What Is The Cheapest Way To Move Across Canada?

January 16, 2023

Would you like to know the cheapest way to move across Canada? Do you intend to relocate anywhere across the country? Moving to another city in Canada is expensive. Distances are almost always very long and fuel costs are high, which forces moving companies to charge hefty sums, even for smaller cargos. That said, the cheapest ways to move across Canada include hiring a box truck or renting a shipping container and moving everything yourself, hiring a moving company or a mix of both. You can expect costs to be in the $1,200 to $3,000 range for the first option and from $4,000 $9,000 for the second, depending on the distance, and the weight and size of your cargo.

Thousands of Canadians move to other provinces across the nation every year. Some relocate for a change of scenery or to be nearer to their family, while others do so to pursue better professional opportunities.

Whatever your circumstances, you should know that moving can be expensive. The cheapest way to move is to pack up your entire belongings into a truck and drive yourself. This could entail clearing up a lot of clutter and selling most of your possessions. This is the best option for everyone looking to move across Canada at the cheapest cost. But beware, a DIY move has some other expenses besides gas.

In this article, we will analyze the cheapest options and the best course of action when you decide to move across Canada.

Related: You may be interested in the cheapest way to ship within Canada.

cheapest way to move across Canada

What Is The Cheapest Way To Move Items Across Canada?

Not everyone has work or government support to foot the bill when moving. This is particularly valid for those travelling long distances across Canada to a different region. Several elements that affect costs include:

  1. How much furniture and other items you are moving.
  2. The price of fuel.
  3. Your mode of transportation.
  4. Moving any delicate or otherwise challenging to transport items.

Renting a moving truck, packing yourself, and driving to your destination is undoubtedly the cheapest “do-it-yourself” way to relocate across Canada.

Nevertheless, this may not always be the best option since saving in one thing might make you lose in another. For example, if you own a small business and have to close down for a week to move, you may easily lose thousands of dollars in lost sales alone.

If that applies to you, then hiring a moving service may be the best course of action because it will help you to cut costs. But how do you choose the best moving company?

Related: If you have an established business, moving to another city can be challenging. To avoid these issues, you can use a mail forwarding service that will provide a fixed shipping address for your company and forward any mail to you wherever you are in Canada or the world.

Choosing A Moving Company In Canada

Before choosing a moving company, you need to consider the different types of moving services available so you can choose the one that best meets your needs. This will help you choose the cheapest method of moving across Canada that works for you.

Hire A Box Truck And Transport Your Properties

The saying goes, “If you want something done right, you gotta do it yourself.· This also applies to moving. You're probably going to find some items that need a unique level of attention to detail that only you can supply when relocating your entire house, possessions, and family.

Many movers don't enjoy the idea of their most precious family artifacts being carelessly thrown into the back of a vehicle by a bunch of strangers.

Renting a vehicle like a box truck and packing it yourself will cost you the least amount of money when moving across Canada. However, do consider that you’ll have to cover the following costs while using this approach:

  1. The box truck rental fee.
  2. Fuel costs.
  3. The price per mile to drive the vehicle across Canada.

All of these elements are simple to manage with some calculation and consideration of the fuel efficiency of the moving truck.

cheapest way to move across Canada

However, renting, loading, and operating a truck on your own may be a difficult task. This can be simpler if you have a big family or lots of friends to help, but if you don’t, it probably won’t be fun.

Another thing to think about is that many people who will assist you in packing might not be available to assist you in unpacking once you get to your new location. You might then be left to handle all of the challenging tasks yourself.

Moving alone requires a lot of time when everything is taken into account. Also, many people don't have the money to take a week off work to pack and relocate on their own.

This isn’t an issue if you're young, live alone in a flat, and don't have any children, pets or possessions. But if that’s not the case, if you have a house with multiple bedrooms, you might need to employ some help.

Employ A Reputable Moving Company

Employing a professional moving company is the least stressful choice you can make if you're the kind of person who despises moving and would prefer not to worry about anything. It is, however, the most expensive. The cost will be greater because you're entirely outsourcing a challenging task.

This is why shopping around for good, cheap moving companies before making your decision is particularly important. When choosing a reputable moving company, keep the following in mind:

  1. The hourly rate to pay each mover.
  2. The daily rental cost for the truck.
  3. The truck's fuel expenses.
  4. The price of the move per km.

In this case, keep in mind that you are paying the staff not only to pack your properties but also to fly across the country and offload it at your preferred destination. Additionally, using a reputable moving company may be more difficult to budget for. You should receive a general price quote before the transfer.

This price could, however, easily go up if the move ends up taking longer or if unanticipated problems occur during the process.

Pro Tip: Make sure you carry your most valuable or vulnerable possessions by yourself because even with a reputable company, you may get a person who isn't as careful as you hope.

When unpacking after a move, homeowners frequently report lost objects, and it's often challenging to determine whether objects were stolen or misplaced. Even experienced movers sometimes make mistakes. Simply put, no one will take as excellent of care of your possessions as you will.

Get A Shipping Container And Ship It

Renting a shipping container and having your properties sent across Canada is one of the most flexible and cheapest moving alternatives, especially for longer distances. This approach typically costs a little more than renting a moving truck on your own, but it's usually less expensive than hiring a professional mover.

cheapest way to move across Canada

Related: You may be interested in shipping from the US to Canada.

