Home Improvements

Moving Your Music Instruments on a Budget

Moving is expensive enough on its own. But when you add musical instruments to the mix the prices seen to go sky high. Well, luckily, that doesn’t have to be the case. While music instruments are harder to pack and transport than the regular stuff, there are ways in which you can deal with them without spending a fortune. Here is how to move your music instruments on a budget.

Proper preparations

Moving is a project. And with every project, you should follow the golden rule: “Measure twice, cut once.” Preparing your instruments is one of the most important parts of the move. Because of their fragile build and difficult shape, they can be hard to move safely. By protecting your items properly you are making sure that they stay as safe as possible during your move. In order to do that you need to understand your instruments and use some cost-effective ways to make them move-ready.

You can easily move your instruments without spending too much money.

String instruments

The first thing you need to do when preparing string instruments for moving is to loosen their strings. Don’t go overboard and make their bridge fall over. You are loosening them just enough so that the temperature won’t put too much of a strain on them. You can never be sure as to what weather conditions your instruments will be exposed. Cold weather will make them tight while the warm weather will make them loose. When packing them you need to add extra padding. Crumpled newspapers will do just fine as the first layer, but you would do well if you wrap some clothes around your instrument as a second layer. Do not use shredded paper, as it will easily get inside of your instrument and you will have a hard time getting it out. Place your instrument in a box and clearly label it.

Brass or woodwind instruments

Brass or woodwind instruments tend to be less fragile in their build. But, a small dent can still have a high impact on the overall sound of the instrument. What you need to do is to take the instrument apart and wrap each part individually. Some parts are less fragile than others and require less wrapping. For the more fragile parts, you can also use clothes to increase safety. If possible, use thick clothes as it will provide both padding and temperature isolation. It would be very advisable to put your instruments in hard cases. They are the best investment you can make in regard to the safety of your instrument. If you are going to purchase one, now is the time.

Hard cases are the safest container for your instruments.


Pianos may be seen as tricky, but they are a no-brainer. The trick with piano is that you just have to find the right movers. There is simply no way that you will have all the required equipment and skills to safely transport your piano by yourself. The best thing you can do, both money vise and safety vise, is to get informed on your local movers and find the best ones. You can try and find wrapping material for them to use, as that might lower the price. But, besides that, there is pretty much nothing else you can do to lower your expenses while not risking accidents.


Drums and other percussion instruments need protective wrapping as well, but much less than the rest of the instruments. As there are no overly fragile parts of a drum, packing one is really straightforward. You just need to find a box that is slightly bigger than the drum. Next, you put some crumbled paper as padding on every side of the drum and safely tape up the box. No additional padding or wrapping is usually required.

Just make sure that you have enough room for drums. Maybe you should move them separately.

Make your containers moisture proof

One of the biggest reasons why instruments get damaged during relocation, beside reckless driving, is moisture. As many of them are made out of wood moisture can easily seep in and ruin them. If you want to avoid such an event you can repolish your instruments as new polish comes with a protective coating. Be sure to add a little salt and sugar to your containers as that will absorb the moisture in the air and help keep your instruments nice and dry.

Get proper movers

The saying goes that come moving day, your movers will either be your best friend or your worst enemies. That goes double if you are trying to move something as fragile as music instruments while being on a budget. Respectable movers like Dorothy & Martha Moving NYC will do whatever they can in order to make your move as safe and cost-effective as it can be. And those two things are the most important when it comes to finding good movers. Not cheap, but safe and cost-efficient.


Even though you are on a budget you should never look for the cheapest movers. There are many ways, including scams, in which the cheapest movers will end up costing you the most. Both in time and in money. What you need to do is to start looking for your movers as soon as you can. Get multiple estimates and figure out what is the fair price for the move that you have in mind. Next advice is to check out your local movers. Ask around if anyone has worked with them before and how their experience was. Also, go and check their company. A good mover knows that reliability is the number one concern of a responsible customer and will do whatever they can to show you how professional they are.

Work with your movers

Once you have found your movers, be sure to work with them. If they are friendly towards you they will do their best to make your move cost efficient. A little tip can surprisingly save you money, as movers will give you preferential treatment. Make sure to give your movers as much time as possible to organize your move. There are certain discounts and low prices you can get only if you start playing months in advance.