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Best Moving Companies for Military Moves (2024)

Author Icon Written by Shane Sentelle + 1 other Reviewer Icon Reviewed by Kent Sisneros Updated 04/19/2024

You may feel anxious about your relocation and list of to-dos if you’re one of the many military members called for a permanent change of station (PCS). You can alleviate most of your stress by hiring a professional moving company such as International Van Lines (IVL) or American Van Lines to handle some or all of the move. 

We looked at the top moving companies’ costs, service offerings, customer service, reviews, military discounts, and more to find the best for military moves. We also spoke with industry experts and surveyed thousands of moving customers to provide you with reliable information and recommendations. IVL is our top pick for military moves because of the company’s long history in the industry and extensive service selection. American Van Lines is our second pick because of its in-house, certified moving crews that have experience handling military moves. Learn more about our seven picks for military moves below.


Best Moving Companies for Military Moves in 2024

We created a 100-point rating system and methodology that analyzes each provider’s service packages, insurance coverage, military benefits, inspection rate reports with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), and more. Here’s our list of the best moving companies for military moves in 2024:

International Van Lines: Best Service Offerings
American Van Lines: Best Overall Moving Labor
U-Pack: Most Affordable
Safeway Moving Inc.: Most Reliable Pricing
Moving APT: Best Customer Service
JK Moving Services: Best Specialized Packing

What Should I Know About Military Movers?

You should know how much your move might cost, the insurance available, and the services you can choose.

The cost of a military move varies widely depending on the service member’s rank, whether they’re married or have dependents, where they’re moving from and to, and whether it’s a domestic or international move. The military provides allowances to cover many PCS costs, but there are often out-of-pocket expenses.

Some of the standard allowances provided include the following:

  • Transportation of household goods (handled by the military or through a privately contracted moving company)
  • Temporary lodging and food per diem during the move
  • Mileage reimbursement if driving to the new duty station
  • Dislocation allowance to help cover miscellaneous costs

The service member is responsible for costs exceeding the standard allowances. These extra costs include what moving companies charge based on estimated weight and additional services such as packing, unpacking, and storage.

Moving insurance provides financial protection against loss or damage to household goods during a move. Companies are required by law to offer released value protection. This protection provides replacement value coverage for lost or damaged items, but only at a depreciated rate. Therefore, reimbursement for damages may not be enough to fully replace more expensive items such as electronics or antiques.

Service members can purchase third-party moving insurance to get full replacement coverage. This private insurance covers the difference between the depreciated value reimbursed by the military and the replacement cost. Rates and coverage levels vary between insurers.

The government provides several moving services for military members and their families during a PCS. The military helps arrange packing, transportation, and unpacking of household items through contracted moving companies. Weight allowances vary by rank and whether it’s a domestic or international move. Additionally, the government pays for the storage of household goods for up to 90 days if the new home is not ready upon arrival. Longer storage is the service member’s responsibility. The government also provides lodging per diem for 10 days, with potential extensions approved in some situations.

You also have the option to personally arrange your moving service at your own expense, providing more flexibility and customization. There are three main service models for moving. The most comprehensive and expensive option is a full-service move. It involves hiring a moving company to pack, load, transport, unload, and unpack your belongings. Your next option is a partial-move service, where you pack some of your belongings, and the movers handle the difficult items. 

Lastly, you can opt for a self-move, which involves renting a moving truck or having a mover deliver a storage container to your current home and then drive it to the new one.


Compare Top Moving Companies for Military Moves

See which moving companies offer military discounts, can help with vehicle moving, are GSA-approved, or provide other services that are valuable for military members.

Star Rating BBB Rating Services Link
International Van Lines International Van Lines
B local, long-distance, international moves VISIT SITE
American Van Lines American Van Lines
A local, long-distance, international moves VISIT SITE
Interstate Moving & Relocation Group Interstate Moving & Relocation Group
B long-distance moves VISIT SITE
U-Pack U-Pack
A+ long-distance moves, military discount VISIT SITE
Safeway Moving Inc. Safeway Moving Inc.
A+ long-distance moves, packing, storage, vehicle relocation VISIT SITE
Moving APT Moving APT
B local, long-distance, international moves VISIT SITE
JK Moving Services JK Moving Services
A+ local, long-distance, international moves VISIT SITE
International Van Lines
Logo International Van Lines
Star Rating
BBB Rating B
Services local, long-distance, international moves
VISIT SITE
American Van Lines
Logo American Van Lines
Star Rating
BBB Rating A
Services local, long-distance, international moves
VISIT SITE
Interstate Moving & Relocation Group
Logo Interstate Moving & Relocation Group
Star Rating
BBB Rating B
Services long-distance moves
VISIT SITE
U-Pack
Logo U-Pack
Star Rating
BBB Rating A+
Services long-distance moves, military discount
VISIT SITE
Safeway Moving Inc.
Logo Safeway Moving Inc.
Star Rating
BBB Rating A+
Services long-distance moves, packing, storage, vehicle relocation
VISIT SITE
Moving APT
Logo Moving APT
Star Rating
BBB Rating B
Services local, long-distance, international moves
VISIT SITE
JK Moving Services
Logo JK Moving Services
Star Rating
BBB Rating A+
Services local, long-distance, international moves
VISIT SITE
Company Star Rating BBB Rating Estimate Info Visit Site
4.9
B $2,500–$4,300 VISIT SITE
4.4
A $3,200–$3,500 VISIT SITE
4.2
A+ $6,300–$7,500 VISIT SITE
4.4
B $2,800–$4,000 VISIT SITE
3.8
A+ N/A VISIT SITE
4.4
B $2,968–$5,668 VISIT SITE
4.7
A+ $7,550 VISIT SITE
Star Rating BBB Rating Services Link
International Van Lines International Van Lines
B local, long-distance, international moves VISIT SITE
American Van Lines American Van Lines
A local, long-distance, international moves VISIT SITE
Interstate Moving & Relocation Group Interstate Moving & Relocation Group
B long-distance moves VISIT SITE
U-Pack U-Pack
A+ long-distance moves, military discount VISIT SITE
Safeway Moving Inc. Safeway Moving Inc.
A+ long-distance moves, packing, storage, vehicle relocation VISIT SITE
Moving APT Moving APT
B local, long-distance, international moves VISIT SITE
JK Moving Services JK Moving Services
A+ local, long-distance, international moves VISIT SITE
International Van Lines
Logo International Van Lines
Star Rating
BBB Rating B
Services local, long-distance, international moves
VISIT SITE
American Van Lines
Logo American Van Lines
Star Rating
BBB Rating A
Services local, long-distance, international moves
VISIT SITE
Interstate Moving & Relocation Group
Logo Interstate Moving & Relocation Group
Star Rating
BBB Rating B
Services long-distance moves
VISIT SITE
U-Pack
Logo U-Pack
Star Rating
BBB Rating A+
Services long-distance moves, military discount
VISIT SITE
Safeway Moving Inc.
Logo Safeway Moving Inc.
Star Rating
BBB Rating A+
Services long-distance moves, packing, storage, vehicle relocation
VISIT SITE
Moving APT
Logo Moving APT
Star Rating
BBB Rating B
Services local, long-distance, international moves
VISIT SITE
JK Moving Services
Logo JK Moving Services
Star Rating
BBB Rating A+
Services local, long-distance, international moves
VISIT SITE

