Follow Jennifer's 3-part blog series as she describes her cross country moving experience with U-Pack!
Four months ago I did something kind of crazy: I quit my full-time job to pursue a lucrative career as a freelance writer. Why did I quit my full-time job with benefits in a beach-front office at a promising tech startup? Because I fell out of love with Los Angeles.
Two years (and one month) ago, I left my home in Chicago and accepted a full-time job with a company in LA. It was hard to leave, but the opportunity simply was too good to pass up. And who couldn't use an excuse to escape the brutal Chicago winter? But as time went on, I started missing my family, my friends, and even the seasons (Christmas lights wrapped around a palm tree just isn't the same).
When I left the company I came out here for, I hoped to build enough of a life for myself that I might feel at home here. I know that many would challenge me and say that you can't feel at home after only two years, but I'd argue that. In those two years I've known many people who have come to visit and experience a "this is where I'm meant to be" moment. I've been all over this city and I haven't come close.
The challenge is that this is my 23rd move in 27 years. I don't really know what it's like to be settled and it's hard to discover that feeling when there's broken down boxes stored in every closet. Despite my moving expertise, this is only my third cross-country move. Regardless of how often you do it, moving is still sure to shake even the most confident mover.
But once you get past apartment hunting and your overwhelming to-do list, driving across the country can actually be pretty fun. As a postcard collector, I'm really looking forward to the journey. (Especially knowing that my belongings are in good hands.) I worked with U-Pack when I first moved to Los Angeles and I'm excited to reconnect for my move back!
Moving day is only a few days away and I'm determined to set out with a fresh and open mind. With my mom by my side, who knows what adventures we'll get into along the way...
Based on information from the U.S. Census Bureau, we know that "attending or leaving college" is one reason a fairly large number of people relocate each year. For people hoping to become a chef, restaurant manager, food researcher, nutritionist, food salesman or food stylist/photographer, that may mean a move across the country to attend an awesome culinary school. And they're everywhere. In fact, these days you can find one in just about every state in the U.S. But if you want to go beyond just your home state, and your goal is to attend the best cooking school in the country, check out the infographic on the Nations' Top Culinary Schools. It shows the top schools by region— including New York, Texas, Illinois, Arizona and California.
Thanks to channels like The Food Network and the Cooking Channel, and shows like The Rachael Ray Show; Bobby Flay's Brunch@Bobby's; Giada De Laurentiis' Everyday Italian; Paula Deen's Paula's Home Cooking; and Jennifer Paterson and Clarissa Dickson Wright's Two Fat Ladies, going to culinary school has become the "in" thing to do. And I think the foodies across the nation (including me) are okay with that!
This is the final post of a five-part series written by guest blogger Josh Knoll about his experience moving with U-Pack from Arkansas to Arizona. Make sure to check out his other posts: Moving to Phoenix Part One, Moving to Phoenix Part Two, Moving to Phoenix Part Three, Moving to Phoenix Part Four.
*The views and opinions expressed in this blog post are solely those of the original author. These views and opinions do not necessarily represent those of U-Pack, the blog.upack.com staff, and/or any/all contributors to this site.
A summary of my experience moving with U-Pack – Part Five Maybe I'm just like you— a college student trying to make ends meet, looking to start a career, and hoping to succeed in a new urban environment. If you can relate to any of this, keep reading!
Throughout the experience, I knew that I would want to relay various parts of my experience on Facebook, on the phone to family and friends, as well as in personal journals and blogs. I set into memory some of my experiences during the journey, and I took dozens of pictures! I jotted down numerous mental notes, and I would like to share a few things now (to pay it forward for other movers trying to decide if U-Pack is best for them). Here are the key points I noted throughout the transition:
1. I have never driven a vehicle that was hauling a moving trailer behind it. Why start now? The U-Pack drivers both at the origin and destination were amazingly polite, professional, and accommodating. I actually believe my belongings got more "TLC" with them than they would have gotten with me.