Usually, the shipping firm will come to pick up your properties on or very close to the day of your move-out and make them ready for you when you go to your new house.

Security is another advantage of moving to Canada with a shipping container. Your items will be placed in a huge locked container, making stealing impossible.

Hybrid Moving

This involves working yourself on parts of the move and hiring other people for other more labour-intensive tasks. You might, for instance, lease a shipping container, get movers to load it with your bulky furniture, and then pack your more private belongings by yourself.

This technique not only provides control over your most valuable items but also relieves you of the burden of packing bulky furniture. When you get to your new house, you can work with a nearby moving company to help unpack everything into your new home.

This technique of moving across Canada has only one drawback: It involves a little more preparation and logistics and is usually more expensive.

However, it's not that tough if you don't mind doing a little research to find movers and setting move-out dates.

Related: Moving out of Canada? You may be interested in discovering the best ways to ship internationally from Canada.

Average Cost Of Moving Across Canada

Your needs and financial situation will determine the most efficient approach to moving across Canada. However, keep in mind that, as stated above, the cheapest method of moving might not necessarily be the best method for you.

The four most common and cheapest forms of moving across Canada and their estimated costs are listed below. The actual cost of your move will depend on various factors listed in subsequent sections of this post.

Type Of MoveAverage Costs
DIY truck rental$1,200-$2,000
Moving container$2,000-$4,000
Freight trailer$2,500-$3,000
Moving company$4,000-$9,000

Remember that this is only an average. If you have a big house, a family, and many rooms' worth of possessions, moving across Canada can cost up to $5,000 or more, even with the cheaper options.

While larger residences may require a big trailer to transport properties, a box truck is typically the cheapest way of moving across Canada.

Factors Affecting The Cost Of Moving Across Canada

Let's now discuss more specific factors that can influence how much it will cost to move across Canada.

Dimension Of The Load

The most significant factor affecting how much it costs to relocate across Canada is the size of the load you're moving.

A 1,000-square-foot load for one person will cost far less than a two-story house with four bedrooms. Larger loads require additional labour, more time, fuel, and a bigger truck.


Travelling from Alberta to British Columbia will be less expensive than moving entirely across Canada from British Columbia to New Brunswick. You'll often be charged a specific price per kilometre if you're using a shipping container or employing a full-service moving company.

The distance charge, which stands apart from the other moving costs, is intended to pay for fuel costs, vehicle wear-and-tear, as well as other shipping and transit costs.


Moving at the last minute could cost you a little bit more than if you planned things out in advance. You don't need to think about paying more if you're moving things yourself. However, you can be required to pay more if you hire a moving company on short notice.

Fragile Stuff

It's crucial to account for any specific requests or fragile things requiring more time to move when calculating your overall moving expense and time. For example, fragile electronics may need to be packed with other stuff, a century-old chandelier will take time to dismount and pack, and a grand piano requires special attention.

It's a good idea to specify any special needs you may have before requesting an estimate from a moving company. Otherwise, you may be in for a big surprise when the bill arrives.

Things To Consider Before Selecting Your Moving Method

Before you decide how you will travel the country, take the following important criteria into account.

How Long Will It Take You To Move?

Using a shipping container is a flexible choice that enables you to gradually pack day by day until your entire home is prepared to be moved if you have a lot of free time.

However, if you have a limited amount of time, it is more reasonable to employ experienced movers to assist you in packing your properties.

What Kind Of Room Do You Have In Your New Place?

It may be a better idea to hire movers to drive your moving truck if the new home you're relocating to doesn't offer a place for you to keep your shipping containers. This will guarantee that you can unpack everything in a single day.

How Heavy Or Fragile Are Your Belongings?

To ensure that your properties are handled carefully, you may need to engage professionals if you have particularly delicate items that are difficult to move.

It is dangerous and quite likely to result in an injury to try to lift bulky goods by yourself. Similarly, picking the cheapest moving company could lead to your properties being damaged or misplaced.

In Summary, What Is The Cheapest Way To Move Across Canada?

Packing your truck and driving it to your new location is the cheapest way to move across Canada. You may only need to take the weekend off from work and it’ll probably cost you less than $2,000.

Nevertheless, depending on your specific conditions, this option might not be the perfect one for you. It is advisable to prepare a list of the objects in your house, get pricing quotations from a few movers and shipping container firms, and then use the information to make the best choice possible.

Your chance of getting a better deal depends on how much planning and price comparison you do for your relocation.

However, it's a brilliant idea to outsource at least some of the arduous tasks if you have a large family and are moving all the contents in your home.

Moving Across Canada FAQs

Is moving across Canada worth it?

The influence of terrorism, political stability, current conflicts, and diplomatic ties are a few factors used to assess countries. Migration across Canada is only worthwhile if the location you intend to move to is better in this aspect.

Which month offers the best moving deals?

You can get the best moving deals by moving from October to April. This period avoids both the summertime, which is the busiest moving season, and the fall, up until early September, when moving services are in great demand.

Which Canadian city has the cheapest cost of living?

The city with the cheapest cost of living in Canada is Sherbrooke. This southern Quebec city is 20.81% more affordable than Toronto and 13% less costly than Montreal.

Which Moving Option is the Cheapest In Canada?

The cheapest option for moving across Canada is by renting a truck. You will have to drive the truck yourself, unlike a moving container firm that takes care of transportation. However, your budget and needs will define the perfect method of relocation.

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