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Avoid this moving company at all costs. In the summer of 2019, we moved from Whitesboro, NY (near Syracuse) to Miami, FL. Since we had previous bad experiences with moving companies we did a lot of research before agreeing to use Greater Syracuse Moving and Storage, a company affiliated with North American Van Lines. We knew choosing a national company meant paying more, but due to the distance of the move, we wanted to be safe. Wow, were we wrong and were we greatly deceived.
At first, when we met with the Relocation Sales Consultant, Ron **, we were quite optimistic. He understood we had bad experiences in the past with other companies and guaranteed us that everything would go well. It is what he didn't tell us that, in retrospect, led to many of our issues. We agreed to a nearly $10,000 move and signed a contract. One piece of advice - these contracts are utterly useless. You have almost no rights and no control. They in no way are a legitimate contract. Buyer beware!!!
The loading of our stuff in Whitesboro went quite well and the actual movers were quite professional. They arrived on time, treated everything with care, and were polite, respectful, and worked very hard on a hot day. The only concern we had was that the driver who picked up our stuff let us know he would not be the driver to deliver our items to us in Miami. He still set they would meet the delivery window time, but it would be a different driver. Though this seemed unusual to us - never in our previous moves did one driver pick-up and one driver deliver - but since everything went well so far we trusted them. Lesson learned: no matter how wonderful the actual movers are, NEVER trust a moving company. One hand is not working in tandem with the other hand.
Then the disaster began. As we drove down to Miami we waited about five days since our items had been picked up from a call from Greater Syracuse Moving telling us the actual day of delivery. We finally called and they said they did not know yet and to call back after the weekend. This was a dance for a number of days and then they finally provided us with the date... BUT... only 2/3 of our stuff was going to be delivered. This made absolutely no sense to us. In numerous calls and emails to Ron ** and Move Coordinator, Melissa **, we learned that when our stuff arrived after being picked up at our previous home in New York it was moved off the truck and into storage. Then it was moved to a new truck that would be taking it down to Miami, but they ran out of room on that truck. SO THEY LEFT 1/3 OF OUR ITEMS BEHIND.
Did they call us to let us know this, not a chance! They were never forthcoming with information, and in fact, I do not believe they ever initiated a phone call to us. In addition to learning we would not receive all of our stuff on the same day, we learned they did not know when the other 1/3 of our items would ever be delivered. They said they would let us know when they knew, but it would be past the delivery window we agreed upon when we signed the contract. Again, the contract means nothing. You have no rights, even though they provide you with a nice brochure telling you what your rights are supposedly.
The first 2/3 of our stuff arrives. The movers were good and they worked hard. But a number of items were damaged. Many of our boxes were damaged and most of the wardrobes had caved in sides or the top. Clearly, our items were not treated with care. They had let us know that the items left behind in Syracuse were "not important" as they included mostly outdoor furniture. Not true. Our beds were missing. Our dining room table was missing. Important boxes were missing. And important electronic items were missing.
We still had no information on when the rest of our stuff would arrive. Finally, after repeated calls and emails we learned that a new truck had been assigned and would delivery our remaining stuff on July 4th - holiday. Plans had to be canceled. More importantly, since it was a holiday our pets couldn't be placed in boarding so we had to secure them in a bedroom all day when the movers were here. Not at all an ideal situation.
So we finally had our stuff but numerous items were damaged - the dining room table, a bookshelf, 2 dressers, and a chair. This doesn't include the damaged boxes and wardrobes. Despite insurances over the phone and through email that we would be able to make claims for the late arrival and damages, in the end, we received $252 for damages and $0 for 1/3 of our stuff being delayed by more than a week. $252 refund on a nearly $10,000 moves is absolutely absurd. But as I said before, we had no recourse. So I turn to the Internet to share these facts so that future families do not have to deal with this corrupt and incompetent company. Lessons learned: The contract is meaningless. The delivery window means nothing. They will not treat your stuff with care. They will keep you in the dark as much as possible.
I recently had the experience of using North American Van Lines for my move from NJ to FL. When the salesman from Beltmann in NJ came to our home he emphasized that anything left in dresser drawers that was not breakable would not be removed. This was not the case. Everything (including underwear) was removed and packed in reams of paper. I was also told that I had to purchase the highest amount of insurance and had to pay the amount on the contract whether or not it was accurate. Upon delivery, there were several items missing including some that could not be replaced. I was unable to get some of the carton numbers.
Several weeks after the delivery, I received two additional cartons that were delivered to someone else in error. There are still at least two or three missing. I am now being told that maybe I didn’t look carefully in all the cartons. This type of comment is insulting and professional. My claim which totaled $1600 seemed to only be valued at $210. That’s disgusting. I have moved five times within the last 25 years and have never had as horrible an experience as this one.
