July 19, 2022 Posted in Moving Essentials
Gemma Collins

Gemma is an NJ local that has explored all the US states, making her the perfect person to write about moving.

What Size Moving Truck Do I Need When Relocating Across the Country?

Organizing a move can be very exciting – as long as you know what you are doing. Once you find out where you are going to move and what stuff to bring, you might start wondering what size moving truck do I need? To avoid confusion and unnecessary mistakes, we can offer you this short guide that will help you solve all your dilemmas.

professional cross country movers are loading the truck overlay
Renting a suitable vehicle is essential if you want to fit all of your belongings and move them across the country

The size of the relocation truck will always depend on the items you are about to relocate. If you don’t plan on relocating a lot of inventory, you’ll probably be able to fit everything in a smaller vehicle, and vice versa – with bigger volume moves comes a need for a larger relocation vehicle.

What Size Truck Do You Need to Move?

The eternal dilemma of organizing a quality and efficient move – what truck size do I need for moving? How to find the ideal machine and not waste money on something that is too big or too expensive if you are relocating on a budget

Every aspect of the move is important and has its challenging sides, but choosing suitable moving truck dimensions might be crucial if you don’t want to jeopardize your move and risk spending too much money on a bigger machine or overloading the smaller one and breaking some of the fragile possessions

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You Should Decide What to Relocate and Declutter Unnecessary Stuff

As we already explained, the dimensions of the vehicle you should rent directly depend on the furniture you move to your new home or to storage – the number of bulky objects, relocation boxes, and so on. This is why the first step in your calculations is deciding what you are going to relocate and what to get rid of.

This is possible once you’re done with the house-hunting process and know exactly where you are going to relocate and what stuff you’ll use once you move to a new home. If you have any extra items and you don’t know what to do with them, you can decide to keep them in storage or simply get rid of these objects by selling or donating them.

Consider Hiring Professionals – They Can Help You Make the Precise Calculations

Despite the common misconception that movers cost too much money and that you can save a lot if you go through this process alone, let us break it to you – this is completely false. Professional cross-country movers exist because their assistance during these challenging times is often irreplaceable. Even if this isn’t your first time relocating and you feel like you’ve done this a million times already, every new relocation brings different challenges. That’s why having professional long-distance movers by your side can be really helpful. 

Apart from providing amazing packing services and knowing exactly how much packaging materials you require for the items you are relocating, professionals will know everything about available moving truck sizes and how to find the perfect one for your move. 

This is why it might be an excellent idea to hire a cross-country moving company and get professional assistance. In the long run, this will help you save some money and avoid unnecessary complications that might occur if you don’t choose a vehicle with suitable dimensions. Check out this table to get the right idea about the home space and recommended vehicle sizes:

Home space Relocation vehicle
1-room apartment 10-16 ft.
2-room apartment 12-22 ft.
3-room apartment 16-22 ft.
5-room apartment 22-26 ft.

*Keep in mind that this is not always a precise calculation, and the amount of stuff that can fit into one room or a conveniently sized vehicle depends on your personal interior design and furnishing.

Man sitting on a long-distance moving truck overlay
If you want to avoid making unnecessary mistakes, make sure to calculate the volume of your move promptly

What Types and Sizes of Trucks Exist?

It is important that you understand that there are two different types of vehicles you can rely on when relocating – obviously when we’re talking about professional vehicles. That’s how you can rent a box truck and a pick-up.

Other options include vans, private vehicles, trailers, and so on, but these two categories are the ones we’re going to focus on. Learn more about each one of these options from their reviews and decide which one suits you best. 

Box Trucks Are the Most Popular Choice

The first category and probably the most popular one for relocation needs are the box trucks. These vehicles are the ones you probably already often see parked around the streets in front of buildings and houses.

This type of vehicle is the right choice in case you are relocating furniture that can fit into a one-bedroom apartment. Anything less than that isn’t worth the price and can probably be packed in a smaller van. Box trucks usually come in three different sizes, so that is another thing to consider:

  • Small box,
  • Medium box,
  • Large box trucks. 
Size Capacity Dimensions Weight Limit Interior space
Small 1 bedroom apartment - studio apartment 12 ft. 3,610 lbs 450 cu. ft.
Medium 2-3 rooms, 3 bedroom apartment 17 ft. 6,385 lbs 865 cu. ft.
Large 3-5 bedroom home 26 ft. 10,000 lbs 1,700 cu. ft.

*Keep in mind that these are approximate values, and every company has different limits when it comes to the dimensions of their specific rental.

