How to Calculate the Cost of a Moving Truck

Estimate the cost of your moving truck before you rent.
Estimate the cost of your moving truck before you rent. (Image: Digital Vision./Digital Vision/Getty Images)

Moving marks a new beginning and it can be an exciting situation, but the actual process of transporting your stuff isn't always very fun. It can also be an expensive experience since you have to pay for moving supplies and your truck. You should try to estimate the cost of your moving truck before you make plans to visit the rental office. Based on the result you may decide to ask a friend to borrow his van instead.

Determine the distance in miles from the moving truck rental location to your old place, then the distance from the old location to your new place. Add that total to the distance from your new place back to the rental office. This is the total estimated mileage of your move. Add an extra 5 or 10 miles to the total in case you get lost or have other complications.

Determine the size of your apartment or home so that you can estimate the size truck you need. For instance, you can usually fit the contents of a one-bedroom apartment into a 10-foot moving truck. The rental location can suggest a truck for your size home and quote the rental price, or you can use an online moving truck size estimation tool.

Ask the rental location for the number of included miles (if any) as well as the price per mile (mileage rate) if you go over that limit.

Deduct the included miles from the total you calculated in step one. If you have miles leftover multiply that figure by the mileage rate to determine your total extra fee for going over the limit.

Estimate the fuel cost for the mileage you estimated in the first step. You can get a fuel estimate using an online calculator, or if you use an online mapping tool like MapQuest to get directions for the move, the mapping program estimates the fuel cost for you.

Add your truck rental fee to the extra mileage fee and total estimated fuel cost to calculate the total cost of the moving truck.

Tips & Warnings

  • Make sure you bring the moving truck back at the same fuel level as you rented it to avoid additional costs.

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