Open carrier transporting cars on a highway

Cars are the most convenient form of transport for most individuals and families. However, there are times when you have to move, and driving your car may not be an option. Or perhaps you are just looking to miss some of the winter by heading somewhere warm, and though it might be too far to drive (or the weather is already setting in and making it difficult to drive), you still want to have your car in the sunshine.

What do you do in such cases?

You always have the option to ship your car.

How much does it cost to have a car shipped?

What Factors Determine Vehicle Shipping Costs?

When considering car shipping, one of the first questions many people ask is, “how much does it cost to ship a car?” The answer is not as simple as it may seem as there are many factors that come into play. After all, your vehicle is unique, and therefore the shipping methods and protection should be tailored to meet your specific needs.

Let’s briefly look at some of the factors that determine car transport costs:


One of the first factors that will help determine how much it will cost for shipping your car is the type of car you’re shipping. Bigger cars are charged more as they:

  • Take up more space. This reduces the number of cars a transporter can carry.
  • Weight. More weight results in higher fuel consumption for the carrier.

But there are other details as well, such as whether or not your car is a convertible. Does your car need to be transported in a covered or open carrier? It is factors like this that play a role in your ship car estimate.


Another factor that influences how much you’ll pay to ship your car is distance. Most transporters primarily quote their car shipping rates on a per-mile basis to make it easier to calculate the average costs you’ll incur. And again, while not always the same depending on other factors, there is generally an average cost to ship a car per mile. To put it in perspective, the average car shipping for distances under 200 miles is around $2.00 per mile. For distances exceeding 1,500 miles, the price dips down to about $0.60 per mile.

If you’re relocating to the other side of the country, you’re probably wondering how much it costs to ship a car across the country. As you can see, there are several factors that determine the actual cost. However, if distance were the only factor, shipping your car from Washington to Georgia (2,719 miles) would cost you an average of $1,600 based on the national average cost to ship a car per mile.


There are different types of carriers you can use to ship your car. And each has a different price tag attached to it. Generally, rail is the cheapest while air freight can be so costly it’s usually not worth considering.

When it comes to car shipping by road, you have the option of using an enclosed carrier or an open one. Shipping your car using an enclosed carrier is, of course, costlier than using an open carrier. There are several other considerations to make when deciding between using an enclosed carrier vs. an open one, so make sure you do your due diligence in this regard. After all, you want to choose the method that is right for your vehicle, and while an open carrier might come with a higher cost to ship a car, it might be more appropriate for your ride.


Auto transport costs are also influenced by seasons. For example, the demand for shipping is less in winter and thus prices drop. April through to October is usually the peak season for moving so prices at this time of year can skyrocket. If possible, target your move when during off-peak season to save on your car shipping costs.


Are you planning on using a door-to-door car shipping service or do you prefer terminal-to-terminal?

Door-to-door car shipping is more expensive but offers more convenience than its terminal-to-terminal alternative. However, if your nearest terminal is hundreds of miles away, the costs of dropping off your car and going to pick it can easily add up. As a result, door-to-door car shipping may end up being the more cost-effective solution.


Besides the cost factor associated with shipping your car, you must also make sure to choose the right car shipping company. With so many of them around, and with so many of them claiming to be the best, how do you do that?

Here are a few tips to help you:


One of the first things you must do when shopping for the best carrier company is to check out the quotes offered by different car shipping companies. Doing so will help you shortlist those that best suit your budget.


Another way to ensure you partner with the best car shipping company is to check out customer reviews. Customer reviews help you know what to expect as you ship your car with a particular car freight company. 

At the end of the day, the service you get will determine whether the cost of shipping your car was ultimately worth it.

How Much Does It Cost to Have a Car Shipped?

There is no one-size-fits-all cost for shipping a car. Each situation is different as there are many variables involved. The best way to know how much it will cost you to ship your car is to get a quote and be as detailed as possible about your car shipping needs.

So go ahead, get your free quote today.