Best Moving Container Companies

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Have you been putting off shifting to a new place just because you can’t think of an option to move your stuff to an accessible location? Maybe your house is desperately calling for a much-needed renovation, but you’ll need to take everything out and move it first, and you don’t know what to do about that.

Instead of handing over the responsibility to a moving company that stores your things miles away from your home and isn’t worth the buck, why not consider pods for moving? They’re portable, convenient, and cost-efficient, to name a few benefits.

With moving container companies, you can transport your household items from one place to another easily. All you need to do is book one, schedule the time to receive the container, load the items, and have them transported to the new location or the storage facility.

Sounds simple, right? But now the question arises: which moving container company should you trust when you have more options than you can count? Use this guide to compare and select among the top 5 moving container companies.

PODS—Top Choice for Customers

PODS is a well-known name as one of the leading moving container companies. Operating since 1998, the company has offered over 4 million deliveries.

Undoubtedly, the prime benefit of hiring PODS as your moving container choice is the nationwide availability of their services. Their storage warehouses are expanded across 46 states in the US.

Customers get the added benefit of multiple storage container options of 8 ft., 12 ft., and 16 ft. Where you’ll have to worry about containers in your garage on a rainy day, PODS containers come with climate-resistant structures. Additional features like ramp-free loading and roll-up doors make loading and unloading hassle-free.

Unlike competitors that specify a time range for loading and unloading, PODS lets its customers have 30 days for the standard duration and offers affordable prices for another 30-day extension.

If the excellent reviews from millions of customers aren’t enough to convince you, the company offers discounts and lower-than-market price estimates for long-distance moves.


    • Facilities in 46 states
    • Extensive time range for loading/unloading
    • Multiple container options
    • Availability of insurance coverage


    • Advanced reservations required during peak moving season
    • On-call long-distance quotations and bookings only

Estimated Costs

Cost for a Local Move

1 Bedroom: $200-400

2-3 Bedrooms: $300-650

4-5 Bedrooms: $300-800

Cost for <250 Mile Move

1 Bedroom: $450-800

2-3 Bedrooms: $750-900

4-5 Bedrooms: $900-2100

Cost for a Cross-Country Move

1 Bedroom: $2000-4000

2-3 Bedrooms: $3000-5000

4-5 Bedrooms: $5500-7600

U-Pack—Nationwide Coverage & Affordable

The one moving container company that has repeatedly topped the list in nationwide coverage, including rural locations and affordability, is U-Pack. It should be the first company you look into for long-distance moves because of their competitive prices for longer distances than other companies.

One of the major drawbacks of U-Pack is its limited container options, meaning you don’t get to choose between sizes. The standard ReloCube has internal dimensions of 7’ x 8’2” x 9’3” with a 2500 lb weight limit. For larger moves, you can opt for a moving trailer that allows up to a 22,000-lb weight limit.

The company compensates for its limited container options by billing customers with a "pay for what you use" policy, making the prices flexible. Suppose that one container isn’t enough, but you’re only using 50% of the space of the second; U-Pack will only charge you according to the utilized space.

Despite recent price hikes since COVID-19, U-Pack continues to be a customer favorite due to its standout Guaranteed Delivery feature that ensures delivery on a set date and offers a full transportation cost refund in case the shipment is late.


    • Affordable rates for long-distance moves
    • Adjustable prices and space
    • Nationwide availability
    • Quick delivery time


    • Minimum 150 miles move
    • 3 days time frame for loading/unloading
    • No at-home storage facility

Estimated Costs

Cost for <250 Mile Move

1 Bedroom: $900-1300

2-3 Bedrooms: $1100-1700

4-5 Bedrooms: $1200-1900

Cost for a Cross-Country Move

1 Bedroom: $1500-2500

2-3 Bedrooms: $2400-3900

4-5 Bedrooms: $3500-6600

1-800-PACK-RAT—Multiple Container Options

Looking for the closest competitor to PODS? 1-800-PACK-RAT is the right one. With 15 years of experience under their belt, they have a range of features and services to make your move stress-free. 1-800-PACK-RAT isn’t a moving container company that’s shy about ranking in the top positions thanks to its competitive rates and robust containers.

