Best Long Distance Moving Companies

Move.org evaluated over 75 long distance moving companies and analyzed more than 10,000 customer reviews to find the 7 best long-distance movers in the United States based upon availability, pricing, customer reviews, and overall service.
Best overall
internationalvanlines
International Van Lines
4.9 out of 5 stars
4.9
  • pro
    Transparent pricing
  • pro
    30 days free storage
  • pro
    10% Move.org discount
Best for accurate pricing
safeway
Safeway Moving
4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6
  • pro
    Price matching
  • pro
    24/7 customer service
Best industry reputation
americanvanlines
American Van Lines
4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5
  • pro
    Flat rates
  • pro
    Piano moving
Best customer reviews
Mayzlin Relocation
4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5
  • pro
    Offers several discounts
  • pro
    Price match guarantee
  • bullet
    10% Move.org discount
Best for East Coast moves
Solomon & Sons Relocation
4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2
  • bullet
    Offers guaranteed pricing
  • bullet
    Instant online quotes
Christa Baxter
Feb 20, 2024
bullet17 min read

What is the best long distance moving company?

Moving is stressful as it is, let alone moving long distance. While there are thousands of out of state moving companies to choose from, it makes a difference choosing one with fair prices and a proven track record of quality service. What's more, many customers fall prey to moving scams. That's why we vet our top long distance movers for things like binding estimates, strong customer reviews, affordability, and proper industry credentials. 

Our top picks

International Van Lines is our favorite long distance moving company. It's a nationwide moving company, has an established reputation, offers 30 days of free storage for those who need it, and even provides discounts for seniors and military families. Best of all, International doesn't play games with pricing—costs are transparent and there aren't any unexpected hidden fees—a factor that makes a big difference when you need to stick to a budget.

Customers told us they like Safeway Moving, and we agree. We like Safeway’s comprehensive vetting process for employees, which adds extra reassurance when you’re trusting a company with your belongings for a cross-country move. We also like the company’s price-matching services and 30 days of free storage with every move—but we found that it can be hard to nail down the fine print with Safeway, so be sure to verify all information prior to signing any contract.

If you’re looking for high-end service that leaves everything to the pros so you can worry about the rest of your move, American Van Lines may be your long distance moving match. American offers specialized moving expertise for delicate items like pianos and doesn’t cut corners. We also like American’s flat-rate prices that remove the guesswork so you can stay on budget. But American Van Lines has limited customer service hours, which can be stressful if you need help during off-hours.


Top 7 rated long distance movers of 2024


internationalvanlines
4.9 out of 5 stars
4.9

Our top-rated mover

International Van Lines’ comprehensive list of moving services, worldwide availability, and unparalleled customer service make it one of the best options for any move.

Sponsored Content

Compare the best long distance moving companies

Company
Move.org rating
BBB Rating bullet
Deposit amount
Discounts
Learn more
4.9 out of 5 stars
4.9
A*25%10% Move.org discount, Military personnel, seniors
4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6
A+30%–40%AAA members, military, seniors
4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5
A10%–50%N/A
4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5
A25%Early reservation, tariff discounts, other customer cancellation
4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2
A+20–35%Military, seniors
4.8 out of 5 stars
4.8
A+0%Seniors
4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6
A+0%N/A

*Not BBB accredited.


What should you look for in a long-distance moving company?

You want your full-service move to be expensive. Maybe not Lifestyles of the Rich and Famous expensive. But pricey enough to feel confident your movers didn’t skip steps that could lead to late delivery or damaged items.

Pay special attention to nationwide companies like American Van Lines that offer binding quotes. The guarantee means your price won’t change after signing on the dotted line—as long as you don’t add any more items to the home inventory you and the movers agreed on during the quote process.

Most moving companies charge a deposit of up to 50%. Do your homework (or let Move.org do it for you) to know whether you can afford the upfront fee.