2. Loading the U-Pack ReloCube was simple. Someone in this business has done their research. It was the perfect size for moving from one collegiate environment to another. I never felt like I would run out of room inside the container, but I also didn't feel like I was packing a studio apartment into a gymnasium. The dimensions of the ReloCube offer a great middle ground between too big and too small.
3. I packed things tightly (which is preferred to keep fragile items stable) and when they dropped off the container, it was exactly as I packed it. It was as if they teleported it to Phoenix! They clearly took care not to jostle the container around too much.
4. I was allotted three days to pack and four days to unpack my ReloCube (because I was able to include the weekend for unloading). The procrastinator in me took advantage of this tenfold. In the extreme Phoenix heat, I probably averaged one box an hour. I believe other moving services are on a tighter schedule. I liked the flexibility of being able to unpack one box at a time.
5. At both apartments, I was only assigned one parking space, and guest parking is very limited. It was great that the relo-cube fit perfectly into even a compact parking spot! It is taller than it is deep/wide, which not only makes sense, but allows tons more room than you would expect.
6. Because I was able to fly into Phoenix early, I got to spend a couple days with my new roommate, met several of his friends, and enjoyed a little "mini-vacation" in the city I would be inhabiting for the next several years. It was nice to get in this "R & R" before tackling the task of moving in.
7. It was also nice that I didn't have to feel that I was invading every available empty spot of the apartment with boxes of my junk immediately upon meeting my new roommate! Instead of stepping on toes right away, U-Pack made the transition much easier. I took a couple days learning how he lived, where he kept everything, etc. By the time the U-Pack shipment arrived, my new roommate and I had established a very good rapport and an understanding of how the apartment cohabitation would work. He even offered to help me move some of the heavier items when the driver dropped off the cube.
All in all, this was the best moving experience I have ever had, and I believe planning my move around the U-Pack concept is what made it so enjoyable. From now on, I will highly recommend this to anyone. We are programmed to think we must do the driving if we are not hiring movers. I think, "The times they are a-changin!'" Now you know. You do have an alternative!
It's FRIDAY! And that's means another Flashback Friday post! Each week U-Pack revisits a blog topic that has been helpful to our readers. High on the list lately has been posts about moving to Canada from the U.S. So today, we're bringing back the "How do you Move to Canada" post from early 2010. Make sure to check out the comments at the bottom of the post— you'll find great questions and helpful information from our readers and customers there. Happy Friday!
How Do You Move to Canada
There's something about doing things we're unfamiliar with that makes us uneasy, isn't there? A little fear of the unknown. It almost brings out that "first day of junior high" kind of feeling. I think it's what people who are moving to Canada from the U.S. for the first time must experience. Since it's a move that differs from normal up the street moving, or even cross country moving, it makes people nervous. Understandably…they just want to get it right because getting things caught up in customs— well, not really on the "to do" list.
Answers to your "how to move to Canada" questions First, if you haven't already requested a moving quote from U-Pack, getting one is easy. You can call 800-413-4799 and a U-Pack representative will gladly help, or you can simply enter your move information in the field to the right, and click the orange "Get Instant Quote!" button.
When you reserve a move to Canada with U-Pack, you'll find a list of requirements for shipping household goods into Canada at the bottom of your Bill of Lading. But, I think knowing how it works ahead of time may help you make some important decisions as you're planning your move. So this information is designed to answer questions about how to move to Canada from the U.S.— specifically with U-Pack.
Here's how moving to Canada with U-Pack works:
In order to move your goods across the border, you will need to complete Canadian Customs Forms B4 and B4A (an itemized list of your goods with an approximate value in Canadian dollars) and proof of status (in the form of a visa, passport or other documents that show you have legal permission to move yourself and your personal items into Canada). Keep the original copies for yourself, but place copies of your proof of status and the completed Canadian Customs Forms into a manila envelope labeled with your name, your U-Pack quote number and your origin address. Then simply give the envelope to the ABF driver on your moving day.
The ABF driver will take your paperwork to the ABF origin terminal where it will be imaged— giving the destination ABF terminal the ability to view it— and the copies you provided will travel with your shipment.
