Differences between major van lines?

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scotty321
Posts: 17
Joined: Sun Jul 03, 2011 2:08 pm

Differences between major van lines?

Postby scotty321 » Tue Aug 09, 2011 10:50 am

Are there any notable differences between the major van lines?

For example: Mayflower vs. Atlas vs. Allied vs. United, etc.?

Is there any REAL difference between the way these van lines operate and what they require of their agents or the ethics to which they hold their agents??

I've found it much easier for me, when searching for a moving company, to focus on one van line at a time and then contact the agents which are close to me. But I'd like to know if I should just be avoiding certain van lines altogether.

I personally won't use Mayflower agents again because of 2 previously bad moves with them (one with the Blue Chip agent in Los Angeles), but I was wondering if there is REALLY any difference between all the van lines?

Thanks,
Scott

ArchieWhite
Posts: 2942
Joined: Thu Mar 25, 2004 11:38 am

Re: Differences between major van lines?

Postby ArchieWhite » Tue Aug 09, 2011 11:16 am

scotty321 wrote:Are there any notable differences between the major van lines?

For example: Mayflower vs. Atlas vs. Allied vs. United, etc.?

Is there any REAL difference between the way these van lines operate and what they require of their agents or the ethics to which they hold their agents??

I've found it much easier for me, when searching for a moving company, to focus on one van line at a time and then contact the agents which are close to me. But I'd like to know if I should just be avoiding certain van lines altogether.

I personally won't use Mayflower agents again because of 2 previously bad moves with them (one with the Blue Chip agent in Los Angeles), but I was wondering if there is REALLY any difference between all the van lines?

Thanks,
Scott


Nope, on any given day, any of the big ones can be real good, or real bad....no matter what the sales people say, no matter how pretty of a picture they paint, the success or failure of a move boils down to the driver assigned and his crew...they will be the ones coming into your home, and taking everything you own away.

rydog444
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Joined: Fri Nov 23, 2007 11:44 pm

Re: Differences between major van lines?

Postby rydog444 » Tue Aug 09, 2011 11:21 am

United and Mayflower now have the same parent company - Unigroup

North American and Allied now have the same parent company - Sirva

Atlas is on their own.

Those are the 5 biggest. All of the major vanlines have the same basic business models. I would encourage you not to consider the van lines first, but the agent that is booking your shipment first. Find out if they are self hauling. If they would not self haul, find out who the hauling agent would be.

All vanlines have stronger and weaker agents. You could get a garbage agent if you are going about this the way you suggest.
My job is to give the best domestic and international moving services to my corporate clients by using the best movers in the world, regardless of vanline affiliation.

chrisatlas
Posts: 334
Joined: Mon May 12, 2008 4:27 pm
Location: Chicago

Re: Differences between major van lines?

Postby chrisatlas » Tue Aug 09, 2011 12:54 pm

Totally agree with you on this All vanlines have stronger and weaker agents. You could get a garbage agent if you are going about this the way you suggest.[/quote]

rydog444 wrote:United and Mayflower now have the same parent company - Unigroup

North American and Allied now have the same parent company - Sirva

Atlas is on their own.

Those are the 5 biggest. All of the major vanlines have the same basic business models. I would encourage you not to consider the van lines first, but the agent that is booking your shipment first. Find out if they are self hauling. If they would not self haul, find out who the hauling agent would be.

All vanlines have stronger and weaker agents. You could get a garbage agent if you are going about this the way you suggest.

scotty321
Posts: 17
Joined: Sun Jul 03, 2011 2:08 pm

Re: Differences between major van lines?

Postby scotty321 » Tue Aug 09, 2011 1:35 pm

rydog444 wrote:You could get a garbage agent if you are going about this the way you suggest.


Thanks so much. Just to clarify, I would still do extensive background research on all the companies... I would eliminate any companies that aren't up to snuff.

rydog444
Posts: 1022
Joined: Fri Nov 23, 2007 11:44 pm

Re: Differences between major van lines?