*BBB ratings are accurate as of February 2024.


International Van Lines

Best Service Offerings
4.9
  • Our Rating: 4.9 out of 5
  • Availability: 50 states
  • USDOT #: 2293832

IVL is our top pick for full-service military moves. The company offers help for local, long-distance, and international armed forces. Full-service options include packing and unpacking, loading and unloading, specialty services for pianos and antiques, and storage solutions. The company provides a military discount of 10%–15% off for most military moves. You simply need to ask about the discount when getting a quote.

How We Scored International Van Lines

IVL received our highest rating of 4.9 out of 5 stars due to its comprehensive list of basic and add-on services and its wide service area. It lost some points for not offering a rental truck option and financing. Here’s how it did in each category:

  • Moving Services (59 out of 59 points): IVL scored all points in this area because it offers every moving service imaginable.
  • Insurance Coverage (8 out of 8 points): The company scored perfectly in this category because it offers more than three different insurance options. You can pay for full-value protection or choose less expensive partial-value release plans.
  • Scheduling (8 out of 8 points): IVL’s scheduling and quote process is simple and easy with multiple communication options, including email and phone.
  • Additional Benefits (10 out of 13 points): The company lost a few points in this category because it doesn’t provide financing or any do-it-yourself (DIY) moving methods. However, it offers comprehensive storage services and sells packing materials.
  • Customer Service (12 out of 12 points): IVL has a positive reputation across online review sites. It has only had one crash report in the past two years, with most of its trucks passing federal inspection and remaining in service.

Pros and Cons

Pros Offers specialty services for fragile items such as artwork, antiques, and pianos Provides both full-service and partial-service moving options Provides multiple insurance plans Cons Doesn’t provide sample pricing online Has higher pricing than many competitors Requires an up-front deposit

Military Moving Services

IVL creates a full- or partial-service moving package based on your budget and needs. The company offers a full-value protection plan if you want comprehensive insurance for high-value items, and you can even get short- or long-term storage through one of IVL’s third-party providers.

Its services include the following and more for military members:

  • Custom crafting for high-value or fragile items
  • Office relocation
  • Packing
  • Vehicle shipping

Cost

IVL quoted us a general price range to move from the U.S. Marine Corps Base in Quantico, Virginia, to the Marine Corps Air Station in Beaufort, South Carolina. This quote includes loading services and all transportation. You need to go through a more in-depth consultation process with the company to get a more accurate estimate.

  • Sample quote: $4,200–$6,150 (three-bedroom move from Quantico, Virginia, to Beaufort, South Carolina)
  • Deposit: 25%
  • Payment accepted: Cash, cashier’s check, credit card (deposit only), money order

Reputation and Reviews

Your customer service experience with IVL varies depending on your location. This difference is because the local agents operating in your area greatly determine the level of helpfulness and attentiveness. The company holds an A rating on the BBB but lacks accreditation. Previous customers mentioned prompt service, but others cited subpar quality when IVL had to outsource a move to a third-party provider in its network.

American Van Lines

Best Overall Moving Labor
4.4
  • Our Rating: 4.4 out of 5
  • Availability: 48 states*
  • USDOT #: 614506

*American Van Lines isn’t available in Alaska or Hawaii

American Van Lines is a company that stands out for its well-trained moving crews and three decades of moving experience. All members of the company’s moving crews are full-time employees, not contractors. Crew members must complete ongoing certification courses in various areas, including handling fragile items such as antiques and bulky items such as gym equipment. It also provides military moving packages for an efficient and streamlined relocation experience.

