Everyone knows that Labor Day is supposed to be a time for rest and reflection, but some people prefer to use the holiday to accomplish the time-consuming task of moving.
Each year the first Monday in September is set aside as a national tribute to America’s workers. The resulting three-day weekend can give movers time to relocate without taking time away from their jobs, said Carol Miller Fradkin author of “Moving Gracefully: A Guide to Relocating Yourself & Your Family.”
“It’s easier to have a holiday weekend in which to get settled without having to take additional days off of work,” Fradkin said.
Assembling a crew of volunteers to help you with your move may be easier on a holiday, when your friends and family aren’t busy with work or school, she added.
Once you find a moving company that’s willing to work on Labor Day, the moving crew is likely to be incentivized to complete the job quickly so workers can return home to enjoy the holiday with their families, Fradkin said. Just be sure they aren’t in so much of a hurry that they forget to handle your property with care.
Weighing the Disadvantages
Before you decide to move on Labor Day, you should also consider the disadvantages. For example, Fradkin said it’s difficult to get your Internet, cable TV, or satellite connections up and running right away if you move on a holiday weekend.
Also, if you move into your new home and discover that there are no water or electrical connections, it may be difficult to reach a public utility to send someone to your new home to deal with the problem.
Moving companies may work more quickly on Labor Day, but they also are likely to charge you more. It’s common for them to request a higher fee.
Amy Trager, a professional organizer based in Chicago, said a successful Labor Day move calls for planning in advance. Finding a business that will rent you a truck or send a moving crew to your home on a holiday can take time. You task likely will be easier if you live in a large metropolitan area, with plenty of moving companies to choose from.
How much you tip movers who work on Labor Day is up to you. Trager says if you can find professional movers who are willing to work on the holiday, it’s good etiquette to give them a tip if they do their job well.
Darren D’hont, the owner of San Diego Moving Company, said he’ll be working a short shift on Labor Day to take phone calls and book future moving dates, but he’ll likely give his staff the day off. If someone were to book a truck and moving crew from him for Labor Day, they would need to contact the company at least two weeks in advance, he added.
They also would need to pay extra money so he could make losing a holiday worthwhile for his workers.
It’s common practice for movers to charge more for working on holidays, he explained.
“If someone charges $90 per hour, I would expect to see an increase to $120 per hour for two movers and a truck,” D’hont said.
Returning Rental Trucks
If you use a rental truck for your Labor Day move, you’ll likely be required to return it on time to avoid paying an extra day’s rental fee, said Robert Chiti, president and CEO of OpenTech Alliance, a company that offers self-serve kiosks, call-center services and other self-storage technologies.
Because moving often takes longer than people expect, you should give yourself plenty of time to return the truck before the rental facility closes, added Chiti, who serves on the governing board of the Self Storage Association.
In Central Florida, Richard Mathis, vice president of operations at Personal Mini Storage Management Co., helps oversee 36 self-storage facilities. There is no day of the year that’s completely free of moving activity.
“We actually have had people who have come in on Christmas Day,” he said.
Even so, Labor Day moves happen infrequently at his businesses. Mathis expects no more than 10 Labor Day customers to visit his 36 facilities to return rental trucks or place items in storage.
Some moving and storage professionals never truly take a day off, not even Labor Day.
Chris Hitler, the Wisconsin Self Storage Association’s past president, oversees six storage facilities across the state. Although they will be is closed on Labor Day, Hitler says he will be available by telephone in case “there is a desperate need for a unit.”
His outlet that rents moving trucks will be closed on Labor Day, but renters will be able to return trucks that day, leaving their keys in a drop box to avoid an extra charge, he said.