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Boston Moving Truck Rental Tips

Everything to know about getting your things from A to B in Boston.

Renting your own moving truck is a great idea for short-distance moves that don’t involve moving too many personal possessions. 

The team at Jumpshell wants to help streamline your move by showing how Boston’s top moving truck rental companies stack up with regard to price, selection and gas mileage. We’ll put a number next to each category to show how it ranks against the competition.

If you're making a long distance move or have a lot of stuff, you might want to consider a moving company — check the next section.

U-Haul

Most cost-effective for moves under 50 miles — solid gas mileage.

Price (#3) - U-Haul is beats the competition for a local move (under 50 miles), but when traveling over longer distances, it can start to add up. Although the company has one of the lowest base prices we looked at, only $19.99 for a 10 foot truck, they make up for this by charging one of the most expensive fees per mile, $0.99 per mile. Source: TopTenReviews

Selection (#1) - When it comes to truck selection, U-Haul is king. U-Haul offers six moving truck sizes from 10 ft. to 26 ft. — compared to just four sizes that its main competitors offer. Here they are:

haul moving truck sizes

Gas Mileage (#1) - Better than Budget / Same as Penske:

uhaul gas calculator

Deals/Discounts - U-Haul also has a discounts page on its website with the latest deals to help you save a little green on your move. Note to students: U-Haul does not appear to have any special discounts for college students.

Locations:

Zipvan

Best for moves within Boston with little cargo.

zipvan photo

If you're traveling really light and within the city — like no mattress or bed frame yet — Zipvan can be a really cost-effective alternative to renting a truck. Cargo space: 10 ft long by 52" wide by 4 ft high. Seats two people. For local moves with few possessions, check it out!

Budget

For 50+ mile moves, Budget pricing beats U-Haul, but watch out for gas mileage.

Price (#1) - Local moves will cost you around $30, plus $0.79 per mile. If you want to opt for the collision waiver with a $500 deductible, it will cost you an additional $18. If you’re planning a long-distance move, Budget has a fair price to offer, as it will cost around $1700 to move across country from La Mesa, California to Hinsdale, Massachusetts. Source: TopTenReviews

Selection (#2) - Budget offers four different vehicle sizes. Click on the image below to get the full details:

budget rental truck sizes

Gas Mileage (#3) - Not as good as U-Haul or Penske:

 

budget rental truck gas calculator

Discounts/Deals - Budget regularly offers deals on its moving truck rental services and also offers discounts to certain demographics as well, including students, members of the Bar Association, members of the Armed Forces, first responders and more.

Locations:

Penske

For 50+ mile moves, Penske pricing beats U-Haul and has the best gas mileage — but no locations in Boston!

Read as: for longer moves, Penske is best, but you'd need to return the truck to one of it's centers outside of the city, so you'd need someone to pick you up after.

Price (#1) - Penske’s pricing structure is very similar to Budget’s. If you are just going to use the truck around town, prices start around $29.95 with an additional $0.79 per mile. Insurance for these local trips costs around $18 a day. Source: TopTenReviews

Selection (#2) - Penske offers four different vehicle sizes.

penkse truck sizes

Gas Mileage (#1)- Better than Budget / Same as U-Haul:

penkse truck fuel cost estimates

Discounts/Deals - Penske also offers a number of discounts on its site, for example college students get 10% off when booking online (and the underage renter surcharge is waived). Also, you can check out the Penske Truck Wizard to determine how big of a truck you’ll need.

Locations:

A couple useful tools you can use on moving day — especially September 1st.

If you're driving your own truck into and around Boston, it's good to have as many resources as possible at your disposal. Check out these two local tools to help you avoid major snarls in traffic.

Know the Roads

In September, relocating to Boston brings with it a spike in the number of truck crashes — nothing crazy, just fender benders and misreading height limits. Check out Boston.com’s comprehensive look at using moving trucks in Boston and with insights on where to be extra careful.

Be sure to watch for bridges going over Storrow Drive and Memorial Drive.

boston commuter traffic to look out for

Monitor Real-Time Traffic

The Massachusetts Department of Transportation (Mass DOT) has a nice resource to help you keep tabs on traffic jams and construction projects as they happen; in their words, “the Road Work and Incidents map displays much of the construction and maintenance undertaken by MassDOT as well as traffic incidents that may affect traffic conditions on Massachusetts roadways.” Moving to Boston can really be a nightmare if you’re getting snarled by traffic jams.

real time traffic monitoring in boston

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