Since ABF's Canadian Authority is as a post audit carrier, your shipment to Canada is allowed to move in-bond to the ABF destination terminal. That simply means that you don't have to meet us at the border to clear the items. We can just hold the goods at our terminal or warehouses until you clear the items through the local customs office. Which is exactly what happens…
Once the moving trailer arrives at the border, Canadian customs border officials will check the paperwork. After it is approved, the driver will transport the moving trailer to the Canadian ABF terminal that services your destination address.
Once the moving trailer arrives, you will go to the local Canadian Customs Office to clear your items. (Depending on where you're moving from and where you're moving to in Canada, U-Pack transit times average about 2-5 business days— check your moving quote for your estimated transit time).
After the items have been cleared, ABF will deliver the moving trailer to your destination address.
And…here's a little "moving to Canada" side note…if you have specific Canadian Customs questions about the clearance of your items or completing the customs forms, your absolute best resources are the Canadian Customs and Revenue Agency, the Canada Border Services Agency or your local Canadian Customs Office. They're the experts on all things moving to Canada. In fact, I recommend speaking to them a couple of weeks in advance of your move so that you don't have to scramble to get answers when you're also dealing with the actual moving process.
More advice on how to move to Canada…
Keep a copy of all documents with you during travel to present to Canadian Customs.
Since you are responsible for providing accurate documentation and clearing your own goods, make sure the B4 and B4A forms are completed correctly and that you have provided all necessary documentation to the ABF origin driver. Incomplete forms can result in your goods being held "In Bond" and additional fees could be applicable.
If you're moving to Canada, you must physically clear your own goods at the local Canadian Customs Office. If the person receiving the goods at the destination is someone other than the owner of the goods, you need to contact Canadian customs for instructions. Again, if proper procedures are not followed, the goods may be held "In Bond" and additional fees could be applicable.
If you have more questions about how to move to Canada, let us know. If we don't have the answers, we will find them and get you pointed in the right direction.
Most high school students beginning their college search will probably tell you that there's a little more to choosing a college than just educational opportunities (much to their parents chagrin). They might even tell you that while the campus is a hugely important decision-maker, the surrounding city is just as important. The college experience reaches far beyond the classroom walls— students care about what there is to do off-campus too.
This is part four of a five-part series, written by Josh Knoll, about his experience moving with U-Pack from Fort Smith to Phoenix. This time Josh talks about the process he went through to pick a moving company for his move - and how ultimately decided on U-Pack. Make sure to check out Moving to Phoenix Part I, Moving to Phoenix Part II and Moving to Phoenix Part III while you're at it!
*The views and opinions expressed in this blog post are solely those of the original author. These views and opinions do not necessarily represent those of U-Pack, the blog.upack.com staff, and/or any/all contributors to this site.
Moving to Phoenix with U-Pack Part IV
My original plan for this move from Fort Smith to Phoenix was to either rent the smallest rental truck I could find or rent one of those small rental trailers and coax a friend and her husband to haul it with their SUV. I didn't want to drive (I prefer bicycling), and when factoring in the cost of my friends boarding their pets, purchasing fuel for an SUV (round trip), paying the rental fee on the trailer, reserving hotel rooms for three adults over the course of 4-5 days, meals on-the-go, and the abstract cost associated with all the unavoidable hassles of moving, it didn't take long before I was dreading every aspect of this cross-country dilemma.
I relayed said dilemma to my sister over lunch and she said she had heard a lot of good things about U-Pack (U-Pack's home office is located in our home-town). She suggested I get quotes from other companies, specifically U-Pack. I definitely had nothing to lose just checking prices. I immediately got a quote (and an email) from U-Pack that included a very doable grand total. There were no hidden fees. There was no scary fine print. What a surprise! I never would have guessed I would be able to afford it on my limited budget. Everything was clearly outlined in their email, and it was actually quite a bit cheaper than the alternative when all of the extra costs (like gas, hotels, food on the road, etc.) were added in. And of course, it was an added bonus that all of my online and phone interactions were quick and pleasant. So, I took the plunge-and I'm glad I did.
