PODS vs. 1-800-PACK-RAT: Compare Moving Containers

Our pick
  • Low final prices
  • 60+ locations
Best availability
pods
PODS
4.2 out of 5 stars
4.2
  • Low initial prices
  • 180+ locations
Kurt Manwaring
Researcher & Writer
Read More
Published on January 07, 2021
4 min read

PODS and 1-800-PACK-RAT are two of the best moving container companies in the industry. PODS has more locations and gets better reviews. But thanks to generous price matching and hefty discounts, 1-800-PACK-RAT scores big where it matters the most: low final prices. We give 1-800-PACK-RAT a slight edge with an overall rating of 4.4 out of 5 stars (PODS comes in at 4.2 stars).

Winner: 1-800-PACK-RAT is our winner because it has lower pricing (after discounts) and higher quality containers.

Looking for low final prices?


PODS vs. 1-800-PACK-RAT pricing

PODS has lower initial prices than 1-800-PACK-RAT, but 1-800-PACK-RAT often has lower final prices (because of discounts and aggressive price matching). PODS typically has lower prices for small homes and short distances, while 1-800-PACK-RAT is usually more affordable for big houses and long distances.

PODS vs. 1-800-PACK RAT price comparison

PODS
1-800-PACK-RAT
Average cost
$3,160
$3,290
Discounts
Icon Yes  DarkYes
Icon Yes  DarkYes
Price matching
Sometimes
Icon Yes  DarkYes
Taxes included in quotes
Icon No  DarkNo
Sometimes

Data as of 8/10/2020. Offers and availability may vary and are subject to change. Average cost calculated by comparing moving costs for four home sizes across three distances.

We collected 48 quotes from PODS and 1-800-PACK-RAT to see how their prices match up. To identify each company’s strengths, we requested quotes for six distances and four home sizes.

Both companies offer discounts (1-800-PACK-RAT has the most), and price matching (1-800-PACK-RAT is more aggressive). Taxes aren’t part of your quotes, but 1-800-PACK-RAT sometimes gives you a tax estimate upon request. PODS typically declines to provide tax estimates even upon request.

PODS vs. 1-800-PACK RAT price comparison by home size

PODS
1-800-PACK-RAT
1 room$1,960$2,870
2 rooms$2,660$2,870
3 rooms$2,970$2,870
5 rooms$5,060$3,290

Data as of 8/10/2020. Offers and availability may vary and are subject to change. Average cost calculated by comparing moving costs for four home sizes across three distances.

PODS has lower rates for smaller homes, while 1-800-PACK-RAT has better prices for bigger ones. PODS’s average cost of $2,310 for one to two rooms is about $560 lower than 1-800-PACK-RAT’s fee of $2,870. 1-800-PACK-RAT’s average cost of $3,700 for three to five rooms is about $320 lower than PODS’s average cost of $4,020.

PODS vs. 1-800-PACK RAT price comparison by distance

PODS
1-800-PACK-RAT
100 miles$1,160$2,020
450 miles$2,930$2,770
1,050 miles$3,830$3,470
1,750 miles$2,870$3,290
1,850 miles$4,570$4,580
2,050 miles$3,610$3,590

Data as of 8/10/2020. Offers and availability may vary and are subject to change. Average cost calculated by comparing moving costs for four home sizes across three distances.

PODS has significantly cheaper rates for short moves, while 1-800-PACK-RAT is slightly less expensive for long distances. PODS’s average cost of $1,160 for a 100-mile move is approximately $860 cheaper than 1-800-PACK-RAT. 1-800-PACK-RAT’s average cost of $3,540 for moves over 450 miles is about $20 less expensive than PODS.

PODS vs. 1-800-PACK RAT discounts and price matching

PODS and 1-800-PACK-RAT have discounts and price matching that affect your final costs. 1-800-PACK-RAT beats out PODS in both categories. 1-800-PACK-RAT has more deals than PODS—and price matches more consistently. PODS offers discounts primarily for Move.org readers and long-term storage, while 1-800-PACK-RAT has a ton of discounts for everyone from teachers to first responders.

While PODS sometimes offers price matching, it can depend on the customer service rep you talk to. On the other hand, 1-800-PACK-RAT offered PODS price matching virtually every time we spoke to them when we posed as customers.

The result is that PODS has lower initial fees, but 1-800-PACK-RAT has cheaper final prices.

Winner: 1-800-PACK-RAT


PODS vs. 1-800-PACK-RAT availability

It will be easy for you to find a PODS location. PODS has about three times as many sites as 1-800-PACK-RAT. While 1-800-PACK-RAT has 62 facilities in 30 states, PODS has 184 locations in 44 states.

PODS vs. 1-800-PACK-RAT locations

PODS
1-800-PACK-RAT
# of states44 30
# of locations184 62

Data as of 9/22/2020.

Winner: PODS


PODS vs. 1-800-PACK-RAT customer experience

PODS customers generally leave better reviews than 1-800-PACK-RAT customers. 1-800-PACK-RAT lines up with the industry average of 3.3 out of 5 stars, while PODS is a full half-star higher than the norm with a rating of 3.8 stars. While both companies typically get praise for their professionalism, customers routinely give PODS much higher reviews than 1-800-PACK-RAT’s customers. They especially love PODS' customer service.

