How To

Car Shipping: Frequently Asked Questions


What is the cheapest way to ship a vehicle?

If you are looking for cheap car shipping, then the best way is to use an open carrier for transport. While it also helps to have a flexible shipping window, scheduling your shipment weeks out in advance will also provide you with the most affordable rates and options available.

How much will the cost of car shipping be?

This will largely depend on where you are shipping your vehicle to and from. If you are looking to ship your car cross country from New York to California you can expect the prices to be in the $1200 range. Shipping from Florida to New York would be significantly cheaper since the distance to be traveled is cut in half.

Is it worth it to ship my car?

It definitely is, especially when you factor in the cost of buying plane ticketsand having to drive the vehicle the entire way to its destination. Just be sure you go with a shipping option that is appropriate to your vehicle type and any constraints you have on time.

How far in advance should I book my shipment?

In general, the farther out in advance you are able to book your shipment the better. By having a flexible shipping window and booking at least 2-3 weeks out in advance, you will find you have more shipping options available to you and the rates will be more affordable.

Should I ship on an open or enclosed transport?

This will depend on your budget and type of car you need to ship. Your most affordable shipping option will be on an open carrier with the more expensive option being an enclosed transport. If you are shipping an expensive or antique car you should go for an enclosed transport. If you’re shipping a more basic car like a Honda civic for example, then open carrier is the better option.

Will I have to pay a deposit?

Not always but with most companies you can expect to put a deposit down. Many companies view it as until you put down a deposit that you haven’t really scheduled your booking. If you have a change of plans, you may have an option to cancel the shipment for a refund but this usually depends on your timing and on the transport company.

How long will it take to ship a car across the country?

This is somewhat similar to asking how long it would take to fly across the country. If you are taking a direct flight it may take only a few hours but if your flight has several stops or layovers it can take longer. If you were able to secure a great rate with your transport company it may take a couple weeks for the vehicle to be delivered. Most companies try to get the vehicle delivered within a week but depending on the distance and weather conditions you can expect delays and delivery to sometimes take a couple of weeks.

Am I allowed to pack my vehicle with personal items when shipping it?

In most cases you will be advised to refrain from packing your vehicle with your personal belongings. Not only will this add to the vehicle’s weight and increase your shipping costs but any damage or theft to your personal items wouldn’t be covered by insurance.

How does car shipping insurance work?

If you encounter an auto transport company that can’t provide answers about their insurance coverage you should look elsewhere. The carrier is responsible for the vehicle while it is on the trailer. This doesn’t imply that you should suspend your own personal insurance coverage while the vehicle is being shipped though. Be sure to maintain coverage throughout the transport and review the carrier’s insurance coverage and what they will be responsible for in the event of damage.

How should I prepare my vehicle for transport?

If your vehicle is leaking fluid everywhere, you won’t be very popular with the driver. Try to take care of anything that may cause leaks before the vehicle is loaded onto a trailer. Also be sure to leave your gas down to around a ¼ of a tank. This will lower the overall weight of the vehicle while leaving enough fuel for the car to be driven on and off the trailer without any issues.

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