How much does it cost to ship a car?

CarsArrive | Costs , Auto shipping , CarsArrive

If you need to ship a car to another state, using a reliable auto transport company really is the best way to go. And because cost is an important factor in any decision, many people want to know the average cost to transport a car. However, like a lot of services, car shipping services do not use a flat rate. The price to ship your vehicle from point A to point B is going to vary on a number of factors, including things like:

  • The distance the car will need to be transported
  • The size and the model of the vehicle
  • The method of shipping or service package chosen
  • Type of carrier
  • Timeframe
  1. Distance to transport the vehicle

One of, if not the most important factors when determining the price of shipping is the distance your car needs to travel. Generally speaking, the longer the distance, the more the transport will cost as shipping companies need to be reimbursed for fuel costs and to pay drivers. However, as most auto shipping companies calculate the cost per mile shipped, the fare often decreases as the distance increases, so it’s important to factor that into the end result.

So, if you’re shipping a vehicle from New York to California, it is going to be more expensive than a shipment from New York to Illinois overall, but the rate per mile may be lower.

  1. Size and the model of the vehicle being shipped

The size of your vehicle will also have a big impact on the price of shipping, as heavier vehicles like pick-up trucks and SUVs cost more to ship than motorcycles and small sports cars. Professional vehicle transport companies like CarsArrive can even move oversized vehicles like tractors and commercial vehicles, it’s just going to cost more than moving a compact car.

  1. Service package

There are several different options when it comes to picking up and dropping off the vehicle that affect the price of shipping. CarsArrive, for example, offers several different types of service packages, including:

  • Carrier Direct Service. This option bypasses our network of service centers and instead relies on the large, over-the-road (OTR) car carrier to handle your entire move from beginning to end.
  • Service Center to Service Center. In this option, you drop off your vehicle at a designated service center and pick it up yourself from another service center at the end location.
  • Door-to-door shipping. The carrier comes to your location, picks up your car, and drops the vehicle off wherever you choose. This method is the perfect shipping solution for anyone looking for the simples and most convenient way to have a vehicle shipped.

Customers also have the option to combine or mix and match services, like door-to-service-center delivery and vice versa.

  1. Shipping in an enclosed vs. open carrier

Auto transport companies ship vehicles typically utilize two kinds of carriers used for auto transport, and they each have different rates. The two options are open-air trailers that can carry multiple cars at a time, and enclosed trailers that offer protection from the elements.

Open carriers are the most commonly used option, as the cost of shipping a car in enclosed trailers can be more than 60% of what you have to pay for an open carrier. However, if you’re shipping a new, luxury or even antique car, the enclosed carrier may be the most attractive option for you.

  1. Timeframe of the move

The sooner you can book your move, the better. The auto transport business does have its busier times of the year. Busy season typically starts in summer and goes through early fall, so if you need to ship your car during this time, you should expect to pay a little more than if you ship in the off season from late fall to early spring. 

If you’re in a hurry and you need to ship your car now, some companies do offer to pick up your vehicle within 24 hours, but that’s also going to increase the cost of transporting your vehicle.


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