SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — South Dakota was one of the top moving destinations in 2021 according to data from the nation’s largest moving companies.

U-Haul’s Growth Index shows South Dakota saw a nearly 30 percent increase in one-way moves to the state last year. And a study by United Van Lines shows South Dakota was ranked number two for the second highest number of inbound moving trucks in 2021.

“Pretty much exactly a year ago now we signed the lease,” 15th Round Boxing Gym owner George Giovanis said.

It’s been one year since George Giovanis and his brother moved their boxing gym from Los Angeles, California to Sioux Falls, South Dakota. But they quickly found they were one of many making the move.

“Four of my clients are from California, they’ve relocated here also,” Giovanis said.

“Right after COVID started we started seeing a huge increase in one-ways coming in,” Sioux Falls U-Haul General Manager Eric Erbentraut said. “Over the last year we’ve had about a 30 percent increase.”

Those one way moves mean a lot of trucks coming from Arizona, California, New York, are ending up here in Sioux Falls, that means Sioux Falls is running out of places to put them.

“We’ve had to use second parking lots just because so much equipment is coming into town,” Erbentraut said.  “We are looking at expanding into a second location in Sioux Falls.”

“There are a lot of trucks here, everyone is moving here, this is a final destination,” Giovanis said.  

But with so many people moving to town, its also created a logistical nightmare for anyone trying to find a truck outside of South Dakota.

“It was horrible, it was horrible, we looked everywhere, we looked at Los Angeles, San Francisco, looked in Phoenix, not one truck anywhere to rent,” Giovanis said. “So we actually had to rent a U-Haul over here in Sioux Falls, drive it all the way back to Los Angeles, put all the stuff in it, and then come back.”

Moving companies are not only seeing an increase in one-way moves, but also a big increase in these cross-country, round trip moves as people have to get creative to move their stuff to South Dakota from other states seeing a lot of people moving out.

“I had a customer rent two trucks from here to California and back, just to move their stuff,” Erbentraut said. “With paid mileage, those were expensive ones, but still cheaper than the rates out of California because they’re so short.”

Erbentraut says he expects to see a continued high rate of inbound moves to the Sioux Falls area in 2022 as more jobs and industries come to town.