Boston Moving Company FAQ – Big City Moving

Q: Is your moving company licensed and insured?
A: We are a fully licensed and insured Boston Moving Company, regulated by the Massachusetts State Department of Public Utility, Transportation Oversight Division: MDPU #31367. Under state regulations every licensed carrier is required to carry moving, cargo and liability insurance. We also have workers compensation and commercial auto policies.

Q: What is Travel Time?
A: Most Boston moving companies charge a fee for their commute to and from the job in what is known as a “travel fee”. Many companies have been known to abuse travel fees by inflating travel times to their advantage. Big City Moving Company has a more reasonable approach. For labor charges, we start the clock the moment the truck arrives at your starting location. We stop the clock once we finish at your final destination. However, we do have to charge for the time it takes to get from our facility to the first location, and from the final destination back to our facility. Keep in mind that we must pay the movers for their drive time, gas, tolls etc… For your peace of mind we charge travel fees based on virtual time, not actual time. We calculate the amount of travel time it should take by inputting our address and your addresses into a routing software program. This gives us an approximate number of minutes for each trip. These figures are based on ideal conditions and are the same regardless of traffic or actual distance. So you pay the same flat travel fee whether it takes us twice as long due to a traffic jam or driver misrouting. This policy separates Big City Moving from the majority of Boston movers who charge travel time based on real time.

Q: How is the cost estimate determined for a move?
A: The quote we provide you is based on years of experience gauging the approximate number of hours it will take the appropriately sized crew to complete the job in a safe and efficient manner. This estimate is based on several factors including inventory, flights of stairs, the proximity of entrances to our truck, etc… Good communication between the customer and mover during the initial booking process can lead to a better experience for both parties. By taking the time up front to talk to your move coordinator, everyone involved will be fully aware of the specific circumstances they will find on moving day. The majority of moving companies base their estimates for local moves on an hourly rate. Inaccurate inventory lists and poor packing and consolidation by customers are some of the biggest contributors to jobs taking longer than they should.

Q: How does Big City Moving protect my furniture from damages?
A: We wrap your furniture with special furniture pads, which are thick, quilted, mildew resistant padded blankets. We secure them with stretch wrap or tape to eliminate damages and scratches to your furniture. We also use cargo straps on our trucks to tie down and secure certain objects from shifting during transit.

Q: Should I empty my dresser drawers?
A: Load/unload time is reduced when your dresser drawers are empty. However, if they are lightweight, clothes may stay in the drawers. In that case the only items that need to be removed are breakables, liquids, valuables, money, jewelry, or important documents. Don’t worry about taping drawers shut. They will be wrapped before being moved.

Q: Should I pack myself or hire Big City Moving to do it?
A: While it is perfectly fine for customers to pack up their own home, please be aware of the potential problems. Packing yourself can possibly save you money, but if done incorrectly could actually cost you more. If you plan on doing it yourself, please read our helpful packing tips on how to pack like the professionals. It’s also important to keep in mind that insurance coverage will not pay out on goods packed by their owner, unless the exterior of the box is damaged.

Q: Will the movers dissemble and reassemble my furniture?
A: We have all the necessary tools to disassemble and reassemble your furniture if needed. Be aware that disassembly for some furniture is not recommended for different reasons. If you happen to have furniture that cannot be disassembled, we will find an alternative way to move it. Many customers wish to handle disassembly and reassembly on their own to save time. This is perfectly acceptable. Just remember to keep track of all hardware.

Q: Will I be charged extra for stairs, fuel, mileage or any other charges?
A: No. We never charge any fees not described in your job contract. There are additional costs for any materials used such as tape, stretch-wrap and boxes (furniture pads, dollies, tools, taxes, tolls, and fuel are included in your rate). There are also additional fees should a hoist become necessary.

Q: What is Driving Time?
A: Driving Time is the time it takes the movers to get from Point A or starting location, to Point B or ending location with the customer’s belongings.

Q: Why do I need 3 (or 4 or more) movers for my move?
A: Big City Moving Company always assigns the most efficient number of movers to each move. Depending on your specific situation, we will let you know the most cost effective solution to meet your specific needs. It is usually more expensive and time consuming to under-staff a move. A smaller crew might have a lower hourly rate, but they will take longer to complete the move. It has been well documented that when there aren’t enough movers on a job, crews are more likely to rush and fatigue sooner, raising the possibility of damage or injury.

Q: Do the movers take a lunch hour or breaks?
A: On certain jobs, especially longer more physically demanding ones, the movers may wish to break temporarily. When a break becomes necessary, the customer will always be informed and the duration of the break will be deducted from the total hourly labor expense.

Q: Why is there a 3-hour window for my afternoon job?
A: In certain cases we might provide you with a 3-hour window of arrival if your move is scheduled in the afternoon. It might be the crew’s second move of that day, and we can’t be 100% certain of their arrival time until the first move is finished. Although we try our best, there is no formula that can determine the exact duration of any jobs that we scheduled prior to yours. However, we try to stay in contact the day of the move and call you with an updated ETA.

Q: What if my move takes 3 hours and 10 minutes. Do I pay for 4 hours?
A: Big City Moving only charges you for the time we actually work. We bill by the quarter-hour. So, if your move takes 3 hours and 10 minutes, you only pay for 3 hours and 15 minutes worth of work. Many other Boston moving companies round up to the nearest hour.

Q: What type of payment do you accept?
A: We accept: cash, postal money order, bank check, company check, Pay pal or major credit cards such as: Visa, Master Card, Discover and American Express. Personal checks are accepted with a copy of your credit/debit card.

Q: How much am I expected to tip?
A: You are never expected to tip, and our movers never ask. While gratuities are customary and greatly appreciated, they are not required. Our crews work very hard and try their best to complete every job to the customer’s satisfaction. This is our number one concern. Tips are a great way to show that you appreciate the movers’ attention to detail, diligence and effort. Common gratuity is $5-10 per hour, per laborer.