Positive customer reviews are a critical trust signal. Look for company reports about moves that mention things like safe delivery, professional movers, and helpful telephone brokers. (Customers give the highest praise to Safeway Moving.)

Make sure your professional long-distance movers are properly licensed and insured. You don’t want to fall victim to costly moving scams.

Look for companies like International Van Lines that go the extra mile by giving you 30 days of free storage. Other worthwhile perks include real-time GPS tracking, supplemental insurance, and special discounts.

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How to move to another state

Any long-distance mover on this list can move your belongings to all 50 states. There are few things you should do before moving to another state, but you can start by calling a few companies on this list and asking for a moving estimate.


Our reviews: The best long distance movers for you in 2024

International Van Lines—Best overall

Best overall
internationalvanlines
International Van Lines
Our Rating
4.9 out of 5 stars
4.9

International Van Lines is our pick for the #1 long-distance moving company. It offers nationwide moving services, gives seniors a 15% discount, and even throws in 30 days of free storage. International Van Lines can also trim hundreds of bucks off car shipping services if you can be flexible about timing. On the downside, the company gets lower-than-average customer reviews and has a lot of distracting online pop-up ads that can take away from the online experience.

pro
Pros
pro 10% Move.org reader discount
pro Transparent pricing
pro Local and long-distance moving
pro 15% car shipping discount
pro 15% senior discount
pro 30 days free storage
con
Cons
con Below-average customer reviews
con Annoying pop-up ads

Why we recommend International Van Lines

Transparent pricing

International Van Lines doesn’t try to hide its prices. The company’s website is filled with sample moving quotes. Plus, IVL is transparent with us about how its pricing works. That’s a huge trust signal.

Pricing for full-service moves doesn’t work the same way as services like moving container companies or truck rentals. In those cases, you typically look for the most affordable service since you do much of the work yourself. However, it’s different with pros. You often want a higher price tag to ensure your belongings stay safe.

You don’t want a company that hems and haws about costs. We’ve seen those movers—and they make us wary. International Van Lines will tell you anything you want to know about costs. That gives you the power to make an informed decision.

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IVL packing prices

Packing services are optional—but if you can afford it, it’s a great way to save time and stress with your move. International Van Lines’ packing services range from $375 for a 300-cubic-foot living space to $2,500 for a 2,000-cubic-foot home.

Auto transport

International Van Lines can also ship vehicles to your new home. This long-distance mover offers two types of vehicle transport services and can often trim hundreds of dollars off the going rate:

  1. Open transport. Your car ships on an open-air truck (think of a semi-truck without walls). It picks up dust along the way but is so affordable that 90% of customers opt for this service. IVL also offers insurance to protect against driver negligence.
  2. Enclosed transport. Your car ships inside of an enclosed semi-truck. This typically costs about $400 more than open transport, so it’s primarily recommended for high-value automobiles like custom cars, antique cars, and luxury vehicles.

IVL can save you 15%–20%, depending on your flexibility. That means if you can hang tight until it can load a full truck along your route, you could save hundreds of dollars on average car shipping costs.

Want to save up to 20% on car shipping?

Free storage in your home city

International Van Lines offers one free month of storage in your home city. So, for example, if you’re moving from Washington, D. C. to New York City, the company will keep your belongings in D.C. at no cost for up to 30 days. It’s a great perk if your new home isn’t move-in ready.

Storage services are still available in your new city. IVL charges 50 cents per cubic foot. So, if you have a 1,200-cubic foot home, your storage costs would be $600 per month ($0.50 x 1,200 cubic feet).

IVL’s destination city storage prices
Home size (cu. ft.)
Monthly storage cost
Learn more
1,000$500
2,000$1,000
3,000$1,500
4,000$2,000

Data as of 6/29/22. Prices and availability vary by location and are subject to change.

