As promised, here is a recap of my long-distance move complete with budget and actual costs. I tried my best to plan it all out in advance with a detailed budget, but there are just some expenses you forget about or end up being more costly than you expected. Gas would be my #1 "plan for more than you ever really think you'll need", followed closely by "don't forget tax on big items like Uhaul rentals" :-). So this is for all you college/grad/dirt poor people like me; hopefully it will make your move just that much less stressful. Just remember, this was the best option for my move; there are plenty of other great options but they would not have been ideal with my current budget and moving situation. Go with whatever works best for you.
We started out at 6:00am Saturday morning in Phoenix, AZ and arrived in Columbia, SC around 3:00pm the following Friday. Had we not taken any rest days, we probably could have made it in 4 days. However, we would have been exhausted and stressed out, which is not exactly the best way to start a new chapter in your life.
Trailer Rental: $775.00
Trailer Rental: $755.66
Not too shabby! One more tank of gas and we would've been in trouble, though :-). Maybe next time I move (in the far, far distant future), I'll have the budget to hire someone else to help me move.
Notes: Unless you plan to stay with people you know along your route, budget more for hotels and food. But, if you have the option to stay with friends, definitely take it! A free night's rest and a good home-cooked meal can help both with your overall health on a long trip and in stretching out your budget.
I am eternally grateful to everyone that helped me move. In case I haven't said it enough: Thank you, thank you, thank you!