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If you are looking to ship your car from one state to another then you are part of the largest segment of the business. Most auto transport consists of this type. It is also known as interstate auto transport.

So, if you have ever asked yourself ” How much does it cost to ship a car to another state?” then you might want to sit down, and enjoy. You are about to learn all there is to know about it.

Open Trailer Vs Enclosed Trailer:

The first decision you have to make is whether you’re going to ship your car open trailer or enclosed trailer. Just like the name suggests, an open trailer means it’s going to be on a flatbed or a multi-car carrier that is exposed to all the elements. An enclosed trailer is just what it sounds like; you load your car inside of a semi, either by itself or with multiple cars, you close the doors and it’s concealed.

Both Enclosed and Open Trailers Have Their Pros and Cons

As you would expect, the enclosed trailer is a lot more money, and it takes more time to schedule because there are not as many of those types of fleets available. So, expect a lot longer lead time for it to be picked up, and dropped off depending on your location or where the car is at. With an open trailer, there’s a lot more of them, it’s a lot cheaper.

So, for a small car like a Honda S2000, it should cost you roughly $1050 to ship from somewhere like Reno, Nevada to Illinois. If you were to have used an enclosed trailer, it would have cost you somewhere around $2500 for the same trip, and probably extra lead time.

Also, with an enclosed trailer, you don’t have to worry about things like the paint getting damaged, or the car getting damaged as much, because it’s enclosed. Assuming the driver is competent, and not you know overturning the truck or you know driving off a cliff or whatever, you’re paying for that peace of mind.

The second part of an enclosed trailer is sometimes the insurance is better; their insurance works a little bit differently. So, if you have a more expensive car, and you have a little bit more of a budget to ship a car, or you have you know a vehicle you’re so anal about, then you can’t risk any types of you know cosmetic damage you want to ship the enclosed trailer.

Open-air trailer; can go two ways: it can go great or it can go really bad, and a lot of times you’ll see people complaining that their car came damaged, and a lot of times it’s how it’s unloaded or unloaded or loaded into the open-air trailer.

Another thing you have to worry about with an open-air trailer is it is exposed to the elements. Depending on what time of year you’re transporting the car if you’re driving it in winter, just because you don’t get snow in California doesn’t mean the driver is not gonna have to go through the mountains to get the car to you or go through a snowing climate.

So, while the car may be pristine as it’s picked up by, the time it gets to you it looks like it’s been through quite a bit. Therefore, you might get your car dirty and that’s just what’s going to happen when you’re dealing with open trailers, you can’t avoid it.

The Open Carrier is the Most Common

It’s the most popular way to ship cars. So, it’s something to know about it before you get in. However, if you are going to ship your car with an open trailer, know it’s going to be exposed to the open air. Now that’s not a bad thing, but for anyone moving a very valuable vehicle, collector car, exotic car, then that’s a different story. But most cars regular daily divers and as such open carrier is more than safe.

Are You Certain If You Want To Ship?

Now that you know the shipping methods, you have another decision to make; do you even want to deal with shipping a car? Do you want to pay the money to do all that?

Well, in some cases, some of the best car buying experiences were the ones where people flew where they needed to go, and drove the car back either with a friend or by themselves.

This is great because you get to meet the previous owners especially if it’s a cool car. Or dealing with a good dealership that has everything sorted out, there’s nothing better than that for some people. This is because you get to make stops along the way, and it can be a really fun thing.

Nevertheless, if you’re not the person that enjoys that, or secondly if it’s a long drive, and you can’t take three-four days off of work to drive 2000 to 3,000 miles well then you’re going to ship it.

The second thing is, even if you’re somebody that likes to drive the car well, there’s nothing worse than being stranded somewhere in between 2,000 miles home in the middle of nowhere trying to figure out how you’re going to fix your car breakdown and get it back.

So, generally, shipping it would have been a better idea, to begin with, that’s something else to consider.

Let’s Take A Look At The Shipping Services Available To You:

So, now that you’re ready to ship your car, what’s next? Well, you need to know what type of services are out there, and most all of them are available online.

Individual Shipping Services:

This is absolutely the hardest one to find. You would very likely spending a lot of time calling various private car carriers to locate someone that does the driving. It would be great because you could simplycommunicate via phone, texting, you know where he’s at, and when he’s going to arrive in your car. This can be easy breezy if it worked out that way.

Shipping Carriers:

Another really hard to find option is a large direct carrier company. We talk a lot about this option where having somebody who owns its fleet, which owns their trucks. Thing is, these are the guys being contracted out and not visible to the public eye.

When deal with someone who owns the trucks and fleet you have feel that you have more control, but 99% of the time their fleets are not where they need to be, and they will actually contract out and you may think you are still dealing with them. So, you can go directly through them, or a company like them to get your car from point A to point B but results will vary in getting what you want.

Brokerage Services:

Ahh, the esteemed brokers. These are the companies where all they do is contract out everything. They don’t own their trucks, they don’t have their drivers, however, they just have insurance, and they handle all the backend work. All you have to do ispay them a small fee cut for them to to get you the carrier. Just about everyone in the top 30 of Google is a broker. This is by far the most popular format for shipping cars. And the carriers love it! Put yourselves in their shoes. No customer service, no questions, just look at a list of cars and check off the box to the ones they want. Off they go.

