Moving a mattress may be the absolute worst part of moving. They’re big. They’re heavy. And they’re usually almost impossible to move without a large vehicle of some sort (often provided by a friend who has a truck).
So how do you move a bed?
Let’s talk logistics. Sometimes it makes more sense to bundle all of your moving costs together, but sometimes it is cost effective to use a moving or shipping service for your mattress alone. This is often dependent on how far you’re moving: are you moving across town or across the country?
Moving a long distance
White-glove full service: $2000+
If you’re moving across the country on your own dime, rest your soul, full-service packing and shipping is expensive—expect to spend thousands. That’s plural. Definitely thousands plural. Professional movers do a great job, and sometimes it is worth it, but it isn’t cheap.
Partial service, renting a U-Haul: $400-$1500
If you pack everything up, you can hire a local moving company to do the heavy lifting. Expect to pay $100-$300 for a few hours of labor. The U-Haul rental will add up quickly depending on how many miles you’re driving the truck (you can use the rough estimate of $1 per mile for a 10′ truck) on top of the standard rental fee.
Selling here, buying there: (cost dependent)
If you have relatively few possessions and aren’t settled yet, we recommend selling what you can and buying it when you get to your new city. If you’re in this boat, we highly recommend checking out the plethora of online mattress companies that have great beds, free shipping, and extremely generous return policies. Our highly biased review is OSO—a great mattress that’s actually designed for folks that move a lot—with free straight-to-your-doorstep shipping, a mattress that is compressed to fit in a box the size of a small cocktail table, and it’s foldable like a taco for truck-free future moves. But you can decide for yourself here.
Moving a short distance
If you’re moving across town, it becomes a closer race between if the cost of moving your bed outweighs the cost to buy a new bed. So how much does it cost?
Hire a local company to move only your bed: $150-$300
You could hire a local moving company to do your dirty work for you: if the mattress is the only thing cramping your style, they can just move your mattress, frame, and box spring for a lower cost than to pay them to move all of your stuff.
But let’s be honest. Moving is expensive enough. Let’s look at our DIY options for moving a mattress on your own.
Rent a U-Haul truck: $70-$100
Despite the giant “rent this truck for $19.95” on the side of vans, the usual cost is much higher.
After factoring in the fees for mileage (let’s put it at a tame 50 miles), plus gas, plus various fees, our estimates tallied out to $70-$100 to rent a van or 10’ truck for 12 hours (both of which fit a queen-size bed). Keep in mind: that’s the bare bones estimate with no dollies, boxes, tape, or help included.
Rent a U-Haul trailer: $40-$90
If you have your own car with towing capacities, the cost to tow a U-Haul trailer would be roughly half of the cost of renting a truck (plus whatever it costs in gas). We’re talking somewhere in the $40-$50 range plus some heavy lifting and finagling by yourself and your troupe of helpers (so an additional $30-$50 for pizza and beer for the troupe).
Enlist your friends: $30-$70
The age-old moving day right of passage. Find a friend with a truck and move yourself. Make it a party and quickly separate wheat from the chaff in friend land. Cost: gas money, pizza, beer, and some sweat and blood.
So there you have it: you could spend a hundred bucks or thousands. Choose wisely, good luck moving, and sleep well!