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Study Says: Global Van Lines, Mayflower Transit and Two Men and a Truck Rank Highest in Customer Satisfaction

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RISMEDIA, Sept. 26, 2007- J.D. Power and Associates released its 2007 Full-Service Moving Company Customer Satisfaction StudySM this week. Global Van Lines ranks highest for long distance moves, while Mayflower Transit ranks highest for local moves in the Northeast, South and West regions and Two Men and a Truck ranks highest for local moves in the Midwest region, according to the study.

The inaugural study is based on evaluations from consumers who used a full-service moving company for residential long-distance (more than 50 miles) or local (50 miles or less) moves in the United States. Customer satisfaction with full-service moving companies is measured across seven factors: transportation of belongings; loading service; unloading service; optional coverage; estimate process; packing service; and insurance/damage claims.

The study finds that while 77% of local move customers report receiving their belongings on-time and without damage, this figure decreases to only 55% among long-distance move customers. In addition, claim settlement does little to improve satisfaction levels among customers whose possessions are lost or damaged. When customers report that a moving company provides reimbursement that is equal to or greater than the perceived value of damaged or lost items, satisfaction decreases from an average of 812 among customers who report no loss or damage to their belongings to an average of 701-a decrease of 111 points. Furthermore, when customers report that the reimbursement they received from their claim settlement is less than the perceived value of their lost or damaged items, satisfaction drops an additional 151 points to an average of 550.

“It is important for moving companies to realize that there is very little opportunity to recover if customers are dissatisfied because of damage or loss to their belongings,” said Michael Drago, senior account manager for the real estate and construction industries practice at J.D. Power and Associates. “Moving is already a very stressful process, and even if moving companies are generous in providing monetary reimbursement for claims, in the customer’s mind, the settlement may not fully compensate for the loss and inconvenience they incurred.”

Long-Distance Segment

Global Van Lines ranks highest in the Long-Distance Segment with a score of 774, performing particularly well in loading service, packing service, and optional coverage. Atlas Van Lines and Graebel Van Lines follow with scores of 767 and 760, respectively. Atlas Van Lines performs well in estimate process and transportation of belongings, while Graebel Van Lines performs particularly well in insurance/damage claims and unloading service.

Midwest Region

Two Men and a Truck ranks highest in the Midwest Region, achieving a score of 815 and performing particularly well in five of the seven factors: insurance/damage claims; loading service; packing service, transportation of belongings; and unloading service. Also ranking above the segment average is United Van Lines, which performs well in estimate process.

Northeast Region

In the Northeast Region, Mayflower Transit ranks highest in customer satisfaction with a score of 804, performing particularly well in estimate process; loading service; transportation of belongings; and unloading service. Following Mayflower Transit are Allied Van Lines (783)-performing well in insurance/damage claims and optional coverage-and United Van Lines (777).

South Region

Mayflower Transit ranks highest in the South Region, achieving a score of 791 and performing particularly well in estimate process, optional coverage and packing service. Atlas Van Lines and United Van Lines follow with scores of 787 and 782, respectively. Atlas Van Lines performs particularly well in insurance/damage claims; loading service; and unloading service, while United Van Lines performs well in transportation of belongings.

West Region

Mayflower Transit ranks highest in customer satisfaction in the West Region with a score of 788, performing particularly well in five of the seven factors: estimate process; loading service; optional coverage; transportation of belongings; and unloading service. Following Mayflower Transit are Two Men and a Truck with a score of 774 and United Van Lines with a score of 771. Two Men and a Truck performs particularly well in insurance damage/claims and packing service.

The study results include the following key findings:

Consumers who are employed by the military and government report satisfaction scores that are considerably lower than those of non-military consumers. For long-distance moves, overall satisfaction scores average 756 points for civilians, compared with 717 points for military/government employees. With local moves, satisfaction averages 780 points for civilians, compared with 743 for military/government personnel.

Approximately 61% of long-distance move customers opted to have their belongings packed by their moving company, while only 30% of local move customers did the same.

When shopping for a moving company, 52% of long-distance move customers and 46% of local move customers perform research on the Internet. In addition to visiting Web sites for full-service moving companies, shoppers also visit moving resource sites and Web sites for partial- and self-service moving companies, such as portable self-storage and rental truck firms.

The 2007 Full-Service Moving Company Customer Satisfaction Study is based on responses from 7,000 customers who used a full-service moving company in the past 18 months. The study was fielded from April to July 2007.

For more information, visit www.JDPower.com.

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