When you’re thinking about moving, there is a lot to take into consideration. The most basic question, when to move, is worth contemplating. Scheduling a move at a convenient or cost-effective time is not a luxury everyone has. For some people, relocating is something one does due to an occupational change or a a family demand. Often these events can arise suddenly and there is not much time to orchestrate the logistics in an economic way. In those situations, a person can only do their best to ensure good pricing by shopping around for the best deal. However, if you are able to plan your move time in a more open-ended fashion, is there a season in which shipping it is cheaper?
The short answer: It depends.
The truth is that the prices of moves depend on a number of variables including where you’re moving, demand, and fuel prices. As the price of fuel is constantly changing, this can have a severe impact on the cost of your move. Currently these prices are low, but this can change. A move one year may cost more or less the following year.
That said, there are some factors individuals should take into consideration when they are planning their move:
Summertime means increased prices: This is the season people tend to get outside and be active. They may take vacations or weekend trips to the beach or mountains. It’s also by far the most popular season for people to move. Without having to deal with the harsh conditions that can accompany moving in the winter, such as cold and snow, summer moves are easier to plan. This can put a higher demand on shippers and may drive up the price. Additionally, because of the increased travel, there is a greater consumption of fuel, which can skyrockets its prices. Due to this, shipping costs increase and moves can become far more expensive. If you can help it, try to move off-season, meaning not in the summer, and you’ll likely save some money on your move.
Snowbirds pay higher prices: If you’re living the American dream and enjoying the warmer southern climate in the winter and then heading north to soak up the hot days and cool nights of the summer, it’s likely you’ll pay the price. Southbound winter traffic is in high demand and can drive up prices, as can its northbound spring counterpart. High demand means that you might have to work a little harder and pay a bit more to find a shipping company that can accommodate you if you’re following these routes.
Bottom line: The time you plan your move can make a difference. If you have the option, try to schedule it at a time when fuel costs and demand are low. It might end up saving you some money. But if you can’t, don’t worry, as seasonal fluctuations are rarely more than 10-15% of the average price.