2021 International Van Lines Review

Bottom line: International Van Lines’ comprehensive list of moving services, worldwide availability, and unparalleled customer service make it one of the best options for any move. In fact, it beat all its competition to become our very favorite full-service moving company.
Best Overall
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International Van Lines
Our Rating
4.8 out of 5 stars
4.8
Jenny Willden
Researcher & Writer
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Published on February 19, 2021
6 min read

International Van Lines operates as both a carrier and moving broker for local, long-distance, and international moves.

With its large truck inventory, relationships with international carriers, and experience transporting home goods around the globe, IVL is a moving master—and an especially wise choice if you’re relocating across the country or abroad.

Continue reading to learn more about the pros and cons of using International Van Lines for your next move.

Pro Heading
Pros
Pro Bullet Worldwide availability
Pro Bullet Discounts on moving services
Pro Bullet Optional (and often included) storage
Pro Bullet Award-winning customer service
Con Heading
Cons
Con Bullet Moves outsourced to other carriers
Con Bullet 25% deposit required at booking

International Van Lines is our choice for the best overall long-distance mover. Find out why it stands out in our Best Long-Distance Moving Companies list.

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Move.org Moving Grants: The 411

At Move.org, we offer financial assistance to individuals and families who are moving in exchange for details about their experience. Their candid reviews help us provide unique, real-life perspectives about the moving process.

Visit our Moving Grant hub to find out which companies we’ve worked with and to apply for funding for your next move!


How much does International Van Lines cost?

International Van Lines’ summer prices range from $2,000 to move a one-bedroom apartment less than 200 miles to a little over $10,000 to move a four-bedroom home around 1,000 miles. In the winter, IVL’s rates can drop by up to $1,000.

These prices are right on par with standard industry rates. When you consider the top-notch service that IVL provides (more on that later), it’s actually surprising that the company’s prices aren’t a little higher.

International Van Lines moving rates

Home size
Shipment weight
Price to move 140 miles
Price to move 546 miles
Price to move 1,011 miles
Price to move 1,174 miles
4-bedroom home8,731 lbs.$9,680.00$9,680.00$10,393.00$10,393.00
1-bedroom apartment2,151 lbs.$2,104.00$2,104.00$2,598.75$2,598.75

Data as of 4/16/2020. 1,174-mile move estimates based on moves from Los Angeles, CA, to Denver, CO. 1,011-mile move estimates based on moves from Omaha, NE, to Buffalo, NY. 546-mile move estimates based on moves from Memphis, TN, to Chicago, IL. 140-mile move estimates based on moves from Washington, DC, to Philadelphia, PA.

You may notice that the two longer moves have the same price in both home size categories and that the same is true for the two shorter moves. This is the way IVL gave us these prices because they’re just ballpark estimates, not quotes for real moves.

As always, you’ll only know exactly what your move will cost after getting your own estimate. If you first want to see more rates from IVL, check out our full IVL pricing data (PDF).

Getting your IVL estimate

Obtaining an accurate quote is one of the most difficult aspects of working with International Van Lines, as you have to provide a full inventory of what you’re moving, when, and where. You’ll also need to submit your full name, address, and phone number.

That said, IVL’s thorough online and over-the-phone quote process is far more accurate than instant quote generators used by other companies. You’ll fill out an entire inventory of how many beds, dressers, couches, tables, and even unusual items (like canoes) you’re moving so you can ballpark the price of your truckload.

What’s included in every International Van Lines move

  • Basic furniture assembly and disassembly
  • Loading and unloading
  • Use of pads, blankets, ties, and straps for furniture protection
  • Moving items up or down one flight of stairs
  • All tolls, mileage, fuel, and taxes (unless otherwise listed)
  • Liability protection ($0.60 per lb. per article, only up to $10,000)

IVL also offers full-value protection—which covers damage to your belongings at a higher rate per item—at an additional cost. If you’re moving abroad, you can also purchase marine insurance for your shipment.

International Van Lines moving fees

Depending on the logistics of your move, you may have to pay extra fees. Use this summary to better estimate your overall cost.

IVL fee categories

Fee type
Amount
Details
Elevator$75One-time charge
Stairs$75 per additional flightFirst flight (10 steps) is free
Long carry$75 per additional 75 ft.Charged if truck must park more than 75 ft. from your door
Packing materialsVariesBubble wrap, boxes, tape, mattress covers, and crates available for purchase
Shuttle service$0.75 per cu. ft. ($350 minimum)Charged if an 18-wheeler cannot reach your location
Bulky item$150 per itemTreadmills, canoes, etc.
Piano handling$150–$350Varies with piano type
Motorcycle handling$350Does not include packing or weight of bike
Storage $0.50 per cu. ft. per month Calculated starting on day of pickup

Pricing on long-distance moves

A deposit is required for all long-distance and international moves—typically 25% of your overall quote. The deposit reserves the date that your carrier will pick up your belongings, but it is fully refundable for moves canceled up to 48 hours prior to the pickup date. The deposit can be placed on a credit card and will be deducted from your total balance.

The remainder of what you owe is split into two payments: half is charged upon pickup, and the other half upon delivery. You must pay the balance by cashier’s check, cash, or money order.

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Pro tip

For the most accurate quote on a long-distance move, skip the lengthy phone call and opt for a free in-home estimate. This helps you cover your bases and avoid unexpected charges tacked onto your total.

