Shipping a car stress-free & cost-effectively

You can move to another country or state for many reasons – work, education, love, pension, etc. Whether your move is temporary or permanent, you may want to take your belongings with you. And those could be the ones you cannot put in the pocket. 


Especially when moving a business with you, you might need not only to move cars, but to ship equipment as well. Good news is, that the transportation process can go smooth and painless with professional help.


Car owners often ship their cars when they move from one state to another, from one city to another, or even from one country to another. You can also ship the car if you purchased it from a far away dealer and choose not to pick it up yourself. 


Delivering your car saves you the hassle of driving a long distance. If you want to ship your car, you will need to contact the transportation company, determine a delivery option that is the most suitable for you, and prepare your car for moving.


Follow the simple steps to make the delivery fun, easy, stress-free, and cost-effective.


Step #1 Determine The Mode Of Car Delivery

There are a few ways to pick up and drop off your car that may affect your car’s shipping cost.


The cost of delivering your car from the terminal-to-terminal is usually on the bottom side. However, door-to-door delivery is a convenient way, and for most people, it is worth it. 


Below is a basic breakdown of the advantages and disadvantages associated with these options for delivering your car:


With this type of transport, you will take the vehicle to the designated drop-off point and pick it up from another designated point.


Although this delivery option is usually inexpensive of two, you will have to take measures to send the car to the pickup area and take the car from the destination.


If you look through the lens of a shipping company, the shipping terminal allows road transport firms to deliver full transportation from a certain place to another, reducing their total cost.


On the other hand, it means that your vehicle can spend extra time sitting in the terminal parking lot until the shipment is ready to be shipped.


As mentioned earlier, the door-to-door transport of cars is extremely convenient. It means that the service provider will pick up your car from your chosen location (usually your home) and take it to its final destination.


Since this method increases the driver’s travel time, it is usually a little more expensive than the other delivery method.


Note that some places of work or home may not be accessible to carriers, as the roads may be a little too narrow for their large delivery vehicles to pass through. 


In such a scenario, you will have to set the receiving or delivery location closest to the final destination.

Step #2 Car Transport Type

As mentioned before, there are two main ways to deliver your car: open and closed.

Both of these modes of transportation have their pros and cons. 


However, the type of transport that you end up taking will hinge significantly on the car that you are transporting.

Open-air Transport

Delivery using open transport is the cheapest delivery option of the two. A road transport company usually transports up to 10 cars in one open-air trailer to reduce its travel costs per vehicle.


Most car owners choose this mode of transport because it is inexpensive. It is because of the huge number of orders for transporting cars in the open-air, which gives some flexibility in terms of delivery time.


However, open delivery exposes your vehicle to elements. Fortunately, the risk is not too high, and the chances of your vehicle being delivered intact or in pristine condition are quite high.


Besides, all possible paint or paint chips that could occur are usually insured.

Enclosed Transport

Transportation in a closed trailer, on the other hand, is safer and more reliable than transportation in an open one.


Carriage in a closed trailer or container protects your car from various weather conditions. If your car is luxury or you value your car more than the average car owner, closed shipping is recommended.


Besides, a special loading bay with closed transportation provides a softer tilt that allows for safer loading of the vehicle. 


This method of car delivery is ideal for exotic vehicles, collectibles, and class cars.


As for the delivery cost, you can end up paying 50 percent more than the outdoor delivery cost, as fewer cars are usually transported using this mode of transport.

Step #3 Auto Transport Quotes

Pricing is an important aspect when transporting a car across the country. Therefore, it is imperative to have a written estimate of the cost of transporting the car. 


Here are a few things that you should pay attention to when viewing the quotes:


An established shipping company should include insurance costs in its transport rates. Investigate if the proposed insurance is secondary or primary to yours, and double-check with your insurance company to make sure they will take care of compensation for damage incurred during transportation.


Also, pay attention to the policy’s expiration date. You should keep valuables and personal belongings out of your car that will be shipped, as they will not be covered under your car insurance policy in the event of theft or damage.


Also, Make sure that the shipping company’s insurance has a franchise component. Bring written copies of all things related to accident insurance.

Shipping Rates

People who send their car several hundred or thousands of miles away should know how transport charges and tariffs are structured.


However, the rates will be reduced if several cars are shipped from and to the same cities.

Delay Policy

You should find out if there is a partial or full refund of the shipping cost if the delivery is delayed more than usual. 

Step #4 Scheduling Car Pickup And Delivery

The sooner you agree to transport your car, the more flexible and convenient things become. 


You should be able to compare and choose from several car carriers and compare prices for their services. If you have a schedule, several factors will affect your price:


You should probably know by now that the cost of shipping will increase with shipping distance. The cost of shipping may vary depending on the transport company you choose. 


Therefore, you should do your research about different carriers to determine how much you will pay based on distance.

Time Of Year

During peak months, you should expect to spend more money than the standard for delivery.


Prices for car delivery during the warm months of the year can rise by at least $200 per trip.


If you are in the early stages of planning your vehicle transportation, ask about peak prices and find out if the broker or carrier offers discounts during the off-season, which could reduce your average shipping costs.


If you happen to find a carrier that offers these discounts, you should book with them to save money.

Delivery Time

You will most likely pay more if you want to get your car a few days in advance. If you are flexible about the delivery time, you can expect to pay less for delivery than usual.


You are usually given a three-or two-day pickup window, followed by relatively accurate delivery date.


If you want your car to be picked up by a certain date or on a certain day, most companies will be able to store your car on their premises for an additional fee. For urgent delivery, you will end up paying at least $ 200 more than for flexible delivery.

