10 Things You Should Know About PODS Before Moving

The thought of moving is enough to trigger feelings of anxiety and overwhelm. Not only do you have to go through everything you own, but then you either have to box it up and move it yourself with multiple car trips or a moving truck you’re scared to drive, or you pay an excessive amount of money for someone else to come and move it for you. But, there’s also a third option– renting a PODS container that lets you take your time and gives you back the control over your move. Here are 10 things you should know about PODS before you plan your next move. 

What Exactly are PODS?

PODS are designed as a solution for individuals and families to have portable storage when and where it’s needed. Initially known as Portable On Demand Storage, the company is well-known by its shortened name: PODS.

These portable storage containers are locked containers that can be used to move your things or store them for as long as you need. Each container is weather-resistant and has ground access making it easy to load and unload. PODS offers several services, including local moves, long-distance moves, international moves, and even storage facilities to alleviate the stress that comes along with moving. Today PODS has over 227,000 PODS containers and has completed more than 1 million long-distance moves, making it one of the best moving services.

1. PODS Makes Moving Easier

The entire mission behind PODS is to provide an easy solution for individuals and families in transition.PODS containers are designed to be ground-level, using a specialized hydraulic system to lift the container onto the truck that will be moving it. This design makes it easy to load since there are no annoying ramps and no heavy lifting required to get your belongings onto a moving truck. Additionally, PODS are rented monthly, giving you plenty of time to load and unload your things.

2. Door To Door Moving Solution

PODS containers give you flexibility in the moving process by giving you the time you need to both load and unload your belongings. Your PODS container will be dropped off at your residence while you take your time loading your belongings. Then, it will be dropped off directly at your new location (when you need it) so that you can unload it. No worrying about how to get your things from point A to point B, all you have to do is take care of the packing and loading.

Check Laws and Permit Requirements

While PODS is a convenient moving solution, it’s important to make sure you dot your I’s and cross your T’s. Before you book your PODS container, figure out where you are going to store your container while you load it. Your city or town may require a special permit to put your PODS on your street. In this case, you’ll need to provide your PODS copies of your permits. Likewise, if you live in a subdivision, your HOA may have regulations concerning portable containers. You’ll want to confirm ahead of time to avoid any headaches or unnecessary fines.

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Needed Space for PODS Container

One of the unique things about PODS is PODZILLA, the hydraulic system that drops off and picks up your portable container. However, in order for this system to work it needs a specific amount of space. You’ll want to make sure you have a clear path that is 12-feet wide, 15-feet high, and 40-feet long (which can include your drive as well as the space available for maneuvering in the street). If you’re getting the PODS container put in a parking lot, you’ll want to reserve two parking spaces. You can also get your PODS container in a single parking space but you’ll need three adjacent spots for drop off and pick up. Note that there is an extra fee if your PODS container will be placed on a non-paved surface due to the extra labor required for the unit to work properly.

3. Numerous Sizes of PODS Containers Are Available

A common misconception with PODS containers is that they are a one-size-fits-all solution. But, the reality is that we all have homes of different sizes. PODS containers actually come in three different sizes, so whether you’re moving a studio apartment or a two-bedroom home, PODS has a container that’s the perfect fit. To get a better idea of what size PODS container to rent, see the calculator on this page.

  • 7-Foot Container: Comparable to a 5’x10’ storage unit or a 10’ moving truck, the small PODS container is ideal for studio apartments and homes under 500 sq. ft and has a weight limit of 5,200 lbs. 
  • 12-Foot Container: Comparable to a 10’x10’ storage unit or a 15’ moving truck, the medium PODS container is recommended for homes between 500-800 sq. ft. (or a home with 2-3 rooms) and has a weight limit of 4,700 lbs. 
  • 16-Foot Container. Comparable to a 10’x15’ storage unit or a 20’ moving truck, the large PODS container is ideal for spaces up to 1,200 sq. ft. (or a home with 3-4 rooms) and has a weight limit of 4,200 lbs.

4. Storing Your PODS Is Easy

Whether you got a sudden job offer on the other side of the country or your new home isn’t quite move-in ready, PODS is an excellent solution given that they offer storage services. Once you load your PODS container it is sent to a storage facility where it is kept until your new place is ready. If you don’t need your things moved but simply need to store your belongings due to renovations, PODS containers also work great for on-site storage. Likewise, PODS containers can be picked up, stored, and dropped off at the same location for your convenience if needed.

