Here’s the bottom line: We love 1-800-Pack’s Rat’s accurate quote process and convenience! The company offers secure portable metal storage containers in three sizes to store or move your household items with ease and minimal cost compared to competitors.
We launched the Better Moves Project to better understand individual experiences with moving companies across the nation. Desmond participated when he got a new job in Ohio, about 2,300 miles from his home in Oregon and he told us all about his 1-800-PACK-RAT experience.
He gathered quotes from interstate movers and moving container companies and even considered renting a truck and doing the driving himself. That said, he ended up booking a container move with 1-800-PACK-RAT.
With his move now in the rearview mirror, Desmond gave 1-800-PACK-RAT high marks for communication, quote accuracy, and overall experience.
Desmond’s move was a resounding success, but there’s a lot you should know before booking your move with 1-800-PACK-RAT.
In this post, we’ll help you decide if the company fits your needs, explain what to expect on move day (with pictures from actual moves), and offer tips to avoid common problems when moving with 1-800-PACK-RAT.
Pros and cons of moving with 1-800-PACK-RAT
- Generally less expensive than full-service movers
- May negotiate with customers on price
- Local and long-distance moving and storage
- 30-day minimum rentals with unlimited loading time
- 8, 12, and 16-foot container sizes to fit your unique needs
- Barn-style container doors make loading and unloading easy
- Containers rest directly on the ground (ramps aren’t necessary)
- Professional drivers, so you don’t have to drive yourself
- Multiple insurance options
- Not a full-service moving company
- Additional services, such as packing and loading, provided by third-parties
- You may have to call and speak with a representative to get a quote and book your move.
- Services are only available in about 29 states (no international moves)
- Big fuel surcharges on some long-distance moves
- No Sunday deliveries
- 1-800-PACK-RAT (US DOT: 1534531) is an affordably-priced self-service moving and storage company that delivers proprietary steel containers to your home.
- While they don’t offer packing and unloading, you can add third-party services to your reservation.
- You can request quotes by phone, where a customer service representative will help you find an 8-, 12-, or 16-foot container that meets your storage needs.
89% of users select this mover
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1-800-PACK-RAT pricing: How much it costs to move
Batool, another participant in the Better Moves Project, shared her experience with us. When Batool moved from California to Texas in early 2022, 1-800-PACK-RAT came through with a $3,400 quote for an 8-foot container that was big enough to accommodate the contents of her apartment.
1-800-PACK-RAT’s quote saved Batool hundreds of dollars over the competition and delivered her container on time and within budget.
Before moving from Oregon to Ohio to start a new job, Desmond got the following initial quotes:
|Estimated weight/equipment type
|Allied Van Lines (full-service)
|1-800-PACK-RAT (moving container)
|Interstate Van Lines (full-service)
|American Van Lines (full-service)
1-800-PACK-RAT’s quote wasn’t the cheapest, but Desmond liked that:
- The company had a solid reputation
- They use steel containers
- Pack Rat delivered his items in custom trucks designed to minimize tipping and shifting.
Desmond could get online quotes with some companies, but with 1-800-PACK-RAT, he needed to call for a quote. He spoke with a helpful customer service representative who worked up an estimate and walked him through the moving process.
The following table shows average costs for various move types and sizes with 1-800-PACK-RAT:
|$150 – $500
|$200 – $630
|$340 – $790
|< 250 miles
|$465 – $910
|$660 – $1,900
|$1,000 – $3,400
|$1,200 – $3,800
|$2,400 – $4,600
|$5,100 – $6,900
Remember that these figures are averages. Your unique situation may lead to a lower or higher quote than outlined here.
Another note is that your final bill with 1-800-PACK-RAT may include a fuel surcharge. After completing your move, the company will assess the necessary surcharge and add it to your invoice.
Some customer reviews complained about this unexpected charge, so we recommend asking as many questions as possible when requesting moving quotes from this provider.
However, 1-800-PACK-RAT is one of the few moving container companies that allow haggling. Negotiation is a huge plus if you aren’t sure if you got the best deal or have a lower quote from a competitor.
1-800-PACK-RAT offers a wide variety of services
1-800-PACK-RAT is a self-service moving company, which means you will pack and load yourself in exchange for more affordable pricing options.
However, 1-800-PACK-RAT is different from any old U-HAUL. Instead of driving your belongings yourself, you can count on seamless pick-up from your current location and delivery to your new home when ready.
At its core, 1-800-PACK-RAT is a storage company, but its steel containers can streamline the moving process. Portable metal storage containers are 1-800-PACK-RAT’s bread and butter. You can use PACK-RAT containers for at-home renovation projects, long-term storage, and local moves.