How We Scored American Van Lines

American Van Lines earned a high rating of 4.5 out of 5 stars because of its moving services and insurance coverage. Here’s how it did across key categories:

  • Moving Services (59 out of 59 points): American Van Lines scored all points in this category because it provides a full range of moving services, including full and partial packing options and antique and specialty services.
  • Insurance Coverage (8 out of 8 points): The company gained all points in this area because it offers fully customizable insurance plans in addition to the released value plan.
  • Scheduling (4 out of 8 points): American Van Lines has limited hours for such a large company. Its customer service hours are 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. EST Monday through Friday and 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. EST on Saturdays. The company is closed on Sundays.
  • Additional Benefits (8 out of 13 points): It lost points in this category because it doesn’t offer financing or DIY services.
  • Customer Service (9 out of 12 points): The company has a positive online reputation on the BBB, but we found some of its trucks appear to fail federal inspections regularly.

Pros and Cons

Pros Delivers moving shipments seven days a week Offers the Extraordinary Value Plan to provide more comprehensive coverage of high-value items Provides private storage and personal storage vaults Cons Charges an additional fee to guarantee a delivery window Doesn’t include pricing information on its website Requires an up-front deposit of up to 50%

Military Moving Services

American Van Lines provides add-on options to help you create the military moving plan that fits your needs. Optional services include the following:

  • Furniture disassembly and reassembly
  • GPS shipment tracking
  • Packing
  • Storage that’s climate-controlled and monitored by 24/7 surveillance cameras

Cost

American Van Lines provides binding estimates—the exact amount you can plan to pay for your move—only after conducting a virtual home assessment. Therefore, you can’t get general pricing information online or over the phone. However, a company representative did give us a rough estimate to move a two-bedroom home from Beaufort, South Carolina, to Quantico, Virginia.

  • Sample quote: $2,900 (two-bedroom move from Beaufort, South Carolina, to Quantico, Virginia)
  • Deposit: Up to 50% up-front
  • Payment accepted: Cash, cashier’s check, credit card, money order, and traveler’s check

Reputation and Reviews

American Van Lines has an A+ rating and accreditation on the BBB and a high customer review score. Previous customers praised its pricing structure, which helped make preparing and budgeting for their moves easier. Some negative reviews mentioned sudden price hikes when nearing the end of the quote process and difficulty communicating with moving crews during transit.

Interstate Moving & Relocation Group

Most Efficient
4.4
  • Our Rating: 4.4 out of 5
  • Availability: 50 states
  • USDOT #: 3034100

Interstate Moving & Relocation Group (IMRG) is one of the largest moving brokers in the United States. It provides various military moving options through a network of independent local, long-distance, and international movers, unlike other providers on this list, including Safeway.

How We Scored Interstate Moving & Relocation Group

IMRG scored 4.3 out of 5 stars. The company has an excellent service profile and flexibility regarding military moves. Here’s how it did in our key categories:

  • Moving Services (59 out of 59 points): IMRG gained all points because it offers a full range of moving services like IVL and American Van Lines.
  • Insurance Coverage (5 out of 8 points): The company scored lower because it only supplies two insurance plans: a partial-value protection plan and a full-value protection plan.
  • Scheduling (8 out of 8 points): It scored perfectly in this category because you can communicate with IMRG via the phone and online.
  • Additional Benefits (6 out of 13 points): The company offers a decent selection of extra benefits but doesn’t provide any DIY moving options or financing for more budget-friendly military relocations. It also doesn’t offer storage services.
  • Customer Service (9 out of 12 points): IMRG has a lower BBB rating when compared to our top two picks but a better FMCSA profile than most.

Pros and Cons

Pros Offers a price-match program Provides military discounts Provides resources and guides for packing and moving Cons No responsibility for damages due to broker status Has a 4% fee for move cancellations Has no weekend customer support

Military Moving Services

IMRG offers various PCS services. Its partner companies handle all sizes of military equipment relocations, as IMRG has GSA approval that carries over to its entire network. Your IMRG move can include packing, crating, vehicle shipping, special item moving, and the following:

Cost

Your IMRG moving experience will begin when you fill out a contact form online. Then, a move coordinator will contact you to set up a virtual consultation or in-home estimate. This estimate will yield a rate based on your service needs, inventory, move date, and the available moving partners in your area.

We spoke to an IMRG move coordinator who provided us with a written estimate and the following information:

  • Sample quote: $4,450 (two-bedroom move from Portland, Oregon, to San Francisco)
  • Deposit: Up to 33%
  • Payment accepted: Credit card and check

Reputation and Reviews

IMRG doesn’t feature an accreditation with the BBB and holds a B rating. Like Safeway, IMRG’s service quality depends on its partner companies. The company should strive to connect you with movers accustomed to military moves but double-check that IMRG prioritizes this during your quote process. Positive reviews mentioned its crews’ professionalism and safe packing skills. Also, like Safeway, negative reviews mentioned bait-and-switch pricing tactics.

U-Pack

Most Affordable
3.8
  • Our rating: 3.5 out of 5.0
  • Availability: 50 states
  • USDOT #: 2946400

U-Pack is a reputable option if you prefer a more self-service move. DIY moving is a great way to reduce relocation costs while still enjoying some of the conveniences of working with a professional. The company focuses primarily on moving container moves. U-Pack doesn’t offer help with packing or loading, but it can pair you with a partner in your area that provides moving labor. Container options include a ReloCube or moving trailer.

How We Scored U-Pack

U-Pack earned 3.5 out of 5 stars. We find it one of the best self-service movers for military relocations. Here’s how it did in each category:

  • Moving Services (40 out of 59 points): U-Pack lost points in this category because it doesn’t offer local moving services, so you can’t use it for military moves less than 150 miles in total distance. However, the company is still a great option for long-distance military moves. 
  • Insurance Coverage (5 out of 8 points): Unfortunately, the company limits its insurance options to one partial-value and one full-value plan.
  • Scheduling (4 out of 8 points): U-Pack requires you to finalize any scheduling over the phone rather than online, but the company still provides quick turnaround times. 
  • Additional Benefits (11 out of 13 points): U-Pack supplies plenty of extra benefits because of its focus on more self-service and cheaper moves. You still receive options for moving labor through third-party providers, including GPS tracking on all shipments.
  • Customer Service (9 out of 12 points): U-Pack receives positive online reviews, but many of its trucks fail FMCSA inspections.

