Beginners Guide: The Art of Renting A U-Haul (2024)

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Ready to rent a U-Haul but not sure where to begin? Look no further! In this beginner's guide, we'll cover everything you need to know to make your U-Haul rental experience a breeze. From choosing the right size truck to returning it in perfect condition, we've got you covered every step of the way. Let's get started!

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Beginners Guide: The Art of Renting A U-Haul (2)

In this article:

  • Why rent a Uhaul?
  • Size Matters: How Big of A Truck Do You Need?
  • Pick A Time: Scheduling the move
  • insurance… do I really need it?
  • It’s Showtime: Picking up the truck
  • Making The Drop: Returning the truck

So you're ready to move but none of your friends has a truck, or you have a ton of stuff and you don't want to make multiple trips. Sounds like it’s time to rent a U-Haul.

But maybe you don't know where to start. Well don't worry because in this guide we will cover all the steps about renting a U-Haul, so you will be ready to play furniture Tetris with all your belongings.

Why rent a Uhaul?

Renting a U-Haul is the simplest way to move everything at once. They're easy to rent and great for long-distance moves. You can pick up a U-Haul in one city and drop it off in another.

U-Haul offers many types of vehicles for rent, including vans, pickup trucks, car trailers, box trailers, and box trucks of different sizes. This means you can find something suitable for whatever you need to move.

It’s important to know:

  • You must be at least 18 to rent a U-Haul.
  • If you rent from a third party, the age restriction may be higher.
  • You will need a valid driver's license and another form of ID with a matching name, like a debit card.

Size Matters: How Big of A Truck Do You Need?

First, decide how big a truck you need based on how much stuff you have to move. For example, a small 10-foot truck can move things from a small apartment, but a big 26-foot truck is needed for moving four or more fully furnished rooms.

Think about whether you're someone who has just a few belongings or a lot of items. Also, consider if you need extra tools like moving blankets, boxes, or dollies to help with heavy items.

Remember, not every place will have all the tools available, so choosing what you need is important.

Pick A Time: Scheduling the move

Choose your pick-up and drop-off times, and where you'll pick up the truck. You can book the truck and any moving tools you need by calling the nearest rental place. Find a U-Haul location by searching online or visiting uhaul. You can also book directly on their website.

If you're moving with friends or a partner, you’ll want to add them as additional drivers, which might cost a bit extra but is useful if they'll help with driving

insurance… do I really need it?

When booking, you'll be asked about getting extra insurance for the truck. It's a good idea to consider this because your personal car insurance probably won't cover damage to the rental truck.

If you don't get the U-Haul insurance and something happens, you might have to pay for the damages yourself.

Even though it costs a bit more, it's worth it for the peace of mind, especially since the rental truck is likely bigger and harder to drive than your car.

It’s Showtime: Picking up the truck

When you go to pick up the truck, they'll need to see your driver's license and will ask for a payment deposit. You'll pay the full amount after you bring the truck back. They'll go through the rental agreement with you, explaining what you should and shouldn't do with the truck.

Before you take the truck, you'll check it over with a staff member. This means looking for any existing damage, plus noting the mileage and how much fuel is in it. This step is crucial because if there's damage when you return it that wasn't noted before, you could be responsible for it.

Here's a tip: Take a photo of the dashboard showing the mileage and fuel gauge. You need to return the truck with the same amount of fuel it had when you got it. Even though they'll write down the fuel level, having your own photo is a good backup.

Making The Drop: Returning the truck

After your move, hopefully, everything went smoothly with no issues with the truck, the moving tools, or your back. Return the vehicle to the designated drop-off location you chose when you booked it. When it's time to pay, U-Haul charges a set price for renting the truck and any equipment you used, plus a fee for each mile you drove.

If you didn't refill the fuel to the level it was at the start, you'll also pay for the missing fuel. But, be aware that refueling through U-Haul is much more expensive than doing it yourself. After returning the truck, an employee will check it with you for any new damages to make sure everything is returned as expected.

What happens if I damage the Truck?

If you damaged the U-Haul truck and bought extra insurance, you don't have to worry because the insurance will cover the damage. But if you didn't buy the extra insurance, you'll have to pay for the repairs. It's tough, but that's how it works. As long as you take good care of the truck and bring it back just like you got it, everything should be fine.