You may add other services to your reservation, but 1-800-PACK-RAT isn’t a full-service moving company. As such, third-party providers will coordinate your add-ons.
Batool and Desmond appreciated how easy it was to get a quote and book their move with 1-800-PACK-RAT.
Some customers don’t like calling in and speaking with a representative to get a long-distance moving or storage quote.
However, our take is that this person-to-person communication is beneficial because it allows you and your representative to address important move details that sometimes get overlooked with online quotes.
1-800-PACK-RAT has three convenient container sizes
1-800-PACK-RAT offers 8, 12, and 16-foot containers, all of which feature rugged steel construction and weatherproofing to move or store your items with peace of mind.
Desmond needed a 16-foot container because he was moving the contents of a 3-bedroom, 2,000-square-foot home.
On the other hand, an 8-footer was sufficient for Batool because she lived in a moderately furnished apartment.
Let’s take a look at the differences between containers.
|2-3 rooms of furniture
|3-4 rooms of furniture
|Types of moves
|Local and long-distance
|Local moves only
|Local and long-distance
|8’3″ x 7’3″ x 6’10”
|11’10” x 6’11” x 7’7″
|15’10” x 6’11” x 7’7″
|404 cubic feet
|620 cubic feet
|830 cubic feet
- 1-800-PACK-RAT uses only metal containers
- You can choose from 8 and 16-foot containers for local and long-distance moving
- 12-foot containers are available for local moves only
- 8-foot containers are great for college students and small apartment moves
- 12 and 16-foot containers work well for multi-bedroom apartments and homes
How insurance works with 1-800-PACK-RAT
1-800-PACK-RAT doesn’t include insurance with container reservations, but you can elect a content protection plan to minimize your liability and fortify your belongings’ safe keeping.
You’re responsible for damage to the container while it’s in your possession or on your property. You can purchase the minimum content protection plan for $9.99 per container per month to protect yourself against costly mishaps and accidents.
The company offers protection plan options with different degrees of coverage: the Basic Plan and its Silver Plans.
The following Silver Plans include waivers and increased coverage levels to protect your belongings while moving or storing.
Need moving supplies? 1-800-PACK-RAT has what you’ll need
1-800-PACK-RAT customers can order moving supplies and packing material online and have everything shipped directly.
Prices are competitive on everything from boxes and packing paper to furniture pads and bubble wrap.
Here’s everything you need to know:
- Free shipping on orders over $35
- Orders placed before 4 PM EST generally ship the same day
- Most deliveries occur within 1 to 3 business days
- Special move kits include everything you’ll need to start packing
- Other available items include locks, mattress bags, and moisture absorbers
How 1-800-PACK-RAT stacks up against the competition
Choosing the right moving container company is all about making head-to-head comparisons and weighing the pros and cons of each service provider.
Desmond and Batool were cost-conscious shoppers, but they also considered factors like container options, loading times, and service area before selecting 1-800-PACK-RAT.
We always suggest getting a quote from 1-800-PACK-RAT, but they’re not the best option for every customer.
The following table shows how 1-800-PACK-RAT stacks up against other industry leaders.
|8, 12, and 16-foot containers
|6-foot ReloCube containers and 28-foot trailers
|8, 12, and 16-foot containers
|Ten and 15-foot containers
|28-foot and 53-foot trailers
|Three days each for loading and unloading
|Various options allow for up to three days each for loading and unloading
|Local and long-distance moves
|Moves over 100 miles only
|Local and long-distance moves
|Local and long-distance moves
|Moves over 250 miles only
|Yes, at your place or theirs (some 1-800-PACK-RAT storage facilities are climate controlled)
|You can only use ReloCubes for storage and store them at a company facility (not climate controlled)
|Yes, at your place or theirs (not climate controlled)
|Yes, but only with 15-foot containers at a company facility (all Zippy Shell storage facilities are climate controlled)
|Temporary storage for up to three months, but only at a company facility (unspecified)
- 1-800-PACK-RAT and PODS customers enjoy unlimited loading and unloading time
- Zippy Shell’s street-legal portable storage containers work well when parking space is limited
- PODS is best for long-term storage, on-site storage, and local moves
- U-Pack is an excellent option for larger moves (freight trailers have tons of space)
- U-Pack only handles moves over 100 miles, and Moving Place only does moves over 250 miles
Here’s how the 1-800-PACK-RAT costs compares to the competition regarding local and long-distance move costs and national coverage:
|Average local move cost*
|$150 – $790
|Not available for local moves
|$200 – $800
|$190 – $750
|Not available for local moves
|Average long-distance move cost
|$910 – $6,900
|$900 – $6,600
|$450 – $7,600
|$500 – $7,000
|$1,100 – $4,700
|About 29 states
|All 50 states, Canada, and Puerto Rico
|About 45 states
|About 29 states
Got lots of “stuff”? Check out Desmond’s large container in the image below.