IVL is our #1 rated company


Safeway Moving—Best for accurate pricing

Best for accurate pricing
safeway
Safeway Moving
Our Rating
4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6

Safeway Moving gets positive customer review scores unheard of in the moving industry. For example, its 4-star rating is a full star higher than some of the companies on this list. The company also claims to offer price-matching services and 30 days of free storage. In addition, we love how it advertises that a portion of your moving cost will be donated to St. Jude’s in an effort to defeat childhood cancer. On the downside, company information is difficult to verify.

pro
Pros
pro Price-matching
pro 30 days free storage
pro Positive reviews
pro Charitable donations
con
Cons
con Only mentioned on a few review sites
con Vague website claims

Things to know about Safeway Moving

Free storage

Safeway Moving says that each move comes with “up to 30 days of free storage.”1 You’ll want to check with the company for more details, but we’ve found that moving storage is helpful in a many situations:

  • Home staging
  • Remodel
  • Late closing date
  • Emergency relocation
  • Corporate relocation
  • Downsizing

Best reviews

If you're wondering which moving company on this list has the best reviews, it's Safeway Moving. Safeway gets the best reviews of any long-distance mover we’ve seen. Although it comes with caveats (for example, most of Safeway’s reviews come from a single site), the company’s resulting score is nearly one full star higher than the best companies in the business.

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Putting reviews into context

Few things indicate a good moving company like excellent reviews. However, even the best companies have hiccups. So be sure to read some reviews on your own to make sure you’re comfortable trusting a moving company with your belongings.

Charitable donations

Safeway Moving was founded by a military veteran who believes in giving back to the community. The company boasts a partnership with St. Jude’s hospital and says it donates “a portion of your total move cost to St. Jude upon completion of your move.”2

Looking for a company with some of the best customer reviews?


American Van Lines—Best for up-front pricing

Best industry reputation
americanvanlines
American Van Lines
Our Rating
4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5

American Van Lines is our pick for high-quality moving services. These long-distance movers don’t skimp on the costs necessary to keep your belongings safe. American charges a flat rate and lets you use all of its many moving services (including piano moving). The company also background checks its workers (including drug tests and background screenings). The catch? American doesn’t have GPS tracking, and its customer service reps are available only on weekdays.

pro
Pros
pro Wide variety of moving services
pro Moves high-value items
pro Flat rates
pro Background-checked movers
pro Uniformed drivers
con
Cons
con No GPS tracking
con No weekend customer service

Why we recommend American Van Lines

Piano moving

You shouldn’t trust your piano to a run-of-the-mill moving company. Instead, look for a long-distance mover like American Van Lines, which specializes in moving large and heavy instruments. They know all the tricks of the trade to ensure that your piano arrives undamaged—and in tune.

For example, did you know that professional movers should disassemble pianos before moving them? It’s a lot different than mental images of workers loading the full monty onto a moving truck. American Van Lines trains its staff to disassemble, load, transport, unload, and reassemble your piano in working condition.

You don’t pay extra thanks to AVL's flat-rate pricing.

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Other high-value items

Pianos aren’t the only high-value item that American Van Lines can move. The company also specialized in moving antiques and fine art.

Flat rates

American Van Lines’ flat-rate prices can save you time and money. Unfortunately, some moving companies try to nickel and dime you. The idea is that you don’t get charged for things you don’t need—and they can make some extra cash by charging for services other companies include. It’s a solid idea in principle but doesn’t always work. Sometimes you simply pay more for less.

Not so with American Van Lines. The company charges a single upfront rate based on the weight of your belongings. Then, you use all of the services you want. It’s kind of like a buffet. You pay for a pricey meal but can load up on as much dessert as you like.

For example, let’s say you get a quote from American Van Lines—and another company that doesn’t use flat-rate pricing:

Sample invoice: Flat-rate vs. standard rate moving prices
Description
American Van Lines (flat rate)
Company B (standard rate)
Initial quote$8,000$7,150
Grand pianoNA$650
Elevator feeNA$75
Bulky itemsNA$450
Packing materialsNA$260
Final price$8,000$8,585

It’s easy to see how your invoice looks cleaner (imagine a bill with two dozen extra line items). Plus, you can save money if you use enough high-end services.

