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5 Best Long Distance Movers In Iowa

Long-distance and interstate moves can be a lot to take on by yourself. Even for those more experienced at handling the ins and outs of moving can find themselves overwhelmed. It is far easier to hire professional movers to take care of everything for you. We’ve done all of the research necessary to make finding the best Iowa long-distance movers for you easier. Here, you’ll find thorough breakdowns of our top-five providers of moving services, and will learn which will be the best option for your move.

Best Full-Service Mover

International Van Lines

  • Provides Local, Long-Distance, & Int'l Moving Services
  • IVL is a Licensed Moving Carrier & Broker
  • Live Chat Option & A 24/7 Telephone Assistance Line

Best Moving Add-ons

American Van Lines

  • Local & Long-Distance Moving
  • Storage Options Available
  • Specializes In Fine Art, Antique, & Piano Moving

Best for Military Moves

Safeway Moving System

  • Safeway Moving is an FMCSA-Licensed Broker
  • Brokers Connect Clients With Local Moving Options at Advantageous Pricing
  • Select Locations Provide 1 Month of Free Storage Services

The Top Long-Distance Moving Companies in Iowa

All of our top moving companies are fully licensed and able to operate in the state of Iowa. To ensure that you ultimately go with the best option, you will need to begin your moving process early. Beginning to take inventory and research movers between six and eight weeks ahead of your ideal move date is the best way to do this. The more free quotes you’re able to get from movers, the higher the chance is that you’ll be able to have a stress-free transition to your new home. 

Provider Get a Quote Our Superlative Local Long – Distance Labor Included Specialty Services Storage Services Quoted Price Rating
International Van Lines Free Quote Best Overall Full-Service Mover Yes Yes Yes Antiques, pianos, vehicles Yes $2,015-$3,445 96.2%
American Van Lines Free Quote Most Experienced Moving Labor No Yes Yes Antiques, pianos Yes $2,900 – $3,900 95%
Safeway Moving Free Quote Top Reliable Military Movers No Yes Yes Military Yes N/A 87.5%
JK Moving Free Quote Most Customizable Full-Service Mover No Yes Yes Antiques, pianos, vehicles Yes  N/A 90%
U-Pack Free Quote Most Customer-Focused Long-Distance Movers Yes Yes Yes Moving Resources Yes $1,851 – $2,056 90%

* Note: All prices listed above are sample costs, for a two-bedroom, 400-mile move. To get your own optimized price, you should get your own quotes today, from these providers. 

1. International Van Lines: Best Overall Full-Service Mover

Due to its track record of customer service, recognizability in the moving industry, and range of services, International Van Lines is our choice for the best mover in Iowa. Whether you require domestic or international moving, this gigantic carrier and broker will likely be a good fit for you. By virtue of its 10,000 relocation-per-year workload, they can ensure that you will be in capable hands. 


  • Somewhat-frequent discounts for moving services
  • Available in the entire US and 180 other countries
  • One month of free storage included in all quotes
  • Industry-leading customer service


  • Limited US locations
  • Brokers out a good portion of its moves
  • High deposits required when booking

Best Full-Service Mover

  • Provides Local, Long-Distance, & Int'l Moving Services
  • IVL is a Licensed Moving Carrier & Broker
  • Live Chat Option & A 24/7 Telephone Assistance Line


As a giant broker and carrier, IVL is in a prime position to provide a wide range of services to its clients. Along with the basic loading and unloading, and released liability protection, they offer far more in the way of specialty add-ons. Customers can expect only the best when booking with these Iowa long-distance movers, including:

  • Local and long-distance moving services
  • Full-service packing and unpacking
  • Packing materials
  • Storage services (with the first month included in your base price)
  • Piano moving
  • Auto shipping
  • Custom crating for valuables and fragile items
  • Debris removal


IVL offers pricing that is consistently competitive with the rest of the moving industry. Any base price quoted includes loading and unloading, fuel and mileage, and add-on services required. Should a client add inventory or request additional services between a quote and moving day, pricing could easily increase. To get a quote now, you should contact IVL well ahead of moving day.

2. American Van Lines: The Most Experienced Moving Labor

American Van Lines has been in business for 25 years, and lays claim to some of the most experienced moving crews in the business. This large carrier does not broker out moving services to other carriers. Instead, they handle all moves directly through a network of locations throughout the US. Their super-capable moving crews, wide range of add-on services, and flat rate pricing all go a long way towards ensuring your satisfaction.