1-800-PACK-RAT has been in the moving container business since 2002, and customers like Desmond and Batool generally have positive experiences.
Reviews for 1-800-PACK-RAT vary because customers can rate individual franchises on various websites like Google, Yelp, and TripAdvisor, and many locations have their own Better Business Bureau (BBB) pages as well.
If you’re considering 1-800-PACK-RAT, we suggest searching the BBB and review pages for your local facility and the corporate headquarters.
In the last few years, the U.S. Department of Transportation Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has received relatively few complaints for a company as large as 1-800-PACK-RAT. Of the complaints, most related to issues in the following areas:
- Shipment documents
- Estimates/final Charges
- Pick-up and delivery
- Loss and damage
- Claim settlement
- Deceptive business practices
Still not sure if 1-800-PACK-RAT is right for you? Check out these container company comparison posts:
- PODS vs. 1-800-PACK-RAT vs. U-Pack
- U-Box vs. PODS vs. U-Pack
- Zippy Shell vs. U-Pack
- U-Pack vs. U-Haul U-Box
How moving with 1-800-PACK-RAT works
Moving with 1-800-PACK-RAT is a snap.
Simply call the easy-to-remember phone number or begin filling out the online quote form.
At this point, 1-800-PACK-RAT will let you know whether services are available in your areas based on your zip codes. If not, you may get redirected to U-Pack instead.
If you’re moving locally, you may be able to continue the quote and booking processes online, but you’ll need to call in if you want to use an 8-foot container or a mix of container sizes.
Otherwise, you can review rental, transport, and delivery fees for 12 and 16-foot containers and choose how many you’d like to reserve. You can finish your reservation and pay online if you’re happy with your options and prices.
On long-distance moves, you’ll get a reference number and have to call in to get your quote and complete the booking process.
Customer service representatives are available at the following times:
- Monday to Saturday – 8 AM to 10 PM EST
- Sunday – 9:30 AM to 6:30 PM EST
Here’s how 1-800-PACK-RAT’s moving process works:
- They will deliver your empty container(s) to the residence you’re vacating.
- You take as much time as you need to load it or hire local movers to help.
- When your container is loaded, 1-800-PACK-RAT is only a phone call away. All you have to do is schedule a time to have it picked up when you’re ready.
- 1-800-PACK-RAT will transport your container to your new home or apartment.
- Once it arrives, you can take your time unloading it or hire movers to help.
- When it’s empty, call in and schedule a time to have it picked up.
If you’d rather not do the heavy lifting, you can hire moving labor through a partner company, HireAHelper. If you’re moving long-distance and would rather fly or drive with a loved one, you can have your car shipped door-to-door with Mr. Car Shipper. Just make sure to mention that you’re a 1-800-PACK-RAT customer to get any applicable discounts.
1-800-PACK-RAT offers flexible storage options:
You can store your container at a secure, climate-controlled facility or on your own property for as long as you like.
And remember, you don’t need to move to take advantage of 1-800-PACK-RAT’s convenient storage services. They’re great for seasonal on-site storage and home renovations too.
You’ll pay a monthly fee for as long as you need storage. Charges vary by location, but we recently saw storage charges of $180 per month per container in the Chicago area and $230 per month per container in Denver. If you store your belongings in one of Pack Rat’s facilities, there will be additional fees for drop off and pick up.
1-800-PACK-RAT offers moving and storage services (and discounts) for military families on the move too.
All active and retired service men and women get a 10% discount with 1-800-PACK-RAT with the code MILITARY10.
1-800-PACK-RAT doesn’t have an on-time delivery guarantee, but many customer reviews and our first-hand customer accounts were happy with the delivery time.
Pack Rat offers a pricing guarantee that they will beat any price offered by its competitors, but you’ll have to negotiate over the phone with a representative to access this benefit. If you just request a quote at face value, you may miss out on potential discounts and price matches.
It’s also important to note that 1-800-PACK-RAT regularly circulates offers and promotions to attract people looking for affordable moving and storage solutions.