When I called my friends and told them they wouldn't have to drive their new SUV across the Sonoran desert during the July heat wave, they were elated! I ended up booking a flight to Phoenix and meeting my new roommate early. Because it was a weekday, the flight wasn't full, so the airline even upgraded me to business class free-of-charge! I know that's not something everyone can expect, but I'm glad it happened to me! I barely lifted a finger and moved 1200 miles in three hours. In my book, that's a great moving experience!
Here's what the ReloCube looked like at my apartment in Fort Smith:
ReloCube all packed up:
My flight from DFW to Phoenix (the plane from Fort Smith to Dallas was just a little smaller ☺).
From pine trees to palm trees…ReloCube delivery in Phoenix.
This week we're going to mix it up a little. Instead of Flashback Friday, how about Flashback Thursday? It doesn't quite have the same ring, but I'll be out of the office tomorrow, so we're going to get a little crazy and post this one early. It's a great post too; 24 Ft. Truck – Just How much Does it Hold? Both the 24 ft. and 26 ft. rental trucks are popular sizes for moving three to four-bedroom homes, so this has been an extremely helpful post for a lot of customers. We hope you find it helpful too! Happy Thursday!
You're moving a large 3-bedroom home. Using a 24 ft. truck sounds like a reasonable plan, right? Unfortunately, there could be a problem: how do you know your belongings will fit? For some, it's more than enough room; for others, it's not nearly enough. But there's a company that solves that problem— U-Pack Moving. You pay only for the space you use, and it's always available if you need more.
Here's how U-Pack works: ABF delivers an empty 28 ft. moving trailer to your home. You load into the amount of space you need, and install a secure divider wall when you're done. Just indicate on your Bill of Lading how much space you loaded into, and that's what you pay for. Simple. And getting an instant moving quote from U-Pack is easy too. Just call or click— 800-413-4799.
If you're still deciding between a 24 ft. truck and services like U-Pack, here are a few details you may want to consider:
How much space am I actually getting with a 24 ft. truck? The inside dimensions of most 24 ft. trucks are around 24' x 7' 5" x 8' (lwh), and have a capacity of around 1380-1400 cubic feet.
The inside dimensions of an ABF moving trailer are 27' x 8' x 9' (lwh), and have a capacity of 1,944 cubic feet. Since U-Pack trailers are wider and taller, 19-20 linear feet is equivalent to the 24 ft. truck.
How much will fit into a 24 ft. truck? Since moves differ from household to household, and everyone packs and loads differently, it's difficult to say exactly what will fit into a 24 ft. rental trucks. But U-Pack's space estimators (especially the room-by-room estimator) do a great job of providing a good approximation— very helpful for knowing what to expect. We estimate that a typical large 3-bedroom home will fit into a 24 ft. rental truck— or 19 linear feet of a U-Pack moving trailer.
What happens if I don't use the whole 24 ft. truck? That's the problem with rental trucks: If you don't quite fill the entire 24 ft truck, you still pay for it. And if it gets down to the end, and you discover everything won't fit, you may have to leave stuff behind. Not ideal, either way.
It's not a problem with U-Pack though. You only pay for what you use, and more space is always available.
How much does it cost to fuel a 24 ft. truck? Though this question isn't related to the truck's size, it is important info to know before you make a decision. Most 24 ft. trucks get around 8 mpg. That means, on a 1200 mile move your price to fuel the truck will be around $550-$600. If you're driving your own vehicle, that gets 26 mpg, fuel for the same trip would be around $150-$200. That can make a difference.
Get a free moving quote to compare your 24ft truck charges to U-Pack rates. You'll likely be surprised at how much you could save!
I don't know about you, but we kicked the holidays off right this year. On Halloween night, two little people, dressed as Strawberry Shortcake and Spiderman, left my house with two huge, empty, plastic jack-o-lanterns at 7:00pm. They walked back in the door at 9:00pm with more candy than we'll be able to eat in a year (though the chocolate may or may not already be gone). Fun times and great memories!
