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  1. #1
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    Is this a bad idea?

    My wife and I are going to be moving from Saint Paul, Minnesota to Nanaimo, BC in the next three to five weeks because I got a new job. We're currently discussing the options we have available to us to ship our things back to Canada with us. It seems that we have two options available to us- use a moving service such as ABF or PODS, or rent a UHaul truck and drive it ourselves.

    Using a moving service such as ABF or PODs has one major advantages over UHaul- namely in that I don't have to drive a UHaul truck through the mountains in the winter. However, it also has two major disadvantages. Neither ABF or PODS will deliver our items to Vancouver Island (which is where our new city is located). So if we use ABF or PODs, we would have all of our stuff delivered to my in-laws place- and then once it arrived, we'd have to rent a U-Haul van there (Vancouver, BC), transfer everything from the ABF/PODs container to the U-Haul, and then drive the UHaul ourselves to Nanaimo, BC. The second major disadvantage is that our stuff won't be with us, and we're likely to arrive several days before it does. So after we'd arrive in Nanaimo, we'd have to return back to Vancouver to rent the UHaul.

    The two options cost about the same in terms of money, even after factoring fuel costs into the equation.

    I'm not entirely keen on the idea of driving a 17" cube van through the mountains along highways I94, I90, and then I5.

    What does BF think?

  2. #2
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    Drive the U-Haul (though I prefer Penske). I have done several cross-country moves with my wife, and it isn't as bad as you think; it really isn't. And I drove the 26-foot trucks with an 18-foot car trailer on the back each time. No biggie. Drive slow; no one will mind.

    It's the same price, you will only have to load/unload once, and you will have your stuff with you. If you are going to be stopping anywhere overnight, buy a lock for the truck's overhead door.

  3. #3
    Cool Beans MangoPumpkin's Avatar
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    Drive the U-Haul. I used a service to move from Cali to VA and it was horrible. Not saying all services are like that but I had a terrible experience. Yes it was nice to not have to pack up and move it myself but they lost and broke stuff, and they wanted more money than originally quoted and wouldn't give me the rest of my stuff until I paid.

    I keep trying to contact them about my lost stuff which they assured me they would find, they disconnected their phones and I never heard from them again. *sigh*
    I've got your restraining order right here. [grabs crotch] Restrain this!

  4. #4
    Senior Member
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    I'd rather use Penske too, but I don't think that chain exists in Canada, so I'm SOL in that case.

    We moved to Saint Paul from Vancouver, BC via UHaul before. It wasn't terrible, but it was also the middle of the summer, so I didn't have to worry about icy roads. Really, I'm mostly worried about icy roads + 17 foot uhaul cube van + mountain winds.

    But I do appreciate your vote of confidence. You're probably right, it's totally doable. When we drove here my wife (who was driving our pontiac sunfire) drove like a bit of a maniac- often exceeding 80 mph. I told her in no uncertain terms, that she's not driving that fast on the way back- that we're not going over 60 mph, and that if she decides to have a lead foot, then I'll just have to catch up with her later.

  5. #5
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    +1 on U-Haul.

    Caveat: Get the insurance, called Super SafeMove (the upper tier). Yes, it may be pricy, but there is one big advantage -- you smash the U-Haul rig up, and you can walk from the wreck regardless who is at fault. Someone rams up your truck's tailpipe or T-bones it? Your stuff is covered up to 25 grand.

    Normally I don't care about insurance, but moves are a PITA at the best. So, even though it does cost, it is one less thing to worry about when trying to get all your crap organized and in order.

  6. #6
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    First of all ,welcome to Nanaimo. Second, you should if you do it be able to drop the U-haul off here when you're finished with it. There are at least two drop off points that I can think of off the top of my head. What area are you thinking of moving to in Nanaimo and I'll try and figure out which one is most convenient. It's been awhile since I've driven I90 through the mountains but my memory is that it wasn't a bad road to drive.

  7. #7
    Senior Member Keith99's Avatar
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    The extra load and unload pretty much would decide it for me. That just multiplies the effort and chances of things going wrong.

    Only ther OP knows how much the roads matter to him. But there I'd suggest having a flexible and conservative schedule for the drive.

  8. #8
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    U-Haul. Less handling of your belongings. If somebody like ABF picks up your furniture it will be taken to their local terminal where it will be offloaded and then loaded into another trailer headed towards BC. It may or may not be reloaded in route, but when it gets to the terminal serving the area you're moving to it will then be offloaded and reloaded into the trailer that will make the actual delivery. every time something is handled it increadses the chances of breakage or loss.
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  9. #9
    derailleurs are overrated bigbenaugust's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MangoPumpkin View Post
    Drive the U-Haul. I used a service to move from Cali to VA and it was horrible. Not saying all services are like that but I had a terrible experience. Yes it was nice to not have to pack up and move it myself but they lost and broke stuff, and they wanted more money than originally quoted and wouldn't give me the rest of my stuff until I paid.

    I keep trying to contact them about my lost stuff which they assured me they would find, they disconnected their phones and I never heard from them again. *sigh*
    Too late for you obviously, but I heard on the radio the other day that the police around here were investigating fradulent moving companies that do just as you describe.
    --Ben
    Carrboro Bike Coalition - putting the "bike" in "CARrboro" :)
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    Previously: 2000 Trek 4500 (2000-2003), 2003 Novara Randonee (2003-2006), 2003 Giant Rainier (2003-2008), 2005 Xootr Swift (2005-2007), 2007 Nashbar 1x9 (2007-2011), 2011 Windsor Shetland (2011-2014)
    Current Linux Usage (by machine): Arch: I Debian: I openSUSE: II

  10. #10
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    To everybody- thanks so much for the votes for the UHaul. My wife wanted to UHaul- I was a bit nervous, but you've reassured me. Awesome!

    Quote Originally Posted by overthehillmedi View Post
    First of all ,welcome to Nanaimo. Second, you should if you do it be able to drop the U-haul off here when you're finished with it. There are at least two drop off points that I can think of off the top of my head. What area are you thinking of moving to in Nanaimo and I'll try and figure out which one is most convenient. It's been awhile since I've driven I90 through the mountains but my memory is that it wasn't a bad road to drive.
    Thanks! We don't know exactly where we're going to be moving too- this is quite last minute- we're still looking for housing. We would like to find some place that has good areas to walk our dog in, and would ideally be located somewhat close to Pacific Biological Station, since I'll be working there. Any advice?

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