Winner: PODS


PODS vs. 1-800-PACK-RAT containers

PODS and 1-800-PACK-RAT have the two best containers on the market—but 1-800-PACK-RAT takes our top spot. Though both companies have three container sizes, the PODS container is made with steel frames while 1-800-PACK-RAT’s containers are entirely made of steel. That extra layer ensures even more protection for your stuff. (More security equals more peace of mind.)

PODS vs. 1-800-PACK-RAT container comparison

PODS
1-800-PACK-RAT
# of container sizes33
Container materialSteel framesAll steel
Small container dimensions7 x 7 x 8 ft.8.5 x 7.2. x 7.8 ft.
Medium container dimensions12 x 8 x 8 ft.12 x 7.8 x 7.5 ft.
Large container dimensions16 x 8 x 8 ft.16. x 7.8 x 7.5 ft.

Data as of 9/22/2020.

Winner: 1-800-PACK-RAT


PODS vs. 1-800-PACK-RAT services

PODS and 1-800-PACK-RAT offer comparable services. Both companies have three container sizes, provide portable storage, and service local and long-distance moves. PODS has more locations (184 vs. 62), but 1-800-PACK-RAT has better containers (all steel vs. steel frames).

PODS vs. 1-800-PACK-RAT services comparison

PODS
1-800-PACK-RAT
# of locations
184
62
# of container sizes
3
3
Container material
Steel frames
All steel
Local and long-distance moves
Icon Yes  DarkYes
Icon Yes  DarkYes
Portable storage
Icon Yes  DarkYes
Icon Yes  DarkYes

Data as of 9/22/2020.

Winner: Tie

Badge Definition
What is portable storage?

Moving containers double as storage units (hence the term portable storage). Your storage options include keeping the shipping containers at your home or a moving container company’s storage facility.

PODS vs. 1-800-PACK-RAT coverage options

PODS has more coverage options than 1-800-PACK-RAT. While each moving container company has identical prices for similar coverage amounts, PODS offers up to $300,000, and 1-800-PACK-RAT caps out at $75,000.

PODS vs. 1-800-PACK-RAT coverage prices by declared value

Declared value
PODS
1-800-PACK-RAT
$5,000 $34.95$34.95
$25,000$79.95$79.95
$50,000$119.95$119.95
$100,000 $179.95Not offered

PODS data as of 3/3/2015.1 Pricing for US Contents Protection only and subject to change. 1-800-PACK-RAT data as of 4/3/17.2 Pricing may vary by location and are subject to change. Individuals should review their rental contract—including addendums—for a complete description of the policy’s terms, conditions, and exclusions.

Winner: PODS


Our pick: 1-800-PACK-RAT

1-800-PACK-RAT squeaks out a win over PODS because of its pricing and container quality. 1-800-PACK-RAT has lower costs (after discounts), provides tax estimates upon request, and consistently offers price matching. The moving company also has better container quality thanks to its all steel construction.

Want high quality and low prices?

Other moving container picks

PODS and 1-800-PACK-RAT have a lot to offer—but they aren’t the only container companies out there. Learn more about the competition:

Moving container FAQ

Do moving container companies offer portable storage?

Yes, moving container companies offer portable storage. Besides providing local moves and long-distance moves, portable moving container companies let you use the containers as portable storage units.

Are there moving services that offer hourly moving help?

Yes, there are moving services that offer hourly moving help. The best moving labor companies are HireAHelper, Dolly, and TaskRabbit.

Is a moving truck cheaper than a portable storage container?

Yes, a moving truck is generally cheaper than a portable storage container. However, a storage container becomes more affordable than a truck over longer distances because you don’t have to pay for fuel, food, and lodging.

Do PODS and 1-800-PACK-RAT have more than one container size?

Yes, PODS and 1-800-PACK-RAT have more than one container size. Each company has three sizes. The smallest container sizes often fit one room of belongings while the largest container sizes can fit up to four rooms.

What is the moving cost of PODS vs. 1-800-PACK-RAT?

PODS has a lower initial moving cost than 1-800-PACK-RAT ($3,160 vs. $3,290 for an average move), but 1-800-PACK-RAT often has lower final prices because of discounts and price matching.

Sources

1. 1-800-PACK-RAT, “Contents Protection Plans,” April 3, 2017. Accessed September 21, 2020.

2. PODS Enterprises, LLC, “Contents Protection,” 2016. Accessed September 1, 2020.

Kurt Manwaring
Written by
Kurt Manwaring
Kurt Manwaring brings nearly a decade’s worth of research experience as a business consultant to the Move.org team. He specializes in taking complicated issues (like moving) and presenting them in a way that everyone can understand. His writing has been featured in hundreds of publications, including USA Today, Martha Stewart Living, Country Living, Good Housekeeping, Heavy, Slate, and Yahoo! Lifestyle. He brings a BS in sociology and an MPA (masters of public administration) to the Move team. He would love to hear about your moving experiences and questions at kurt@move.org.