5. Available for Local and Long-Distance Moves

PODS makes moving easy whether you’re moving down the coast, across the country, or just around the corner. When you use a PODS container, you get more flexibility in your move since you can load or unload whenever your schedule allows, making it a logical moving solution for any busy individual or family. Even if your journey takes you north of the border, PODS can help with their Canadian branch, making your international move as painless as possible.

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6. PODS Are Easy to Load and Unload

Unlike other moving solutions, PODS are portable containers that go directly on the ground. This helps save your back since you don’t have to do any heavy lifting into the back of a moving truck. Plus, you can avoid any mishaps from boxes falling off the ramp as you move things onto the truck. PODS also gives you the freedom to load and unload your container at your convenience making moving work around your schedule, rather than adjusting your schedule to accommodate your move.

Hire Help to Load Your PODS

PODS containers are designed to make the moving process as easy and flexible as imaginable. Even though the ground-level design makes the container easy to load, it doesn’t mean you have to be on your own when it comes to packing. Instead, you can hire a team to help you pack and load your PODS container. To help, PODS has shortlisted three different providers that offer qualified teams to help you pack and load your belongings into your PODS container. Or, you can always rope in your friends, family, and neighbors to help you move, paying them with a pizza and beer once you’re done for the day.

Pack Smart

It’s important to remember you won’t have access to your belongings when your PODS container is being shipped to your new home. To make sure you have what you need while you’re in transition, it’s important to pack a bag of essentials that you’ll need, making sure you also set aside your important documents and electronics that you want to keep safe. For the things you do pack in your PODS container, consider using plastic, structured boxes to minimize any risk of water damage or boxes collapsing (which in turn could damage your belongings). Also, don’t forget to label so you can easily find what you’re looking for when you start to unpack.

7. Your New State May Require a Gypsy Moth Inspection

Gypsy moths can wreak havoc on the environment and many states do everything they can to protect their state’s wildlife and crops. Depending on where you are moving from or moving to, you may be required to have a gypsy moth inspection. This will require you to do the inspection yourself or you can hire a qualified professional. It is recommended that you do the inspection on moving day if you are moving between April and August. If that isn’t possible, your items should be sealed under a tarp after the inspection is completed. The PODS team will let you know if the inspection will be required and give you the specific checklist required.

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8. You Can Insure Your Possessions with PODS during Transit and Storage

Whenever you’re moving you want to do everything possible to protect your belongings. Oftentimes your homeowners insurance will help cover your possessions. PODS requires you to have insurance for both your contents and the container. PODS does offer insurance if your existing insurance doesn’t cover either, meaning you have the option to insure just the container or the contents as well through PODS Protection. You can sign up for this coverage when you order your PODS container.

9. Not All Items Can Be Moved Using PODS

While PODS is a convenient solution, it’s important to remember that there are some items you should avoid packing away in your container. Items you’ll want to keep with you are valuable items like your important paperwork, jewelry, firearms, computers, medicines, photo albums, or sentimental items. This way, even if something should unexpectedly happen to your container, your most precious things will be safe. Additionally, you should avoid packing any living things like plants, hazardous materials (paints, aerosols, pool chemicals, batteries, nail polish remover, etc.), motorized vehicles, lawn mowers, or perishable food in your PODS container.

10. Always Secure Your PODS Container with a Lock

Each PODS container locks to protect the belongings you have put inside. When you order a PODS container you have the option to purchase a lock directly through the company or you can use your own. It is recommended that you use a 2 ¾” (70mm) disc lock or a 1 ¾” padlock. For peace of mind, you may want to take a photo of your lock before you ship off your container so that you know the lock wasn’t tampered with during shipping or storage.

Skip The Truck and Order a PODS!

If you’re looking for a flexible moving solution, then PODS is one of the best options available. They’re easy to load and can easily be stored while you wait for your new home to be ready. Whether you are moving to a different neighborhood in the same city or to the other side of the country, PODS is the moving solution designed to make the entire moving process easier. Just make sure to book your PODS container early so you can ensure a container is available for your moving dates. And use out PODS savings code to save 5% off the cost of your move!

This review of PODS moving containers was originally published in December 2011. It has been updated to include changes in PODS policies and practices. 

7 thoughts on “10 Things You Should Know About PODS Before Moving”

  1. Others have gotten quotes from Pods and say they cost too much. I feel that Pods is excellent company but are perhaps targeting richer clients such as companies that want to remodel their facilities and just put everything in a Pods unit in the parking lot. Military and government customers responding to disasters such as hurricanes are also big on their list. Some say it’s too risky to put your stuff in a Pod and send it cross country, but I dont think so because Pods told me that they use air-ride trailers and have insurance just like any other moving company.

