PODS vs. U-Pack Review 2022

We compared nearly 100 quotes and scoured PODS and U-Pack’s customer reviews. Our verdict? PODS comes out on top.
Our pick
pods
PODS
4.6 out of 5 stars
4.6
$3,810 avg. price
  • Icon Yes  Light
    Local and long-distance moves
  • Icon Yes  Light
    3 container sizes
  • Icon Yes  Light
    46-state availability
Excellent customer reviews
upack
U-Pack ReloCube
4 out of 5 stars
4
$4,500 avg. price
  • Icon Yes  Light
    Long-distance moves only
  • Icon Yes  Light
    1 container size
  • Icon Yes  Light
    50-state availability
Julia Campbell
Researcher & Writer
Read More
November 18, 2022
6 min read

Our top pick: PODS gets our vote for the best moving container company. It’s got low prices, more moving container sizes, and a wider range of services. PODS can also handle local moves. U-Pack outshines PODS in pricing transparency, customer reviews, availability, and coverage. 


Compare PODS and U-Pack top features

The average cost of PODS is $3,810 while U-Pack's average price is $4,500. PODS is below the industry average, while U-Pack is above. PODS has three steel-framed containers (8, 12, and 16-foot containers), U-Pack has one metal container called a ReloCube that's 6 ft. x 7 ft. x 8 ft. PODS includes 30 days of storage in its quote, but U-Pack does not. U-Pack does allow three days for you to load and three days to unload your container.

Company
Avg. cost
Number of container sizes
Included storage
Learn more
$3,810330 days
$4,50016 days

Data of March 2022. Offers and availability may vary and are subject to change. Average cost calculated by comparing moving costs for four home sizes across six distances.


Best pricing: PODS

While U-Pack has more transparent pricing with its pay-for-what-you-use policy, PODS is more affordable as a whole. PODS offers all Move.org readers a 10% discount, which is nearly  $400 in savings based on the average moving cost. 

Compare PODS and U-Pack ReloCube pricing

Details
PODS
U-Pack ReloCube

Move distance

2,060 mi.

2,060 mi.

Container size

8 ft. x 7 ft. x 8 ft.

6 ft. 3 in. x 7 ft. x ft. 8 ft. 4 in.

Interior space (cu. ft.)

385

308

Weight limit (lbs.)

5,200

2,500

Capacity (rooms of furniture)

1 room

1 room

Total moving estimate

$4,714$2,714

Data as of March 2022. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.

The chart above illustrates a 2,060-mile move using U-Pack’s ReloCube and PODS’s 8-foot container.

The data we gathered for a cross-country move over 2,000 miles for 1-bedroom homes shows PODS to be $2000 less than U-Pack.

Price transparency

One thing that sets U-Pack apart when it comes to pricing is its pay-for-what-you-use policy. The policy allows you to reserve as much space as you think you’ll need—and you’ll never be charged for extra cubes or empty moving trailer space you don’t use.

If you order three ReloCubes but fill only two, you’ll pay for only two. If you use all three, you’ll pay for three. With PODS, you’ll pay for a full container—even if it’s half-empty. And since PODS’s containers are larger than U-Pack’s, it’s more difficult to mix and match them to fit your exact load size.

Container space and weight capacity

While the ReloCube and PODS' 8-foot container have the same room capacity, the PODS container can handle more than double the weight of the ReloCube. For the average load of household goods, this may not matter all that much. But if you’re packing your motorcycle and woodworking equipment, you may get close to U-Pack’s 2,500-pound limit.

The PODS 8-foot container has a bit more interior space than the ReloCube, which is something to keep in mind if your container will be packed to the gills.

Bullhorn
No free locks

Some moving and storage companies provide locks with your container (so you can keep your stuff in and thieves out). Sadly, neither U-Pack nor PODS include locks in your reservation—you’ll have to buy your own.


Best availability: U-Pack

Both U-Pack and PODS have nationwide service, but U-Pack covers all 50 states, while PODS covers 46 states. Both moving companies also offer moving services outside the United States. U-Pack is available in Canada, and you can hire PODS in the UK, Canada, and Australia.



Best customer experience: U-Pack

U-Pack has a slight edge over PODS when it comes to customer experience. Both companies have websites that are easy to navigate. It also has  impressive customer review scores, but U-Pack's overall 3.5 out of 5 stars beats out PODS' 3.1 out of 5 stars. U-Pack customers have depicted exceptionally safe deliveries, how surprised they were about the space they got with a ReloCube, and how much they saved with ReloCubes as opposed to hiring professional movers.

In the end, U-Pack pulls out the win because it offers instant online quotes. PODS typically requires you to visit with a company rep (although it does provide online quotes if your move is less than 50 miles).

Megaphone
Did you know?

Only U-Pack allows you to reserve online. With PODS, you’ll need to have a convo with a PODS rep if you plan to move more than 50 miles.


Best range of services: PODS

While both moving container companies offer a similar number of service, PODS outshines U-Pack because it services local moves, offers car shipping, and has both at-home and facility storage. PODS is the only moving container company on our best list that offers car shipping. U-Pack does offer a variety of trailers for larger household moves, while PODS has moving three containers. 

Compare moving services: U-Pack vs. PODS

Company
Local moves
Long-distance moves
Trailers
At-home storage
Facility storage
Car shipping
Website
PODS
Icon Yes  DarkYes
Icon Yes  DarkYes
Icon No  DarkNo
Yes
Icon Yes  DarkYes
Yes
U-Pack ReloCube
Icon No  DarkNo
Icon Yes  DarkYes
Icon Yes  DarkYes
No
Icon Yes  DarkYes
No

Data as of March 2022. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.

