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When relocating, some possessions can be of a size that cannot be safely contained in your luggage or car. Hence the need for special transport arrangements.
The larger size and weight of mattresses make them more complex to arrange to ship.
Here we will outline a simple procedure you can use to ship a mattress, understand the cost-benefit, and what alternatives you have to shipping.
- To ship a mattress, we should begin by measuring. Then, we can look for some price quotes online, prepare the mattress for shipping, and finally, ship the mattress at the correct time.
- It can cost anywhere around $300 to $700 to ship a mattress. If you’re shipping an expensive mattress, you can pay for optional insurance to guarantee your mattress’s safety.
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Steps to Mattress Shipping
1. Take Measurements
Just like when shipping any other package, your provider will want to know the dimensions and weight of the item they will be handling. This allows them to make arrangements such as what space the item may take up in their vehicle or container.
If you have a queen or king size mattress, know they are often not accommodated by the postal service. You will likely need to engage private trucking companies that can accommodate this as a less than truckload shipment.
It will also allow for a more accurate quote on how much it will cost to ship. Be sure to add details on the bed frame or box spring if part of the shipment.
For a more clear understanding of how much each mattress size weighs, take a look at this list for guidance:
- Twin: 75” x 38” - 40-45 lbs
- Twin XL: 80” x 38” - 43-48 lbs
- Full: 75” x 54” - 50-60 lbs
- Queen: 80” x 60” - 120-160 lbs
- King: 80” x 76” - 130-180 lbs
- California king: 84” x 72” - 130-180 lbs
- Olympic queen: 80” x 66” - 130-180 lbs
- Wyoming king: 84” x 84” - 150-200 lbs
- Alaskan king: 108” x 108” - 220-300 lbs
2. Source for Quotes
To find out the best deals you should shop around. Comparison shopping for this service is important in ensuring the shippers get the best value for their money.
Conduct an online search to find out what shipping company websites are top-ranked. Be sure to confirm your shipment matches their services and check out customer reviews both on and offsite.
There are also comparison websites where you can source quotes from various shippers. You simply need to input the measurements and weight of the item you need to be shipped, the pick-up and delivery locations, and desired dates.
Some sites may even allow you to set limits on your budget. The lower the amount, the fewer quotes you are likely to get. Or, you may have to wait and see if a provider will offer you a bid or rate.
3. Prepare Your Mattress for Shipping
You may have a choice between preparing your mattress for shipping or having the provider handle it. Note that leaving this step to the provider will likely cost more. The reasons behind this: the added time, materials, and labor that will be used. The service can however be helpful to those that are physically not able to do the prep work.
The first step when considering how to ship a mattress should be to strip the mattress of all bedding. If shipping the bed too, you may need to disassemble it. A bed frame is typically held together by small hardware pieces like screws and bolts. Get a zip lock bag in which to place them once the bed is disassembled.
Then wrap up the bed pieces or box spring in shrink-wrap and bubble wrap or high-density packing foam. This should reduce the risk of damage in case of mishandling or accidents.
The mattress will require a quality polyurethane encasement mattress bag. This covering is typically two to four millimeters thick. It protects against punctures and liquid damage.
Be sure to get a mattress bag that corresponds to your mattress size. You should be able to easily find full, twin, king, and queen mattress sizes as standard. They typically come somewhat bigger so you can add extra cushioning within, like a blanket or cardboard to further protect your mattress.
Once bagged, you can then place your mattress in a mattress shipping box. They also come in corresponding mattress sizes. Once in the box, you can fill up any extra space with cardboard, packing peanuts. Ensure you properly seal all the edges of the box using strong adhesive tape.
When I wanted to ship a mattress to another place, I also did a couple of extra steps:
- I cleaned the mattress, the bedding, and the foundation and bed frame separately and properly to rid them of dust and dirt.
- I vacuum sealed the mattress bag to ensure the mattress stayed in the position I placed it in.
- Plus, I labeled the box in which I put the mattress with some of the mattress info, my own name, and the receiver address, just in case. Labeling goes a long way in the case of finding a package easier
Also Read: Mattresses Made in the USA
4. Confirm Pick-Up and Delivery Details
This will depend on what service option you have chosen. Providers will typically offer curbside pick-up or have the client deliver the mattress to a pick-up location.