    People posting online love to post complaints about Pods but my experience with them was great. Yes they charge a bit more than DIY truck rentals etc but they do have a lot of advantages. It’s up to you to decide if the conveniences are worth the money. For me they were.

  2. I would HIGHLY encourage ANYONE that is going to be needing moving to under NO circumstances to use this company for your moving needs, as we are currently experiencing the worst moving nightmare ever. We purchased a home back in June and after reading the reviews we felt PODS would be our best option as once you can load it at your convenience. The way the company works is they charge you an initial POD monthly fee, ours was $274.64, this fee gives you usage of the Pod for one month. During this month you load the POD then call them or go online to schedule your Pod to be moved to your new location, then they charge you a fee to move the pod to your new location, our fee was $203.29 this includes fuel and the 44 mile drive. During this month rental of your Pod you have one month to load your POD, schedule a delivery date to your new home, unload the POD then schedule a date for the POD to be picked up and if you DO NOT have the POD removed off your property ( removal price was$89.99) during this initial month rental you will automatically be charged another months rental. This shouldnt be a big issue BUT unlike the TV commercials and online ads, unless you can schedule your final POD move 2-3 weeks in advance you are out of luck and will be charged another month, as PODS will ensure there are no available move dates until you have to pay for an extra month. We used this service to move our belongings out of our garage which took a 15 foot pod and everything went fairly fairly smooth with the exception of the difficulty of a Pod moving date. So we then had the POD moved back to our old residence to load the items out of our home, this is when things really went downhill fast. The Pod sat for two weeks empty at my new home because PODS didn’t have an available date to move it, then on the day it was scheduled to be moved back to my old home to load again, the driver left me a voicemail stating he was picking the pod up from my new home. AFTER 4 pm that day I had no POD at my old house ( it had been scheduled from 12-4) so I called the driver back, he had taken my POD (that I had already been charged for) back to the POD storage place!! He did say he would go get it and after 5 minutes of explaining exactly where to put it, it was placed in the wrong place I was not home when it was delivered, this was July 5th, Ok accidents happen I thought so I disregarded this and focused on moving. I learned from the first move to call WAY in advance to schedule another move, so I immediately called PODS and was told July 16th was available so I booked it. On July 15th I noticed at 11 am $89.99 was taken out of my bank account, I did the online chat in an attempt to verify that my move was still on for the next day, which this rep stated a supervisor would email me an answer… today is July 17th, still havent heard anything from JOHN the supervisor. I then called PODS to see why this amount was charged as this was not the quoted price to have my fully loaded POD taken to my new home. I was told by a rude cust. serv. rep that this was the price for my FINAL PICKUP, I tried to explain to her that it was not final as it was loaded not empty, this entire conversation went nowhere except that I was not gonna have my POD taken to my new location, I asked to be transferred o a supervisor only to be told by this rep, she had no supervisor, I told her unless she was the CEO that she did have a supervisor. After being on this call for over 40 minutes with this rep also having the gall to tell me I needed to be quiet and listen to her, she FINALLY transferred me to a manager named MIchelle. Michelle was very pleasant and genuinely wanted to help, but just like JOHN, she was going to call me back or email me , and I am still waiting for that email as well. Saturday morning came and I called PODS first thing and spoke to a very nice man named Max went above and beyond to try to get my POD moved to my new home, but he was told the problem was it would be a 44 mile drive for a drive. He eventually transferred me to a supervisor to discuss this mess with who also tried to help but couldn’t he did offer a $50.00 credit to my account for this error,it has yet to show on my account so I am not gonna hold my breath. He broke the news to me that my POD that was scheduled for July 16th, will now be delivered on the 19th. I have forgot to mention this pod has all my families clothes on it, stove, refrigerator, wash & dryer, all furniture, so we all have maybe 2 changes of clothes to our name until PODS decide to bring our POD to us. To put the icing on this cake, after all this mess yesterday the PODS driver called me from my old driveway where this POD full of my stuff is sitting telling me he is sitting in my old driveway looking at my POD wondering why it is full and has a lock on it, I proceeded to tell him about PODS negligence and that was why my POD was still there, he was beyond sympathetic and stated if they hadn’t booked him until 5 he would have gladly drove my POD to me.During his and my conversation someone beeped in my phone and left a voicemail after hanging up with Dan the driver, I listened to a RUDE msg from a warehouse manager named BRIAN stating his driver was at my house and there was a lock on the pod and if I didn’t call him back he was just gonna take the POD to storage and I could have it moved from there!! SO … as I sit in a lawn chair inside my new home with one of my two changes of clothes on, I am waiting to see if PODS decides to bring me their POD full of belongings as they scheduled. DId I mention that I had already paid a moving crew to unload my POD yesterday???? No refunds now I can either hire them again or hope like heck I can get it unloaded before I have to pay another months rent, I am POSITIVE PODS will not have an available date before Aug3rd though which is my deadline….I need to also mention I just looked at my PODS account and they also ILLEGALLY WITHOUT AUTHORIZATION used a Credit Card that IS NOT my primary card to pay for the move that is scheduled for this Tuesday! I used this CC one time to pay for a pick up I specifically told them then it was NOT to be used ANY other time! PODS took it upon themself to use this card again, I just hung up with a customer service rep named Mike that was in shock and even stated this was not right, but billing was not in until Monday and this would be something to discuss with them! I would also like to mention I have requested some form of compensation only to be told no one has the authority to do this. I truly just want to get this nightmare over with and never see or hear the word PODS again, Since PODS refuse to make THEIR wrongs right, I am making a copy of this post and will post it on EVERY review site I can possibly find as well as the BBB. This is one shady company that financially manipulates schedules and orders in order to line their pockets. And god forbid you have to speak with customer service, prepare yourself to be disrespected and you will end the call with no resolution, its PODS way or the highway, they know they are in control as they either have a POD full or your stuff or they make the schedule and tell you when they will get the POD off your property, sofinancially you are at their beck and cal. SO please please DO NOT become a victim of this companies shenanigans, and as I stated word of mouth is always best and If I can post this on every site possible I will in order to prevent anyone else from being screwed over!! After todays illegal use of a Credit Card, I will be seeking Legal advice and representation in this matter!

