Best Long-Distance Movers in California for 2024

After comparing costs, services, and customer satisfaction, we rated Safeway Moving as the best long-distance moving company in California, giving them 4.5 out of 5 stars.

moveBuddha logo iconrating starstarstarstarstar 4.5 / 5
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  • Best overall value
  • Portion to charity
  • Veteran owned

% of users select this mover

moveBuddha logo iconrating starstarstarstarstar 4.5 / 5
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  • 20 yrs experience
  • Flat rate pricing
  • Family owned

% of users select this mover

moveBuddha logo iconrating starstarstarstarstar 4.45 / 5
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  • Family owned
  • East coast focus
  • Affordable pricing

% of users select this mover

While Safeway Moving is our top pick for interstate moves, Meathead Movers is rated as the best California-based company that can handle long-distance moves. We rated them a 5 out of 5 star rating.

Other great options for long-distance moves out of the Golden State are worth checking out. Whether you're moving out of California or making a long-distance move across the state, we'll walk you through the best national and local movers based on transparent costs, availability of services, and real customer reviews.

How we picked the best long-distance movers in California

Over the past 10 years, we’ve developed a rigorous review process to identify the absolute best long-distance moving companies in California.

We look at:

  • Customer satisfaction (40%): The company consistently delivers services in a timely matter with good communication and within the estimated cost.
  • Dispute resolution (20%): Mistakes cannot be avoided in the moving industry. We look for companies that own their mistakes and make genuine efforts to fix any issues that arise during a move.
  • Industry reputation (15%): The company is well regarded within the moving industry and participates in industry conferences and organizations.
  • Online reputation (15%): The company maintains a professional website with accurate information. The company promptly and professionally responds to online customer inquiries.
  • Service options (10%): We look for companies with a deep breadth of services including full packing, storage, specialty item handling, expedited delivery, and more.

Read more about our moving company rating methodology.

Best interstate movers for those moving out of California

These are the best state-to-state moving companies available in California.

  1. Safeway Moving, 4.5 out of 5
  2. American Van Lines, 4.5 out of 5
  3. Mayzlin Relocation, 4.45 out of 5
  4. North American Van Lines, 4.25 out of 5
  5. JK Moving Services, 4.25 out of 5
Best Overall Value
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moveBuddha logo iconrating starstarstarstarstar 4.5 / 5
(855) 650-0657

93% of users select this mover

At A Glance
  • GPS tracked trucks and tractors
  • Barcode scanned and tracked inventory of your possessions
  • Dedicated move coordinator assigned to each client
  • A portion of every move is donated to charity
read our full review
(855) 650-0657

93% of users select this mover

Best industry reputation
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moveBuddha logo iconrating starstarstarstarstar 4.5 / 5
(866) 835-2392

93% of users select this mover

At A Glance
  • Over 20 years in business
  • Excellent customer service score
  • Best pricing we've seen
  • Can handle last minute moves
read our full review
(866) 835-2392

93% of users select this mover

Best Upfront Pricing
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moveBuddha logo iconrating starstarstarstarstar 4.45 / 5
(980) 217-6841

93% of users select this mover

At A Glance
  • Family owned with locations covering the east coast
  • Full refund for cancellations within 7 days of your move
  • Packing and unpacking services available
  • Handle residential, corporate, and military moves
read our full review
(980) 217-6841

93% of users select this mover

Best for complex moves
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moveBuddha logo iconrating starstarstarstarstar 4.25 / 5
(844) 950-2963

93% of users select this mover

At A Glance
  • Over 74 years in business
  • More than 1,800 trucks in the fleet
  • 1,500 local agents covering all 50 states
  • Top major moving company in the U.S.
  • Highest rated agent van line among moveBuddha customers
read our full review
(844) 950-2963

93% of users select this mover

Best for high-end moves
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moveBuddha logo iconrating starstarstarstarstar 4.25 / 5
(703) 972-1772

93% of users select this mover

At A Glance
  • Guaranteed pick up and delivery dates
  • Low deposit requirement of $250 for interstate moves
  • Easy and fast AI-powered in-home estimate tool
  • Over 40k moves in the past 3 years
  • Available Financing as low as 0% Interest for low monthly payments
  • Extremely responsive customer service
read our full review
(703) 972-1772