Be sure to adhere to whatever timing is agreed upon to avoid delays. If they end up having to wait for you, your slot may be canceled or you may be charged extra. Even with cancellation, you may still be penalized financially.
There are still a couple of things you should pay attention to when you’re picking up the mattress. So, make sure you follow the steps below to properly avoid any complications in the future:
- Pick up the mattress. At the right time, be ready to pick up the mattress. If you have to pick it up at a certain location besides your house, make sure you take a proper vehicle or a carrier with you. Bringing the mattress home is as important as shipping it, so make sure the mattress gets home safely.
- Check the mattress out for damage. You should immediately check the box or the mattress for any external physical damage first. Look around in the corners and edges. If there are any holes you’ve not seen before, or if there are other noticeable damages that could affect the mattress inside the wrap or the box, you should take note of it immediately. Preferably, check the box or the wrap as you’re picking the mattress up. You don’t need to unwrap the mattress because sometimes a quick external inspection is enough.
- Let the carrier know instantly if you find any damage to the mattress. If you happen to find any damage to the box or the mattress itself, you should immediately let the carrier know about it. It might be harder to prove the damage if you take it home. Still, if you notice any other damage later on, you can take pictures of it and submit them to the shipping service online to file a claim.
- Carefully open the mattress up. Whether the mattress is rolled up, folded, or packed in a box, you want to take it to an empty and clean room where you can unwrap it conveniently and immediately place it on a bed frame or foundation. You should also open the windows, especially if the mattress is made with memory foam, just to let the odors or chemicals get away freely. Next, you should inspect the mattress itself and make sure it has no new cuts, stains, or other issues that could have been caused during shipment.
Also Read: Beds Like Tempurpedic But Cheaper
To Ship or Not?
Before you set up a date and time for your mattress pick-up, be sure it is worth it in terms of cost-benefit. This means looking at the cost of the shipping process and compare it with the worth of the mattress.
For instance, quality hybrid mattresses tend to come at a higher cost given their better health benefits. This type of mattress may be worth much more than shipping it cross-country. However, if the cost is close to the value of shipping, it may be better to simply buy another mattress.
Some may opt to ship using their car to save on cost. While this may help in cutting expenses, there are certain legalities to be considered. There are no laws prohibiting mattress shipping this way.
But, you may contravene certain laws if tying the mattress to your car obscures visibility for the driver or exceeds limitations on car length. If the rope comes loose you may also end up penalized for improperly secured loads(1).
You may need to consult those in the moving business to ensure you do not run into trouble. Or, consider hiring a suitably sized vehicle that can accommodate your bed and mattress for the haul. Also note that tying such a heavy item to your car roof may cause damage to the sunroof, window frame, and door seals resulting in costly repairs.
Renting a moving trailer (U-Haul or a similar company) might be a suitable alternative, especially if your car isn’t large enough to transport a mattress. This option will give you more flexibility. You will travel with the trailer and, thus, will be able to start unpacking as soon as you get to your destination. After all, delivery trucks can be late.
Additionally, some companies include moving services with a trailer. This means you won’t have to do the heavy lifting on your own. This option may not be free in some cases, so it would be good to compare the rates before committing to one company.
Those moving an RV mattress within the vehicle should not have a problem. Since many personal cars cannot accommodate mattresses within, you also have to consider how exposure to the elements may affect the condition and value of your mattress on its journey. Especially If the distance to be traveled is lengthy. In such instances, engaging a shipper or suitable vehicle is best.
So what do you do if shipping is not an ideal option? If you decide that it is not worth it to ship a mattress, then you will require to make a purchase. Going online is a great way to find a wide variety of options at bargain prices(2).
How Much Does It Cost to Ship a Mattress?
The service cost can be a defining factor when choosing a shipping method for the mattress. Now, the price will depend on the mattress size, how far it needs to be shipped, and how quickly it has to arrive. Generally, you can expect to spend somewhere between $300 and $700.
Usually, there are certain services that ship mattresses for you, including FedEx, UPS, uShip, Freight Pros, and TSI Shipping (3)(4). To grasp how much it would cost to ship a mattress, let’s consider the cost of shipping a queen-size mattress in the same distance by each of these services.