  • Flat rate pricing
  • Shuttles between major cities
  • Price matching available
  • Experienced moving crews


  • Customer service varies with location
  • Large deposits required upon booking
  • No online quotes

Best Moving Add-ons

  • Local & Long-Distance Moving
  • Storage Options Available
  • Specializes In Fine Art, Antique, & Piano Moving


With their extremely experienced and effective workforce, AVL is able to offer a wide array of services across the country. From basic loading and unloading, to specialty services, they have it all, including:

  • Local moving
  • Long-distance moving throughout the US
  • Custom crating for special items
  • Antique moving
  • Piano moving
  • Short and long-term storage solutions
  • ​Flat rate pricing


All price points given with AVL are flat rates. This means that you pay what you expect. Obviously, adding inventory or services can change your projected move cost. To accurately assess what that will be, you should schedule a quote with an American Van Lines representative well ahead of your ideal move date. Doing so will set you up to have a positive moving experience, and it is a fairly easy step to make with this carrier.

3. Safeway Moving Systems: The Top Reliable Military Movers

This veteran-founded company specializes in military relocations, but also handles commercial and residential moves equally well. As one of the largest moving brokers in the country, Safeway’s selling point is the transparency of service and flat rate prices they offer. Both feature very highly on customer reviews, and are a huge reason why they have such high ratings.


  • Flat rate pricing
  • Excellent partner companies
  • No hidden fees


  • Limited pricing information online
  • No shipment tracking option available online
  • Clients must contact them for full service offerings in their area

Best for Military Moves

  • Safeway Moving is an FMCSA-Licensed Broker
  • Brokers Connect Clients With Local Moving Options at Advantageous Pricing
  • Select Locations Provide 1 Month of Free Storage Services


As one of the largest moving brokers in operation, Safeway is in a prime position to offer a number of excellent specialty services aside from most movers’ typical offerings. These can vary by location, but include:

  • Loading and unloading
  • Storage services
  • Piano moving
  • Furniture assembly and disassembly
  • Full-service packing
  • All overhead costs included in one flat rate


Flat rate pricing is one of Safeway’s selling points, and is definitely not the industry norm. They do not provide pricing information online, but this is mostly due to their service area being so large. The only way to get an accurate quote, customized for your needs, inventory and location, is by contacting them through their website today.

4. JK Moving Services: The Most Customizable Full-Service Mover 

In their four-plus decades in the business, JK Moving Services has carried out more than half a million relocations. This mover acts as a carrier within a small area, but brokers out moving services in all of the US. Of particular interest is the financing for all move bills which they offer. With this, as well as the most flexible moving packages on the market, they ensure that they can serve the widest range of clients possible.


  • Financing provided through Enhancify
  • GPS tracking for all moves
  • 24/7 customer service
  • AI-assisted virtual estimates


  • Brokers out a good portion of its moves
  • Lengthy claims process for damages
  • Quote process can be time-consuming

Best for Protection Insurance

  • Long-Distance, Interstate, Local & Int'l Moves
  • 24/7 Customer Support & Great Mobile App for Customers
  • Low-Interest Financing Available with JK Moving partner


As a carrier and broker with a wide service area, JK’s offerings can vary by region. However, their service packages are top-notch across all regions. Here is a sample of what they provide:

  • Carrier capabilities in Washington DC, Virginia, and Maryland 
  • Broker capabilities throughout the rest of the US (local and long-distance)
  • Full-service packing
  • Custom crating for fragile or valuable items
  • Piano moving
  • Storage solutions
  • ​Auto shipping
  • Financing through Enhancify
  • Excellent valuation coverage options


Though you will have to contact JK directly to get a sample price for any move through them, initiating this process is fairly easy. When you fill out a contact form on their website, a representative will reach out to you to conduct an estimate. With their AI-assisted estimate tool, you can be assured of accurate and trustworthy pricing, even over the phone.

5. U-Pack: The Most Customer-Focused Long-Distance Mover

​U-Pack is one of the leading providers of mobile storage units and trailers today. With their wide network of locations (more than 240 throughout the US, Canada, and Puerto Rico), they are able to service millions of clients’ moving needs. U-Pack’s pricing model keeps costs low, and allows for clients to have a far greater amount of autonomy than with a standard full-service moving carrier. 


