There are many things to consider when thinking about buying a pool table. The style, the size, the cost, how much space you’ll need, etc. But like any other piece of furniture you buy, you’ll also have to consider how to get it into your house (or wherever it is you want to put it). This begs the question, “how are pool tables delivered?”
Pool tables are usually delivered in a partially assembled state, with the cabinet, legs, and playing surface in separate packaging. The table is typically installed (assembled and leveled) at the same time. However, the delivery process will vary depending on the seller, the buyer’s wishes, the type and design of the table, and whether it’s used or new.
How Different Types of Pool Tables Are Delivered
The first thing that’s going to affect how a pool table is delivered is the type of table. Every table model is different, and every manufacturer and dealer packages their tables differently for shipping and delivery. But there are general guidelines that will help you know what to expect from certain table types.
Slate tables are the most common tables on the market. They are also extremely heavy, thanks to the slate rock slabs that constitute their playing surfaces. These slabs either come as one piece or in three separate pieces.
Whether 1-piece or 3-piece, the slate is typically packaged separately from the cabinet, rails, and legs of the table for shipping and delivery – unless it’s a coin-operated style table, in which case the cabinet is already fully assembled and only the legs need to be attached.
3-piece slate tables have a particularly complicated and lengthy delivery and installation process since the slate pieces need to be leveled and joined, and the cloth subsequently installed on top of it.
MDF, Outdoor, and Portable Tables
MDF pool tables and outdoor pool tables are considerably lighter than slate tables since their playing surfaces are made from medium-density fiberboard or a similar material. The main thing that affects their delivery, however, is that they don’t require professional installation. The cabinet and playing surface are typically already put together, so most of the assembly simply involves attaching the legs.
Portable tables are even lighter and require little or no assembly. MDF, outdoor, and portable pool tables typically come in one box and are delivered to the front porch or front room.
How Long Does it Take to Get a Pool Table Delivered?
How long you’ll have to wait for your table to be delivered depends on the seller. Most pool table companies will schedule delivery for within one month (30 days) of the purchase date.
This varies depending on where you buy the table and what kind of table it is, but thirty days is generally the outside limit. It’s always a good idea to read the fine print about delivery time and the installation process before buying a table!
The other major factor in the delivery of a pool table is where you’re buying it from. There are three main categories that we’ll look at here – authorized dealer, online retailer, and private seller.
Most pool tables in North America are sold and delivered by authorized dealers. These are usually brick-and-mortar stores like games table suppliers, billiards supply stores, furniture outlets, and sporting goods retailers. Many manufacturers also distribute their own tables, but the majority go through a regional dealer or partner company, particularly when it comes to actually delivering the table to the consumer.
Here’s how the process typically goes with an authorized dealer:
At the time of purchase (or shortly afterward), a delivery date and time frame will be agreed upon. On the delivery day, a two-person team will arrive at your house (or other delivery location) in a large van, panel truck, or trailer.
Depending on the accessibility of your location, they’ll either carry the padded and packaged components (cabinet, slate, legs, etc.) or roll them on a dolly from the truck to the chosen room. Many dealers require that you inspect the table components and sign a form confirming that nothing is damaged or missing.
Installation and cleanup are usually recommended as part of the delivery – some dealers call this “white glove” service. This is either added to the cost of delivery or included in the price of the table, depending on the dealer. After installation, you’ll likely be asked to sign another form confirming that the table has been delivered and installed to your satisfaction.
It is possible to waive the professional installation and simply have it delivered to your curb or front room. However, setting up a pool table (especially a slate table) is a complicated and time-consuming task, so you’re probably better off letting the pros handle it. Some manufacturer warranties are even voided if the table isn’t installed by an authorized professional.
Online Retailer (New Tables)
When you buy a table through an online retailer like Amazon or Wayfair, simple curbside delivery is typically your only option – meaning it will be delivered in its packaging to your front door or front room. You’ll have to hire a professional installer yourself if you don’t want to go the DIY route. It’s worth noting, however, that most (but not all) of the tables sold on these sites are not slate tables and don’t require professional installation anyway.
Some sellers give you the option of having an authorized dealer install the table for an extra fee. Some other sellers include the cost of installation in the price of the table, although this isn’t typically the norm.
Private Sellers (Used Tables)
If you’re buying a used table from a private seller through a classified ad or an online marketplace like eBay or Craigslist, you may need to hire a moving company that specializes in pool tables. Some sellers may handle that on their end and include delivery (and even installation) in the price – but always be sure before you buy.
How Much Does It Cost To Deliver a Pool Table?
The cost to have a pool table delivered depends on the seller, the type of table, and whether or not installation is included. Most dealers of big-name brands charge anywhere from $300 to $500 for their “white glove” delivery and installation services. For many dealers, delivery (without installation) is included in the price of the table, provided you’re in their normal delivery area.
You may be able to save money by waiving the dealer installation and hiring a local certified third party to install the table after delivery – but make sure to compare quotes first.
When purchasing from an online retailer, the shipping and delivery cost will depend on your location and where it’s being shipped from. Some sellers offer free shipping while others may charge hundreds of dollars.
If purchasing from a private seller, as mentioned above, the delivery cost may be included in the table price. Ultimately, the cost will depend on the moving company. Usually, the cost of moving a pool table is anywhere from $250 to $650.