A couple about to pay their local movers in Los Angeles

What Is Double Drive Time and How Does it Affect Moving in LA?

Posted in: Moving 101

Written by: Michael Vaughan

If you’re planning to hire a professional to assist you with the relocation, you must learn more about the double drive time in California. The DDT was created to give customers more control over their finances, as it describes precisely how each mover in the state should charge their transportation fees. If you’re still not sure what all this means, don’t worry. This blog will help you understand all the terms and how the DDT can affect your relocation.

What Is Double Drive Time (DDT)?

If you ever got professional moving services in Los Angeles, you might have noticed that you were charged a double drive time fee (DDT) at the end of the move. That’s because the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) passed a law that requires all California-based Los Angeles moving companies to add this fee on each transaction.

Still, you’re probably wondering what the DDT Law is all about. It dictates how the movers can charge the transportation costs. According to the law, a Los Angeles moving company is required to double the time it takes to get your belongings from the origin point to their final destination according to the hourly rate you previously agreed upon.

Learn What All the Important Terms Mean Before Signing the Contract

The moving contract is one of the most important documents you’ll have to deal with when hiring Los Angeles movers. To avoid unnecessary relocation stress, you must understand all the information before signing it, including all the details around DDT. If you’re unfamiliar with it, don’t worry. We’re going to explain precisely what all the terms mean:

  • Origin – This is the home or the office space you’re relocating from and the place where the movers will come to pick up all your belongings. It’s also the point where they will start charging you for their transportation services.
  • Destination – As you might have already guessed, this is the place where the belongings are going to be delivered. More importantly, the size of the DDT fee will primarily depend on how long it took to get to the destination from the origin. This means that relocation within the same Hollywood neighborhood won’t have a large DDT fee. However, if you’re living in Beverly Hills but relocating to one of the more affordable LA suburbs, be aware that traffic congestion could significantly increase the fee.
  • Warehouse – This is the LA moving company’s office, where their trucks and equipment are located. Depending on the location of their warehouse and storage facilities, driving to suburbs like the East LA neighborhoods can sometimes take several hours. While the movers might want to charge you this period, the law prevents them from doing so, no matter how long it takes them to cross this distance.
A person signing a contract with their moving company in Los Angeles
t's essential to understand what all the terms mean before signing a contract with a mover

What Are the Benefits of DDT?

While all the information we just went over will help you understand how the fee is calculated, you’re probably wondering why this law was even created in the first place. The DDT exists to protect customers by giving them more control over their relocation expenses. If you’re relocating at an hourly rate, knowing the distance between the origin and destination points and how long it takes to cross it will allow you to determine the transportation costs quickly.

Instead of calculating charges for several trips, you only have to multiply the time by x2. For example, if it took 20 minutes, the movers will put 40 minutes on the invoice, which will be charged according to the predetermined hourly rate. Before the CA law on double drive time came into play, customers were charged by the “Portal to Portal” method, which also included the costs of getting from the warehouse to their home. They had very little control over the pricing, as the prices were nowhere near as transparent as they are today.


Double Drive Time Fee Allows You to Spot Fraudulent Local Movers in Los Angeles

Considering you’ll be able to calculate the transportation costs, the DDT will prevent you from getting scammed. Everybody knows how lousy driving in LA can be, which makes it very easy for a fraudulent mover to justify the higher costs for the service they provided. To ensure you don’t fall for this simple relocation scam, ask the company how they usually charge their transportation services before hiring them.

If they say that they also include the trip from their warehouse and storage facilities to the origin point, it’s best to avoid them and look for a different company. Hiring a mover that also charges this distance will take away any control you have over the final driving costs. After all, they can easily claim they’ve spent more fuel because it took them longer to get to you.

DDT Allows You to Hire Almost Any Local Moving Company in Los Angeles No Matter How Far Away Its Warehouse Is

Another benefit of DDT is that it eliminates any bias towards service providers that are not close to you. If you want to hire cheap movers in Los Angeles whose warehouse and storage facilities are located on the opposite side of the city, don’t hesitate to do it.

You will only be charged for moving between the homes, as any fuel costs the mover accrued before this period won’t be included in the invoice. This means that even someone living in Downtown LA will be able to get some affordable services. If the service providers in Central LA are too expensive for you, look for their competitors in the best Los Angeles suburbs.