Background-checked movers

AVL’s movers are top-of-the-line professionals. The company puts every potential long-distance mover through an intense pre-hire screening process, including background checks and drug testing. Those that make the cut arrive at your home wearing uniforms that identify them as AVL professionals.

Bottom line: American Van Lines goes the extra mile to ensure that you and your belongings are safe when moving across the United States.

Looking for premium quality?


Solomon & Sons Relocation—Best for East Coast moves

Best for East Coast moves
Solomon & Sons Relocation Services
Our Rating
4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5

Solomon & Sons shines brightest with moves originating on the East Coast but is more than capable of tackling your upcoming move regardless of location. Its sales team will expertly guide you through the quoting process leading to a guaranteed price based upon your unique moving needs.

pro
Pros
pro Offers guaranteed pricing
pro Instant online quotes
pro $100 discount for moving + car shipping
con
Cons
con Requires additional 15% deposit for moves outside of Florida

Why we recommend Solomon & Sons Relocation Services

Excellent quoting process

The sales team at Solomon & Sons really stands out providing a superior quoting experience. First, if your move originates in South Florida, Solomon & Sons will perform a detailed in-home estimate leading to an accurate quote. If you don’t call South Florida home, no need to worry as Solomon & Sons uses convenient video conferencing capabilities and a thorough list of questions to ensure they understand the intricacies of your upcoming move. Even more impressive, Solomon & Sons can provide their services in five different languages: Russian, Spanish, French, Hebrew, and English.

Guaranteed, transparent pricing

One of the biggest worries you face when hiring professional movers is not knowing whether or not your quote and final bill are going to match up. Luckily, Solomon & Sons offers guaranteed pricing when they provide in-home estimates with no hidden fees or charges meaning that you can have confidence there won’t be any surprises at the completion of your move.

Accessorial services & additional fees

Part of Solomon & Son’s transparency is the disclosure of accessorial services and fees. These are especially important to keep in mind if you’re moving into or out of a high-rise in a big city.

  • Long carry: The first 75 feet are included. Each additional 75 ft. is $75.
  • Stairs: 14 steps are included in the basic estimate. Each additional flight (7 steps) is an additional $75 per flight.
  • Packing and unpacking: Packing supplies and crate services, if not already listed within the proposal, are not included. These services are not included with a basic estimate either.
  • Bulky items/special handling: There’s an additional charge for special handling of items like motorcycles, pianos, gun safes, Pelotons and similar speciality items.
  • Storage: Storage costs are $40.00 per 100 cu.ft. per month + $39 monthly administrative fee, non-prorated ($189 minimum).
  • Shuttle service: If a semi-trailer cannot get reasonably close to your residence for loading/unloading, a shuttle truck may be required to complete the relocation at a minimum charge of $300. The actual charge is subject to shipment size ($0.75 per cubic foot after 300 cu ft).

Service area

Located in South Florida, Solomon & Sons offers its services nationwide (excluding moves originating in Montana, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wyoming) and can even help you with an international move. However, when it comes to moves originating from regions other than the East Coast, chances are your move will be brokered to one of its seven highly-vetted partners. This is a common practice for moving companies this size who are looking to take their capabilities nationwide but it does increase the risk of poor communication as your move changes hands.

Ready to start your East Coast move with Solomon & Sons?


