Automotive & Vehicles

How Much Does it Cost to Ship a Car?

Shipping a car in the continental U.S. has an average cost of $1,000. This cost typically varies between $700-$1,300 with the lowest being in the $700-$750 range and the highest being in the $1200-$1,300 range. The per-mile average for shipping an automobile is $0.60/mile when it’s less than 1,000 miles away.

While it’s true that the total cost of shipping a vehicle can vary from company to company, there are usually hidden fees. When you find a company that claims to have a flat shipping cost, investigate the fine print. You might be surprised to find that the shipping cost ends up being more than expected.

Factors Affect the Car Shipping Cost

A few factors determine the total cost of shipping your vehicle. For one, you have to consider where you are shipping from or to. What kind of vehicle are you shipping? How does it look? These are all factors that will change the price of your transport.


The distance between your pickup and delivery location has a huge impact on the price of your shipment. That’s because, as we all know, the longer the distance, the cheaper it is. Most companies charge per mile, and the price per mile is lower for longer distances. In contrast, short distances are more expensive but they cost less per mile.

Vehicle Type

When you’re shipping from one location to another, it’s important to know what you’re shipping. Get the exact dimensions of your vehicle when you ship so your shippers know how much room they’ll need for it. In general, larger vehicles cost more to ship. It’s worth paying a little bit more in order to avoid the hassle of delayed delivery.

Vehicle Conditions

The condition of your car will also play a role in shipping costs. If your car can’t start, but it can roll, brake, and steer, a winch can be used to load and unload it. If your car can’t be driven onto the truck, a winch is an extra car shipping cost that some carriers may charge you.

If you don’t tell your agent that your vehicle is not running, they may dispatch a truck that cannot load your vehicle. This can lead to fees for dry run services which you are responsible for paying. Telling your agent the condition of your vehicle accurately is better for everyone.

Transport Type

Open transportation is the most affordable way to ship a vehicle. It will not cost as much as enclosed car shipping. Open transportation is the best choice for large pickup trucks or for cars with modifications. These types of vehicles are trickier to pack and ship in an enclosed truck, so it will cost more.


With the popularity of major cities, people are opting for urban locations over rural locations for many reasons. For starters, it is naturally easier to find a carrier in a larger city. There are more options for customers, which also makes things cheaper. This is because carriers don’t have to go too far out of their way to pick up or deliver a vehicle. Rural shipments on the other hand can be pricey if they have to go on long trips.


You might be surprised to learn that the seasons can affect your car shipping costs. Generally speaking, fall and spring are considered the most stable, while summer and winter tend to be more volatile. During the summer months, demand for transport services spikes and prices go up. This is because there are more people on the road and it also increases the chance of accidents. Conversely, during winter, demand goes down and prices go down as well.

There are many factors that come into play when you ship your car. A few of the most important are the condition of the vehicle, the services you require, and the route. If you want to ship your car with the cheapest shipping cost, make sure it’s in working condition without any extra services or complications.

One of the more important factors to consider when shipping a car is whether or not there is a discount for shipping more than one car. A higher number of vehicles means that there is more chance that you will need to pay more. Also, it is worth considering the season. Shipping cars are cheaper in the winter and costs more during the summer because of the higher demand for trucks and drivers. Failing to make contact during the delivery window will result in surcharges.

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