When planning our move, my husband met with several companies and ultimately decided to go with North American due to the cost. During the in-home meeting, we discussed that we would be packing our own belongings and that the only thing needing done was loading, hauling and unloading. The representative set the loading date, the window for delivery and took detailed notes of our belongings to be loaded. On the loading day we had a wonderful group of men from Beltmann in Lenexa, KS. (No complaint with them). They took our belongings and we retained all items we would be moving ourselves, including personal items and clothing to last us the length of the window given to us for delivery. As we gained access to our new home (13 hours away) our excitement built at seeing our belongings in this new environment. Each day we waited to hear from the company regarding our delivery.
As the window began to close and not hearing anything we contacted Beltmann and were told they had heard nothing from North American except no driver was available. We continued to call and eventually asked for a North American #. At that time we were told there was a driver shortage and there was no known date our belongings would arrive. It is important to note that their recording touts how many trucks and drivers they have "just waiting to deliver". At the end of our window we were told that we could stay in a hotel and they would cover the cost and give us $50 a day for incidentals - by the way; this doesn't include clothing. We explained that we had a dog with us and a home we were staying in, and paying for, so why would be move to a hotel? We would still have the same problems - no food, nothing to cook with, no furniture and no way to wash our clothing.
They told us we could go purchase an air mattress to sleep on (already had one - because we prepared) and that we could provide receipts for incidentals like shampoo and meals out that they would reimburse at a later date. After 2 days of contacting and speaking with a representative, we requested a supervisor and explained the situation again - more forcefully and with greater frustration. She had the audacity to ask why we hadn't prepared for a situation like this! I asked why they hadn't prepared to have a driver ready to deliver my belongings and eventually got $500 without receipts so that we could purchase some other items to continue to stay in our home until our belongings arrived. Fourteen days after loading and 12 days after taking possession of our new home - eating all meals out, going to a laundromat, sitting on the floor, and sleeping on an air mattress PART of our belongings arrived.
It was at this time, that we found out all of our belongings had been taken to a warehouse, off-loaded, unwrapped from the moving blankets and left to sit (free for anyone to go through) for 14 days. Prior to coming to us a company from TX went to the warehouse, re-wrapped our furniture and loaded a portion of it onto another truck. This was a box truck - not the semi that had North American plastered on the side of it that came and loaded us 14 days prior. Again, these were nice men that took precautions not to damage our new home. They worked tirelessly to offload before heading to FL to load another family. These men had no idea when our other items would arrive. It was at this time we discovered that my husband's motorcycle had a broken piece on the handlebar. (No one could say exactly when the piece was broken). We also discovered that one of the things missing was the container with our washer and dryer hookups.
We had to purchase new hoses and vents to avoid another trip to the Laundromat. All of my husband's clothing (except what he had packed for the 7 day window) was also left behind. After a weekend, we contacted North American Van Lines AGAIN regarding the lost of our items. They had no idea anything had been left behind and told us they would have to check on it. Not a word for 2 more days. When WE reached out AGAIN we had to leave a message. Finally after another week, we were notified our items would arrive the following day. The crate they were enclosed in was bashed in one one side. Inside this crate was the missing hoses for the washer and dryer, a large box of my husband's clothing and some items. One of those was a ride on John Deere tractor that had belonged to our son when he was small. It was made of metal.
This had been broken along the axel and the center seam along the top of the tractor was split open due to heavy items being stacked on top of it. We expected some things to be broken, however, a metal ride-on toy was not what we were thinking. The lack of transparency at how our items would be handled (loaded, offloaded, unwrapped, left sitting, re-wrapped and reloaded), the missed window of delivery, the poor communication from North American regarding lack of drivers, that they were not going to make the window for delivery and the difficulty we had to go through to received compensation for the lack of contract completion is the why we will NEVER use this company again. I would tell anyone that asks to NEVER use this company.
I came in to contact with North American Van Lines after using a local company in Seattle to crate and store my apartment furnishings for a year. When planning to move to Texas, the local agency contracts with North American Van Lines to move the crate interstate. The pickup of the crate was cancelled 4 times, usually at the last minute so it was impossible to make plans or arrangements to accommodate these problems. On the telephone customer service almost always sent me to voicemail, which was never returned. On the rare times I did get someone on the phone, the information was either inaccurate or incomplete.
After the four cancellations of the pickup I implored the representatives to personally follow up on my contract, but this did not happen and I was told whatever needed to be said to get me off the phone as quick as possible. Lastly, despite all the mistakes and delays on their part they refused to offer delay compensation on a technicality, which gave me absolutely no recompense in my dispute or an incentive for them to actually do a better job.
North American was contracted for us through a corporate relocation package. They initially came to our home to do a quick inventory of our items and then we scheduled the move. On moving day they arrived as scheduled, friendly and efficient. They ensured the floors were covered and then off together for the walk-through. They packed our entire house 3 bedrooms 2 bath within 8 hours and had the catalog list prior to leaving. I was extremely pleased with this service and now can’t imagine moving without it. I was the only person present for the move since my husband was already at our other home and by far this was not stressful and they were well organized. Thanks and a kudos!!
