Reanna and I just moved from Eugene, OR, to Joshua Tree, CA for $693.79. Our boxes were free, mostly from the Oakway Nike outlet dumpster. Our labor was free, mostly our own, plus a couple friends at key moments. We paid $218 for our 5×8 U-Haul trailer ($170 for seven days, plus $48 for trailer-plus-$5k insurance). Our U-Haul guy threw in an extra day (which we used) and a bag of packing blankets (which we used a few of).

We paid $70.71 for food. We ate at Casa Ramos in Corning for $22.76 and bought a date milkshake for $4.95 at Charlie Brown Farms in Littlerock, CA. The rest was for groceries.

We paid $126.99 for lodging. We stayed for free with my cousins Tom & Megan in Ashland the first night. We planned to stay at campgrounds the other three nights but that didn’t work out very well. We could’t find the first one before it got dark, so we stayed at the Economy Inn in Corning for $44. (We liked that room. Reanna liked the cinderblock construction and bathroom layout enough to take photos. The advertised pool, however, had clearly been out of commission for a long time.) We did camp on the third night, at Caswell State Recreation Area, for $30. It was very pretty there. A tiny remnant of central CA old growth forest. If you go, spend some time choosing your campsite. Some are adequate and some are really nice, right on the river.) Our fourth night of camping was undone by a blowout on our trailer. We spent three hours huddled in the dust between the I-5 and an almond orchard just south of Coalinga, while U-Haul and Billingsley tires figured out where we were, that the rim was cracked, and just what size of wheel we needed. We sprung for a motel that night, as we were pretty sure some of that dust was pesticide. We’d seen a crop duster flying over the almond orchards a few minutes north. It was worth the $52.99 just for the shower at the Econo Lodge Inn in Buttonwillow. (Though the wifi was terrible and the advertised pool was covered in some kind of scum.)

The biggest expense was gasoline: $278.09 for 72 gallons for the 1,112 mile trip. That’s only 15.44 miles per gallon, but not bad to move that much weight–6,900 pounds, including me and Reanna.

I also bought new tires before the trip ($310 on sale at Wal-Mart) but I am not counting that as a moving expense since I needed them anyway–my old tires were in OK shape for occasional town driving but ten years old with well over 100,000 miles on them.

So our total was $693.79, which is my most expensive move by far, but pretty good, I guess, for moving 40 years worth of possessions over a thousand miles.