there with at the start of the summer. So our truck was still rather light with load but we were still towing the car which was not fun by any means. We pulled into Phoenix at about three in the afternoon and decided to grab a bit to eat and go sit in a cool place cause the u-haul was lacking air conditioning. After a good meal and some liquids to quinch our thirst we were back on the road,
It was just before traffic jamb time, which everyone was trying to beat.
The traffic was fast and ferious, and the Interstate was under construction which made things even more interesting. Cars a sliding back and forth in the heat of the day changing lanes....and here me used to driving back roads of Wyoming where you usually have more sheep or cattle on the road than people. Were cruising along with the traffic and this pickup truck pulls infront of us with a load of furniture. Liberty can attest to it.....It is crushed Velvet and the damnest colors you have ever seen. My buddy and I are asking one another who the hell buys that crap, when all of a sudden it starts peeling off the back of his truck landing right in front of us. We are traveling at about 65 mph the stuff is just breaking into a million pieces as it impacts us....I hitting the breaks trying to get stopped and cars are flying by us on both sides. We finally get to a stop and jump out of the truck to pull half crushed chairs from under the carriage of the truck along with the guy who was driving the pickup in front of us. We tossing the crap back into his pickup and trying at the same time keep from being run over. Somehow we managed not to get killed, somehow managed to get his name and license for the damage report and make the rest of our trip to Tucson without another problem. When I told the guy at u-haul the story he must have thought I was completely nuts, but they never did charge us for the damages to there truck. I did give him the name of the other driver , so they must have tracked him down and confirmed our story.

Mar 28, 07 8:01 pm  · 
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Starland Vocal Band

Wow snooker, you're full of stories aren't you? :)

Mar 28, 07 8:31 pm  · 
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wellywellywell

Ahoy! You know what's funny? When I Googled "cross country move", this thread was in the top ten search results!

Well, I am officially heading to UCLA this fall....from Boston.

Anybody on the East Coast want to throw in on a truck together? It seems that the estimate from BOS to LA is about $1400...but if we upsize the truck and split the cost, well, that's a lot more affordable! I could swing down or you could swing up here?

I only have a studio worth of stuff, and what with the discarding of winter coats (!!!) I will have approximately 2 van loads (based on prior move...a van being like, you know, an econoline typical van) which will fit easily into the smallest truck rental.

Any takers? Non smoker over here, ummm, excellent music selection, good driver never had an accident, uhhh, adventurous cross-country type of gal?

Apr 16, 07 11:23 am  · 
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WonderK

Hmmmm. I'm not in Boston, I'm in Cincy.....but other than that, my situation is exactly the same. When are you thinking of going? I like what you are thinking with the splitting of the truck cost. If you can't find anyone else and don't mind driving about a day by yourself to pick me up here, I would be down. Or if you do find someone and still don't mind swinging by here, we could caravan.

I brought it up here too:
http://www.archinect.com/forum/threads.php?id=55865_0_42_0_C

Apr 16, 07 11:30 am  · 
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wellywellywell

Ohhhh fancy! Caravan! ahhaha

Well classes at UCLA actually don't start until late September. Did you ever play that primitive computer game "Oregon Trail" on the old Apple IIes? I feel the same anxiety in predicting when the best time to rent the truck as I did when I played that game and had to figure out the best month to leave for the West. How many bundles of food? How many oxen? You don't want to leave too late but you don't want to get there too early! What if the harvest fails? What if you CAN'T. FORD. THE RIVERZ?!

I was tentatively thinking the first week in Septmber: a week-ish to drive, a couple of days to unload and return the truck....a week in LA before classes, and then the rest of my life?

What about your school calendar?

Apr 16, 07 11:40 am  · 
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Living in Gin

When I drove cross-country in 2004, it took a little over 4 days, averaging about 700 miles per day. I can do 800 miles (about the distance from Chicago to NYC) day if I need to, but that's pushing my limits.