Mayzlin Relocation—Best customer reviews

Best customer reviews
Mayzlin Relocation
Our Rating
4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2

Mayzlin Relocation is the best customer-reviewed company on our list. Their sales agents provide helpful tips, like how to avoid common moving scams, and they do what they can to pass along discounts to customers. If customer service is your priority, Mayzlin Relocation is tough to beat. Because you can't get an online quote with Mayzlin, you'll need to give them a call or fill out the new customer form on their website.

pro
Pros
pro Outstanding customer reviews
pro Price matching
pro 7-day cancellation policy
pro Low deposit
pro Live tracking
con
Cons
con No online quotes

Why we recommend Mayzlin Relocation

First-class customer reviews

Mayzlin Relocation is a younger (and smaller) company than others on the list, but there's no denying customer feedback. People who choose Mayzlin on moving day report dependable movers, helpful sales agents, and solid discounts. While Mayzlin doesn't have the same volume of online reviews as companies like IVL or North American Van Lines, they're off to a strong start.

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Track your move in real time

Mayzlin makes it easy for you to see where your belongings are during your long distance move. With Live Tracking, you can follow the truck with your goods as it moves to your new home.

Low deposits

Many long-distance movers charge a hefty deposit to reserve your move—sometimes up to 50% of your total cost. Mayzlin Relocation requires a much more affordable 25%. When you're trying to budget for an expensive cross-country move, a lower initial deposit makes a big difference. On top of that, if you need to cancel your move, you can call Mayzlin up to seven days before your move to get a full refund deposit.

Plenty of discounts

Mayzlin Relocation sales agents do everything they can to secure discounts for your move. Before you even get to discounts, Mayzlin will price match any reputable carrier with a Better Business Bureau grade of B+ or better. If you reserve a move early enough, you'll likely get a discounted rate. You may also be in luck if another customer cancels their move and Mayzlin needs to fill that slot. Ask your sales agent about potential savings while you're getting your quote!

Is customer service your focus?


North American Van Lines—Best for customizable services

Best for customizable services
northamerican
North American Van Lines
Our Rating
4.8 out of 5 stars
4.8

North American Van Lines lets you pick and choose moving services. That’s a big deal because most companies charge you for everything whether you need it or not. It even has plans for supplemental insurance coverage. Not surprisingly, North American gets exceptionally high customer review scores. Regarding drawbacks, the company’s website is a bit clunky, and it’s tough to nail down the cost of your deposit.

pro
Pros
pro A la carte moving services
pro Excellent customer reviews
pro Extra insurance
pro GPS tracking
pro 24/7 customer service
con
Cons
con Vague deposit info
con Sub-par website

Why we recommend North American Van Lines

Customizable moving services

North American Van Lines lets you pick and choose which moving services you want. For example, do you want to save a couple of thousand dollars by packing your belongings yourself? North American is okay with that (most companies aren’t). The same thing goes for other moving services too. If you’re up to the task of unloading your items, the North American Van Lines crew is happy to let you do the work.

Put it all together, and you can choose which local or long-distance moving services want to pay for:

  • Packing services
  • Packing supplies
  • Loading
  • Unloading
  • Climate-controlled storage
  • Installation and assembly services
  • Debris removal
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Is there a checklist for moving?

Yes, there is! Move.org’s 70-Step Moving Checklist covers everything from setting up utilities in your new city to selecting moving insurance.

Live tracking

North American Van Lines makes it easy to know where your household goods are. Once your move is in progress, the company will provide you with a six-digit registration number. Just plug that number into North American’s tracking website, and it will tell you where your belongings are.

A screenshot of North American Van Lines shipment tracking page.

You can get real-time location data for your North American Van Lines shipment with your six-digit registration number and the first three letters of your last name.

24/7 customer service

Did you know that about one-third of long-distance moving companies don’t have weekend customer service? It’s almost unheard of for a company to offer 24/7 support. And yet, that’s what North American Van Lines brings to the table.

Let’s say that your belongings arrive on a Saturday—but that some things are missing or damaged. Normally, you’d call and talk with a company rep to sort things out. But that’s tough to do if no one’s in the office.

North American makes sure that someone is always available to take your call. It’s just one reason the company has some of the highest customer review scores in the industry.

Want to customize your move?