Bidding Services:

The last one is like a bidding system service like Uship, and that are pretty much the biggest one and the goal there is to eliminate the broker. With this, you’re going to put in your information, put what car you have, the to and from location, the dates you want, and it’s going to give you a whole bunch of companies and their prices of what the average price is. At this point you can choose your price, and have them bid on who you want to go for.

Now on uShip, they will show you reviews of customers that have used different companies before. So, you can weed out the ones that have a ton of problems, and the ones that have a lot of positive reviews.

BUT, while Uship is pretty good, there are tons of paid reviews on the site. The shipping companies will pay customers to write positive reviews to pad their review ratings, and this is where the experiences you read about may not match your outcome. .

Another problem with Uship is, as soon as somebody accepts your bid, so if you want to ship the car for $750, the big companies have automated response systems where they’re going to immediately respond, and accept your bid even though, it’s not a real acceptance, it’s an automated way to do it they accept your bidding it locks everybody else out.

If this system was so great, you would not be reading this article. Plain and simple. A company that has excellent ratings has to pick good carriers. You being your own contractor eliminates the years of experience in the industry an auto transport company has to weed out bad carriers.

So, What’s The Best Way?

So, if you decide to use a company like Uship, or any bidding service, you need to know how to do two things:

  • Weed through company reviews: take a look at them just because there are 20,000 reviews on there with 98% positive doesn’t mean anything because a lot of those could be paid reviews. I would look for a company that has you know a couple hundred that are positive where you read the reviews and you know they’re somebody. With real reviews, most of the time customers do have concerns, and also they tend to type of more lengthy reviews about what they like, and what they do not like. Most paid reviews are like ” Excellent shipping service” ” They are amazing” and those kinds of comments.
  • The second thing is kind of weeding out what it is you’re going to choose in terms of pricing. Now I can tell you one thing, don’t low-ball on price because if the broker accepts your price they may send you to the bottom of the barrel carrier if your vehicle gets picked up at all. Chances that low quality carrier is not going to care as much about loading your car unloading and all the detailed work that goes into it. If they’re getting more money let’s just face it you have a little bit more incentive to do a good job,

For example, if you have quoted as low $800 for something that should cost $1000, you’ll have so many more good carriers willing to work with you instead of radio silence with your vehicle sitting in the driveway The broker and carrier will offer a higher standard of service when on the phone when you talk to them about your transport. So, it’s just something to remember that when you’re doing this.

Cover Yourself:

So, now you’ve decided on how much money you want to spend, the service you want to use, and you’re ready to go. Now before you click go, before you pay anything, you want to make sure that you have every single picture of that car before it ships. You want to make sure that you let them know the condition.

Once you decide to hit go, there are two things to look at:

If you’re using a reputable company, there should be zero fees charged to you until the carrier is picking up the vehicle. A lot of times that early deposit is held over you forces you to stay with a shipper that you do not want to use any longer,

That’s the nice thing about dealing with a reputable transport company, is that you know you are not paying for something you haven’t gotten yet.

Now, if using a broker will take their initial fee, their commission when a carrier is scheduled, and when the driver drops the car off you pay the driver in cash, cashier’s check or money order directly; it’s a kind of a person-to-person transaction.

This can feel kind of be dicey, because and it does not have to be cash (although the carrier prefers it). After all,you don’t want to you walking around with a thousand dollars in cash, and then tip for the driver, it can feel risky and some people don’t like to do it so it’s something to note. So you can use certified funds.

Next, some freight companies will not deliver it to your house depending on where you’re at. Because these big rigs usually can’t get into residential areas. So, just because they say point-to-point delivery doesn’t mean they’re going to get to your house.

A lot of fleet companies, a lot of drivers of big rigs will want to meet you in something like aa Walmart parking lot, or some roomy place that is wide open where they can get those trucks in. So, you want to be aware of it.

The next thing about it is when you get that car off that truck. you want to be someone to be there at both the pickup and the drop. You need to sign the bill of lading. This is the inspection report that certifies the condition at each location. The carrier’s insurance will only accept the BOL as proof of condition. Not even photos or videos.

Make sure when that car comes off the truck or whatever you’re getting, inspect it front to back. Because if there’s any damage that you don’t pick up on and you find it later there is nothing the company can do. You need to catch it right away. Because if you don’t file a claim right away, your chances of getting the insurance covered afterward is a lot more difficult. So, do your due diligence there.

General Cost Of Shipping A Car From State To State:

Sample Pricing:

New Jersey to / from Washington State$1125
California to / from Florida$900
California to/from New York$1025
New York to Florida (September to March)$800
New York to Florida (April to October)$450
New Jersey to Florida (September to March)$800
New Jersey to Florida (April to October)$450
Texas to/from California$700
New York to/from Texas$800
Washington State to/from Texas$1200
Georgia to/from California$825
California to/from Washington$700
Florida to/from DC$750

The average cost of shipping a car should cost you anywhere from $450 to $1500 on average.

  • West Coast to East Coast or vice versa is: $1105 for cars, and $1270 for SUVs, and trucks.
  • North to South or vice versa:$710 for cars, and $815 for SUVs, and trucks.
  • East Cost to Midwest: $685 for cars, and $785 for SUVs, or Trucks
  • West Coast to Midwest: $920 for cars, and $1060.

National Express Auto Transport provides full service door to door auto transport to many state routes. Below are some popular routes we see all the time for running vehicles on open carrier. For the most up-do-date information, please use our car shipping calculator.