Overall Opinion of North American Van Lines: They are a very successful company that has established itself as a “household name.” The services offered are very comprehensive and allow customers tremendous flexibility based on their specific needs. The primary complaint among customers is that belongings are improperly handled and damaged. They are a good overall option for moving services.
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First established back in 1933, North American Van Lines, Inc. now maintains a network of more than 500 agents. Local agents that demonstrate exceptional performance receive a Quality Mover Award. In 1999, the organization was merged with Allied Van Lines to form one of the world’s premier moving options.
- Residential Moving: The company handles household moves locally, nationally, and internationally. Full-service moving is an option that includes assistance with packing, loading, unloading, and more. The movers maintain inventory sheets that assign each item or package with a tag number. A separate High-Value Inventory Sheet is required for costly items. They offer professional piano moving services, which may be subject to local agent availability.
- Long-Distance Moving: They offer services to all U.S. states and Canada. Cross-country moves can be completed in less than five days. The organization reminds customers to consider how long-distance moves may save them money on fuel, hotels, tolls, food, and other expenses. Active military members are a category of customers that regularly use North American for long-distance relocations.
- International Moving: The company has now offered international moving services for more than 80 years. Service is available to most countries and door-to-port shipping is also offered. They encourage customers to begin their preparation for an international move 10 weeks in advance. They recently implemented MoovScout, a digital application that standardizes the global moving process.
- Commercial Moving: Moving and relocation services are available for businesses both large and small. They have handled intentional moving projects for several Fortune 500 companies and door-to-door service is generally available. They boast a 95% satisfaction rate among corporate customers. Customized service offerings include donation and disposal services, furniture management, shredding, and more. Corporate employees are encouraged to use their moving services as well.
- Storage Services: Storage-in-transit (SIT) is a temporary short-term option for storage available for an additional charge. North American Van Lines doesn’t promote storage options at the corporate level.
- Packing and Moving Labor: Full-service moves include professional packing services and all materials needed. Rugs and carpets are rolled-up and wrapped and basic furniture is disassembled. Appliances and oversized items are wrapped in padding and maybe crated for transport.
- Packing and Moving Supplies: Some of the specialty supplies offered include stand-up wardrobe units, mirror and mattress boxes, and custom crates.
- Vehicle Transport: They will move cars, trucks, motorcycles, and more. The typical timeframe for delivery ranges from three to seven days.
- Mobile Storage Containers: The company offers a BlueExpress moving solution now that competes with PODS, the U-Box service offered by U-Haul, and Mobile Mini. A trailer will deliver a mobile storage unit to the customer’s home or office that will be loaded and then transported to the destination. This program is specifically designed for smaller moving projects and transit times vary from 8 to 12 days.
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The Good: Very Comprehensive Service Offerings
NAVL has expanded the services offered to include full-service capabilities for both residential and commercial customers. They offer customized local, national, and international moving services through an impressive network of agents and service partners.
The Bad: Some Agents Employ Movers That Are Careless
Customer complaints suggest that some agents are not taking the proper precautions to limit the number of items damaged. Also, some cases involved movers that damaged floors, ceilings, and walls while transporting larger items inside the home.
- They employ a WorldTrac satellite-delivered platform for tracking shipments anywhere
- Has created an interactive simulator for training drivers
- The organization promotes its charity work including the Habitat ReStore Donation Program and Move for Hunger
- Workers are all background checked and the staff has been trained in a mitigation plan amid the COVID-19 pandemic
- Packing and moving supplies can be estimated by using their website tool (see image below)
- Third-party service providers should be used for artwork, gas appliances, satellite components, medical equipment, and all combustibles.
- Storage options are limited and vary based on local agent availability.
- Some local agents have movers that fail to exercise caution and prevent damage to property during the process.
- The claims process for damaged property tends to be tedious and customers should read the terms of the agreement closely.
North American Van Lines promotes its very competitive pricing and offers “not-to-exceed” options. The company website estimates that local (intrastate) moves average $2,300, while state-to-state moves range from $4,300 to $4,800. Estimates may be obtained through the Quote on Demand website platform; however, the organization prefers to provide on-site quotes.
Full Value vs Released Value Replacement Coverage
Released Value coverage is the required minimum coverage provided by all carriers that pay sixty cents (.60) per pound per item. Full Value coverage is an add-on purchase that all for items that are lost or damaged to be repaired, replaced with a similar article, or a cash settlement to be made according to current market prices.
Items of particularly high value must be separately documented on the inventory. Full Value Protection is subject to a minimum of $6.00 per pound. All claims must be made within nine months after the delivery is completed.
They have an agent in Rhode Island with an overall rating on Google of 4.0 out of 5. Some of the most common complaints involved movers arriving late at the origin location and delays in shipment arrival.
Their agent located in Stone Mountain, Georgia, has an overall rating on Google of 3.9 out of 5. Long delays on shipments reaching the destination are a leading reason for complaints. Several customers had items damaged during the moving process, which they claimed were the result of carelessness.
On Yelp, the company has an overall rating of 2 stars out of 5. Many of the negative postings involved significant delays in shipment arrivals, items that were broken, and a lack of responsiveness from customer service. A couple of complaints cited movers behaving unprofessionally and some not wearing facial coverings (masks) amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
North American Van Lines is highly rated by the Better Business Bureau (BBB) and has been accredited since 1984. The BBB has received approximately 20 complaints over the past 12 months. Several customers stated that the movers were moving items carelessly through their homes and causing damage to floors and walls. A few customers complained about the claims process for damaged items being slow to provide compensation. A company representative does personally respond to most complaints.
The majority of customers will experience a good overall outcome. Residential customers with many fragile or high-priced items such as antique collections should be cautious and definitely consider supplemental third-party insurance coverage.