Mayflower—Best for full-service moves

Best for full-service moves
Mayflower
Our Rating
4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6

Mayflower is your best bet if you’re looking to hire an experienced mover to manage your entire move for you. Whether its full packing, custom crating, taking care of your car shipment alongside your move, or even disconnecting and connecting your electronics, Mayflower can tackle it all. When added to one of the largest agent networks in the moving biz and over 95+ years of experience, it’s tough to find a more comprehensive moving experience than Mayflower can provide. If you have the budget, Mayflower won’t disappoint.

pro
Pros
pro Over 200 nationwide agents
pro 95+ years in business
pro Shipment tracking
pro Three different full-service moving packages
con
Cons
con Higher than average prices

Why we recommend Mayflower

Full-service moving packages

While every company on this list can provide a full-service moving package, Mayflower just does it better than most. With one of their full-service moving packages, you can hire Mayflower to manage your move so you’re freed up to work on tackling other elements of your move. Each full-service move includes the following:

  • Assigned move coordinator
  • Full-Value Protection (unless waived)
  • Standard transport of appliances
  • Qualified drivers and equipment
  • Loading, transport, and unloading of household belongings
  • Disassembly and reassembly of standard bed frames
  • Standard furniture placement
Full-service moving package pricing
Option 1 - $225
Option 2 - $425
Option 3 - $725
$5,000 Additional Valuation ProtectionAll Option 1 Services +All Option 1 Services +
Gold Standard Protection$25,000 Additional Valuation Protection$25,000 Additional Valuation Protection
Identity Theft ProtectionDebris RemovalBasic Wall Mount Disassembly (up to 2 TVs)
Claims AssistAdditional Delay Claim Payment ($250/day)Basic Wall Mount Setup (up to 2 Tvs)
Additional Delay Claim Payment ($250/day)

These full-service moving packages are offered on top of an already comprehensive list of services, all carried out by Mayflower’s highly qualified agent networks.

  • Packing
  • Unpacking
  • Trash and debris removal
  • Storage
  • Car shipping
  • Speciality items
  • Crating
  • Electronics installation
  • Move protection

Shipment tracking

A common frustration consumers face when moving is not knowing exactly where their belongings are. In an age of same-day delivery and porch pirates, people get anxious about the safety of their belongings. Thankfully, Mayflower has you covered. Simply head over to their Shipment Tracking portal at any point in your move and provide your order number and last name for an update on where your household belongings are in transit to your new home.

Hand the keys to your move over to Mayflower today!


Other cross country moving companies we considered

Check out our reviews of some other companies that can we looked at during our evaluation and mystery shopping, but didn't make the final cut:


Final word: International Van Lines is the best long distance moving company

International Van Lines is our pick for the best long-distance moving service. It has a vast network of cross-country movers, provides one month of free storage, and offers military and senior discounts.

Want to move with Move.org’s #1 pick?


How to prepare for your long-distance move

Get organized

Anyone who has moved knows about the laundry list of essential moving tasks. We like to recommend the first thing you do when moving long distance is get a moving binder or download an app where you can organize all your important documents and checklists. That way, you can chip away at your to-dos without doing it all in one stressful haul and be ready to rock on moving day.

Here are a few things you might want to include on that list:

Create an inventory of your belongings

A home inventory allows you to identify the items that you’re taking from your old home to your new one. It’s a great organizational tool, but it’s also recommended in case you need to make an insurance claim should something happen to these items. 

You can use a notebook, spreadsheet, or specialized home inventory apps to make your home inventory. Go room by room to survey your belongings. Provide a detailed description of each item, the date of purchase, where you bought it, and any receipts you have to approximate the item’s value.

Decide what type of move is best for you

Determine which moving service is right for your situation, how convenient you want your move to be, and how much money you’re willing to spend. Whether you’re moving DIY or hiring full-service movers for your long-distance move, now is the time to look at your budget, consider what work you will do and what you will pay professionals to do, and weigh the pros and cons of each option.

