When is the best time of day to move?

Knowing the best time of day to move will help you plan moving day better. More about Ethan Greenfieldby Ethan Greenfieldon Feb 22, 2023.

One of the first things to do when planning a house move is to decide on a moving date. If you have flexibility in when you can relocate, choosing the best day to move can help you save money, get quality moving services, and reduce a number of potential risks (such as rain or snow on moving day, for example).

What about the time of the day when you perform your move though? Does it matter whether you schedule your move for the morning or for the afternoon? When is the best time of day to move?

Obviously, the hour when you choose to start your move will have quite an impact on how things go on moving day – but it may also help you snag a better deal, avoid heavy traffic, and even improve your chances of a smooth relocation.

Read on to find out what time of day is best to move house – and make your plans accordingly:

When is the best time of day to move?

It is said that the early bird catches the worm – and this is especially true in the event of moving house.

Without a doubt, the best time to start your move is in the early morning – so you have plenty of time to complete the job by the end of the day. Besides, moving in the early hours, when it’s cooler, the roads are less busy, and people are well-rested and full of energy, can make things easier and safer for everyone.

Sometimes, however, moving in the late afternoon – or even during the night – may be your better option. You may want to move without anyone knowing, or may prefer the moving truck to arrive at your new home in the morning, or may be able to save money if you move later in the day – it all depends on the specific circumstances in your case.

So, is it better to move in the morning or in the afternoon? Usually, the early morning is the best choice, but it may not always be so – and, sometimes, it may simply not matter.

In the event of a local move, you will definitely want to start your move as early as possible – your items will only travel for a few hours, so the earlier you get them loaded on the moving truck, the earlier they will arrive at your new place and the more time you will have to unpack and get settled before nightfall.

When moving long-distance, however, it may not make much of a difference whether you move in the morning or in the afternoon (provided that you can finish the job by the end of the day, of course). Your items will be on the road for several days, so regardless of when the moving truck departs from your old home, you won’t be able to move into your new place on the same day.  (See also: How long does it take to move cross country?)

All in all, though, the ideal time to move is in the morning – between 8 a.m. and 10 a.m.

Why morning is the best time of day to move?

There are many good reasons why early morning is considered the best time to move:

1) More time

The earlier you start, the more time you will have to perform your move.

If you’re moving a large household, you’ll expect the process to take a long time, so you will certainly want to start as early as possible. Even if you’re moving a one- or two-bedroom home, however, it will still be best to start in the early hours – moving often takes longer than expected, so it’s always a good idea to have as much time as possible.

Related: How long does it take movers to load a truck?

What’s more, if you’re moving short distance, a morning move means that you’ll be in your new home in the early afternoon – so, you’ll have time to unpack and organize. Your new place will start feeling like home from day one, you’ll be able to have a good night’s rest after the exhausting moving day, and your new life will start on a positive note.

In case you’re moving without professional help and renting a truck to transport your belongings to your new home, it’s even more important to start your move very early in the morning. First of all, you’ll have to do all the work yourself – or with the help of family and friends – and it will take you much longer to load and unload your items than it would take professional movers. Besides, since truck rental companies usually charge a daily rate, you’ll want to return the truck the same day – so, you need to make sure that you have enough time to complete your move and return the rental vehicle by the end of the day.

Related: What to know when renting a moving truck

2) More energy

After a good night’s sleep, people have more energy and more motivation to work – so, the morning is the best time of the day to undertake arduous projects, such as moving house.

Carrying boxes and furniture requires a lot of energy – and it’s very important to be focused and careful on moving day, so you avoid accidents and mistakes.

Your energy levels will be highest right after waking up (so you’ll be able to work quickly and efficiently) and your mind will be clear and sharp (so you’ll be able to find good solutions to whatever problems you may encounter and will be less likely to make mistakes) – which means that early morning is the best time to start you move.

If you’ve hired professional movers to help you relocate, they’ll also work most efficiently in the morning when they’re well-rested and their energy is at its peak.

All in all, when you start your move early, it will go faster and smoother and the risk of accidents, damages, and injuries will be smaller.

Related: How to keep your energy up when moving

3) Better moving services

When moving with a moving company, it’s extremely beneficial to schedule your move for the early morning:

  • Moving companies are less likely to be booked for the early hours, so it’ll be easier to get top-rated movers for an early morning move – and you may even get a discount;
  • Your move will be the first for the day for the moving company, so your movers will almost certainly show up on time (without any jobs to complete before yours, there will be a smaller chance of delay (due to traffic issues, weather issues, etc.). If you choose to move in the afternoon, a previous job may not go smoothly and the movers may not be able to keep their schedule;
  • The movers will start their day with your project, so they won’t be tired or annoyed from previous jobs – the pros will have a lot of energy and will be calm and focused, so they’ll work quickly, carefully, and efficiently and will easily overcome any challenges that may arise.

When moving in the morning, you will get the best moving services possible.

Related: How to find the best movers for you

4) Lighter traffic

Roads are typically less busy in mid-day (after the morning rush and before the evening rush), so if you start your move in the morning and your items are loaded by noon, it will be much easier for you – or for your movers – to drive the moving truck to your destination location.

Finding a convenient parking space for the moving vehicle is also likely to be easier during that time of the day.

Related: Tips for driving a moving truck

5) Cooler temperatures

Most house moves take place in the warm season (May to September). The weather is hot – and it’s really difficult to carry heavy items in the scorching temperatures. Therefore, it’s a good idea to move in the early morning, when it’s still cooler and easier to do heavy physical labor.

If you’re moving in a summer month, moving early will help you beat the heat – you and your movers will be able to finish the job by noon and won’t need to haul boxes and furniture when the sun is at its hottest. 

Related: Tips for moving in the summer

6) More hours of daylight

If you’ve chosen to move during the off-peak season (October to April), when moving rates are lowers and the choice of movers is wider, you won’t need to worry about heat. Yet, the days during that period of the year are shorter – so, if you start your move in the afternoon, it may get dark before you (or your movers) have even finished packing the truck.

Hauling heavy items in the dark – and driving in the dark – is difficult and dangerous, especially when the weather is bad (as it often is during the cold season). It’s best to finish your move before dark, so you’re advised to start early in the morning.

Related: How to organize a safe and smooth moving day

Bonus tip: Moving in the evening

Even though the morning is the best time of the day to move, the circumstances may necessitate – or you may prefer – moving in the afternoon.

In such a case, if it’s summertime and you’ve opted for a self-move, you’re advised to start your move in the late afternoon:

  • Many truck rental companies will give you a considerable discount if you rent a van later in the day, when no one else is renting;
  • You will be able to load the truck in the evening when it will be cooler;
  • It will be light outside until late in the evening, so you’ll have plenty of time to finish the job.

You can wait until morning to depart for your new home or you may choose to drive at night when there will be very little traffic (be extremely careful if you choose to drive in the dark).

Knowing what time of day is best to move house will help you better plan your relocation and make the most out of moving day. Good luck!


Share to...