Pricing on local moves

International Van Lines does not fulfill local moves itself. Once you submit a quote request, it will provide a list of vetted companies that offer door-to-door service in your area.

Local moves are priced by the hour instead of by weight. These hourly rates vary based on a few factors:

  • How many movers you need
  • The time and date of your move
  • The size of your home
  • The number of bulky, heavy items

Request a free moving quote via the IVL website or by telephone, and be sure to ask about available promotions to secure the best rate.

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Where to?

As much as people dream about big moves, most folks stay close to home. Just 34% of American movers relocate to a different county or state, and just 4% come from abroad.2 If you’re from one of these adventurous groups, International Van Lines is an excellent choice for relocating over long distances.


What services does International Van Lines offer?

International Van Lines launched in 2000 and has a competitive edge in domestic and international moving. Its global reach and breadth of services offered make it a winner for complicated moves across the country or around the world.

International Van Lines’s standout features

  1. It provides an array of moving services.
  2. Its services are available worldwide.
  3. It offers optional temporary storage.

International Van Lines’s services

  • Free online and over-the-phone quotes
  • Local moves
  • Long-distance moves
  • International moves
  • Online rental discounts
  • Online reservations
  • Packing, assembly, and disassembly services
  • Moving advice
  • Moving forms
  • Optional temporary storage
  • Auto transport services
  • Military moves
  • Small moves
  • Corporate moves
  • 24/7 customer service
  • Door-to-door and port-to-port service

International Van Lines’s long-distance moving services cover any location within the United States. And, thanks to partnerships in over 180 countries,1 IVL services worldwide moves.

While International Van Lines focuses on long-distance and international moves, it can also assist with your local move in select locations.

Heads Up
Take note

International Van Lines operates as a moving carrier and broker, meaning IVL may outsource the transport of your belongings to other companies.


International Van Lines offers specialty moving services

If your household goods go beyond the usual boxes, dishes, furniture, and useless knickknacks found in practically everyone’s home, you’ll love IVL’s array of moving services.

Need a crane to lift your hot tub off of your porch? Or an extra set of hands to haul a baby grand piano from your living room? Check and check. Trained staff arrive ready to safely pack and haul nearly anything you request.

International Van Lines offers the following specialty moving services:

  • Full-service packing
  • Short or long-term storage
  • Specialty crating
  • Large and heavy item moves
  • Crane service
  • Piano transport
  • Complex furniture assembly and disassembly
  • Motorcycle handling
International Van Lines moving truck

International Van Lines has moving services worldwide

The best part of International Van Lines’s moving services is that they’re available anywhere around the globe. Whether you’re relocating from Botswana or Boston, you’ll find a bevy of vetted door-to-door and port-to-port moving options.

(All are way safer than hiring a stranger off Craigslist.)

Plus, International Van Lines has moving coordinators to help guide you through the global moving process: they can explain customs inspections, international transit times, and additional charges for cross-border moves.

These added charges will vary based on your move, but expect increased costs if you request door-to-port service, which requires you to pay port and terminal handling charges (THC) at the destination port.3

Get more information on these costs from your destination country, customs departments, the local consulate, or your moving coordinator so you can know what to expect.

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Be aware

International transit times are unpredictable and can take much longer than moves within the United States. Expect 6–10 weeks to get your goods to your new home—ask your moving coordinator for a specific timeline based on your destination.


International Van Lines provides optional temporary storage

Whether you’re a military member shopping around for a new home after a Permanent Change of Station or a civilian waiting on a sale to finalize before moving in, you may need a place to temporarily store your belongings.

Thankfully, International Van Lines offers a variety of storage services. Customers report that they’ve received a month of free storage with moving packages. Choose warehouse or portable storage to safely stow your home goods until you need them.

Warehouse storage

With thousands of partner facilities around the globe, International Van Lines can offer customers storage in (almost) any country or state. IVL monitors facilities to ensure all are safe and secure for stashing cargo until you’re ready to move in.

Portable storage

If you need a few extra days to pack—or if you just want everything stowed in a single container in your driveway—try IVL’s portable storage. You’ll pack your belongings in weather-resistant cubes, and International Van Lines will transport them to a warehouse facility until your new home is ready.

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Keep in mind

You must notify IVL if you wish to cancel storage 10 days before your contract expires or you’ll owe the next month’s entire fee.


What we think

For global, long-distance, and local moves, International Van Lines is an experienced carrier and broker that gets the job done. Its availability in all 50 states and around the world and its professional drivers mean your stuff is in good hands from Toledo to Tahiti.

Our one caution for moving with International Van Lines: The quote process is not instant and requires a full inventory of your home, which means rates can vary depending on the information you provide. For the most accurate pricing, try in-home estimates—you should also request a list of any extra fees when confirming the cost.

Time to pack up?

Get an idea of how much moving with International Van Lines might cost you with a free quote.

Are you an International Van Lines customer? Share your experience in the comments below. If you’re still not sure whether International Van Lines is right for you, check out our Best Interstate Moving Companies list to find other movers we recommend.


Sources

  1. International Van Lines, “International Movers
  2. Move.org, “The State of the American Mover: Stats and Facts
  3. International Van Lines, “International Moving Company

Joe Roberts also contributed to this article.

Jenny Willden
Written by
Jenny Willden
Jenny’s been writing stories since she first picked up a pencil and is lucky to call it her profession. She’s lived in five U.S. states (and counting) and uses her mishaps to help you master your next move.