Why Is U-Haul So Expensive?

Moving home can be a costly exercise, and you might feel tempted to save money by moving your household contents yourself. After obtaining a quote from U-Haul, you might wonder why it’s so expensive. 

U-Haul is so expensive because it is a trusted company, the final price includes many conveniences, and U-Haul trucks have special features to make domestic moves easier. The high price could also be because your pick-up and drop-off locations are different. 

In this article, I’ll provide an in-depth explanation of why U-Haul is so expensive. 

expensive U-Haul

Reasons U-Haul Is So Expensive

In the introduction, I mentioned why U-Haul is so expensive. Below is a comprehensive look at these reasons: 

U-Haul Is a Trusted Company

When you’re moving home and doing everything yourself, it is no coincidence that U-Haul is probably the first truck rental company that comes to mind. 

Founded in 1945, U-Haul has been around for over seven decades and has 21,000 branches throughout North America. It operates on a franchise model, meaning you can confidently expect the same customer service and quality standard, regardless of the U-Haul branch you use. 

Being a household name in North America allows U-Haul to price its rentals at the top end of the range. 

Your Pick-Up and Drop-Off Locations Are Different

Various factors can influence the price of your U-Haul truck or trailer rental, including: 

  • Truck or trailer size.
  • Rental date (you can expect to pay more at the beginning or end of the month when most people move).
  • Mileage.

However, if you are moving a far distance, and your pick-up and drop-off locations are different, this can push up the price. One-way rentals make it inconvenient for U-Haul as they have to move stock around, which is time-consuming and costly.

Some U-Haul customers overcome this problem by driving the rental truck back to the pick-up point and then driving their personal vehicle to their new home. Although this can result in high fuel costs, it often works out cheaper than a one-way rental.  Additional reading that may be helpful Will U-Haul Price Match (Budget, Penske, Enterprise)?

truck movers loading van carrying boxes and moving house

The Final Price Includes Many Conveniences

When comparing quotes from different companies for a rental truck or trailer, you might not be comparing apples with apples. Although the truck or trailer rental will make up most of the cost with any company, U-Haul’s quote includes additional conveniences you might not be aware of: 

  • Your choice of seven truck and three trailer sizes. Whether you only have a few boxes and furniture items or need a truck to accommodate a four-bedroom home’s worth of furniture, there is a suitably-sized U-Haul truck that’s perfect for you. You also have the choice of three trailer sizes and can have a trailer hitch fixed to your car at many U-Haul branches.  
  • The EZ-Return® app. U-Haul’s EZ-Return® app is free to download and allows you to conveniently return your trailer or truck at any time. If the branch is closed, simply drop your keys in the clearly-marked box. 
  • U-Haul Truck Share 24/7. After signing up for U-Haul Truck Share 24/7 and going through the vetting process, you can pick up, return, and pay for your truck rental from your smartphone. When picking up your truck or trailer, U-Haul will send you a code for the dropbox to give you access to the keys. 
  • Thirty days of free self-storage for one-way rentals. U-Haul one-way rentals can be costly, but they come with two free self-storage rental units for thirty days. This is applicable at your origin and destination.
  • 21,000 U-Haul locations. Wherever you’re located in the US or Canada, there is likely a U-Haul branch near you. This makes truck or trailer pick-ups and drop-offs incredibly convenient and can save you money on gas.
  • U-Haul sells moving equipment and offers labor. If you run out of boxes or need to rent a furniture dolly, you can do this when you pick up your truck at the U-Haul branch. U-Haul also offers help with moving and charges by the hour. 
  • Basic 24/7 roadside assistance. In the unlikely event that your U-Haul truck breaks down, you can call their roadside assistance service, which is always available. They will fix the issue or give you a new vehicle. You could also upgrade to a more comprehensive plan for added peace of mind. 

U-Haul Trucks Have Special Features for Self-Movers

U-haul on the road

If you have used U-Haul and other truck rental companies for moving in the past, you have probably noticed that U-Haul trucks make domestic moving easier. There are various reasons for this: 

  • U-Haul trucks have low loading decks and EZ-Load Ramps®. The lower loading deck reduces the amount of lifting you need to do when loading your truck. U-Haul claims its EZ-Load Ramp® is wider, shorter, and stronger than its competitors’ ramps. 
  • U-Haul trucks have extra rub rails. According to U-Haul, its competitors only have rub rails on the sides, while they have them in the front. This allows you to secure more appliances and furniture.  
  • Larger U-Haul trucks have a Mom’s Attic®. A Mom’s Attic is a compartment in the truck’s cab that allows you to store small, fragile objects. It also adds another 70 cubic feet (1.98 cubic meters) of packing space. 
  • U-Haul trucks have gentle ride suspension.  The gentle-ride suspension makes driving the truck more comfortable and helps protect your cargo. U-Haul trucks also have automatic transmissions to make things even more convenient. 
  • U-Haul trucks are fuel efficient. The total price for your U-Haul rental will depend on how many miles you’ve traveled. You’ll need to bring it back with the same amount of gas as you collected it, but thankfully, U-Haul trucks are surprisingly fuel-efficient and have V-8 engines. 


If your U-Haul truck or trailer rental seems expensive, it could be because you have booked a one-way rental. This makes it costly and time-consuming for U-Haul as they may need to move stock around. 

Other reasons for your expensive U-Haul quote include: 

  • U-Haul is a trusted company.
  • The final price includes many conveniences specific to U-Haul.
  • U-Haul trucks are tailor-made for domestic moves.

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