Pick-up Trucks Are Suitable for Those Relocating Just a Single Room

For those who are relocating only a single room or just a few pieces of furniture, a pick-up can be a cheap alternative to a bigger rental or a full relocation service. For example, this might be a good solution for someone relocating to a smaller home and only bringing a few of the most significant furniture pieces or those relocating for college

If you’re relocating into a dorm room or looking for a roommate that is going to live in a new apartment with you, make sure to check the roommate websites and decide what you are going to bring and what will be your new roommate’s responsibility.

Pick-ups are also a great choice if you are relocating some gardening tools or large outdoor decorations – there is no reason to mess up the backseats of your car when you can simply order a pick-up service and organize everything in a short time. 

Fiding, a vehicle with suitable dimensions can make the whole relocation process much easier

How Much Do Different Sized Trucks Cost?

One of the things that worries many people that are planning to get long-distance moving services is how much they are going to cost. This doesn’t have to cause relocation anxiety – if you do proper research, of course. Nowadays, most professional companies will give you a quote, so you’ll know the right estimated price for required cross-country moving services in advance.

The price for a specific vehicle rental will depend on the dimensions and the type of machine you’re renting, as well as the company you’re renting it from. Make sure to compare the quotes of different companies and do your research promptly before jumping to any conclusions. The price will also depend on the distance. 

Most companies will offer you approximately the same rental prices, but if something seems too expensive or unrealistically cheap compared to other options, this is probably the sign of a relocation scam. If you plan expenses deduction, try relocating less stuff and find a smaller rental. 

What to Consider When Calculating What Size of a Vehicle You Need? Know the Right Move Volume Before Getting a Rental

There are a few things to consider when deciding what dimensions you need from a vehicle. It is essential that you ask yourself the following question in order to make a smart choice regarding the rental:

  • How many rooms do you plan to move, and how many bedrooms with mattresses does this include?
  • How many boxes are you relocating?
  • What is the distance of your move?
  • How bulky is your furniture, and how many large pieces do you want to relocate?

Most professional relocation companies require an inventory list – this is essential if you want to make precise calculations. One of the best pro tips is to book a vehicle that offers at least 10-15% more cubic space than you think you’ll use to ensure you can fit some additional items last minute. 


Is a 16-Ft Moving Truck Big Enough?

The vehicle with these dimensions is big enough to comfortably hold four rooms – furniture that usually fits into four rooms, to be precise. These machines are also considered ideal for relocating small businesses. A medium-sized 16-foot vehicle can carry around 4,000 to 6,000 lbs (depending on the company), and it’s big enough to fit 250 medium-sized boxes or one to 10 medium-sized furniture pieces. 

How Much Stuff Can You Fit in a 17-Foot Moving Truck?

A 17-ft. vehicle is used for relocating larger condos and apartments. It can easily fit a set of two king-sized beds, a coffee table, a dining table for four people with chairs, a three-seater sofa, and a TV stand. Usually, you’ll be able to fit boxes as well. 

What Can Fit in a 20-Foot Moving Truck?

Vehicles that are 20 feet long are usually big enough to fit furniture from two to three-bedroom homes. It can fit two king size-mattresses, a sectional sofa, coffee and end tables, a dining table for six persons with chairs, a tall or short dresser, and a crib. Besides all this, it’s big enough to fit plenty of relocation boxes packed with dishes, decorations, books, clothes, and other household items.

What Can Fit in a 26-Foot Moving Truck?

These types of trucks can hold around 10,000 pounds of cargo which makes them ideal for bigger moves. Usually, these vehicles are used for those who want to relocate larger homes – it’s suitable for eight rooms worth of furniture and various other items. They are also capable of seating three adults. If you are wondering, “How many bedrooms can a 26-foot truck fit?” know that these vehicles are usually big enough to fit all the belongings from four or more bedrooms. 

Still Wondering “What Size Moving Truck Do I Need?” Hiring a Long Distance Moving Company Is the Best Solution

In case you’re still wondering how big of a moving truck do I need or simply want to avoid potential relocation mistakes, hiring professionals is the best solution. Experienced cross-country movers can estimate moving truck size but also help you with many other relocation-related questions. 

They can assist you with packing your belongings and show you the best relocation hacks that will make your move much easier. Professionals can also offer you storage units to rent if you have any extra belongings that can’t fit into your new apartment. Moving cross country doesn’t have to cause relocation stress – you can get all the precise calculations with professional assistance and avoid waste of money on unnecessary oversized vehicles. 


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