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Jan 16, 2024

Pricing is always the biggest question when customers start to research auto transport. Many customers may expect to find simple pricing based on the mileage of their transport. But the reality is that pricing for auto-transports can vary depending on a number of factors including route/region, season, and even the direction of travel. Sometimes the very same mileage to the very same cities can price differently depending on the direction of travel and time of year the vehicle is shipped. Let’s take a look at shipping a car to or from California to see how that works.

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Currently, it is cheaper to ship a car out of California than it is to ship a car in to California. Even if you are shipping between two cities where the mileage is the exactly same, there can be a price difference of $50 or even more depending on if you are going east or west. And there is a perfectly logical reason for that difference: supply and demand. Your vehicle is going on a truck with other vehicles, and your carrier has to have a full load. Unlike buses or planes that run on a regular schedule no matter what the capacity, auto carriers do not. There are no “mass transit” options for shipping a car to or from California by truck. Each transport is contracted individually and each scheduled route is unique because there are different customer addresses each run. And there are times when there are many more potential customers going one direction than the other. If there are more potential customer jobs on one end than there are spots on trucks, carriers will always take the best paying contracts first. So if there happen to be a bunch of customers moving out of Dallas to Los  Angeles at a time when there really aren't many customers going from Los Angeles to Dallas, the carrier will be able to book the highest offers from the pool of customers heading west, and will be desperate for any jobs out of Los Angeles.

It’s simple supply-and-demand economics. Whether you are shipping a car to or from California, pricing depends in part on the popularity of your route. Sometimes you are on the better deal side of the shipping direction and sometimes you are in competition for limited spots.  Either way, we’ll always suggest the best possible price for the season.

Please give us a call if you have any questions about pricing your transport: 866-221-1664.

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