93% of users select this mover

Best long-distance movers if you’re staying in California

While it’s not as common, if you’re staying in California but still moving a couple hundred miles, these are the best long distance movers for you:

  1. Meathead Movers, 5 out of 5
  2. Luigy's Moving & Storage, 4.9 out of 5
  3. Air 1 Moving & Storage, 4.9 out of 5
  4. Terry Moving and Storage Inc., 4.9 out of 5
  5. One Stop Moving & Storage, 4.9 out of 5

Meathead Movers

moveBuddha logo iconrating starstarstarstarstar5 / 5

DOT #: 921143

Years in Business: 26

3600 S Higuera St,
San Luis Obispo, CA 93401

Meathead Movers has been a trusted name in local residential moving services around San Luis Obispo, CA, since 1998. The company stands out with its glowing consumer reviews, boasting an average rating of 4.2 on Yelp and 4.3 on Google My Business, alongside an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau. Unlike many other local moving companies, Meathead Movers also offers comprehensive packing and unpacking services, all without requiring a deposit. With their solid reputation and wide range of services, they remain a top choice for residents seeking reliable and efficient movers locally.

Get a Quote (805) 544-6328

Review Profiles

Services Offered

Move Distances

  • Local moves
  • Interstate moves

Available services

  • Packing
  • Unpacking
  • Offices
  • Storage

Additional Information

Alternative Business Names

  • Meathead Packers
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Luigy's Moving & Storage

moveBuddha logo iconrating starstarstarstarstar4.9 / 5

DOT #: 02740355

Years in Business: 23

5550 Mission St,
San Francisco, CA 94112

Luigy's Moving & Storage has been a trusted name in local residential moving services in and around San Francisco, CA since 2001. Compared to other nearby companies, Luigy's stands out with their comprehensive service offerings, including packing, unpacking, and crating services, as well as specialized handling for pianos, hot tubs, art, and antiques. Boasting exceptional consumer reviews with an average rating of 4.7 on Yelp and 4.6 on Google, along with an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau, Luigy's reputation for reliability and quality is well-earned. While a deposit is required, they accept both cash and credit cards, ensuring flexible payment options for their clients.

Get a Quote (415) 413-4646

Review Profiles

Services Offered

Move Distances

  • Local moves
  • Interstate moves

Available services

  • Packing
  • Unpacking
  • Offices
  • Pianos
  • Hot Tubs
  • Art
  • Antiques
  • Crating
  • Full-valuation coverage
  • Storage

Additional Information

  • Pay by cash
  • Pay by credit card
  • Deposit Required
  • DOT #: 02740355
  • State license #: 0192210
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Air 1 Moving & Storage

moveBuddha logo iconrating starstarstarstarstar4.9 / 5

DOT #: 1095485

Years in Business: 20

9556 Cozycroft Ave,
Chatsworth, CA 91311

Air 1 Moving & Storage has been a trusted provider of local residential moving services in and around Chatsworth, CA, since 2004. The company stands out among nearby competitors with its extensive array of services, including packing, unpacking, and crating, along with specialized care for moving pianos, art, and antiques. With an impressive 4.4 average rating on Google and a solid A- rating from the Better Business Bureau, Air 1 Moving & Storage is well-regarded for its reliability and professional service. Customers looking for a reputable local mover will find Air 1’s no-deposit policy and acceptance of credit cards convenient and customer-friendly.

Get a Quote (866) 485-1030

Review Profiles

Services Offered

Move Distances

  • Local moves
  • Interstate moves
  • International moves

Available services

  • Packing
  • Unpacking
  • Pianos
  • Art
  • Antiques
  • Grandfather clocks
  • Crating
  • Full-valuation coverage
  • Storage

Additional Information

Alternative Business Names

  • Air 1 Moving & Storage, Inc
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Terry Moving and Storage Inc.

moveBuddha logo iconrating starstarstarstarstar4.9 / 5

DOT #: 649215

Years in Business: 27

25958 Commercentre Dr,
Lake Forest, CA 92630

Terry Moving and Storage Inc., located in Lake Forest, CA, has been a trusted name in local residential moving services since 1997. With outstanding consumer reviews—235 on Yelp with an average rating of 4.7 and 141 on Google My Business with an average rating of 4.9, plus an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau—they’re a standout choice among local movers. Unlike many competitors, they offer a comprehensive range of services, including packing, unpacking, and the specialized handling of fragile items, as well as piano and pool table moving. No deposit is required and they accept credit cards, simplifying the moving process for their clients.