Their high-quality 100% steel containers protect content no matter what during the long distances and weather extremities. So, if you’re moving fragile or valuable items, this portable moving company is the only one promising sturdy and fully protected containers.

You won’t be stranded while loading and unloading containers if you opt for their assistance through the Hire-a-Helper partnership. The 30-day rental allows customers to load and unload shipments without racing against time and work schedules.

You get to choose between three sizes: 8 ft., 12 ft., and 16 ft. Use their storage solutions to your advantage and utilize the facility for short-term or long-term storage.


    • Steel containers for 100% protection
    • $10,000 insurance coverage
    • 24/7 surveillance of storage containers
    • Matching prices to PODS
    • Multiple storage container options up to 16 feet


    • Limited locations in 30 states
    • International moving service is unavailable (only through a third-party)
    • On-call bookings for long-distance moves
    • Confusing pricing structures

Estimated Costs

Cost for a Local Move

1 Bedroom: $150-450

2-3 Bedrooms: $300-600

4-5 Bedrooms: $450-900

Cost for <250 Mile Move

1 Bedroom: $500-1500

2-3 Bedrooms: $600-2000

4-5 Bedrooms: $1000-3500

Cost for Cross-Country Move

1 Bedroom: $1600-4000

2-3 Bedrooms: $2000-4500

4-5 Bedrooms: $3000-7000

Allied Express—Full-Service Solution

With Allied Express, you can hire a full-service solution that takes care of the moving process for you from A to Z. Besides loading and unloading, their professionals will properly pack your items. While their charges are slightly higher than their competitors', the full-service solution is worth the buck.

They’re especially known for catering to fragile and special equipment like electronic gadgets, vehicle relocations, and furniture and appliance assembling and disassembling.

Store the items at their storage facilities for up to 90 days without additional charges. The company provides local, interstate, and international moving facilities. For international moves, hire Allied Express to transport your crates to over 130 countries!


    • Full-service moving service
    • Nationwide availability
    • 24/7 shipment tracking
    • Short-term and long-term storage facilities


    • Prices higher than competitors
    • Negative reviews of irresponsive customer service regarding claims

Estimated Costs

Allied Express does not provide an estimated range of prices for short-distance or long-distance moves. Since the company offers more than just container transportation, facilities, including packing, inventory, and 2-4 professionals, the costs can significantly vary depending on multiple factors.

Cost for a Local Move

2-3 Bedrooms: $2300

Cost for 1000+ Mile Move

2-3 Bedrooms: $4300

Cost for <2000 Mile Move

1 Bedroom: $3500

2-3 Bedrooms: $6300

ZippyShell—Excellent Urban Moving

The aforementioned 1-800-PACK-RAT and Zippy Shell are owned by one and the same company. In the portable moving industry, specifically in ease of urban moving for individuals in their 20-30s, ZippyShell has a reputation of its own.

Zippy Shell provides two steel container models, 10-foot and 15-foot. The latter can fit into 2-3 bedrooms or items that weigh up to 4500 lbs. You may be restricted in terms of container sizes, but the sturdy containers have a tie-down feature worth considering, which will keep your belongings extra safe during transportation.

Their containers truly correspond to the word “portable”, meaning the metal cage containers can be placed at home or on the street without difficulty. Features like hands-on assistance from local service providers, guaranteed delivery, and insurance coverage can add to the ease, timeliness, and security of relocating or temporarily storing your belongings.


