What to Expect When You Move with PODS—The Alwards’ Move

Kurt Manwaring
Nov 11, 2022
Icon Time To Read3 min read

PODS is one of our top recommendations for moving container companies. In October 2019, we put its services to the test with a real-life move from New Jersey to Utah. The company got the job done at an average price—and with exceptional customer service.

We’ll cover our experience with PODS’ pricing, customer service, and more below.

Want to learn how much a PODS container will cost for your move?

Meet the Alwards

Pete and Kathy Alward moved from Manchester Township, NJ, to Salt Lake City, UT, in October 2019, both excited and anxious about relocating to a “big city” to be closer to their two sons and grandchildren. They shipped their belongings from a two-bedroom home, including a small garage, using PODS’ moving container service.

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Our PODS move at a glance

Moving Company

Move date

October 2019

Service type

Moving container

Start location

Manchester Township, NJ

End location

Salt Lake City, UT (2,193 miles)

Quoted cost


Actual cost


What to expect with PODS—Pricing

How does PODS do when it comes to pricing? The moving container company aligns with the industry average. The Alwards told us they didn’t do much price shopping because their quote seemed reasonable, and they recognized the PODS brand.

We researched the competition anyway to see if the Alwards got a good deal.

What did we find? The Alwards paid the industry average almost to the dollar. PODS is the definition of middle-of-the-road pricing.

Price Tag
How much do moving containers cost?

To learn more about how much you could pay for moving containers, hop on over to our pricing summary.

PODS moving container being opened

Oh yeah, and the Alwards’ final bill was exactly the same as their quoted price—no hidden fees.

There’s just one caveat you should know about when it comes to PODS’ pricing.

One company, namely U-Pack, gave us a quote that was nearly $700 less expensive than PODS—and promised faster delivery. U-Pack can offer a better price because it gives you only three days to unpack your belongings, while most companies (including PODS) build a month’s worth of storage into their rates.

This can be a pro or a con depending on your needs. The question you should ask is, “Which do I value more: price or convenience?”

$500 deposit

PODS requires a $500 deposit to confirm your moving containers. You have a limited amount of time to cancel before forfeiting a refund of your deposit. Check with your PODS representative for details.

What to expect with PODS—Customer service

Customer service is an area in which PODS really shines.

Underpromising and overdelivering? PODS delivered the Alwards’ moving containers to their new home in 10 days—one day faster than its estimate.

Professional employees? The Alwards’ five-star rating of PODS says yes.

Adequate communication? Check. The drivers gave the Alwards advance notice before pickup and delivery.

What surprised us about PODS

Two things surprised us about PODS—one good and one bad.

First, the upside: the container delivery process was smooth. “[We’ve] had dumpsters delivered before that scratched our driveway,” the Alwards told us. “This isn’t dumped. They lift it off the truck bed with hydraulics and wheel it into position, lowering it down without tilting the container.”

“This kept things level in the pod, which was important,” they said.

PODS moving container being loaded onto truck

On the other hand, the company required the Alwards to make four payments at different stages of the process instead of allowing them to pay all at once. It’s kind of like going out to eat, but instead of paying the check before you leave, you pay once after your appetizer, another time when your drinks come, again when your entree arrives, and so on.

While the price was competitive, the Alwards were irritated they had to pay four times and would have preferred to make one convenient payment.

Info Box
Need some help loading moving boxes?

Hourly labor services like HireAHelper, TaskRabbit, and College Hunks Hauling Junk and Moving can help you load your belongings into your containers. The Alwards hired local labor for two hours to help them with the loading process.

Our take

PODS remains high on our list of recommended moving container companies. Before the Alwards moved, we asked them to describe their ideal move in three words.

What did they say? They wanted the process to be “easy, cost-efficient, and worry-free.”

And for the most part, they got it. Despite the minor hassle of making multiple payments, PODS offered straightforward service at a reasonable price.

We already know PODS is a great company, but even we were impressed with the way the Alwards raved about PODS’ customer service and expert delivery process.

Nothing says “high quality” like a firsthand testimonial.

If you want an experience like the Alwards’, contact PODS for a quote. Or, if you think you’d rather hire a full-service company, check out our lists of the best local moving companies and best interstate moving companies.

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.