Pros and Cons

Pros Each of its moves comes with liability coverage Is cheaper than other companies Is available nationwide and transports to Canada and Puerto Rico Cons Doesn’t have an app to track your shipment Doesn’t handle moves under 150 miles Some customer reviews reference leaky containers

Military Moving Services

U-Pack doesn’t provide as many services as a full-service mover because it focuses on its portable storage container moves. U-Pack will drop off a moving container on your scheduled date. You’ll have three days to load the container at your own pace before the company returns to pick it up and drive it to your new residence.

You can also opt for storage at one of U-Pack’s secure service centers, and the company says its shipping containers can transport motorcycles and ATVs. Some of its other services include the following: 

  • Climate-controlled storage 
  • Loading and unloading (via third-party)
  • Packing and unpacking (via third-party)

Cost

We used U-Pack’s online cost estimator to get a ballpark quote for a two-bedroom move from Quantico, Virginia, to Beaufort, South Carolina. This is an all-inclusive quote for a 13-foot trailer. The company claims its estimates include no hidden fees. U-Pack limited us to only using its moving trailer option for this move, so we received no option to use its portable storage containers. 

  • Sample quote: $2,380 (two-bedroom move from Quantico, Virginia, to Beaufort, South Carolina)
  • Deposit: None
  • Payment Accepted: Credit card, debit card, or PayPal

Reputation and Reviews

U-Pack has an A+ rating and accreditation with the BBB. The company also appears to maintain a positive customer review score on the site with a high response rate. Former customers mentioned the friendliness and professionalism of the drivers and the sturdy, easy-to-use quality of the ReloCubes. Some negative reviews mentioned billing disputes and frequent delays in delivery dates.

Safeway Moving Inc.

Most Reliable Pricing
4.2
  • Our Rating: 4.1 out of 5
  • Availability: 50 states
  • USDOT #: 3756000

Safeway Moving Inc. is a moving broker and carrier, so it operates differently than IVL and American Van Lines. It mainly operates as a broker, connecting you with other movers who fulfill military moving needs. We still consider it a reliable military moving company because it prioritizes customer satisfaction and informs you throughout the moving process. You can expect timely responses to any concerns, which helps make the military relocation process easier for you and your family.

How We Scored Safeway Moving Inc.

Safeway earned 4.1 out of 5 stars and scored perfectly in the moving services and scheduling categories. Here’s how it did in each:

  • Moving Services (59 out of 59 points): Safeway is mainly a broker, but it connects you with any required service, including partial packing, full packing, and specialty services.
  • Insurance Coverage (5 out of 8 points): Its insurance options are more limited than IVL and American Van lines because it provides a single released value protection plan and one full-value protection plan.
  • Scheduling (8 out of 8 points): Safeway offers multiple communication methods, including phone, email, and chat options, making it an excellent choice if your military move needs to happen fast. 
  • Additional Benefits (4 out of 13 points): Safeway scored the lowest in this category because it doesn’t guarantee certain extra perks such as GPS tracking, financing, and online resources. This all depends on the partner company you get.
  • Customer Service (6 out of 12 points): Safeway suffers from a poor reputation due to some companies it brokers. We found that customers have mixed experiences once connected with certain movers, which may employ bait-and-switch pricing tactics.

Pros and Cons

Pros Offers flat-rate pricing for all moves Provides 30 days of free storage with all moves Requires moving partners to hold $1 million insurance policies Cons Has reviews that mention difficulty reaching customer service representatives Is a broker, so some parts of your move will be outsourced Requires phone calls or virtual consultations for quotes

Military Moving Services

Safeway’s services depend on the moving partners that operate in your area. These companies can offer full-service packing, crating, vehicle shipping, and other specialized moving services. Certain movers provide extra insurance protection for antiques, vehicles, and special items if your move requires it.

Other services you can choose for a military move can include the following:

  • 24/7 customer service
  • Custom crating for fragile items
  • Moving assistance for senior citizens 
  • Temporary and permanent storage

Cost

Safeway provides flat-rate pricing for all moves, regardless of scope or service requirements. You’ll have to call or fill out a form on its website to contact a moving company representative who will handle your quote and move. You’ll be quoted a flat rate and billed a 40% deposit to book your move after you’ve submitted your inventory list.

We requested a Safeway quote online and submitted an inventory sheet to the company representative who responded. Here’s what we received:

  • Sample quote: $5,695 (three-bedroom move from Austin, Texas, to Nashville, Tennessee)
  • Deposit: Up to 40%
  • Payment accepted: Cash, credit card, certified check, and money order

Reputation and Reviews

We found that Safeway’s third-party brokers reportedly engage in some bait-and-switch pricing. We recommend you ensure you receive a binding estimate before signing any moving contract because of this issue. Most reviews are positive and mentioned the helpfulness and quality of its packing service and Safeway’s comprehensive insurance plans. Safeway has a B- rating with the BBB because of these conflicting reviews.

Moving APT

Best Customer Service
4.4
  • Our Rating: 4.4 out of 5
  • Availability: 50 states
  • USDOT #: 2247863

Moving APT is a broker that maintains one of the country’s largest networks of independent moving companies. The company can match you with movers equipped to handle your military move at your preferred price. Moving APT provides customer support even after connecting you to a mover, serving as a touchpoint for any questions or concerns. The company will also check in with your selected mover to ensure the process goes smoothly.