    • Steel containers with tie-downs that offer extra protection
    • Online order status feature
    • Fast delivery options
    • Insurance coverage availability


    • 3-day loading/unloading window
    • Only two container sizes
    • No feature for online quotations
    • Limited availability in 28 states

Estimated Costs

Cost for a Local Move

1 Bedroom: $200-260

2-3 Bedrooms: $300-700

4-5 Bedrooms: $350-800

Cost for <250 Mile Move

1 Bedroom: $550-1000

2-3 Bedrooms: $750-1700

4-5 Bedrooms: $1100-3200

Cost for Cross-Country Move

1 Bedroom: $1800-4000

2-3 Bedrooms: $2800-4600

4-5 Bedrooms: $5200-7200

How Do You Choose the Best Moving Container Company?

Stuck on the verge of having to choose and compare one moving and storage company with the next? Knowing some of the essential factors at your fingertips can help you make a wise decision for yourself and your items.

Type of Move

Before you hire a moving company based on your family member’s experience, think about the type of move you’re planning.

Are you moving to a new state or country? Maybe you’ve finally had luck with the house you were eyeing in another neighborhood? Do you only want a temporary facility to store your items while your home gets refurbished?

Look at whether the company offers that service, i.e., local, interstate, and international. Some might not offer local moves, while others won’t have international moves on their list.

Additional Services

Additional services, especially those at a cost, only seem like an extra burden on your bank account until you need them. If your work schedule doesn’t allow you to take time off, you will need labor services to load and unload the boxes. Fragile items require more protection, so you would want to search for a company with steel boxes and tie-downs. Opt for the one that has the additional services you would need for a carefree move.


Ask for a quote and compare the prices of different companies. You don’t want to go for the one that offers rates that are too good to be true. They might be inexperienced, unlicensed, or a straight-up scam.

While higher than market prices are usually a drawback, in this case, look into the company. Maybe they’re charging for their reputation or exceptional services that are missing in their competitors. Normally, you’re good to go with average prices, neither too high nor too low.

License and Insurance

Recommended moving container companies are those that are licensed and insured. This way, there’s assurance that you’re dealing with a company that doesn’t participate in malpractice, operates according to state regulations and will compensate you in case of an accident or damage to items.

Request official documents or proof from the company for this purpose. Alternatively, you can check via the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s website using the company’s unique USDOT number.


A company might have additional services, reasonable pricing, and even an official license and insurance, but what if it still lacks customer experience?

Search for reviews of the company with a focus on negative reviews. If there were repetitive reviews on major concerns like customer service, damage during transport, or late deliveries, it’s best to choose another company.

Frequently Asked Questions on Moving Containers

How do I find moving container companies near me?

You can find moving container companies in your area simply by entering your zip code or address on NearbyMover’s search engine. Another method is to click on your current state or city. From there, we’ll list the best moving container companies in your area.

How much do moving containers cost?

Hiring a moving container service can cost anywhere between $500-$5,000 on average. There are a bunch of factors that decide the total cost of moving. For instance, container size, pickup and drop-off locations, and storage rental are only a few of the factors that come into play.

What is the cheapest pod to rent?

The cheapest pods are those of the smallest size and fit in studio apartments or one bedroom only. These usually come in 8 feet, with the typical internal dimensions being 7.2’ x 7.8’ x 8.5’, and can accommodate up to 4000 lb.

Is U-Pack or PODS cheaper?

U-Pack has a more affordable price range compared to PODS. But before you rush to hire this company, it’s important to note that U-Pack only offers long-distance moves of at least 100 miles. Meanwhile, PODS has both local and long-distance options along with additional facilities.

What are alternatives to PODS?

There are many moving container companies to choose from; you just need to find the one that’s right for your requirements. On the other hand, the direct competitor that offers the closest service to PODS is 1-800-PACK-RAT, with similar facilities and pricing.

How do you determine what size moving container you’ll need?

You can estimate the collective weight of your items, but that’s an inaccessible option for most. Or determine the size according to the number of bedrooms you’re moving—an 8-foot container for 1 bedroom, a 12-foot for 2-3 bedrooms, and a 16-foot for 4-5 bedrooms.

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