  3. I booked a pods unit on their website from January to April. I went with PODS because of the convenience of it being delivered to my home and being able to load it when I’m ready. Then you call them back and they come and pick it up to store it. My interactions throughout the process were good. I had to call them on the phone a couple of times and their representative was friendly enough. The only issue that I dealt with was the payment process. I initially used one credit card for the first payment, then I wanted to use another one for future payments. So, the creditk card that they had on file was no longer active. Other than that, everything was good throughout the whole process.

    I rented the largest storage container pods had for all the stuff I needed to store. Pods delivered the unit exactly when they said they would. And whenever I asked them to pick it up, they did that as described also. And when I asked for them to deliver it to my new home, they did it and they picked it up the next day. Everything was right on point in terms of scheduling. On the whole, everything was pretty seamless.

  4. I saw a lot of PODS around the neighborhood so I used them for storage services. It was as easy as i thought. The pod got dropped off, I loaded it up, they took it away and theyd store it for a year for me. I booked online and was trying to make sure that the pod would fit in my driveway and was trying to figure where I was going to put it on my property. The website was easy to use. I got a medium-sized container. On the website, they gave an approximation for the size of pods depending on how many bedrooms i have. When it was all said and done, the pod I got has enough space.

    The gentlemen who dropped off the container were very professional. I was trying to see if the container was going to fit in our driveway or not. They came out and looked at it and said that it was not a problem, and they dropped the pod off. I went to the storage facility where the pods are all stored, and they had it set up for me and ready to go. It was timely.

  5. I rented two 16’ pods containers and had them delivered to our driveway. I measured the width of the containers and they were 7 ft 9 inches wide. But the website said the containers have an external dimension of 8 ft in width, which would have been wide to fit my hot tub. I had to cancel the order and get them to pick up the empty containers the very next day, because we could not fit our hot tub in either of them. Very disappointing and frustrating to have something so simple go so wrong!

  6. I used a pods unit to store my belongings while staging my home for sale. After our home sold we used pods to move our stuff from Texas to Utah. But they didn’t deliver our unit when they said they would. We called to ask where the pods was and they said it was still in Texas! We had to stay in a hotel, had trouble transferring money to them, ended up being a disaster. Very frustrated with this company.

  7. Because of covid we din’t want to deal having movers in and out of my house – old or new. So we decided to use a pods unit mainly so we could load and unload things ourselves, and on our own schedule. It worked out better than I imagined. I ended up needing more time to find an apartment than I expected, but it was not a problem because pods just stored my unit a bit longer. When I finally found an apartment I just called tham and they delivered my stuff. I definitely recommend using pods as a way to move because of the flexibility.

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