How We Scored Moving APT

Moving APT scored 4.4 out of 5 stars, and here’s how it did in our key categories:

  • Moving Services (59 out of 59 points): The company scored perfectly for its moving services because it connects you with movers who fulfill all standard military moving services. You can even get vehicle relocation services. 
  • Insurance Coverage (5 out of 8 points): The company offers a released value protection plan and full-value options. Unfortunately, we noticed that specific options will vary according to what carrier you receive.
  • Scheduling (4 out of 8 points): Moving APT only offers scheduling over the phone.
  • Additional Benefits (8 out of 13 points): Moving APT offers moving truck rentals, which is rare for a full-service moving company. However, it falls short in this category because it doesn’t offer financing.
  • Customer Service (12 out of 12 points): Moving APT has a B rating and lacks accreditation but boasts a higher customer review score and response rate on its BBB page than many other providers.

Pros and Cons

Pros Has 24/7 customer service Utilizes a network of 2,500 independent moving companies across the country Provides more discounts when you book further in advance Cons Has frequent pop-up chat boxes on its website, which can make navigation tedious May give a lower estimate than what the third party actually charges Won’t refund deposits on cancellations with fewer than seven days’ notice

Military Moving Services

Moving APT operates a large network of movers, so it can provide traditional full-service moving packages and a long list of add-on options. You can choose to customize your PCS with optional services such as:

  • Appliance disconnection and reconnection
  • Heavy machinery relocation
  • Packing
  • Storage
  • Vehicle relocation

Cost

Moving APT provides moving discounts to members of the armed forces and military veterans and has special pricing offers for moves booked well in advance.

The company also has a moving cost tool on its website to generate an approximate price range for your move. We used the calculator to create an estimate for a two-bedroom move from Quantico, Virginia, to Beaufort, South Carolina. 

  • Sample quote: $2,772–$5,472 (two-bedroom move from Quantico, Virginia, to Beaufort, South Carolina)
  • Deposit: Varies between partners
  • Payment accepted: Cash, check, and money order

Reputation and Reviews

Moving APT’s BBB page features a B rating with no accreditation. However, the company features a positive customer review score, meaning that most were satisfied with their service. Many previous customers have said that the company’s resources and quick quotes helped speed their process. Other reviews mentioned some poor customer service after booking compared to how helpful the staff is before signing a contract.

JK Moving Services

Best Specialized Packing
4.7
  • Our Rating: 4.7 out of 5
  • Availability: 50 states
  • USDOT #: 1065394

JK Moving Services is a full-service mover that focuses on tailoring your moving package according to your budget and moving needs. The company has been a choice moving partner for the U.S. Department of State and the Department of Defense. It’s also committed to providing career opportunities to veterans, active military members, and those with the National Guard and Reserve.

How We Scored JK Moving Services

JK Moving scored 4.7 out of 5 stars. Its financing options and long-distance and international military moving services help it stand out. The company is better suited for you if you have a higher budget and don’t care about DIY options. 

  • Moving Services (59 out of 59 points): JK Moving supplies comprehensive service options for military members, and you customize your moving package to fit your specific needs and wants.
  • Insurance Coverage (5 out of 8 points): The company limits its insurance coverage to only two options, partial and full protection, despite providing more robust financing.
  • Scheduling (8 out of 8 points): JK Moving offers phone and online options to schedule a more in-depth estimate for accurate pricing. These options remain available throughout the moving process, making your PSC convenient.
  • Additional Benefits (10 out of 13 points): JK Moving offers financing programs, storage services, GPS tracking, and more. Unfortunately, JK Moving doesn’t provide online tools to help you learn about its pricing up-front, so you’ll have to undergo a more rigorous process than other providers.
  • Customer Service (12 out of 12 points): The company maintains high customer review scores online, and its FMCSA profile features one injury and two tows.

Pros and Cons

Pros Has a user-friendly mobile app for GPS tracking and virtual surveys Offers financing through Enhancify Provides 24/7 customer service Cons Doesn’t have online sample pricing Has a longer quote process than many competitors Only provides local moves in Maryland and Virginia

Military Moving Services

JK Moving provides comprehensive packing services for military moves, including partial packing for fragile items and full packing for a premium experience. Here’s a list of some of its other services:

  • International moves 
  • Office moves and IT removal
  • Shipment tracking 
  • Temporary and permanent storage

Cost

JK Moving offers customized moving packages tailored to meet the needs of each customer. As a result, the company doesn’t provide much pricing information on its website. The company supplies a smartphone app that uses AI technology to generate swift mobile estimates without requiring an in-person consultation. The app also offers 24/7 customer service, making obtaining pricing and general information easier. 

We contacted a JK Moving sales representative to obtain a quote. The process was longer than that of other military movers, providing a more accurate and detailed quote.

  • Sample quote: $6,622 (two-bedroom move from Portland, Oregon to San Francisco)
  • Deposit: $250 up-front
  • Payment accepted: Cash and credit card

Reputation and Reviews

JK Moving holds an A+ BBB rating with accreditation. The company also features a higher-than-average customer review score and appears responsive to reviews. Many reviews mentioned the skills and professionalism of JK Moving’s crews and how helpful the financing options are when moving on a certain budget. Other reviews highlighted spam calls during the quote process and frustration with the claims department if a filing occurs.  


