Modern Cross Country Moving

The 21st Century Cross-Country Move

Whether it be to accept your dream job, start a new life with your true love, or simply embrace the unknown, a long-distance move can fill your soul with excitement and anticipation. But no matter how eager you may be to hit the road, the thought of getting your furniture and belongings from point A to point B is more likely to arouse feelings of dread than adventure. In the past, when making that big move, you had to choose between two extremes. You could either pay a small fortune to hire a full service moving company and hope to see all your belongings in one piece at the other end, or rent a truck and do all the packing, driving and heavy lifting with only the help of a few less-than-enthusiastic friends. Thanks to modern options like Portable On Demand Storage (PODS) and contract shipping services, relocation today is a far more flexible process, making all those miles seem a little less daunting.

Heirlooms Lost and Headaches Gained: The Old Ways

Though often portrayed as uncaring, lazy klutzes in movies and sitcoms, the vast majority of professional movers are conscientious and committed to protecting your belongings. Most of the problems associated with using a full service moving company stem from the fact that many people simply don’t have enough possessions to fill a semi truck. With multiple families sharing space in a van, movers have to work quickly when loading and unloading. Even if no items are damaged, your prized antique lamp may well end up sitting on a stranger’s driveway three states away. At a minimum, the pace of it all will have your head spinning.

Renting a truck eliminates the risk of lost belongings, but only intensifies the time pressure. Paying by the day is no way to put yourself in a mindset to slow down and handle each item with loving care. Rushing to get on the road, or to empty the truck upon arrival at your new home, is a recipe for broken items and injured bodies. And there is nothing relaxing about driving that behemoth hundreds or thousands of miles, often with a car in tow.

Let the Shippers Compete for Your Business

A modern, money-saving alternative to a full service mover is a contract shipping service such as These services allow you to receive competing bids from a variety of transport companies and independent shipping contractors to haul your possessions according to your schedule. Many of the companies offering bids will include loading and unloading as part of the transport package, at a significantly lower rate than traditional movers. Unfortunately, using contract shipping will not eliminate the stress of rushing, nor the uncertainty about whether all your items will make it to your new doorstep.

Do It Yourself Without Driving It Yourself

Portable storage containers offer the first truly cost effective way to relocate at your own pace, safely and conveniently. PODS, the industry leader in the field, offers multiple container sizes that come with a variety of packing supplies to insure all of your possessions are well protected in transit. The basic scheme is that a container is dropped off at your current home, picked up once you’ve loaded it, then transported to your new place, where it remains for as long as you need it. Compared to all the worry and hassles of traditional moving options, the use of PODS is a breath of high-tech fresh air.

Park it now, pack it when you’re ready

When using storage containers, you pay for the container by the month, so taking extra time to pack and unpack will not cost you any more than a one-day mad rush. When you’re ready to begin packing up for the move, or even just ready to begin thinking about packing up, have a container delivered. If you have a safe place the key can be left for you (bearing in mind that the key is of little value with the container empty), you don’t even have to be home for the delivery. Be sure, however, that you have an appropriate place for the container to sit. A driveway is ideal; a hardscrabble yard also works nicely. But if you don’t have either, most municipalities will allow a storage container to be parked on the street if you obtain the necessary permit. Check with your local government for more information.

Once it’s delivered, you can feel free to take a couple of days to admire your container and do nothing. Load it at your leisure. With no need to rush, you can give the appropriate level of tender loving care to every piece of furniture, family heirloom, or set of dishes. Of course, if you’re a type A personality, you’re still free to be a hero and pack everything up in a day. In spite of all your effort to add stress, however, you’ll find yourself disappointingly at ease. It’s just not the same adrenaline rush when you’re grinding all day long solely for the challenge, not because the van may drive away at any moment.

Take the scenic route in your own car

Once your container is packed up and ready for transport, you simply lock it and call for a pick up. You can even hit the road while the container is still sitting in the driveway. Drive your car, your way, and know that even if your possessions arrive ahead of you, they’ll be safe and secure. Once again, you don’t have to be home for delivery, because you have the storage unit’s only key.

Upon arriving at your new pad, you’ll once again have the luxury of time. It’s a relief to know that after many hours on the road, you can take all the time you need to rest and recover before wrestling furniture through that door that looked just a little wider when you saw it for the first time.

What if I want to take the really, really scenic route?

Maybe you want to turn your transcontinental trek into a month-long adventure, or maybe your new place won’t be available when you first arrive in your new town. Using PODS is a great way to go if you’re undertaking extended travel or living in temporary quarters for a while. Simply arrange to have your container kept at one of the company’s many storage facilities until you’re ready to receive it at your new place. You will have to pay an additional fee for use of a bay at the facility, but once again, the fee is monthly. As with the entire process of moving using storage containers, you can take your time.

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