For those of you who don’t personally know me, you may have been wondering where I’ve been the past month! I recently got a job as the Coordinator of Recruitment Communications and Admissions Services for the Graduate School at the University at Buffalo (sorry that title is a mouthful)! So, over the last few weeks I’ve been apartment hunting, packing my life away, moving from Rochester to Buffalo and starting and new job. Although I miss my friends and former colleagues back in Rochester (very much), I’m excited about this new opportunity and I’m ready to explore a new city!
I cannot even begin to tell you how crazy the last few weeks have been. My boyfriend and I are still in the process of unpacking, but thankfully I think most of the chaos is behind us now. The worst of it was when, the day before we were scheduled to move, our moving truck changed the date and time on us!
I had reserved a UHaul truck a couple of weeks prior for last Saturday afternoon. The plan was to pick up the truck and pack my apartment and a few large pieces of furniture from my parents’ house on Saturday night. We coordinated this plan with three different families and friends that were helping us move (I was moving my stuff from two places in Rochester and my boyfriend was moving his stuff from two places in Lockport). The plan was to wake up and drive the already loaded truck Sunday morning and get unpacked in Buffalo early so that my boyfriend could use the truck to get his move done.
Turns out all of this was just wishful thinking…
UHaul called me Friday to inform me that no trucks were available on Saturday at all. The only truck they had available in “the entire Western New York area” was on Sunday at 1pm and it was two sizes larger (and much less fuel-efficient) than the truck I requested. I immediately started scrambling to call any and all other moving truck options but it was pointless. Nobody was available on such short notice! After a lot of arguing with UHaul reps both on Twitter and over the phone, I surrendered and was forced to take the Sunday reservation. We rearranged everyones schedule at the last-minute (which made for a lot of grumpy movers)!
By the time we were done unpacking and getting everything moved into our new place in Buffalo it was after 11pm! My poor family had to make the hour and a half drive back to Rochester after that and work the next day! It was a bit crazy and super stressful but with the help of our amazing families and friends we got it done.
Later that week, I contacted UHaul to get my “$50 Reservation Guarantee” refund since they totally screwed us over at the last minute and didn’t have my equipment on the day I had requested. After all that craziness, a $50 dollar refund (which they promise on their website) is the LEAST they could do right? UHaul “customer service” doesn’t seem to think so. Apparently their guarantee only applies after you confirm your reservation 48 hours prior!
What this means is say you book a UHaul truck 2 months prior to your moving date. UHaul can call you the day before to “confirm” your reservation for a completely different date, time, truck and/or pickup location…and once you agree to that, you don’t get a $50 refund. This is UHaul’s way of trying to make you feel like it’s safe to book with them, when really there is no guarantee at all.
I’m really not sure what other companies are better out there, but I’m sure it’s worth spending the extra money for an organization that actually guarantees reservations or at least notifies you of any changes more than a day in advance.
Normally I’m not one to bitch and complain about these things…my bitterness towards UHaul probably wouldn’t have lasted long had I received my rightful $50. But as it turns out, I’m not the only one UHaul has upset. Their customer service (or perhaps how they run their business in general) is so bad, there’s a website called dontuseuhaul.com and another called uhaul-Sucks.com. The sites are dedicated to persuading people not to choose UHaul by sharing horror stories similar to mine.
If you don’t believe me, just check out the @UHaul_Cares Twitter handle to see how poorly things are going. The vast majority of tweets @UHaul_Cares receives are complaints just like mine. Via twitter they are kind enough to apologize, but still no problems are ever solved.