A woman happy that she found some good Los Angeles movers
DDT allows you to hire a mover for no extra cost, even if they are on the opposite side of the city

Are There Any Exceptions to DDT?

While the DDT guarantees that you can only get charged for the transportation service from the origin point to the destination, know that there are a few exceptions. The CPUC’s Max 4 Tariff guidelines recognize three different ones:

  • Exception 1 – Multiple trip relocation – If the move cannot be completed in a single trip, the mover will have to go back and forth between the origin point and destination, increasing transportation costs. The final bill will include each trip’s loading and unloading times, DDT of the first, and actual driving times for all consecutive trips.
  • Exception 2 – Multiple simultaneous shipments – Anyone who requires two or more trucks to move a single unit of equipment simultaneously will also be billed differently. Besides the loading and unloading times, you will also be responsible for the actual drive time, plus an additional 25 minutes for each shipment.
  • Exception 3 – Split pick-up, delivery, or a combination move – The last exception covers a few similar scenarios. For starters, those moving in together with their partner from different Los Angeles neighborhoods will require a split pick-up. This means there will be two points of origin and a unique destination. The billing will include total loading and unloading times and a DDT from each origin point. On the other hand, if you broke up with your partner or have any other reasons to move out and start living separately, you’ll need a split delivery, which is billed the same way as the previous option. There’s also a combination of the two, where every component is billed separately.
Three people looking for a good LA moving company
If you and your roommates are not relocating from the same apartment, you will have to pay some additional fees

What Questions Should You Ask Moving Companies in Los Angeles Before Hiring Them?

Although we went over the meaning of DDT and how it could benefit you, the law only vaguely defines the terms surrounding it. Considering different companies can interpret them differently, it’s crucial to go through all the details with the representative before the actual move. For example, while some will wait until all the fragile items, furniture, and other large objects are loaded onto the truck to start the clock, others do it as soon as the loading begins. You also don’t want to hire someone who considers their warehouse or storage facility as the final destination point for the DDT, as many scammers commonly use this tactic.

Some companies also add a fuel surcharge to the final bill, which will also increase the relocation cost, so don’t hesitate to ask if it will be included in the final invoice. You also want to know how they round up their time. Most movers round up the numbers to the nearest fifteen minutes, so if the trip lasted 40 minutes, they shouldn’t charge you for more than 45. Asking the representatives about all these details will allow you to predict the transportation expenses and protect you from falling for a scam.

 A couple on the phone with a Los Angeles moving company
Make sure you clear all the pricing details with the company representative before the move

Is Hiring Professional Movers in Los Angeles Worth It Considering These Costs?

With everything that goes into calculating your transportation expenses, is hiring a mover still worth it? While the price of professional service might seem high to some, the value you get is undoubtedly worth the cost. Although you might be able to move some belongings on your own, you will still need some assistance with relocating a piano or even packing furniture.

If you’re relocating in a hurry or just want to move efficiently, professionals can help you prepare everything much more quickly. They also use the best packaging materials when protecting your belongings, ensuring nothing gets accidentally damaged during transportation. Simply put, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t hire a mover to assist you.

One of the best local movers in Los Angeles
Hiring professional LA movers will make your relocation significantly easier

Are You Relocating Within LA? Hire the Best Movers in Los Angeles to Assist You With Everything

As you can see, the DDT makes all the transportation expenses much more transparent, allowing you to easily calculate how much your entire move is going to cost. It also protects you from all sorts of fraudulent activities, meaning you won’t have to worry about getting scammed when relocating anywhere in the state of California.

With all the things to do before a move, hiring a professional will allow you to finish most of your relocation preparations within a day. If you’re looking for an excellent local mover in LA, you can’t go wrong with hiring All In Moving.

Contact Us to Learn More About Our Incredibly Affordable Rates

Our company provides a wide range of excellent local relocation services, so we’re always ready to assist you with anything. Entrepreneurs relocating their offices to a different location can book a commercial move, while anyone who wants to move to a new home should simply get a residential relocation. Besides using the same DDT principles we mentioned in this blog, both options include a large truck and several trained professionals.

If you can’t pack some of your belongings, simply get our packing service and let us take care of everything. To learn more about our hourly rates, you only have to contact us. Once your request is processed, one of our representatives will get back to you and provide a free quote, allowing you to plan your expenses right away.

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