Moving companies often provide materials and tools to help you remember important steps to accomplish during a move. For example, some moving companies offer personal moving coaches, and others provide moving checklists. Even with these resources, there are some important steps that you might miss when you are preparing for your move.
Here are four steps to take to ensure your military move goes smoothly:
Create an inventory: An important step is making an inventory to take note of the condition of your items. You should also take photos of the items if possible. These notes and photos will be useful if you file a loss or damage claim for reimbursement.
Condense your belongings: We recommend you make two piles as moving day draws near. Place items you can donate in one pile, and place items you want to throw away in the other pile. You can spend some time taking each pile to its respective drop-off location a few days before your movers arrive.
Gather necessary documents: Collect all essential paperwork, including orders, identification, medical records, and any other pertinent documents required for the move. Ensure these documents are readily accessible throughout the relocation process.
Notify important people: Be sure to notify your internet provider, electricity and water companies, insurance companies, tax agencies, utility companies, the post office, and the Social Security Administration that you’re moving and will have a new address.

Expert Tips and Insights

We asked six experts to share their insights on the stressors associated with military moves and how loved ones can offer support. Read their tips below.

Professor and Director of Military and Veteran Programs
Suzanne Dworak-Peck School of Social Work at the University of Southern California
See answers

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What are the main stressors military personnel or families might encounter when moving?
There are a lot of stressors to moving, including not having a place to live. Often, service members move and then are placed on a priority list for military housing, or once they arrive, they need to begin searching for a place to live. If the wife or husband has a civilian job, then they might have to quit and begin the process of finding a new job, usually having to start at the bottom and work their way up, and just when they get that good job, it’s time to move again. For children of school age, school might be disrupted and children will have to make new plans. There is also a huge financial burden to closing down one household and starting up another, which the military doesn’t fully appreciate nor compensate the service member for.
What tips do you have for mitigating the challenges and stressors of frequent moves?
Never get too settled. Once a family or service member arrives at one duty station, they need to begin thinking and preparing for the next move. Practice being a minimalist. Only acquire or buy what is absolutely needed. Use the military lending closet for common household goods if a lending close is available. This will make getting rid of things and packing much easier. From a financial perspective, many military spouses are now only taking remote jobs, which is great if they can get one as this will have less of an impact on moving than a job that requires a physical presence. Of course, being assigned overseas might even disrupt a remote job.
How can family or friends support service members making a permanent change of location?
Family and friends need to understand that frequent moves are part of the military culture. This is not going to change. So, offer to help them move or pack if needed. Understand that they are not going to be collecting a lot of stuff. Also, understand that during every move, personal and sentimental stuff is going to be lost or destroyed. One spouse once described to me that a military move is like a “small house fire” to describe all the lost or damaged items. Also, families shouldn’t give service members or their families a lot of stuff they need to keep unless the items are small.
Carl Castro is a professor and director of the Military and Veteran Programs at the Suzanne Dworak-Peck School of Social Work at the University of Southern California. Before joining the University of Southern California, Professor Castro served in the U.S. Army for more than 30 years, retiring at the rank of colonel. He participated in the Bosnia and Herzegovina and Kosovo Campaigns, Operation Northern Watch, and the Iraq War. Professor Castro has chaired numerous NATO and international research groups and is currently co-chair of a NATO group exploring military and veteran radicalization.
Professor of Sociology in the Department of Behavioral Sciences and Leadership
The United States Military Academy at West Point
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What are the main stressors military personnel or families might encounter when moving?
There are a number of stresses that impact military members and families associated with moving. Issues include waiting for permanent housing to become available; not having enough time to prepare for the move; unexpected moving costs; timeliness and accuracy of reimbursements; changes in the cost of living; loss or reduction of spouse employment; changing schools for children and adolescents; loss of friendship networks for children, spouses, military members, and adolescents; social isolation; emotional strains; changing connections to institutions and their members such as religion/religious leader; medicine/medical doctors; stresses associated with pets; legal issues changing from state to state impacting family, driving, etc; and administrative and bureaucratic challenges.
What tips do you have for mitigating the challenges and stressors of frequent moves?
Connect to the new location as soon as possible via the internet and other methods and address whatever topics are addressable among the above factors. Other tips include getting and staying organized; planning ahead; using the military resources that are available; communicating with everyone in the family and beyond to extended family; creating routines such as eating habits and exercise; controlling what you can; being flexible; and finally seeking professional help if any feature of the move becomes overwhelming such as military relocation programs/assistance and psychological services. Most notably, construct the move as an adventure rather than an imposition. Keep in mind most Americans don’t have the opportunity to see and experience a new location—take advantage of the opportunity. One last feature. It isn’t where you live; it’s how you live.
How can family or friends support service members making a permanent change of location?
Know that different members of the family have different experiences. A move doesn’t necessarily impact each family member the same. There will be more or less stress. Support each person based on his or her needs. Treat the move not only as an individual affair but a collective experience that everyone is going through. Make it fun and adventurous. Keep in mind what Albert Einstein said: “Life is like a bicycle. To keep your balance, you must keep moving.”
Morten Ender is an American sociologist and full professor in the Department of Behavioral Sciences and Leadership at the United States Military Academy at West Point, New York. An award-winning teacher and scholar, his master courses include Armed Forces & Society; Social Inequality; Military Sociology; Military Families; and Marriage and Family, among others. He is also an affiliated faculty member with Columbia University’s Teacher College where he has taught in the Eisenhower Leadership Development Program. He has been a visiting professor on the Fakultät für Staats- und Sozialwissenschaften at the Universität der Bundeswehr München, Germany, and the American College of Norway in Moss, Norway. He has served as a fellow at the Defense Equal Opportunity Management Institute, Patrick Air Force Base, Cocoa Beach, Florida, and in the Department of Military Psychiatry at the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research, Washington, D.C. He has published 100 articles, book chapters, and books over the past 25 years.
Associate Director, Military and Veteran Psychology Program
William James College
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What are the main stressors military personnel or families might encounter when moving?
Military folks and their families are very adaptive. They often have to adapt to new circumstances and are incredibly resilient and resourceful. But that doesn’t mean that they don’t experience stress, especially the stress of moving. We know that having a sense of community and strong social connections can help mitigate stress and longer-term mental health issues. When military folks have to transition to another location, these supports can be completely disrupted. Loss or disruption of social connection can be a huge stressor. The good news is that the military does have a lot of resources on base, especially to connect with others and restore social connection. Typically someone is even assigned to your family on base to help make the transition as smooth as possible.
What tips do you have for mitigating the challenges and stressors of frequent moves?
Really pay attention to your body and how you’re feeling. Engage in things every day that bring you joy or help you relax. Self-care is so important during these stressful times, and it doesn’t have to be elaborate to be effective. Identify micro self-care practices that you can engage in every day. These can be 5- or 10-minute things, like making sure you have your morning tea or coffee. Or, if you like listening to music, incorporate that into your day while doing other tasks. Sometimes self-care can feel overwhelming, especially if we view it as another to-do on our checklist, but little things like listening to music or wearing comfortable clothing can go a long way and can be easily accomplished. Identify a list of self-care activities that bring you joy, and make it a non-negotiable to show up for yourself for at least 5 minutes per day while you’re under the stress of a move.
Importantly, have self-compassion during this time. There’s no right or wrong way to go through a move like this. Try to be supportive toward yourself and avoid all-or-nothing thinking. Whatever you can do is good enough. Anything beyond that is gravy. 
How can family or friends support service members making a permanent change of location?
