PODS Sucks in Florida, too!
I used PODS in the year 2000 and had a "fond memory" of the experience. It made my simple local move easier because I didn't have to rush to get everything done in a day. My memory of the time was no more than this, however.
In 2006, I was fortunate to find another service that was cheaper...The Mobile Attic of Tampa Bay. The unit was ALL METAL construction and was very secure. I felt very confident in placing my belongings in that unit, again for a local move. It was a great experience. I was very happy with that company.
When I moved again in 2007 (yes...I've been moving a lot lately), I discovered that the Mobile Attic couldn't cross county lines (they are in Pinellas County...I moved to Pasco County), so I was unable to use them and just went with renting a truck.
Then I thought a window had opened for me to move across country from Florida to California, which is "home" for me. I had a vague memory that PODS was pretty good and then discovered that they moved across country. It was the perfect answer to not having to drive a truck and my car across country.
I made the arrangements and the PODS unit was set to be delivered on Friday, 9/11. When my plans for moving to CA fell through, I called PODS and explained the situation. They readily cancelled my first reservation and started a second. In all of my communications with PODS, whether via phone or e-mail, all they ever told me was that there would be an additional "final pickup" fee, but NEVER said how much it would be. The initial delivery fee was $48.50. I just assumed it would be that, plus whatever mileage difference from the first delivery. This is just a little background on this fee.
When the PODS unit was delivered on 9/11, I was completely dismayed by the condition and construction of the unit. It wasn't what I recalled at all. It had a corregated plastic roof and wood floor with 4x4" beams as the "framing" for the metal sides and plastic roof. I was not happy. Oh, it was also much smaller than I remembered and compared to the Mobile Attic container I had used previously.
My first thought was, "Thank God this isn't going across country!" My second thought was, "All my stuff would never have fit in here!"
I thought about it more over the weekend and decided that I couldn't risk placing my furniture and other belongings in that unit for any extended period of time (I had planned for the "move" pickup three weeks later). There was absolutely no protection from the humidity, which is extreme this time of year. I just didn't have any confidence in the unit at all. It just scared me. After reading the posts on this website, I know I made the right decision.
Here's where the fun begins. I called first thing on Monday, 9/14, to tell them how I felt and to find out what my options were. They told me there would be a final pickup fee of $82.50 plus tax or $88.28, but that I would "get the rest back." They had already charged my credit card $170.94. I figured I might get the other $30 credited back to my credit card.
I asked them to explain why it was so much more than the initial delivery fee, especially since the unit was in its original location. They said something about giving people a break in the beginning to "get them started" and then they recoupe it in the final pickup fee. I was incensed! I asked again for her to explain the fee and she said that the fees were set locally. I asked her to have someone locally call me so I could discuss it with them. No one ever called me.
Today I looked at my credit card account online and the $88.28 was in addition to the original fee they charged!
I received an invoice in the mail today for the original $170.94. On it was a reminder statement letting me know that there would be a delivery charge imposed at the time of final pickup, the base of which would be $69 and included 20 miles. Any excess miles would be billed at $2.25/mile. There was also a phone number to call for any questions, which I had several.
I asked the first person I spoke to how the $88.28 broke down and how the $69 base fee played into the total. Since the location was unchanged, I needed to know if the 20 miles that was covered had to do with the distance from where the unit was being taken back to and just where that was exactly. She couldn't answer either of my questions and couldn't define the fees I was being charged. She couldn't help me AT ALL. I asked her to please get someone on the phone who could answer my questions. I got a supposed supervisor named Tonyia. All she could do was reiterate what the first woman had told me, but with far more attitude. Yes, I was frustrated and angry...I'll admit that. They both just talked in circles around my questions. When I asked Tonyia if there was someone in management that I could speak to, she simply said, "No." I said, "So you're it for me?" She said, "Yes." I said, "So you're the top of the food chain at PODS?" and she said, "Yes." I told her flat out that I didn't believe her, not for a second. I was livid.
I don't know how this whole thing will play out, but the fact that I paid $260 to have a PODS unit sit in my yard for three days without even having been touched is absolutely ridiculous and outrageous. Although I realize this is not an enormous amount of money, it's a big deal to me, which is all that matters.
I sent an e-mail to a "consumer resolution" e-mail address I found on this site. There was another phone number published all over their website, but it's not a working number (866-229-4160). That's when I started looking for a website like this. We'll see what happens.
Wish I had looked for this website BEFORE I made my first reservation. I'm SO GLAD my move ended up being local!