Containers vs. trailers

PODS has more moving and storage container sizes than U-Pack: a 12-foot moving POD for local moves as well as 8-foot and 16-foot containers for both local and long-distance moves. This is especially handy for larger moves when you prefer to pack everything in one container rather than sorting and splitting your stuff across two or three cubes.

U-Pack does have multiple sizes of moving trailers (basically, moving trucks), which are useful for large household moves. U-Pack’s moving trailer holds four times the amount its ReloCubes hold.

So if you’re moving a family of five, U-Pack’s trailers can easily make your move happen. And if you want a smaller container or multiple containers, ReloCube offers a happy medium.

Local moves

One spot where U-Pack falls short: it doesn’t service local moves. While we’ve been able to get quotes for trips within a single state, U-Pack won’t move you across town. If you need a moving and storage container for a local move, PODS has you covered.

Storage

It's also worth saying that PODS has the best storage options. It offers both at-home or facility storage, while U-Pack only has storage facility access. PODS even has climate-controlled storage facilities for sensitive items like photographs and books. 

Car shipping

Finally, PODS offers auto transport services, which makes it more of a one-stop-shop for moving. It partners with an online marketplace (ACERTUS) where truck drivers bid on your shipment. The service is still new, so be sure to speak with your PODS rep if you need more information.

Info Box
Heads up

Depending on where you live, you may need a temporary street parking permit for your PODS container. U-Pack’s ReloCubes fit in a standard parking spot, so it shouldn’t be a problem finding space unless you’re ordering a whole bunch.

(If you’re reserving a trailer from U-Pack, you’ll need more space. Plan accordingly.)


Best coverage: U-Pack

In the same way you need auto insurance before you hit the road, you’ll want insurance on your moving containers and household belongings before you send them on their way.

Between U-Pack and PODS, U-Pack offers more comprehensive coverage plans. Plus, U-Pack includes two protection plans in the cost of every move. PODS includes $10,000 worth of content protection in every long-distance move, but its coverage prices aren’t as spelled out as U-Pack’s. PODS’s deductibles sit somewhere in the ballpark of $100, but it’ll depend on the specifics of your move.

Let’s break down both.

U-Pack’s coverage plans

Catastrophic Liability: This plan covers the value of everything from your futon to your flip flops while your container is en route. If there’s a fire, theft, or accident, U-Pack will reimburse you $3.00 per pound per item. For ReloCubes, you’re covered up to $7,500 total. For moving trailers, the policy pays out up to $60,000.

Carrier Negligence: If your items are damaged as the result of a U-Pack screwup after you’ve packed and loaded your container, U-Pack will reimburse you for each item at $0.10 per pound.

U-Pack also offers supplemental coverage plans at an additional charge:

U-Pack supplemental coverage plan

Coverage plan cost
$75
$125
$175

Amount covered per pound per item

$1.00

$2.00

$3.00

Maximum coverage (ReloCube)

$2,500

$5,000

$7,500

Maximum coverage (trailer)

$20,000

$40,000

$60,000

Data as of March 2022. Offers and availability may vary by location and are subject to change.

PODS’s coverage plans

Container Only Insurance: This covers the moving and storage container itself while it sits on your driveway or street. Thunderstorm? Don’t worry about hail denting your container. Fire? Don’t worry about that either. PODS won’t make you pay for dents, dings, or other damage.

Content Protection Insurance: This policy covers damage to the container and your stuff inside. The only catch is that it doesn’t cover flooding or water damage. Obviously, we prefer insurance policies that cover everything, but we say this is still better than container-only insurance or nothing at all.


Our pick: PODS

PODS and U-Pack both make our list of the best moving container companies. However, PODS is the better of the two. Although U-Pack is available in more states, it does not service local moves. What puts U-Pack ahead is its pay-for-what-you-use policy, which helps you save money by not paying for empty space in your moving and storage container. But in the end, U-Pack is still significantly more expensive than PODS, and its customer service is good, but only slightly better than PODS.

Want an affordable rate for your move?

Other moving container company picks

Don’t think PODS or U-Pack is the right fit for your move? Here are some other top portable moving container companies that are worth looking into:


Methodology

Move.org follows a five-step process to identify the nation’s best moving container companies:

  1. Compare quotes. We collected over 100 quotes from seven of the nation’s largest moving container companies to identify pricing trends.
  2. Mystery shopping. We do a top-to-bottom analysis of each company’s website and even call posing as customers. It helps us get a feel for what real-life customers experience.
  3. Analyze reviews. We read dozens of reviews for each company to see what most impresses (and turns off) customers. We also ran the numbers for more than 7,000 total reviews to calculate an industry customer review average.
  4. Site visits. We invite industry experts and company executives to visit our headquarters in Salt Lake City, UT. We grill them on everything from pricing and customer reviews to insurance coverage and the latest industry trends.
  5. Annual review. Every year, we repeat the process to ensure that our list of the best moving container companies stays current. That means things like our top recommendations and industry prices may change from year to year.

Recommended resources

If you’ve got more questions about moving and storage containers, dive into these additional articles for answers.

Julia Campbell
Written by
Julia Campbell
Julia Campbell is a full-time writer who knows the tricks of the trade when it comes to planning a hassle-free move. Having moved seven times in the past five years, she draws from her own experience and industry expertise to help you avoid her biggest mistakes (like that time she thought she could get away with packing her dishes without wrapping them first).