  • Three-day loading and unloading windows
  • 240 locations that service moves and storage needs
  • Easy to get an online quote
  • Low pricing due to minimal service model


  • Parking for trailers and units can be challenging to find
  • Fees for late cancelations
  • No local moving option (under 150 miles)

Most Competitive Pricing

  • Long-Distance Moving Container Service
  • Portable Storage Service at U-Pack Warehouse
  • Negligence & Catastrophic Liability Coverage


Though U-Pack doesn’t directly provide moving labor services, clients are allowed to hire as much outside help as they please. This provider delivers and ships its containers and trailers with three-day loading and unloading windows.  

  • ReloCube Unit: 6′ x 7′ x 8′
  • Moving Trailer: 28′ x 8′ x 9′

ReloCube units can fit a standard one-bedroom apartment, while trailers can fit most three or four-bedroom homes. Which option you go with will depend entirely on the scope of your move and your particular needs.


With U-Pack, you only pay for what you need. This service and pricing model is extremely attractive to more budget-minded clients, or for those who would simply like to do things on their own. Three-day windows on each end of a move allow for customers to structure things how they see fit. 

Comparing Long-Distance Movers In Iowa

​Simply put, no moving company is an ideal fit for all moves. Each provider you come across will offer a slightly varied array of services, at varying price points and abilities. The importance of collecting as many moving quotes as you can cannot be overstated. In order to find the best moving company for your relocation, you will have to shop around.

Providers Packing Unpacking Disassemble/Reassemble Furniture Storage Clean-Up Packing Supplies
International Van Lines Yes Yes Yes Yes N/A Yes
American Van Lines Yes Yes No Yes N/A Yes
Safeway Moving Yes Yes No Yes N/A Yes
JK Moving Yes Yes Yes Yes N/A Yes
U-Pack Yes Yes N/A Off-site N/A Yes

Best Movers By City in Iowa

Explore our reviews of the best movers in popular Iowa cities:

What to Look for in a Long-Distance Moving Company

Here, we’ve listed some basic requirements and things to look for in all moving companies you consider for your next move. The best long-distance movers will not only adhere to all possible statutes, but will happily produce proof of their compliance upon request.

  • FMCSA: All  long-distance moving companies are regulated at a federal level by the FMCSA. Through this database, clients can use a mover’s mandated USDOT and MC number to research that company’s complaint history.
  • Proper Insurance: All moving companies have to carry multiple forms of insurance. The most important of these, as it pertains to a client, is workers’ compensation. This protects you in the event of a work injury during the course of your move. Next, all movers have to offer valuation coverage options, in addition to the released liability coverage included in their base price. This covers your goods at a rate of $0.60 per pound, per item. For a full breakdown of your available coverages, follow this link.
  • BBB Accreditation: While not a requirement by any means, a Better Business Bureau accreditation is a nice bonus for movers to have. Plenty of reputable carriers and brokers lack this, but having more sources for reviews is always a good thing for clients.

Iowa Moving Regulations

Moving regulations vary from state to state. In Iowa, motor carrier regulations for the transportation of household goods can be found here. You should look through those requirements before booking with any mover in the state. 

  • Iowa MC: Moving companies within Iowa must carry a valid state Motor Carrier number, to be displayed on all vehicles. Intrastate and local movers must display their USDOT number with a simple “IA” following it, as an in-state designation.
  • Tariffs: All moving companies in Iowa have to file and maintain a tariff for services provided. This has to be on file with the state DOT’s Office of Vehicle and Motor Carrier Services. Tariffs must be adhered to. Any deviation from listed pricing is illegal.

Iowa Moving Trends

Between the 2010 and 2020 censuses, Iowa grew 4.7%, with about 80% of that growth happening in the four largest counties in the state. This follows a recent trend of urbanization. With an increasingly mobile society, however, there is plenty of outbound as well as inbound moving activity in Iowa.  

Where are Iowa Residents Moving To?

According to US Census Bureau data collected in 2019, the states below represented the most popular destinations for Iowa residents. 

  • Illinois (10,294 residents)
  • Nebraska (6,952 residents)
  • Missouri (5,774 residents)
  • Minnesota (5,739 residents)
  • Wisconsin (4,289 residents)

Where are Iowa Residents Moving From?

Incoming new residents flooded in primarily from these five states, among many more in 2019.

  • Illinois (10,843 residents)
  • Nebraska (7,454 residents)
  • California (5,819 residents)
  • Minnesota (5,358 residents)
  • Wisconsin (4,722 residents)

Popular Moving Destinations in Iowa

The cities and towns below represented the greatest growth of all localities within Iowa since 2010. These communities all continue to trend upward as far as growth goes.