Get a Quote (949) 587-9490

Review Profiles

Services Offered

Move Distances

  • Local moves
  • Interstate moves

Available services

  • Packing
  • Unpacking
  • Offices
  • Pianos
  • Pool Tables
  • Storage
  • Fragile-only packing

Additional Information

Alternative Business Names

  • Terry Moving and Storage Inc
  • Richards Moving Company
  • Orange County Storage Movers
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One Stop Moving & Storage

moveBuddha logo iconrating starstarstarstarstar4.9 / 5

DOT #: 1956864

Years in Business: 14

6260 Marindustry Dr STE B,
San Diego, CA 92121

One Stop Moving & Storage offers top-notch local residential moving services in and around San Diego, CA, having served the community since 2010. Renowned for their reliability, they outshine other nearby moving companies by providing comprehensive services, including packing, unpacking, and the ability to move delicate items like pianos, antiques, and art. With an impressive average Yelp rating of 4.1 from 399 reviews and a 4.3 rating on Google My Business from 169 reviews, they boast a solid reputation complemented by an A rating from the Better Business Bureau. Whether you're looking for full-service moving or just labor, One Stop Moving & Storage stands as a trusted choice for local moves.

Get a Quote (858) 633-8600

Review Profiles

Services Offered

Move Distances

  • Local moves
  • Interstate moves

Available services

  • Packing
  • Unpacking
  • Offices
  • Pianos
  • Hot Tubs
  • Pool Tables
  • Art
  • Antiques
  • Crating
  • Shipment tracking
  • Full-valuation coverage
  • Storage
  • Fragile-only packing
  • Safes

Additional Information

Alternative Business Names

  • One Stop Moving & Storage Inc
  • San Diego Expert Movers
  • Quick San Diego Movers
  • Coastal Movers
  • Manpower Movers
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Alternative long-distance moving options

While hiring full-service moving companies out of California is usually the easiest option, it’s not for everyone. Find alternative options below:

Moving Containers

If you’re comfortable doing the packing and loading, but don’t want to drive from California to your new state, a moving container can be a great cost-saving alternative.

Expect to pay somewhere around $1,087 to $7,242 for a moving container coming out of California. The cost depends on several factors, so we recommend getting multiple moving quotes.

  1. U-Pack: 5 out of 5
  2. PODS: 4.8 out of 5
Best value container
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moveBuddha logo iconrating starstarstarstarstar 5 / 5
Check prices Visit Website

93% of users select this mover

At A Glance
  • Long distance moves only
  • Only pay for the space you use
  • No deposit or initial fees
  • Fast delivery time frames
read our full review
Check prices Check prices

93% of users select this mover

Best Nationwide Coverage
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moveBuddha logo iconrating starstarstarstarstar 4.8 / 5

93% of users select this mover

At A Glance
  • 30 days storage included
  • Local and long distance moving options
  • Unlimited loading/unloading time
  • Store on property or at a facility
read our full review
Check prices

93% of users select this mover

Labor Only

If you’re comfortable doing the driving from California to your new state but want some help packing, loading, and unloading, look for labor-only moving companies.

You’ll typically pay $28 to $38 per hour per worker for California-based labor-only movers.