Definitely check in on them frequently, and be a friendly ear when things are not going well. If you are able to, you might even try to plan a visit to them within their first few months of moving. Having future plans to look forward to can certainly help provide a positive outlook during this type of transition.
Angela Taveira-Dick is the associate director of Military and Veteran Psychology Programs at Williams James College. She is also an assistant professor in the Counseling and Behavioral Health Department. Previous to her position at WJC, Taveira-Dick was the clinical lead for the Community Recovery Connections Team at the Bedford VA. In this position, she identified and created community partnerships between the VA and non-governmental agencies in order to enhance veterans’ reintegration into the community. She is a licensed psychologist and Certified Health Services Provider in the state of Massachusetts.
Erica L. Adkins, Ph.D., ABPP
Faculty Director of the Military Psychology Specialty
University of Denver
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What are the main stressors military personnel or families might encounter when moving?
There are quite a few stressors related to moving for military personnel and families. Often times little advance notice is given in regard to where a service member and their family will be relocating, leaving little opportunity to plan far in advance. A sense of anxiety can accompany the unknowns of moving. On average, military families move every 2 years. This is much more frequently than civilian families. Children are faced with changing schools and leaving friends and established extracurricular activities. It can be stressful to re-establish these activities and relationships in the new setting.
What tips do you have for mitigating the challenges and stressors of frequent moves?
As soon as the military member is made aware of their new duty location, they can begin reaching out to military members currently serving at that location. There are often social media pages and groups for each military installation. This can provide a wealth of resources as well as connections prior to arrival. Often times families can form connections with other families in the area, allowing for a smoother transition for spouses and children. With social media and technology, it is easier than ever to both form connections at the new location as well as maintain relationships and ties at the prior location.
How can family or friends support service members making a permanent change of location?
Family and friends can support by asking the service member what their needs are. If a single service member is moving, perhaps friends or family can plan to visit the new location soon after arrival to provide companionship. If a service member is moving with their spouse and/or children, extended family and friends can help ease the transition by being present and/or communicating frequently to provide support and reassurance.
Dr. Erica Adkins is a licensed, board-certified counseling psychologist. She completed her doctoral degree at the University of Oregon and her predoctoral clinical internship at Federal Correctional Institute Fort Worth in September 2009. She served as an officer in the commissioned corps of the United States Public Health Service (USPHS) detailed to the Federal Bureau of Prisons from 2009 to 2014. As a USPHS officer, she served as a staff psychologist and drug abuse program coordinator at the United States Penitentiary Pollock, LA, and as a special management unit psychologist at the United States Penitentiary Florence, CO. In 2014, she left the BOP to pursue full-time private practice and was commissioned in the United States Army Reserve as a 73B clinical psychologist. In 2023, she reclassified as a 38A Civil Affairs Officer. Currently, she owns and operates a group private practice, Stages of Change Psychotherapy, PLLC in Colorado Springs, is the faculty director of the Military Psychology Specialty at the Graduate School of Professional Psychology at the University of Denver and is a Civil Military Operations Center Chief with 440th Civil Affairs Battalion A-Co.
Teaching Professor of Sociology and Veterans Studies and the Chair of the Department of Sociology
University of Missouri-St. Louis
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What are the main stressors military personnel or families might encounter when moving?
Among the many stresses that occur when a military member is ordered to move is the uncertainty related to spouses and children. No matter where one is assigned, the military member knows they will have a job, a salary, and a set of peers. The rest of the family does not have that certainty. Schooling or childcare is paramount, and spouse employment is critical to ensuring a successful family transition. In addition, a move to a higher cost-of-living area can create financial pressures, and moves away from support networks (extended family and friends) can also create stress on a military family.
What tips do you have for mitigating the challenges and stressors of frequent moves?
The opportunity to learn a new place or experience a new culture can be one of the best parts of military life. Military moves can be exciting and bring new adventures, and often military families who haven’t seen each other in years can reconnect.
Use the military resources provided, including Military OneSource and the support networks provided by the receiving post. Reach out to friends for advice, and work closely with the receiving unit sponsor.
How can family or friends support service members making a permanent change of location?
Most importantly, recognize that a military family is more than the servicemember. The spouse, the children, and any other dependents are all affected in different ways by a military move. Reach out to the family and offer your support, or just to listen. If possible, visit or join them for part of the moving adventure.
Jim Craig is a teaching professor of sociology and veterans studies and the chair of the Department of Sociology at the University of Missouri-St. Louis. He is currently the president of the Veterans Studies Association and is on the editorial board of the Journal of Veterans Studies. Before his academic career, Jim served for more than 24 years in the U.S. Army. He has a Bachelor of Science (BS) in mechanical engineering from the United States Military Academy (West Point, NY), a Master of Military Arts and Sciences (MMAS) from the Army’s Command and General Staff College, and a Master in Public Administration (MPA) from Harvard University.
Jenny D’Olympia, PsyD, LP, HSP, LMHC
Director, Military Veteran Psychology and Train Vets to Treat Vets Programs
William James College
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What are the main stressors military personnel or families might encounter when moving?
Beyond the kinds of stressors, folks should consider the timeline of stressors. I think the two points of moving that are the most difficult are a family’s first move from one military location to another, and a family’s last move when leaving the military. If you’re leaving the military and finding your way back into the civilian world, that can be equally daunting, maybe even more daunting, because you have to reestablish yourself in the community and make that readjustment transition from military identity to civilian identity. You have to establish paying bills, find a job, find a house or begin renting, and set up all medical care and services that the military once provided comprehensively. Taking on all of the things that the military provided for you while you served can be very overwhelming.
What tips do you have for mitigating the challenges and stressors of frequent moves?
When leaving service, one of the things to really think about is planning. Have a plan, but then have a backup plan for all your plans. Consider that it might take several months to find a job and a place to live and have income that supports a place to live. I think having backup plans and temporary housing plans are good ideas. Flexibility, too. If you think you have found the perfect location to relocate to but then find yourself having trouble finding a house and a job, or the location doesn’t have the services your family needs, you need to have flexibility to consider a different location.
I think that social support systems, as soon as a person can access those wherever it is they are going, are really important to establish for self and family. I think what people don’t realize is that there are tons of nonprofits, state benefits, federal support, and other structures that can help people. One thing that I think could be particularly difficult for people is moving with a child who has special needs. So if you could use something like a federal support system or a national support structure, that can make a big difference. Organizations like the Federation of Children with Special Needs or Military OneSource can help.
How can family or friends support service members making a permanent change of location?
I think instead of saying, “Let me know if you need any help,” you should try something like, “I’m available on Tuesday to babysit for your children, can I come over with pizza and hang out with the kids while you pack up?” Have a very specific suggestion for helping: exactly what you’re willing to do, when you can do it, and how long you can do it for. This is a lot more helpful than a vague statement. Of course, always try to lend an ear and be generally available to check in with the person who is moving. Just be there while they talk through the anxiety of the move.
Jenny D’Olympia is the director of the Military and Veteran Psychology and Train Vets To Treat Vets Programs, assistant professor, and associate chair of the Counseling and Behavioral Health Department. Jenny has been in the mental health field for nearly 18 years, during which she has had the opportunity to work and train in a diverse range of settings, the most significant of which was counseling veterans returning from Operations Enduring Freedom (OEF) and Iraqi Freedom (OIF) at the Department of Veterans Affairs, Boston Vet Center. In her work at the Vet Center, she counseled more than 800 unique veterans and their family members and created and presented more than 1,400 hours of television, radio, and live presentations in an effort to educate veterans and the public about war readjustment and post-traumatic stress.