Renting a U-haul is an easy and convenient way to move all your things in one go for any DIY mover. Driving a larger truck can be a bit scary, but as long as you are careful with the vehicle and follow the steps above, you will have nothing to worry about.

Unsure if YOU want to haul?

Using a U-Haul can be super convenient, but maybe you don't want to move everything yourself. At we have all the tools to quickly connect you with reliable and affordable movers in your area to take the worry and stress out of moving. Check out today

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Beginners Guide: The Art of Renting A U-Haul (3)

George Marks

A copywriter with a knack for adapting quickly, thanks to moving all across the US when I was growing up. Currently, I continue to embrace new cities for work, each move adding a new chapter to my story and expanding my perspective both personally and professionally. In my free time, I enjoy things like tennis, building computers, and writing engaging stories in a professional setting.

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Beginners Guide: The Art of Renting A U-Haul (2024)


Will a couch fit in a 10 foot U-Haul? ›

Space. Ten feet may not sound like a long enough truck to fit your whole life into, but you can fit much more than you think. If you have larger items to move, such as couches, mattresses or desks, along with your many boxes, there is plenty of room to do so.

Is a 26 foot U-Haul hard to drive? ›

Indeed, out on the open highway, it's not a difficult vehicle to drive. It accelerates far more briskly when in high gear than one would expect from something so loaded down. It's no drag racer, but it's no cruise ship either. Thanks to the high perch, visibility is excellent.

How much does U-Haul hold on a credit card? ›

Whether you pay a deposit depends on your method of payment. No deposit is required if you're paying by major credit card. If you're paying with cash, the following is due when you pick up your equipment: In-Town truck - $100 or estimated rental charges (whichever is greater)

Will a king size bed fit in a 10 foot U-Haul truck? ›

The 10ft truck is our smallest box truck rental available for long distance One-Way moves and local In-Town moves. The 10ft moving truck can easily fit a king sized bed, frame, loveseat, two end tables, and a four piece dining room table with spare room for boxes filled with household items.

How many boxes can fit in a 10 foot truck? ›

A 10-foot truck equals three U-Box storage containers. A 15-foot U-Haul truck equals four U-Box storage containers. A 20-foot truck equals five U-Box storage containers. A 26-foot U-Haul truck equals six U-Box storage containers.

What is the difference between a 10 foot and 15-foot U-Haul? ›

If you are unable to find a guide, here is a general starting point: Cargo van to 10′ moving truck: studio apartment. 15-foot moving truck: two bedrooms or less. 20-foot moving truck: two to three bedrooms.

Why does uhaul recommend 55 mph? ›

A road hazard that could be avoided at 55 mph, may become unavoidable at a higher speed. When driving at a lower speed you are less likely to lose control of any vehicle, than when driving at a higher speed. Excessive speed is a major cause of accidents.

Why did U-Haul charge me so much? ›

The cost of renting a moving truck depends on several factors, such as the distance traveled, the size of the truck, day of the week, and rental location. Additionally, mileage fees play a significant role in determining the overall cost.

How much does U-Haul cost per mile locally? ›

The cost to rent a moving truck for one-way moves depends on the truck size, pickup location, destination, and move date. U-Haul prices often work out to about $0.90–$1.00 per mile, but you might pay more in cities with a higher cost of living. You may also pay a higher rate for Friday and Saturday rentals.

Does uhaul only accept credit cards? ›

Depending on the U-Haul rental location, Customer may pay via credit card, debit card, or cash. In the event Customer would like to pay via check, Customer should contact the dispatching U-Haul rental location prior to creating a reservation. Rentals of pick up trucks or cargo vans.

How to transport a mattress without getting it dirty? ›

Bag it up. The first and most important part of moving a mattress is getting it into a mattress bag. These thick plastic bags can be purchased from any moving supply store if you didn't save the one your mattress originally came in. The plastic bag will be a shield against dirt and tears.

How many boxes fit in a 26-foot truck? ›

Up to 500 medium boxes. 1-15 medium furnitures items.

Can you fit a couch in a 10x10 storage unit? ›

You can easily fit larger appliances as well as larger furniture items such as mattresses and couches. The unit is sized to be ten feet by ten feet equaling 100 square feet.

How do you pack a couch in uhaul? ›

It's important to protect your chairs, love seats and couches, which is why we offer various sizes of polyethylene plastic covers that keep your furniture clean and protected during a move. Be sure to clean your furniture prior putting it under wraps. Use tape to secure the covers over your furniture.

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