Compare moving companies

The whole moving process takes on average about six to seven weeks. Ideally, you should already be scoping out moving companies at least eight weeks before your move. If you wait too long, you may experience less availability and/or higher costs. 

When beginning the moving estimate process, it’s important to get at least three moving quotes so that you can compare costs and services that match your needs. 

Here are some of things to consider when reaching out to companies:

  • Company history: The inception, growth, achievements, and reputation of a company matter.
  • Customer service: Scope out customer reviews on multiple review sites.
  • Proper credentials: Check to see if the company is licensed and insured.

Doing research on any company you’re considering ahead of time also makes you less susceptible to common moving scams

For more moving preparation tips, check out Move.org’s Ultimate Moving Checklist.


Interstate moving 101

An interstate move is when you move home from one state to another. Interstate moving is less complicated when you know what to expect. Before shopping for the best interstate moving company for your move, there are a few things you should know:

It’s best to compare prices.

Be prepared to talk with a company rep before getting an estimate. It takes a little time, but you’ll get a moving quote tailored to your situation. Be sure to get at least three quotes to see how prices for your move compare by company.

You need to take a home inventory.

To get an accurate quote, you’ll need a complete inventory of all your household belongings (and anything in storage, as well). Remember: if you add more items to you inventory after the fact, your final cost will be higher.

Brokers are just a starting point.

Some interstate moving companies are brokers. Brokers take your call and act as middlemen, but usually hand you off to third-party carriers to coordinate your move's details. Learn more about the differences and interplay between brokers and carriers and check the FMCSA database if you’re unsure which type of company you’re dealing with.

Examine the company’s services.

State to state moving companies do everything from packing and loading to transportation and furniture assembly. You tell them what needs to be done—and they can do it.

The best moving companies are nationwide.

Every professional moving company can take you from almost anywhere to virtually everywhere. A few companies like Safeway Moving don’t offer moving services for local moves. But many of the best interstate moving companies don’t have many limitations, providing household moving services in the US, across the border to Canada, and to more than 150 countries worldwide.

Consider other moving options.

Not all of the best state to state moving companies are full-service movers. Moving containers and rental trucks are also popular moving options for long-distance moving. These moving options cost less but require more work. DIY customers also commonly use car shipping companies and rent storage units.

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What’s the difference between a broker and carrier?

You'll probably work with moving brokers and carriers during your move. Brokers are middlemen that connect you with carriers that own and operate moving trucks. Some companies act as either a broker or a carrier depending upon where your move originates.


Long-distance moving FAQ

Most professional moving companies think of a long-distance move as moving over 400 miles, typically across state lines. It can also be called long-haul moving or interstate moving. If you are moving within the same state, or less than 100 miles, consider moving containers or local moving companies instead.

Generally, it's cheapest to schedule the movers to come during the beginning or middle of the week (Monday through Thursday). Moving costs for weekend moves are often a bit higher because there is less availability (a lot of people want to move on the weekend). 

We recommend tipping movers about 15% of your total bill for large homes and 5% for smaller homes. If the math is tricky, you can also ballpark and give each mover $40.

The average cost for interstate movers is about $9,060. However, prices vary depending on things like move distance and home size.

What moving companies charge varies. The price of your move will depend on your move type (professional movers, moving container, or truck rental), how far you're moving, add-on services, the time of year, and the amount and type of stuff you're moving. For example, full-service movers start at $1,200 and can go as high as $29,000.

Long-distance moving costs so much because you pay professionals to do everything from loading up your belongings to transporting them across the country. Additional services, like packing and storage, will increase your total price. You can save costs by using one of the best interstate moving companies. North American Van Lines, for example, lets you pick and choose moving services.

There are three main types of moves: full-service, container, and truck rental. Full-service costs the most while rental trucks typically cost the least. Moving containers usually fall somewhere in the middle. Each of these services can handle your long-distance move, but we recommend a full-service professional mover if you can afford it. It’s simply the easiest option.

