speed bump

We're having a hell of a time figuring out one part of our move - namely, how to get us, our dogs and a few essentials safely from New York to Port Credit.

We're hiring professional movers, so 90% of our stuff will leave about 5 days before we do and arrive 10 days so after. No problem. We thought we'd rent a U-Haul for the four of us and the other 10% - clothes, computer, an air mattress and whatever other essentials we'll need before the moving van arrives.

Then we found out there are no U-Hauls with backseats. Can't put the dogs in a closed truck, can't fit them in the front with us.

Plan B. We'll rent a cargo van.

Nope, no one-way rentals to Toronto.

OK, plan C. We'll rent a cargo van to Buffalo, a few days later rent another car in Toronto, follow each other back to Buffalo to return the van.

Nope, no one-way van rentals to Buffalo.

This is getting very tricky.

We don't own a car, which probably sounds bizarre, but is very typical in NYC. It's very difficult to bring an American-owned car into Canada anyway, so we've been planning on renting until we can lease or buy a car in the Toronto area. But this latest wrinkle is proving very complicated.

Now we're looking at a one-way car rental to Buffalo for us, the dogs, and a bare minimum of stuff, then UPS the rest. Or else the same one-way car rental and hire a guy with a van to drive the other stuff instead of shipping.

Either way, it depends on the one-way car rental, which might not be possible. Allan is taking care of these phone calls while I write about the maurauding hordes of ancient Europe (Goths, Huns, Vandals, Scyths).


Me said...

I am exausted just reading it.

Anonymous said...

Given the size of your two dogs, and not knowing how well (or not) they travel, this may or may not be possible... but if you get a big enough truck, you MAY actually be able to fit them in the front with you. When we moved up to NYC, we ended up with a ginormous moving truck -- it's a long story involving getting a truck that would almost certainly have killed us had we not insisted they give us something that was actually safe to drive 1500 miles -- and we had plenty of room in the front for all of my guitars, our kitties and their crate, a laptop computer, two pillows, and a small ice chest. Plus the two of us.

I don't think there would have been room to fit two crates, so if your guys have to travel crated, that's probably not an option. But if they're good about curling up and going to sleep while traveling, you MIGHT be able to fit them up front with you... IF you're willing to drive a 20 foot Ryder, and assuming they do one-way international rentals, of course.

Failing that, and I shudder to suggest this but it might be a decent option -- how about renting one of those ridiculously big SUVs? I think you can usually get those as regular car rentals, and some of them have nearly as much room as a cargo van.

barefoot hiker said...

I don't know if this will fit the bill, Laura, but I guess it couldn't hurt to look...


Anonymous said...

There are people who will move your dogs for you. I looked into it when we moved from California.

It costs, though.

laura k said...

Anon: Our dogs can't be moved by anyone else. One of them is very "special", and could never be transported by strangers. Thanks for the suggestion, though.

LP: Thanks! I'll check it out.

And Kyth, saving you for last, thank you! I never would have imagined we could all fit in the front of a truck. I'm smiling at the thought of you and Amy, guitars, cats, computer and various paraphenalia in the cab of a truck from Florida to New York... :)

The dogs don't have to be crated, and once we're on the highway, they'll curl up and go to sleep. We'll have to stop several times for them to stretch their legs anyway, so this might be an option. Of course, we don't want to drive a huge truck, and don't need to, but if we had to, we could.

The SUV [yes, shudder!] might do the job, too. The trick is the one-way rental. Allan's making another round of phone calls today, so we'll know more soon.

Anonymous said...

Laura, glad to be able to offer feedback on the trucks... if there's a rental place in your area and you end up looking at that option, see if you can stop by and peek into the cab of one of the big trucks so you can get an idea of whether or not it'd work for y'all.

We were amazed at how roomy it was -- made for a much more pleasant move than we'd anticipated, as we'd originally figured on getting one of the 10-ft UHauls that are built on a tiny Toyota pickup chasis. Granted, our stuff barely covered the floor in the back, and it cost a fortune in gas, but we got there alive and without having a nervous breakdown, which we figure was worth it.

And yes, it was pretty funny to see. We got stopped at a security checkpoint going around DC, and the cop came up to us, asked for Amy's licence and started to question us where we were going and why -- and then took one look inside at the clutter and the cats (who were at that point howling their fool heads off) and promptly handed back her license and sent us on our way with a cheerful "sorry to have bothered you, have a nice day!"

laura k said...

Oh, that's hilarious!

We are willing (and happy to be in a position to) pay a little more to have an uneventful, non-nervous-breakdown trip. So this might be an option.

Going to look at the trucks is a great idea. I think we'll do that no matter what we rent, to avoid surprises. I'll post again when we figure it all out.

Kyle_From_Ottawa said...

What about "half-way"?

I think it's pretty hard to get one-way across the border. However, you could probably return the truck to Niagra Falls, N.Y., walk across the bridge and take a train back to T.O.

Or what about sedating the dogs and then flying them up?

Kyle_From_Ottawa said...

Oops, didn't read the part about Buffalo.

If you can't get one way, maybe plan D could be rent the U-Haul from T.O. and send one person to drive it back to NYC (or if you have a friend in T.O. that you can really impose on, have them drive it down).

laura k said...

The dogs can't fly, no exceptions. It's one of the reasons we're moving to Canada and not the UK! :)

Renting one way to Buffalo, then renting another vehicle and following each other to return the car in Buffalo will probably work. It's not so easy to find a company that will rent a big enough vehicle one-way, even to Buffalo, but we're working on it. Or, Allan is.