Whatever you do, don't try moving on Labor Day weekend, because everybody else and their brother will also be moving that same weekend. Trucks, boxes, and moving supplies will be non-existant. I speak from experience.

Apr 16, 07 11:48 am  · 
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the archinect caravan sweet

next thing we'll be planning archinect European & Asian tours

Apr 16, 07 11:49 am  · 
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WonderK

Aw shucks, I have to start school on August 21. Oh well. It was a great plan for about 5 minutes.

Yes and you had better not leave too late or else you might get Tuberculosis and die! Wasn't that one of the diseases you could die from? I feel like there were several..... I loved the Oregon Trail.....

Apr 16, 07 11:49 am  · 
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Living in Gin

I loved the Oregon Trail game. I think they even still make it, too. ("Now in color!") When I drove from NYC to Eugene in 2004, a good portion of my route roughly followed the real Oregon Trail, which sort of put a whole new perspective on the computer game.

Apr 16, 07 11:59 am  · 
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wellywellywell

LIG--

oh dear god. you're totally right. how could I have forgotten that the rest of the free world is moving that week? What do you think...better a week earlier or a week later? (I'm thinking later might be a bit better, since most schools start the first week...)

Apr 16, 07 12:00 pm  · 
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I usually died of dysentery.

I've just become 90% sure that I'm moving around September 17th, from LA to Seattle, if anyone wants to tag along.

Apr 16, 07 12:06 pm  · 
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wellywellywell

Ew hahaha dysentery! Tuberculosis! hahaha

I forgot about all those wonderful things!

Apr 16, 07 12:21 pm  · 
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which is labor day weekend this year?

Apr 16, 07 12:22 pm  · 
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Living in Gin

Labor Day is September 3rd this year.

Apr 16, 07 12:25 pm  · 
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phew. I'm safe then.

Apr 16, 07 12:31 pm  · 
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brookmeier

Anyone have a rough cost for shipping container moving? I'm planning a move to south asia and we're trying to estimate costs for a 40' or 20' shipping container.

Apr 18, 07 11:18 pm  · 
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KEG

so, I know a lot of us are trying to figure out this whole moving cross country thing. scary.

moving from LA to Philly.

options:

-get rid of almost everything- Amtrak ship the necessities (books, clothes, treasures too hard to part with) and start over (buy new) in the new city. I am selling my car here, so buying new furniture in Philly would still require a truck rental. (still need a quote on all this) It's funny, all the furniture I would have a hard time parting with is stuff I got as family hand-me-downs or crap I found by the side of the road and refinished.

-get rid of about 1/2 to 2/3 of my crap, move the stuff I need to live in a studio apartment (including furn I don't want to part w/) and get movers or do a "u-pack" type thing. (got a door to door movers quote for about $950, no U-pack quote yet)

-get a freight co. to ship some stuff/ furniture, but buy some stuff there (again no car in Philly and I need a quote.)

I really wanted to drive across the country but with the cost of gas for my SUV (gasp), the uhaul trailer rental, hotels/ stops along the way, and the fact that my car will sell for less in Philly than it will in LA, it seems that this is the most expensive option.

Surprisingly, it seems the cheapest/ easiest option is actually to get regular movers. The only problem with this is that they give you a 7-16 day delivery window, so I don't really know how you figure out when to move.

Anyway, though I have moved a lot, my adult moves have just been throughout LA and OC. I moved across 3 continents as a child- things were much better when you just got on a plane, got to your destination, and everything seemed done (I had no idea how hard all of that was for my parents).

So, I'm very excited, but I'm a planner and all these unknowns are unsettling. I just can't wait to be there and for the first day of class to start!!! I can’t wait to live in a city w/out a car!!

Thanks for reading my ramble. What are you guys doing? Are any of you wise-ones as nervous as me?

I’m a worrier. can ya tell?