  • ​Bondurant, IA (77.6% population growth)
  • Waukee, IA (68.9% population growth)
  • Grimes, IA (67.8% population growth)
  • North Liberty, IA (58.4% population growth)
  • Ankeny, IA (46.7% population growth)

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​Benefits of Using a Long-Distance Mover

  • Reduced risk of injury: Let’s start with the obvious advantage to hiring a professional to handle your move. The physical labor and heavy lifting involved in moving presents huge hazards to your personal health and well-being. Not to mention, if you go the DIY route and rent your own moving truck or container, the people helping you will likely be of similar experience. This heightens the risk of injury for all involved. 
  • Logistics: Aside from the physical act of moving, you will have a lot on your plate as your big day approaches. Whether you’re changing schools for any children you have, preparing for a change in jobs, or simply laying the groundwork for life in a new place, it will be a lot to think about on its own. Hiring movers will give you the peace of mind and clarity to be able to tackle those details.
  • General stress: Whether you hire movers or not, relocating will be stressful. Many movers will make claims to providing a “stress-free moving experience” in their marketing campaigns, for good reason. Hiring seasoned pros, with years of experience will be a huge relief during your move.

Our Rating Methodology

At Pro Mover Reviews, we are committed to providing our readers with comprehensive and unbiased information on each provider that we review. Our methodology is a step-by-step process that ensures we maintain your trust through transparency and data that is backed up through routine check-ins. Our staff has spent hundreds of hours reviewing dozens of local, long-distance, and international moving companies to bring you our recommendation for the best moving companies in the US. We then narrowed down our findings based on criteria that we find to be the most helpful for you to choose the best moving company for your needs. 

Our Rating Categories:

  • Company Transparency
  • Pricing + Cost
  • Services Offered
  • Overall Reputation

While there are many sites out there that compare movers, we believe our rigorous standards give us more insights into company performance and better data to share with our community.  For each moving company we check for:

  • Confirmed Licensing with the DOT
  • Updated & Verified Business Registration
  • Real & Recent Consumer Reviews
  • Industry Ratings and BBB Complaints
  • Accuracy of Online Quotes
  • Services Provided & Total Service Area
  • Pricing & Services vs. Competitors

From here we created a comprehensive, 100 point, rating scale based on the following factors: 

  • Moving services (25): Companies that offer more flexibility in their services are rated higher.
  • Coverage of services (5): The more items a moving company can handle, the higher the score. 
  • Pricing (25): We compare this to the industry average when rating pricing. 
  • Trustworthiness (25): We comb through hundreds of reviews and check on BBB ratings to determine the trustworthiness of a company.
  • State availability (5): Finding a moving company in your state can be a challenge depending on where you are located. The more states covered, the higher the score. 
  • Customer service (10): Is this moving company responsive? Do they respond quickly to issues that are brought to their attention? Are they helpful in answering questions? All of these factors are considered when rating customer service. 
  • Additional benefits (5): Moving companies can sometimes offer special promotions or deals when contracting them for a move. The companies with the most benefit scored higher. 

Of the dozens of different moving companies that we’ve reviewed, we’ve broken down the top companies in your area. To keep our ratings and data current, we have a full-time researcher who collects (and regularly updates) more than 100 specific data points from each company to help us compare them on key factors such as coverage, cost, service, and dependability. This list is ever-changing, as companies will update policies and procedures, and we will change our information accordingly.

Iowa Moving FAQ

What are the best places to live in Iowa?

The following communities ranked among the most in-demand localities in the state:

  • Ames, IA
  • ​West Des Moines, IA
  • Iowa City, IA
  • Bettendorf, IA
  • Coralville, IA


How much does the typical long-distance move cost?

Most long-distance moves will cost somewhere between $2,000 and $5,000. More involved moves requiring packing services or other such add-ons will likely cost more. Aside from add-on services, move distance and shipment weight will play the greatest role in determining your cost.


How do I save money during my move?

The best single thing you can do to save money is to handle your own packing. Nearly all moving companies will offer a range of packing services, complete with packing supplies. These costs can add up far quicker than most realize, however. During your moving estimates, it’s worth asking about pricing structures for such services. Aside from that, you may want to ask for multiple prices when getting quotes. The difference between your prices with packing and without may surprise you.