Step #5 Prepare Your Vehicle for Transport

Certain things are advisable to do before your car is shipped. These include things like:

Empty Your Car 

Transport carriers are not permitted to move your household goods across States or cities. In fact, the DoT (Department of Transportation) will fine a car delivery company if personal items are found in cars on their trucks. 


Transporting additional cargo in your car is not only illegal, but the weight added to your car will also increase your transportation costs.


Some car transport firms even recommend not transporting a car with a full gas tank, as this will also increase the car’s weight and final delivery costs. 


The carrier often recommends filling the car with fuel that is more than enough to take it from the delivery point to the customer’s place.

Inspect Your Vehicle For Any Damage

Take a few pictures before sending the car and after the car is delivered. These images are useful if you want to file an insurance claim for damages during transit.


Although such damages are highly unlikely, they are recommended to be recorded in the final bill of lading report.


If you do not follow this, you may end up paying the repair costs out of your pocket.

Car Shipping Cost

The cost of delivering or moving a car between cities or states depends largely on the distance. To get a clearer idea of your car delivery costs, get several quotes from different service providers.


The actual cost of delivering a car varies depending on the service provider. For example, a company may charge you $ 2 per mile for short trips of 1 to 500 miles, or a flat fee of $ 600 for 350 miles.


Thus, we see the cost of one mile at almost $ 1! It is quite expensive for such a route.


If the number of miles to cover is greater, for example, 500 to 1,500 miles, the rate per mile may be lower than a dollar, or you may charge about $ 900 for 1,000 miles.


The bid for longer distances (more than 1,500 miles) drops even further, approaching $ 60 per mile or $ 800 for a 1,500-mile ride.

Cheapest Way To Ship A Car

Usually, a terminal-to-terminal service combined with open road transport would be the least expensive way to deliver your car across the country.


Since open carriers can carry a maximum of 10 vehicles per trailer, operators can save significant money on oil, fuel, and transportation costs.


If you want to save money, look for delivery options during the off-season, usually between late fall and late spring. The most popular and busiest period for sending a vehicle is early autumn and summer.


Generally speaking, door-to-door service is expensive compared to terminal-to-terminal service since the latter requires less travel time, and the customer is not looking for maximum convenience.


Sometimes, however, a door-to-door car delivery service will be cheaper than terminal-to-terminal, as the terminal charges a storage fee from the trucking company.

Enquire About Possible Discounts

You can enquire if you are eligible for any shipping discounts. Most trucking companies offer a range of discounts on their services.


If you are looking for low-cost car delivery, make sure you check whether you are eligible. Road transport companies usually offer the following discounts:

Military Discounts

Several trucking companies offer discounts to military personnel to help them make frequent trips at the lowest price.


This discount is also offered as a sign of respect for the military and recognition of their services.

Student Discounts

Several auto trucking firms provide discounts during the fall and summer if you are moving cities or states for educational purposes.

Senior Discounts

Since older people live on a fixed income and usually have to meet a strict budget, several trucking firms offer older people a significant discount.

First-time Shippers

If you are shipping your car to a specific company for the first time, some car delivery companies will give you a discount.

Return Customers

Some car transport firms recognize returning customers and value their loyalty by offering them a discount on their second or third car delivery deal with them.

Multi-car Shipments

Most companies will reduce the cost of delivery if you transport more than one car with them at the same time.

Early Bird

Some shipping companies will offer you a discount if you sign a delivery agreement within 24 or 48 hours of receiving the offer.

Vehicle Fleets

If you are in the taxi business or want to send multiple vehicles at the same time, you can get a discount from a car delivery company.


However, just make sure that you have requested bulk discounts from your carrier or broker in advance.

Essential Things To Know About Cross Country Shipping

Delivering a car to cities or states is not an easy decision. A car is invariably the most expensive commodity a person owns after their home, and some may be sentimentally attached to their car.


Therefore, when sending a car across the country, you need to consider several things or beware of the following:


If possible, order delivery as early as possible or much earlier than the delivery date. Unlike traditional delivery, car delivery does not happen overnight. 


You will have to wait before a date is set for you to get the car. The waiting period usually lasts four weeks.

Shipping Period

As a rule, car delivery does not take as long as the carriers claim. However, these companies tend to increase the delivery time to have some freedom of action if the cargo runs into problems on the route.


If the price is the main point of dispute, it is recommended to send your car on a carrier that can carry from four to 10 cars at a time. 


However, you will have to wait a little longer than usual for your car to be delivered. Also, you will not be given the exact delivery date, but the delivery estimate.


You should review company reviews before you put your car on the road. Besides asking friends and family, you can also check car forums and car review sites to ensure the car delivery company and its service.


Be careful with brokers. Brokers are individuals or companies that offer your shipping requirements to various shipping companies. 


When interacting with a vehicle transport broker, you probably don’t know which transport company your vehicle will be with. If you want to know who is transporting your car, it is recommended to stay away from these brokers.

No Deposits

If a car shipping company asks you to make a deposit, you should be careful, since reputable and exclusive car carriers usually do not ask for one. Instead, they will require payment when picking up or dropping off your car.

To Sum Up

Driving a car on your own might be fun, but it is hardly worth it. Getting the car shipped is safer and easier in most cases.

Once you have made the vital decision that you are taking your car with you to a new location, then the very next step is to find the best car shipping companies near you.


The delivery process is not as complicated as you previously thought. With this step-by-step guide, you should be armed to do it all stress-free and cost-effectively. Good luck to you!