If you are planning a cross-country move from California to New York, you might need to consider how you will get your car from one state to another. While driving your car might sound exciting, in many cases, it’s too time consuming and exhausting. Long-distance drives put an enormous amount of wear and tear on your car, not to mention a strain on your finances. Things like gas, food, and lodging can quickly add up and that cross-country drive could end up costing far more than you expected. For this reason, it is advisable to hire an auto transport company to assist you with moving your car. This is much more convenient, and in some cases more affordable, than driving yourself. Before you hire a car transport company, here are a few factors to keep in mind that will determine your shipping cost.
Size of the Car
The size and weight of your car matters when it comes to shipping.Due to weight limitations, heavier cars mean the carrier can haul fewer vehicles which is why the more space your vehicle takes up, the more it will cost you. You can expect to pay more for trucks, full size SUV’s, and vans than you would a smaller car.
Distance and Location
As you would expect, the farther you have to ship your car, the more it will cost. The pick-up and drop-off location can also impact the price. If you live in a rural area, it will cost more than it would if you are located in a major city. The mode of delivery is also a factor. Door-to-door delivery is more expensive than terminal-to-terminal.
The Condition of the Car
The condition of your car can also affect the shipping cost. If the car is not operable, the carrier will charge you extra for hauling an inoperable vehicle. Generally, this can raise the price quite a bit because it requires special equipment to load and unload an inoperable car.
Time and Season
If you want your car shipped within a certain time frame, this can put your carrier on a tighter schedule and can cost you more. If you are flexible with your delivery date, you can save some money. The time of year also affects the price. Summer is peak season for auto shipping, so you will notice the rates being higher during this time. The rates will be cheapest during the winter months.
While the average cost for shipping a car within the continental U.S. ranges from about $900-$1200, you can see that there are a number of factors that can affect your final price. It is advisable to shop around and compare prices. Any reputable auto shipping company should be happy to provide you with a free quote. In addition to looking at the prices, be sure and check the company’s customer reviews, history, and credentials to ensure you are working with a reliable company.
Frequently Asked Questions
Honest Answers to Your Car Shipping Questions
Yes, we always ask for your specific pickup and delivery addresses, if the carrier can get right to the addresses you provide, they will. If the addresses that you give us are not safely accessible for a Multi-car carrier, however, you will need to make arrangements with the driver to meet at a nearby location where the carrier can safely get in and out.
People do it all the time (rarely for free) but the official answer is no.
Not what you wanted to hear, we know, but that is the honest answer.
We are not licensed to broker the shipment of household goods and, likewise, no car carrier that operates in the USA is licensed to transport them from state to state either. Despite what you might be being told by other car shipping companies you may speak with.
Remember, at the end of the day we're all salespeople, and the true answer to this question is not a great selling point.
You will hear a lot of companies tell you that you can put up to 100 pounds of items in the trunk, but that is not entirely true. That fact is that items of that amount are fairly common and the department of transportation is probably not going to split hairs and fine the trucker over items of that amount, provided they are not over their weight limit. They could fine them, however, if they see a vehicle stuffed full of personal items so the car carrier will most likely try to negotiate something with you to cover themselves against any costs they could incur. It's not something we can build into your contract though.
We have a short and helpful video on this topic in our user videos.
Only in rare cases and car carriers will usually charge a premium to make it happen.
All dates given by car carriers are typically estimates and projections.
For this reason (and to keep your cost down) we ask that you build in some flexibility and give us the earliest possible date you would be WILLING to release the vehicle, even though it may not be your preferred date.
We'll put you in direct contact with your car carrier and the driver will also typically call you the afternoon or evening before your pick up and delivery (they won't just show up unannounced, and if they do we want to hear about it). However, car carriers are out on the road battling traffic, weather and any number of other factors that can and do throw them off of their pickup and delivery projections from time to time.
If the projected dates we give you come and you are unable to make contact with your carrier, please call our office immediately so that we may help resolve the situation.
The average transit time from pick up to delivery on any vehicle going coast to coast will average 7 to 10 days. From there you can figure your transit time based on how far your vehicle is traveling, i.e. from either coast to the Midwest might average 3-7 days.
Even better, we do not even ask for payment until we have you confirmed for pickup by a safe, reliable, fully insured, direct car carrier. If for any reason you do not ship your car with the carrier that we arrange for you, there is no fee.
The fees paid directly to the carrier however, (in most cases, their fees are not paid until your vehicle is delivered) are not directly controlled by us, so any requests for a refund of the carrier's portion would need to be addressed with the carrier directly.
Of course! And you are always backed by our Damage Free Guarantee policy.
Part of what you pay us for is to verify that the car carrier that we put you on is covered by the proper amount of insurance and that everything is up to date.
There is never any additional cost to you for this coverage, and their insurance is always primary.