  1. HireAHelper: 4.5 out of 5
  2. Bellhop: 4.3 out of 5
Best Labor Only
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moveBuddha logo iconrating starstarstarstarstar 4.5 / 5
Check prices Visit Website

93% of users select this mover

At A Glance
  • First call quoting, get a quote in just a couple of minutes
  • Rates are typically 20-40% lower than the industry averages
  • $1,000 money-back service guarantee
  • Fast and accurate delivery times
  • Free damage coverage with additional coverage options
read our full review
Check prices Check prices

93% of users select this mover

Best customer experience
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moveBuddha logo iconrating starstarstarstarstar 4.3 / 5
(866) 774-5063

93% of users select this mover

At A Glance
  • Quick and easy booking process
  • National 4.75/5 star rating (these guys are good at what they do)
  • Dedicated move concierge specialist
  • Pay as you go service. 2-hour minimum and then prorated down to the minute
  • The time clock starts when the movers arrive and ends when you tell them
read our full review
(866) 774-5063

93% of users select this mover

Full DIY

If budget is the biggest concern, the best long-distance moving options in California are U-Haul Truck Rental and Penske Truck Rental. These moving rental trucks do require the most work on your part, but will save you the most money.

  1. U-Haul Truck Rental: 4.15 out of 5
  2. Penske Truck Rental: 4 out of 5
Best Availability
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moveBuddha logo iconrating starstarstarstarstar 4.15 / 5
Check prices (800) 468-4285

93% of users select this mover

At A Glance
  • More than 20,000 locations with prominent pricing
  • Rental options include everything from pick-up trucks to 26-foot moving trucks
  • Gentle-Ride Suspension add protection to avoid damaging your items during transit
  • U-Box moving containers available if you don't want to drive
read our full review
Check prices (800) 468-4285

93% of users select this mover

Most Reliable
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moveBuddha logo iconrating starstarstarstarstar 4 / 5
Check prices (844) 847-9517

93% of users select this mover

At A Glance
  • Limits environmental impact as part of the EPA's SmartWay Program
  • Non-slip flooring makes loading and unloading easier
  • Easily choose truck size with their Truck Wizard Tool
read our full review
Check prices (844) 847-9517

93% of users select this mover

Average cost of a long-distance move out of California

The average cost of a long-distance move out of California is $862 up to $12,756+. There are several factors that factor into the total cost of moving.

Factors that affect the cost

  1. Size: The volume of items you're moving directly affects costs. Evaluate what you truly need in California – every extra item adds up.
  2. Distance: The distance you’re moving away from California is a major cost factor. Whether it's a couple hundred miles or a cross-country trek, distance plays a key role in your moving budget.
  3. Type of Move: How you choose to move out of California is crucial. Your options include a full-service moving company, truck rental, moving container, or a freight trailer. Each offers different advantages and costs.
  4. Services: Consider whether to do it yourself or hire help for packing and unpacking. Professional services add convenience but also increase costs.
  5. Seasonal Timing: When you move affects the price. Summer moves are typically more expensive. Planning your move during off-peak seasons can be more cost-effective.
money

To get an accurate cost estimate, check out our free
moving cost calculator.

Thing to consider before hiring a mover in California

Whether you’re staying in California for the ample economic opportunity, pleasant weather, and abundant recreational options, or moving out due to the high cost of living, heavy tax burdens, and natural disasters, here’s what you need to consider before your big move.

Check the company’s licensing

When contacting a local moving company for an estimate in California, make sure each has a “T Number” issued by the California Public Utilities Commission (CAPUC). Moving companies with valid T Numbers have met state requirements for insurance, safety, and financial stability and have passed criminal clearance checks conducted by the California Department of Justice.

Ask about their insurance options

Opt for Released Value Protection – a cost-free choice provided by movers with minimal coverage. The liability is capped at 60 cents per pound per article. For instance, if a 50-inch TV weighing 25 pounds is lost or damaged, your reimbursement is only $15 (60 cents x 25 pounds). To ensure comprehensive coverage for your items' full value, consult with your chosen moving company or consider third-party insurance options.

When to move

Weather factors influence how busy movers are, so those things play into the availability of movers and the cost.

In California, you have to consider that the average winter temperature is 59°F, the average summer temperature is 87°F, you’ll see 22” of rain, and about 7” of snow each year. That’s a lot of weather that can determine when to plan your move.

Taking your car

If you’re moving across the country and don’t want to leave your car in California (or drive it cross-country), consider using a car shipping company.

You’ll also want to consider vehicle inspections in your new state as they may be different. Take California’s requirements, as an example. California requires an annual safety inspection to ensure that all vehicles used on public roads are in good condition and safe to operate. The inspection can be carried out at any California Department of Transportation approved service station.

Helpful California resources