Find out the cheapest way to move locally in New York City with our comprehensive guide
Find out the cheapest way to move locally in New York City with our comprehensive guide
Moving tips NYC
September 27, 2023

Cheapest Way To Move Locally in New York City

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Moving within New York City can be both exciting and overwhelming. The city that never sleeps offers an array of opportunities and experiences, but it can also be challenging to navigate when relocating within its bustling neighborhoods. The cost of moving can add to the stress, but fear not; there are ways to make a local move in NYC more affordable. In today’s blog, we'll look at some of the cheapest ways to move locally in New York City.

Plan and Declutter

Before diving into the logistics of your move, take some time to plan and declutter your belongings. Moving fewer items not only saves you money but also makes the entire process more manageable. Here's what you can do:

Start Early: Begin planning your move at least a month in advance. This will give you enough time to make informed decisions and find budget-friendly solutions.

Sort and Declutter: Go through your belongings and decide what to keep, donate, or sell. Reducing the number of items you need to move will cut down on packing materials, transportation costs, and time.

Use Free or Low-Cost Packing Supplies

Packing materials can quickly add up in terms of cost. However, there are ways to secure packing supplies without breaking the bank:

Free Boxes: Supermarkets, liquor stores, and bookstores often have free cardboard boxes that you can use for your move. Just make sure to ask for sturdy boxes that can handle the weight of your belongings.

Bubble Wrap Alternatives: Instead of expensive bubble wrap, use towels, blankets, or clothing to wrap fragile items for protection.

Reusable Containers: Consider using plastic bins or storage containers that you can reuse for organizing your new space.

Rent a Truck or Van

If you're moving a significant amount of furniture or larger items, renting a truck or van can be a cost-effective option. Here's how to do it:

Shop Around: Compare rental truck and van prices from multiple providers. Look for deals and discounts, especially if you're moving during the off-peak season.

Size Matters: Choose a vehicle size that suits your needs. A smaller truck or van is usually cheaper, but make sure it can accommodate your largest items.

Rent During the Week: Rental rates tend to be lower on weekdays compared to weekends. This is because most people move on the weekends since they’re not in the office.

Consider a Moving Container

Moving container companies like PODS and U-Haul U-Box offer a convenient and cost-effective alternative to traditional moving trucks.

Reserve in Advance: Book a moving container in advance to secure the best rates. Make sure you know exactly how much furniture and belongings you have before booking the container. This is important as it will determine the size of the container.

Load at Your Own Pace: You can load your belongings into the container at your own pace, which can be especially helpful for those with busy schedules. This takes us back to what I mentioned about starting early.

Delivery and Pick-up: The container company will drop off the container at your current address and transport it to your new location when you're ready. This is especially great if you are alone and have no help whatsoever.

Hire a Moving Labor Service

Moving labor companies help make your move stress free

If you have access to a truck or van but need help with the heavy lifting, consider hiring a moving labor service. These services provide experienced movers to load and unload your belongings, which can save you time and backache.

Hourly Rates: Moving labor services typically charge by the hour, so you can control the cost by being organized and efficient during the move.

Check Reviews: Research and read reviews to find reputable and affordable moving labor providers in your area.

Seek Help from Friends and Family

One of the cheapest ways to move locally in New York City is to enlist the help of friends and family. Here are some tips for a successful DIY move with their assistance:

Plan and Communicate: Coordinate the move in advance, so everyone knows their roles and responsibilities on moving day. You can do this by drafting a packing plan, floor plan, or moving plan.

Offer Food and Refreshments: Show your gratitude by providing snacks, drinks, and a meal for your friends and family. This will make them feel appreciated.

Be Prepared: Have all your belongings packed and ready to go before your friends and family arrive to maximize efficiency.

Utilize Public Transportation

If you're moving within the same neighborhood or a short distance, consider using public transportation for smaller items and essentials. This is not only budget-friendly but also environmentally conscious.

Pack Smart: Use backpacks, rolling luggage, or sturdy reusable bags to transport your belongings on the subway or bus.

Check Off-Peak Hours: Choose non-rush hour times to minimize crowds and make your journey smoother.

Ensure Accessibility: Verify that your new location is easily accessible from the subway or bus stop.

Explore Delivery Services

In a city like New York, you can take advantage of various delivery services to transport your belongings locally.

On-Demand Services: Apps like Dolly and GoShare connect you with drivers with vehicles who can help with small moves or transportation of larger items.

Shipping Services: Consider shipping some items via postal or courier services, especially if they are not time-sensitive.

Negotiate with Your Movers

If you decide to hire professional movers, don't hesitate to negotiate for a better deal. Here are some negotiation tips:

Get Multiple Quotes: Request quotes from multiple moving companies to compare prices. This will give you the best chance of choosing a company that meets all your needs.

Ask for Discounts: Inquire about any available discounts, especially if you're moving during the offseason or on a weekday. Most moving companies will run a “special” during off-peak hours or season. Take advantage of that.

Be Flexible with Dates: If possible, be flexible with your moving dates to take advantage of lower rates.

Know Your Rights

Lastly, it's essential to be aware of your rights as a consumer when hiring a moving company. In New York City, all movers must be licensed with the New York State Department of Transportation. You can verify a moving company's license and file a complaint if necessary.


Moving locally within New York City doesn't have to break your budget. With careful planning, budget-conscious choices, and a bit of creativity, you can make your move affordable and stress-free. Whether you choose to rent a truck, use a moving container, enlist the help of friends, or explore alternative transportation options, the key is to stay organized and make the most of the resources available to you. By following these tips, you can enjoy the excitement of a new neighborhood without the burden of excessive moving costs.

Contact Capital City Movers Today for a free local estimate at (718) 619-4881, or visit our website for more information.


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