Moving from one home to another is always stressful. This is true even when the new place offers an exciting environment and new personal and professional opportunities.
You may think that a do-it-yourself move is the way to go. You decide that renting a U-Haul moving truck and getting U-Haul moving help will work for you. You have a lot of questions about how that works and whether you can hire a professional driver if you rent the truck, or does U-Haul require you to drive it yourself.
What are the Licensing Requirements for U-Haul Drivers?
In the United States, U-Haul moving trucks are not considered commercial vehicles, so no commercial license is required. Although you can rent a U-Haul trailer at age 16, you must be 18 to rent a truck.
Truck renters must present a valid government-issued driver’s license. It is possible to add a professional driver as an authorized driver of the truck if you can present that driver’s valid government-issued driver’s license to U-Haul.
You can add the professional as an authorized driver when you pick up the truck, or you can do so online by sending photos of both the front and back of the driver’s license of the person you want to add as an authorized driver of the U-Haul truck you are renting.
Does Your Personal Car Insurance Cover Your U-Haul Moving Truck?
When you rent a car, you can generally feel safe in declining the insurance offered by the rental company. Most personal car insurance policies cover rental cars. The credit card you use to secure the rental may also provide additional coverage. This is not true if you rent a U-Haul moving truck.
Most policies specifically exclude vehicles over a certain weight and credit card companies generally exclude all trucks.
U-Haul offers several insurance coverage programs, depending on your individual needs. Be sure to check what is covered by each program. You do not want to be surprised by finding out that you’re covered for mechanical problems or damage to the vehicle in an accident, but your personal items are not protected.
Why Hire a Professional U-Haul Truck Driver for Your Move?
Asking for U-Haul moving help may be one of the smartest things you can do to make your move smooth and uneventful. Keep in mind that the average car weighs about 2,800 pounds. A fully loaded 26-foot U-Haul truck, designed to move a 3-bedroom home, weighs approximately 20,000 pounds. That difference in weight alone makes driving the U-Haul more difficult than driving a car.
Some difficulties you may encounter when driving the moving truck include:
- You will need more time to stop. Braking while driving a 20,000-pound vehicle is a lot different than braking in your own automobile. A professional driver will have experience with this and know how long it takes to stop the truck.
- Cargo may shift, causing an inexperienced driver to veer off the road or into another lane.
- Some states require U-Haul moving vans to stop at the state’s truck weigh stations, while others do not. An experienced driver will know the rules of the state regarding weigh station stops.
- Federal rules issued by the Department of Transportation (DOT) require U-Haul moving truck drivers to log in hours driven. The drivers cannot drive more than 600 miles a day and no more than 11 hours per 24-hour period. This is true whether you are driving yourself or if you have hired a professional driver.
- U-Haul moving truck drivers generally charge by the mile. If you find your driver through a reputable driving company, the professional driver will have been fully vetted with a complete background check so you can feel secure that your items are in good hands.
A professional driver who will provide you with U-Haul moving help will offer you several options. You can follow along in your own car. You can also have the driver tow your car behind the U-Haul moving truck so you can fly to your destination and be there when your belongings arrive, or drive ahead since you will not be limited to the driving restrictions.