May 13, 07 8:22 pm  · 
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WonderK

I'm right there with you. I'm a little confused though. You said you're selling your car in LA anyway, right? So why not just rent a moving truck and move the stuff yourself? Or was this an option and I just read it wrong. This is what I'm doing, and a couple others as well.

We might actually pass each other on the road, since I'll be headed into LA :o)

May 13, 07 8:35 pm  · 
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My solution was to get rid of a good portion of my bigger stuff, keep only a couple items of furniture which disassemble and pack flat, and rent a minivan that I will stuff everything into and drive to my destination. Go for the weekly rental rates that come with unlimited mileage.

May 13, 07 8:44 pm  · 
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KEG

WonderK- the truck rental , including gas/ hotels/etc. costs more than the moving company. odd, I know.
we could high-five each other out the window on route 66. (I'm a dork, I know)

rationalist- hmm, that might be a good idea. Minivans have better gas mileage than trucks....I'll look into it. Thx! Do you have any tips on a good rental company? The problem I've had is that they charge you an arm and a leg for different pick up/ drop off locations.

May 13, 07 9:00 pm  · 
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The best pricing for my journey came from Thrifty, Avis, and Alamo. They're all a little different, so I still need to decide whether I would rather get a Caravan (cheaper) or an Uplander (a little more, but seems to have bigger cargo area) and exactly how many days I need it for.

May 13, 07 9:07 pm  · 
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WonderK

Just made my truck reservation - yowsers, it's expensive. Well, it had to be done.

Also just a friendly reminder that a AAA membership will get you a substantial discount on your move, and a whole boatload of other things as well. It saved me like 15%.

May 13, 07 9:26 pm  · 
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KEG

thanks rationalist!

WonderK....doesn't it feel real now? Congrats!

May 13, 07 9:36 pm  · 
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WonderK

Yes. Isn't it fun? :oP

May 13, 07 10:02 pm  · 
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liberty bell

AAA memberships are so totally worth their cost - mine has paid for itself at least 4 times over in the last two years. Saved me $60 on my new eyeglasses prescription alone. It's also a great gift suggestion to make to your parents before you embark on a cross-country move - guilt them into buying it for you!

May 14, 07 12:33 am  · 
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Living in Gin

Agreed... My $50 AAA membership saved me $85 on my Penske truck rental. That's $35 in free money, not to mention any roadside assistance I might need during the trip.

May 14, 07 1:05 am  · 
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I can't find my AAA card!!!!!!!!!! I have it, my bf bought it for me as a present, but I don't know what I did with the card. = (

May 14, 07 1:20 am  · 
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Katze

...without AAA, the costs of towing a car 100+ miles might exceed $500. Possessing membership for as little as $94 and getting your car towed to your preferred location? Priceless. Reminds me of that MasterCard commercial - It's everywhere you want to be...

May 14, 07 1:31 am  · 
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How far in advance should one reserve a rental truck or car? I'm visiting to arrange all things housing a month before my move, and would like to wait until after I get back to reserve mine (juuuuust in case things change as a result of stuff that happens while I'm up there), but will reserve earlier if you guys thing that a month is cutting it way too fine.

May 14, 07 10:48 am  · 
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cpnorris

I am pretty sure once you make a reservation it isn't a big deal to change it by a couple days as long as you give some kind of notice. That is the case at U-Haul atleast. I reserved a trailer from them this weekend for August 1st and I asked them if I could change it if I find out later that I don't actually need it till August 4th or something like that and they said that was fine.

May 14, 07 10:58 am  · 
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i agree that aaa helps a lot, but consider some of the non-direct costs. aaa has lobbied congress in favor of car companies' agendas: against taxes on fuel, against encouragement/incentives for development of and use of alternative fuels, against enforcement of mileage/fuel efficiency increases, etc. i dropped my membership, despite losing the benefits of it.

[they may be changing these practices these days, now that environmental issues are au courant. maybe i'll look into that.]

May 14, 07 10:58 am  · 
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