If you’re one of the millions of Americans who has moved a home or business in recent years, then you’re aware of the stresses and pressures that come with a relocation. Those stresses are only increased when you make a long distance move, which is any relocation that covers more than one hundred miles. Long distance moves require patience, perseverance, and a partnership with a great moving company.

However, even with the best movers, there are still some things that you can do on your own to simplify the process. This article provides three tips, which have been put together by industry experts, for simplifying a long distance move. The goal is to get you ready for your relocation, so that you can have an effortless and enjoyable experience.

The Three Tips for Simplifying a Long Distance Move

The first tip for simplifying a long distance move is to understand an industry term called, ‘first available delivery date’. Anytime that you have items being transported by a moving company, they are contractually obligated to deliver those items within thirty business days of the first available delivery date. The first available delivery date is the first possible day that you’re ready for your belongings to be delivered and thus the first day that they can be delivered. Moving companies will coordinate their deliveries with the first available delivery date so that there is wasted time during the transportation process. By scheduling their deliveries around the first available delivery date, moving companies avoid having to wait to deliver a shipment (which costs both you and the moving company money). When you understand the ‘first available delivery date’ you can choose the best possible time and date for your items to arrive, and ultimately plan your move more efficiently. If you need time to prepare your new home before your items arrive, then choose your F.A.D.D. accordingly. If you want your stuff to arrive precisely when you do, then you should set your F.A.D.D. so that your items arrive accordingly. When you can plan efficiently, you can simplify a long distance move, so remember to study up on the ‘first available delivery date’.

The second tip for simplifying a long distance move is to understand the various accessories fees you can and may be charged during your relocation. Long distance moves are subject to fees that include stair fees, elevator fees, long carry fees, shuttle fees, storage fees, extra stop fees, and bulky article fees, in addition to differing from local moves in that they are charged by weight or size instead of labor hours. Stair and elevator fees apply if the movers must carry items up eight or more stairs, or if they must use an elevator. Long carry fees apply when the moving company must carry items further than seventy-five feet when traveling from the unload or loading destination to the truck. This fee increases with each additional fifty foot increment. Shuttle fees are incurred when the moving company must use a smaller vehicle to transport your items from the truck to the final unload destination (this occurs when the truck can not fit at or near the final location). Storage fees and extra stop fees are a result of the moving company having to store your items for any period of time, or from having to unload at multiple destinations. The bulky article fee is specialized, and depends on the item, its size, and what tools are required for the transportation of that particular item. Additionally, long distance moves are charged by the cubic foot or total weight amounts, rather than by a labor minimum (as with local moves). With a better understanding of what you have to pay for on a long distance move, you can make a rough calculation of what your move may cost, and you can prepare for any issues that may increase the total price.

The third tip for simplifying a long distance move is to get a dedicated truck. This is a service that will cost an additional fee, however it will add a level of convenience to your move that makes it worth the cost. In the moving industry, the term dedicated truck refers to a truck that is used for only one shipment. This offers the exclusivity of having your items travel alone, and the convenience of having the truck make no other stops or deliveries. Often with long distance moves, different shipments are loaded into the same truck, so that the moving company can take care of multiple moves on the same trip. But, with a dedicated truck, there is only one shipment transported by at that time. Because the moving company is losing the opportunity to take on other shipments, they charge more for the dedicated truck service. If you want to have privacy for your items, along with the guarantee that they do not make any other stops before arriving at your location, then you want a dedicated truck. This is the simplest way to get your items from point A to point B during a long distance move.