The most affordable way to move across the country is to use one of the cheapest moving container companies. You pay less than hiring professional movers (because you do some of the work) while also trimming costs like airfare, gas, and lodging associated with long-distance moving truck rentals.

International Van Lines and North American Van Lines are the best commercial moving companies. IVL has the best overall commercial movers, while North American allows you to customize your moving package. Both companies will handle your interstate move with care and expertise.

Moving insurance is critical to ensure the safety of your belongings. The federal government requires that all cross-country moving companies provide moving insurance (called “valuation”). You can also purchase additional insurance from third parties to be extra safe.

Cheap movers can be safe or dangerous, depending on how low their costs are. We recommend getting quotes from several relocation services and avoiding prices that seem especially low in comparison. For more information, take a look at our best cheap moving companies.

The cost to move internationally ranges from about $1,500 to more than $10,000. Professional international moving companies typically include packing, transportation, and delivery in your final bill.

The best way to do a long-distance move depends if you care about cost or convenience. Moving container companies are your best bet if you need to move on a budget, and professional cross-country movers are ideal if you want to minimize stress.

You should schedule your movers at least four weeks before your move. During this time you should also coordinate a moving permit if you need one, gather any remaining supplies, contact utility providers, and make any travel arrangements.

You may need to provide upwards of eight weeks’ notice if moving to another state during the peak moving season (late spring to early fall). However, some companies can facilitate short-notice moves for an extra fee.

Most professional moving services have local movers. However, some companies like IMRG and JK Moving Services assist with cross-country moves.

You can find a reputable mover by searching for the top local movers near you. You can also head over to our local movers hub, where we've narrowed down the highest-rated movers in cities across the US. 

Be sure not to pack commonly prohibited items for moving like matches, batteries, and nail polish when traveling long-distance. It’s also a good idea to keep some clothing, food, and toiletries until you know you have someplace to stay.

You should start packing about two months before you move. Or, if you hire one of the best long-distance moving companies, their crews need only about one day's notice to pack all of your belongings.

The top-rated moving company is International Van Lines. It has an established reputation, an extensive moving network, and transparent pricing.

Moving containers from PODS cost about $4,660 to move 1,000 miles or more across the state line. Cross-country moving costs are as low as $1,800 for small apartments and up to $6,520 for large five-room homes.

U-Pack is an exceptional company for cross-country moves. It has the best combination of positive reviews and nationwide availability. Just be prepared to pay a premium for the high-quality service.

JK Moving Services is a reputable long-distance moving service with excellent customer reviews. The company caters its services to high-end customers, and can even charter you a private flight to the new city you're moving to.

You can expect to pay anywhere from about $1,000–$10,000 to move a mobile home. However, it's important to understand that mobile home transport costs vary widely and depend on several factors. 


Methodology

Move.org evaluates and identifies the moving industry’s best full-service movers using a fivefold research approach:

  • Compare pricing transparency. We gather quotes, check for binding estimates, and read customer reviews about pricing to ensure each moving company’s prices are trustworthy. 
  • Mystery shopping. We review every company’s website, use first-hand experience to pose as customers in calls to companies, and read customer reviews to analyze every company’s moving services, transit protection, and customer service. We also interview actual customers to learn how their moves went from start to finish.
  • Site visits.  We invite moving companies to our headquarters in Salt Lake City, UT, to share data and expertise. We verify the information they provide by comparing it to data gathered through independent research and interviews with other movers.
  • Regular review. We routinely repeat this process to update our recommendations to reflect current data and trends. We also revise each review annually and make updates throughout the year.

Christa Baxter
Written by
Christa Baxter
Christa Baxter has worked as an editor for more than eight years and specialized in moving content for the last three. She leads the Move.org content team in producing whip-smart moving tips and recs. After relocating four times in the last calendar year, she’s got strong opinions about moving best practices. (Just don’t ever pull a Marie Kondo and suggest she whittle down her personal library.) She earned a BA and MA in English with a minor in editing.