Customers choose 1-800-PACK-RAT for affordability and to avoid driving
With competitive prices, multiple container sizes, and more than 20 years of experience, it’s no wonder 1-800-PACK-RAT earned a spot on our Best Moving Container Companies list.
We love 1-800-PACK-RAT because Better Moves Project participants like Batool generally have positive experiences (that’s her loaded container on the left). In addition, moving containers are usually less expensive than full-service movers, and DIY moves aren’t for everybody.
Batool didn’t want to drive a clunky moving van when she and her sons moved from California to Texas.
1-800-PACK-RAT recommended an 8-foot container based on the size of her apartment, and her $3,400 quote was hundreds less than the competition. In addition, her customer service representative answered her questions and walked her through the entire moving process before she booked her move.
Luckily, Batool could save money, leave the driving to professionals, and hire movers to help load and unload during her move.
Customers feel confident in 1-800-PACK-RAT’s reputation
In his Better Moves Project survey, Desmond gave 1-800-PACK-RAT 4 out of 5 stars for overall experience.
A few items got damaged during a container delivery mishap. Still, Desmond admitted that he was partially to blame because he didn’t rent enough moving blankets for the crew to pad everything adequately.
Either way, the damage was minimal, and Desmond felt like he got a good bang for his buck with 1-800-PACK-RAT.
Batool’s had a few more issues on her move, the biggest of which was ineffective communication while her container was in transit.
In addition, the delivery driver in Texas arrived so late in the day that Batool had to reschedule the movers she’d booked for the following day. However, Pack Rat delivered Batool’s container within the agreed-upon delivery window, and her quote was right on the money.
Despite these relatively minor issues, Batool had a generally positive moving experience with 1-800-PACK-RAT too, and she’d consider using them again on a future move.
1-800-PACK-RAT is perfect for people who prioritize affordability, convenience, and a positive reputation
1-800-PACK-RAT is worth considering whether you’re moving locally, to another state, or need offsite storage during a home renovation.
1-800-PACK-RAT for the following reasons:
- Accurate quotes and competitive prices (containers are usually less expensive than full-service movers)
- Generally positive online reviews
- 30-day container rentals
- Unlimited loading and unloading time
- Multiple container sizes
- Short and long-term on and offsite storage
- Easily add moving labor, automobile transportation, and moving supplies to their orders
- Various insurance options at affordable prices
Ready to reserve a container with 1-800-PACK-RAT?
If so, price-check their quote against the competition, ask about their cancellation policy, and address costs (like fuel surcharges) that may not be in your estimate.
When choosing a moving container company, it’s important to check all your options, compare prices, and get instant quotes from multiple professional movers you can trust.
Who is cheaper, PODS or pack rat?
Moving costs vary tremendously based on the size of the project, the distance between locations, and the length of the reservation. In general, PODS returned cheaper quotes for small moves over short distances, but 1-800-PACK-RAT is competitively priced for long distances and customers with lots of belongings.
It’s important to note that cheaper isn’t always better. Instead of evaluating the price at face-value, we recommend taking a big picture look at the included services and customer reviews to determine the best value for your needs.
What is the difference between 1-800-PACK-RAT and PODS?
The biggest difference between 1-800-PACK-Rat and PODS is that they are different companies, but they offer similar services. PODS has a larger fleet and more locations, but 1-800-PACK-RAT can be more competitively priced.
The two companies offer different container sizes. PODS offers 7-, 12-, and 16-foot containers, while 1-800-PACK-RAT’s sizing includes 8-, 12-, and 16- foot containers.
We recommend requesting quotes from both moving companies and choosing the one that makes you feel most comfortable.
Can I cancel a move with 1-800-PACK-RAT?
Yes, you can cancel a move with 1-800-PACK-RAT before it’s shipped and delivered. We recommend keeping an open dialogue with the customer service representative who originally provided your quote so you can pre-empt any unnecessary fees.
If your container has already been delivered and loaded, you can cancel its transport to another location and schedule pick up for on-site storage nearby.
1-800-PACK-RAT’s cancellation policy is a bit hazy, but you shouldn’t be hit with fees unless your plans change at the last minute.
We found a reference to the cancellation policy in their FAQs, which stated that customers who cancel their order within five days of initial delivery might be subject to a cancellation fee.
If you’re moving or storing items with 1-800-PACK-RAT and may need to cancel your order for any reason, you should address this with a representative early on.
Can 1-800-PACK-RAT be shipped to Canada?
No, 1-800-PACK-RAT can’t be shipped to Canada. The moving and storage company operates domestically in 29 U.S. states, but they have corporate partners that may service other areas.
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