Our Conclusion

Each provider in our review has advantages, but we recommend International Van Lines as our top military mover. The company can be more expensive than some competitors, but we believe the value you get is worth it. You get a full-service moving partner, so you don’t have to lift a finger, as well as insurance coverage, outstanding customer service, GPS shipment tracking, and years of experience handling military moves. 

American Van Lines is another excellent option for military members and families with its highly experienced moving labor that makes relocating priceless antiques and artwork easier. Lastly, we recommend Interstate Moving & Relocation Group if you’re juggling many responsibilities during your PCS and would rather have someone simplify the quote-gathering process.

We recommend reading customer reviews before deciding on a moving partner and getting quotes from at least three companies to compare pricing.


FAQ About Military Moves

Does the military pay for movers?

What is a military move called?

A military move is referred to as a PCS. When using a moving company, they’re referred to as either a personally procured move (PPM) or a DIY move.

What moving company does the military use?

There is no set company that the military uses for PCS relocations. We recommend IVL as our top choice for military moves.

How much will you get for a PPM?

Opting for a PPM will allow you to receive a payment equal to what it would cost the government to move you. Additionally, you’ll also receive standard travel allowances for you and your family. You get to keep the balance if you spend less than the government’s payment.


Other Moving Resources

We’ve done extensive research on the best moving companies across the country and have compiled easy to digest comparisons:


Our Rating Methodology

We back up our moving company ratings and recommendations with a detailed rating methodology to objectively score each company. We conduct research by reading through the company websites, analyzing customer reviews, conducting consumer surveys, requesting quotes, and speaking with customer representatives. We then score each moving company against our review standards for services, contents coverage, scheduling options, additional benefits and custom service options, and reputation among customers to arrive at a final score on a 5-point rating scale.

To share feedback or ask a question about this article, send a note to our Reviews Team at reviews@thisoldhousereviews.com.