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I am an experienced moving company customer. This was my first experience with North American Van Lines. I previously had used United Van Lines on my 3 previous cross country moves, but my company had paid for those moves. This time it was on my dime. North American had a decent price quote, so I decided on using them... Big mistake! They did a poor job packing lost several items, broke a rare sculpture and my printer. I had photos and documenting of the damaged items, and provided the photos and missing items documentation the day it was requested.
They reimbursed me ZERO. Even though I added the additional insurance with a cost of $100 to the move. They will downgrade the value on your broken items, then claim the reimbursement didn’t reach the $500 deductible. On the missing items, you have to notice the missing items, and make that claim with the movers delivering your items. In my case that would be opening 70 plus boxes while they are being delivered to your home, and then notice what is missing. Who is able to do that while directing the move team where to put all your boxes. If you use North American Van Lines...don’t give yourself an added headache on top of an already stressful experience. I will never use them again, and encourage anyone moving not to use them. I’d go with a United Van Lines if I could make this choice again.
We hired this Company to do a state to state move for my parents. Please do NOT contract with them. They gave me a rate, inflated it and stated we will give you more discounts only to inflate it again!
We moved from Texas to California and paid over $18k. This included one month of storage in Texas which cost about $4k. Everything went seemingly smoothly until our items were delivered. Almost all major pieces of furniture were damaged. Large cracks in our brand new dining table, legs knocked off new nightstands, chips on edges and corners of everything. We went through claims and got $5k back and now are the proud owners of damaged everything. Do NOT recommend using North American Van Lines unless you don't care about your stuff.
We hired Allied for a long-distance from Chicago, but they sub-contracted to North American which is another division of the same parent corporation. The long-haul driver was a no-show on our scheduled pickup day. Two days before the end of our contracted delivery window, we received a call that our possessions were in Kansas because they had been stored quite a while in Chicago. When we reminded them that we didn't have to pay if they didn't deliver on time, they found a way to meet the deadline but it involved a crew unloading at our new home until nearly 11 pm. That crew tried to get us not to check off each item, which is good because several were missing (including some that the crew knew were missing because those items were never loaded in Chicago). Several other items were broken.
Then we had to start the claims process which was horrible. The claim adjusters' job seems to be to avoid paying replacement value claims. They have a bunch of schemes. One was to find a cheap knock-off of something we owned and only offer us the price of that. Another was to claim that our possessions were old and had depreciated (their 'tariff', the regulatory document that governs interstate transport, states that depreciation is not a factor for replacement value). Yet another was to claim that there's a low limit on damages for self-packed boxes (the tariff does have a limit, but it's $2500 or higher depending on box size). Ultimately we had to file a lawsuit to recover. That's what it took to recover the full amount due to us.
We moved across the country and had this company move our stuff to storage for a couple of months before we were ready for it. We got the full boat of insurance just to make sure we wouldn't have any headaches at the end. The day we had our things delivered, my mother in law was the only one able to be present for the delivery due to some other circumstances. Since we had the insurance, my husband and I didn't stress about not being able to be there. The delivery day was a horrible experience for my mother-in-law. Rude, impatient, demanding, disrespectful are a few of her words and then they wouldn't go until they had her sign that everything was present.
We reassured her that everything would be okay because we had the insurance and had a set time to go through things. If something was missing or damaged, it would be okay. Fast forward some months...still within the time limit allowed, we filed our claim. Most things were good, but when it came to our Grande Piano... (insert rage) I had it professionally packed before the move to storage. I was present when it was packaged initially and when it was opened at my new house. What we opened was not how it was when it went into storage. Nobody is owning up to how that happened... And now there are parts missing and it is damaged! Damage that cannot be repaired! Plus the board and straps and roller that were our property for moving the piano are gone.
So if we need to move the piano again in the future, we're out those things too! It's still a functioning piano, but I will never let something that valuable be touched by such poor quality customer service people. Our delivery to our house was on October 31st, 2017. Today is February 22nd, 2019 and we got our final denial for our claim. When everything was filed within the given time, pictures, receipts, estimates for missing parts, Lawyers... It was not enough. We've been through the whole process now and I'm just stunned. How? What?... Crooks! The next step is going to court. No headaches??? I encourage everyone who moves to skip looking into North American. DON'T USE NORTH AMERICAN!
North American Van Lines expert review by Janine Sarna-Jones
North American Van Lines specializes in corporate relocation and residential moving for long-distances. With over 80 years of experience, the company is an expert on helping companies relocate throughout North America.
Packing: North American Van Lines has extensive advance packing services to help ensure a timely move. They have a huge network of movers and many offices and trucks so that they have the bandwidth to handle more customers.
Households: In addition to corporate moving, it offers household moving to individuals and families that are moving nationwide.
Competitive pricing: The company is reasonably priced and offers alternatives to help keep costs down, such as flexible move times.
Materials: The company offers customers a number of reasonably priced packing materials, such as moving kits and boxes.
Estimates: North American will provide you with estimates for moving supplies and services in order to give you a true sense of how much your move will cost.
Best for: Corporations, households, military families and individuals.
North American Van Lines Company Information
- Company Name:
- North American Van Lines