Allied Van Lines vs United Van Lines: Which Moving Company is Better?

Overall Opinion: Allied Van Lines and United Van Lines have both been in this business for more than 80 years. Although they have stood the test of time, they both have some areas to improve on, particularly at the local agent level.

Allied movers sometimes arrive late and transports are often delayed. United’s movers tend to be careless when loading and unloading customer belongings, which leads to property damage claims.

Overall, these are both good options; however, Allied Van Lines has a slightly better international operation that consists of corporate franchise locations in 40 countries.

Compare Allied and United to the moving companies on our list of best interstate moving companies and the best international movers.

Allied Van Lines vs United Van Lines: Pros and Cons

Allied Van Lines: Pros and Cons

Allied Van Lines     4.0 out of 5.0 stars
What we love: The Allied Advantage International Moving program.

Allied has an expansive international moving program that consists of corporate-owned franchise locations in 40 countries. A coordinator that serves as a central point of contact is assigned and electronic transport tracking is available 24/7. All cartons used to seal items are either double or triple-walled and wooden crates are used as necessary.

What we don’t love:

Movers sometimes arrive late for loading or shipment takes longer than expected to arrive at the destination.

On their Better Business Bureau (BBB) page there were roughly 121 complaints received in the last three years. The BBB report shows that approximately 28% of the complaints were delivery-related. It looking at the reviews, some instances involved the driver and movers arriving later in the day than expected. In some cases, the customer’s shipment was delayed several days before reaching the destination.

Pros

  • The COVID-19 pandemic motivated Allied Van Lines to upgrade their options for “contactless” quotes and estimates.
  • The Virtual Moving In-Home estimate involves touring your home or business using a phone or tablet to generate a detailed inventory. From this, a company representative can determine the size of the truck needed, the weight of the shipment, and recognize if specialty items need customized crates and more.
  • Has a very strong network of local agents covering most major U.S. cities
  • Allied has an excellent international presence with franchise locations abroad

Cons

  • Unable to obtain any general pricing (ranges) online without speaking to a representative
  • Storage options such as self-storage and warehouse availability vary from agent-to-agent
  • Some customers complain that the claims process is slow and cumbersome

United Van Lines: Pros and Cons

United Van Lines     4.0 out of 5.0 stars
What we love: Great full-service moving packages and specialty services.

United Van Lines offers customers tremendous flexibility in full-service moving. They offer some unique add-on services such as debris removal, cleaning services at the move out location, and home PC and network installation. Their tiered packages (Essential, Plus 1, and 2) are presented in a menu-like format that is very straightforward and transparent.

What we don’t love:

Local agents sometimes have movers that work hastily without regard for protecting customer belongings.

Customer feedback online suggests that some of the movers employed at the local (agent) level are careless, which results in items arriving damaged. For example, it seems that fragile items are often inadequately packaged to prevent damage. During the loading process, some movers fail to properly consider the delicacy of boxed or packaged items positioned below as they stack others on top.

Pros

  • As a part of Unigroup Worldwide Moving’s group that also owns Mayflower, they have tremendous resources and access to a massive network of affiliated agencies.
  • They generally include the upgraded Full-Valuation coverage in their packages, which may increase price quotes but gives customers better protection
  • They offer LOTS of optional services

Cons

  • Has too many customer property damage claims
  • Doesn’t offer any discounts at the corporate level such as for military, seniors, AAA members, etc.
  • Some customers complain of poor communication between local agents and/or agents and corporate support

Allied Van Lines vs United Van Lines: Service Offering Comparison

Allied Van Lines United Van Lines
Local Moves Yes Yes
Long Distance / Cross Country Moves Yes Yes
International Moves Yes Yes
Commercial / Corporate Moves Yes Yes
Military / Government Moves Yes Yes
Packing / Unpacking Services Yes Yes
Storage Services Yes (see Express program below) Yes
Vehicle Transport Yes Yes
Moving / Packaging Supplies Yes Yes

Allied Van Lines: Although not heavily promoted on their website, Allied Van Lines has an Express program. Here, a crew of two to four movers will load a portable moving container and later unload it at the destination. These moving containers are similar to those offered by Pack-Rat, PODS, and the U-Haul U-Box program.

United Van Lines: Offers a moving out cleaning service that is completed by cleaning professionals that are insured and properly supervised. These services are available for up to six hours and optional trash and debris removal is also offered.

The United Van Lines Full-Service Moving Package currently includes the following:

  • The customer is assigned a designated move coordinator
  • All belongings are loaded, transported, and unloaded
  • The price quote includes the upgraded Full-Value Protection plan
  • Appliances are loaded, transported, and unloaded. NOTE: Disconnection and connection is not available
  • Placement of furniture and assembly and disassembly of beds

United Van Lines’ Optional Packages

  • Essentials: Priced at $195, this includes $5,000 in additional protection coverage, claim assistance identity, and theft coverage.
  • Plus 1: Priced at $395, this includes $25,000 in additional protection coverage and a choice of one of the following services: destination debris removal, computer, and network setup, home theater mount disassembly, or home theater stand mount installation.
  • Plus 2: Priced at $595, this includes $25,000 in additional protection coverage and choice of two of the following services: destination debris removal, computer, and network setup, home theater mount disassembly, home theater stand mount installation, or cleaning services at the move-out location.

Our opinion: United Van Lines has the edge. United offers a slightly wider scope of full-service and optional services. They also provide more transparency and details regarding pricing and scope.

Service (Coverage) Area Comparison: Allied Van Lines vs United Van Lines:

These companies both have local agents in most U.S. markets. Allied appears to have an edge in other countries.

Our opinion: Even

Pricing Comparison: Allied Van Lines vs United Van Lines

Unfortunately, neither company currently offers any instant or “ballpark” online prices. Customers must submit some basic information and await contact from an agent.

Opinion: Even

Specialized Tools and Resources: Allied Van Lines vs United Van Lines Comparison

Allied Packing Calculator

The Allied Packing Calculator, despite being simplistic, is a good way for customers to estimate the types of moving boxes and the number of packaging supplies that will be needed to prepare for a move.

Opinion: Even

United’s Online Moving & Packing Video Series

On their website, United has compiled a small library of informational videos that are helpful for those preparing for a move. They are filled with “expert advice” topics such as How to Pack Linens.
Allied Van Lines vs United Van Lines: Available Discounts Comparison

Surprisingly, neither company is offering special discounts at the corporate level currently; however, local agents may have some promotions throughout the year.

Opinion: Even

Summary: Allied Van Lines vs United Van Lines

These are two full-service moving industry heavyweights that are viable options. They both have similar customer satisfaction levels on local moves; however, Allied has a slight advantage because of its Express mobile storage container program.

In the long-distance (interstate) market, they both have excellent coverage nationwide through local agents. Allied tends to struggle with punctuality and meeting tight timelines. Those with very delicate or high-priced items may want to avoid United.

Allied has a slight advantage in the international market. Prices for both companies vary based on the individual agent in your area.

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