No doubt others across the country had the same successful "candy collecting" experience. That's especially true for the folks in the cities mentioned in this infographic, just released in the U-Pack press room; it shows the Top 5 Cities to Trick-or-Treat in 2011. The rankings are based on property value, walkability, population density and crime rates. Make sure to check it out!
Though the town where I live didn't make the list, it was a fun Halloween night! Did your city offer an awesome Halloween experience? We would love to hear about it!
OK, so maybe these aren't quite in your budget; they're still great fun to look at! I have to admit, my first though when I saw the square footage of Carmello Anthony's home was, "how in the world would I keep a home that large clean?" I have a feeling he figured it out.
Here is the shortened version of the Yahoo! list:
Michael Jackson's 17,171-square-foot estate is listed at $29,995,000.
Ricky Martin's Golden Beach, Florida home is on the market for just under $19 million.
Dr. Phill McGraw's 11,036-square-foot home in Hollywood, CA is only $16.5 million.
Uma Thurman's 5-story apartment located in Manhattan's Greenwich Village is listed at $14.2 million.
The price for Mel Gibson's 6-bedroom, 5,403-square-foot Malibu, CA home dropped from $14.5 million to just $12.75 million.
If you're moving toLittleton, CO, you may want to check out Carmello Anthony's 21,083-square-foot home. It's listed at a mere $9,500,000.
Nick Lachey's home overlooks Los Angeles and the Pacific Ocean, and is listed at $6,800,000.
The late Ed McMahon's 7,013-square-foot home is on the market for $4,600,000.
Jerry Garcia's 5-bedroom, 6-bath home, just north of San Francisco, CA is listed at $3,995,000.
Pierce Brosnan's 3,412-square-foot-home, located in Malibu, CA is listed at $3,900,000.
Real Housewives of D.C.'s Mary Schmidt Amons has her 15,000-square-foot home in McLean, Virginia listed for $2,350,000.
John Wayne's former home in Newport Beach, California is on the market at $2,263,000
It's Flashback Friday! Each week, U-Pack revisits a blog topic that has been helpful to our readers. Today's flashback— "Affordable Moving Alternatives". Who isn't looking for a low-cost move these days? U-Pack is a great way to save money without having to drive a large moving truck cross-country!
Moving on a budget? It's often hard to manage a budget and find creative ways to make the funds you've allocated stretch as far as possible. If you're looking for an affordable moving alternative, U-Pack Moving is a sure way to stay on track and within budget. U-Pack offers affordable prices and flexible options while maintaining an excellent reputation in the industry.
U-Pack gives the cost conscious mover affordable moving options, such as a partial trailer move or moving in a ReloCube. As the mother of three college students, I'm always trying to stretch a dollar! So if you're on a budget and are making a small move, the ReloCube is a best bet to know your exact costs; the price includes drop- off fees, the driver, delivery charges to the final destination, and taxes! If you need storage before you move into a new place, the storage and moving costs can be rolled into the same transaction; allowing you to set funds aside to pay for the move and not worry that the price will change later. This helps keep your budget within its limits and you can pat yourself on the back for being so thrifty!
The moving trailer option also gives an affordable moving alternative with tons' of flexibility— you can literally load up to about 6 tons of household goods into a trailer, which is more than any rental truck you might consider. Again, all transportation fees including fuel, tolls and taxes are included. You pay for only the space you use. Whether it's a small one room apartment, or a full house, the trailer option remains at the top of the list for affordable moves where you're in control of your wallet or purse strings!
If you need packing and loading (or even unloading) services, you might want to consider another affordable moving option: MoveBuilder. Experienced movers pack, load and unload your items (or any combination of these services) with no worries about overtime since each move is handled by the size of the load, not the number of hours it takes to complete the job. If you prefer to handle the majority of the move yourself, and just need help with the larger items, you can choose to have MoveBuilder secure a load or unload team by the hour (minimums usually apply). By choosing the services that fit your situation, you're still in control of the budget!
No matter which option you choose, moving is stressful and part of the stress can come from feeling like someone else is pulling the strings. Keep the puppet master at bay: stay in control by choosing the service that best meets your needs.