Postby rydog444 » Tue Aug 09, 2011 3:15 pm

scotty321 wrote:I've found it much easier for me, when searching for a moving company, to focus on one van line at a time and then contact the agents which are close to me. But I'd like to know if I should just be avoiding certain van lines altogether.


I read this, which is what made me think that. To count out Mayflower as a whole though is silly. One of my clients had a nightmare move with Mayflower 15 years ago. They told me about it, but I don't really pay great attention to van line affiliation, so I didn't really think to myself not to use Mayflower. Since he did have a nightmare move, I did have prepared the very best driver for the very best agent that I could find. It happened to be a Mayflower agent. They found out the day before the move that it was Mayflower that was scheduled for their move.

It was quite a battle, but eventually they agree to let Mayflower, who they had sworn off, everytime they had seen their trucks since then they commented about how much they hate them, etc etc., to start the move but with a short leash. Let me just say that I got a call from my client, he said he was so impressed with his movers and how amazing they were, and was thankful as this was by far his easiest move yet.

Moral of the story, the vanline is FAR less important than the agents that are being used.
My job is to give the best domestic and international moving services to my corporate clients by using the best movers in the world, regardless of vanline affiliation.

BigLeeCalif
Posts: 4669
Joined: Sat Aug 23, 2003 5:59 pm
Location: Escondido, California

Re: Differences between major van lines?

Postby BigLeeCalif » Tue Aug 09, 2011 3:47 pm

I agree that it is unfortunate to rule out a van line because of a couple of sub par agents. I'm sure you would find that true of each van line.

Usually if those are continually underachieving agents, they get terminated by the van line.
"It is better to keep your mouth shut and appear stupid than to open it and remove all doubt" Mark Twain

scotty321
Posts: 17
Joined: Sun Jul 03, 2011 2:08 pm

Re: Differences between major van lines?

Postby scotty321 » Tue Aug 09, 2011 3:53 pm

BigLee, I heard that you are the #1 expert on California agents! :) Do you have any favorite agents that you highly recommend in the Los Angeles area for an interstate move?

BigLeeCalif
Posts: 4669
Joined: Sat Aug 23, 2003 5:59 pm
Location: Escondido, California

Re: Differences between major van lines?

Postby BigLeeCalif » Tue Aug 09, 2011 8:11 pm

I cannot promote my company, for obvious reasons, but there are many van line affiliations in the Los Angeles area. I would stay away from those independants, unless you can check them out.

Delancey Street has a branch in the LA area. I would recommend calling them. Call STS movers in Orange County. They are highly reputable. They are independant, but I know that they have very good reputations.

I can't recommend any van line over another, because I am Unigroup, so I know first hand only the United and Mayflower agents in the area, one of which you have already ruled out.

If you need more specifics email or pm me.
"It is better to keep your mouth shut and appear stupid than to open it and remove all doubt" Mark Twain

scotty321
Posts: 17
Joined: Sun Jul 03, 2011 2:08 pm

Re: Differences between major van lines?

Postby scotty321 » Tue Aug 09, 2011 8:19 pm

Thanks again, Lee... you are a fantastic resource. I may PM you! :)

promover2
Posts: 243
Joined: Sat Mar 08, 2008 9:29 am
Location: Tampa, Florida

Re: Differences between major van lines?

Postby promover2 » Mon Aug 15, 2011 8:50 pm

Scotty,

If you are still looking for alternatives, check out Nelson North American. I just moved a CEO from Los Angeles to Tampa and worked closely with this fellow North American Agent. They did a great job in handling origin services for us.

scotty321
Posts: 17
Joined: Sun Jul 03, 2011 2:08 pm

Re: Differences between major van lines?

Postby scotty321 » Tue Aug 16, 2011 5:58 am

Thanks so much.

I think North American is pretty good.

From my own research, I have found that Atlas seems to have the best agents.

Plus, I have found 2 fantastic Atlas agents in the Los Angeles:
- JBL Moving & Storage
- NMS Moving Systems

Thanks!
Scott


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