Price for Shipping Queen Mattress
Often, moving companies offer optional insurance for an additional cost. It can guarantee customer protection if the mattress gets damaged or lost during the move. While this option is not an absolute necessity, it can come in handy when shipping an expensive mattress.
What to Do If I Don’t Want to Ship My Mattress?
For some reason, if you don’t want to ship your mattress and you feel like buying a new mattress, or other solutions would work out for you better, you can always let go of your mattress in several ways.
- You could give your mattress to charities, homeless shelters, care homes, or even second-hand furniture shops. There’s a chance that they might pay you some money for the mattress, but in most cases, it would just be considered a donation.
- You could sell your mattress online for a low price.
- You can also recycle your mattress by taking it to a recycling center.
- You can also give your mattress to online bloggers who want to make content out of restoring your mattress.
- If none of the options above is feasible for you, you might just want to leave your mattress on the curb side. In that case, either it will be collected, or somebody who is in need might pick it up.
I normally just go to a nearby charity or list my mattress online in giveaways. There are obviously lots of people out there who need a mattress, and if my mattresses are in good condition, I wouldn’t choose to just throw them out.
As a bonus method, I’ve even tried to give away my extra mattress to hotels or guesthouses that really needed it. So if that is feasible for you, make sure to give it a try.
Can I ship my mattress through the postal service?
Different providers have different policies on this. USPS does not undertake the shipping of mattresses. This is due to the larger dimensions and weight of most mattresses. FedEx does accommodate mattresses as part of oversized shipments. They however require it to be contained in a mattress shipping box.
FedEx and UPS are also unlikely to accept anything bigger than a twin due to similar size and weight restrictions. The cost however tends to be prohibitive making alternative options like buying a new mattress at your destination a better deal.
If you still prefer to ship, save on costs by considering trucking companies that handle cargo to your destination. They may offer less than truckload (LTL) services that can accommodate your mattress at a better cost.
Can you fold a mattress for transport?
You can fold a mattress for transportation if your mattress is an all-foam or latex one. Even with that, you shouldn’t fold a mattress thicker than 8 inches, because it can damage its tissues or void your warranty.
Do I need to take insurance on a mattress shipping?
You might be wondering if insurance is a necessity for this kind of shipping. There is always the possibility that something can happen along the way that could lead to damage to your property. This is why you need to consider the reputation of the company you hire. Also, if the value of your mattress is significantly higher than the cost of shipping, insurance should be considered.
As you work out how much does it cost to ship a mattress, consult the shipper. They can advise you on what reputable insurers cover this or you can opt to simply shop around online.
Are there any alternatives to shipping a mattress?
A more profitable alternative to shipping a mattress is renting a van (you can use U-haul or any other company) to deliver the mattress or buying a new mattress, in case it ends up being cheaper.
Can a mattress be strapped to the top of a car for transportation?
Yes, you can strap a mattress to the top of a car, in case you don’t plan to use a shipping service. However, you need to secure the mattress in its place, because if it somehow separates, you could both be breaking the law by moving something unsecured and have to financially compensate for any damages to your car or other people’s, if not the mattress itself.
So what is the bottom line? When you are considering how to ship a mattress, you first need to decide if the cost is worth it. You get free quotes by going online with the measurements and weight of your mattress.
Comparing these cost estimates with the current value of your mattress will determine if you go ahead with shipping. If you do, consider insurance where the value is substantially high. Also, ensure you choose convenient pick-up and delivery locations and times.
If shipping is not the ideal solution, consider selling off or donating your mattress and buying a new one at your destination.
Did you find this guide helpful? Let us know your thoughts in the comments section below and what else you think would be useful when mattress shipping.
- United States Government Accountability Office (November 2012). Federal and State Efforts Related to Accidents That Involve Non-Commercial Vehicles Carrying Unsecured Loads. Retrieved from http://www.gao.gov/pdf/product/650049
- National Retail Federation (October 11, 2018). NRF study says consumers shop at discount retailers regardless of age or income. Retrieved from https://nrf.com/media-center/press-releases/nrf-study-says-consumers-shop-discount-retailers-regardless-age-or
- Calculate FedEx shipping rates. Retrieved from https://www.fedex.com/en-us/online/rating.html#
- How do I ship a mattress? Retrieved from https://www.tsishipping.com/resource-center/how-do-i-ship-mattress