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How Much Will It Cost to Ship My Car?

If you have shipped your car before, I’m sure you have heard a wide range of prices. During the high demand times of the year, such as late spring and early fall, you can expect to pay a premium. Even then, there will still be quite a large range of prices, and that is because, well…you get what you pay for.   


Price Depends On A Whole Bunch of Moving Parts


What’s the best type of truck or equipment to move your vehicle? Do you really need to pay the premium for enclosed transport?  Will your car be on a flatbed or a 10 car carrier big rig? Will your car be on an old truck, or a new one? How well is the truck being maintained? 

Not only does the type of vehicle you are shipping matter, but the type and quality of the truck and carrier are extremely important.  Understand that when you are shopping around for the cheapest quote, the low-cost carriers who end up loading your vehicle will be the kind with much less overhead, and most likely older less maintained equipment.  How can you quantify that risk?

A good auto logistics person would recommend the best way to move your vehicle based on your needs and budget.  Most of the time, you can tell the difference between a good logistics person and a bad one by the types of questions they ask.  If their concern is always best price, big deposits and lofty promises, you should probably move on to a carrier recommended by a trusted source. 

Some (But Not All) Factors That Determine Price

Realize that it takes a lot of time and energy to successfully organize the shipment of your vehicles from start to finish.  If you want service with minimal effort, headaches, and problems, this is the one place where you don’t want to be cheap. The best deal is not synonymous with the best price in the world of car shipping; the most expensive carriers might be gouging, but the ones charging a reasonable price, not too high, not too low, are the ones with real businesses, real overheard. They have real employees and they pay them real, fair wages, and they need to charge you a fair rate. It’s amazing how much easier life is when we pay those who deserve it.  A good auto logistics person will value their time and be up front about not being the cheapest.  

If you still decide to go with the cheapest quote, we encourage you to do your research. We have heard horror stories about carriers without proper insurance, horrible customer service and problems with communication.  Again, you get what you pay for, and we hear about it from our customers every single day.  


So-Called Instant Quotes


We want everything instantly today. Food, goods, shipments and everything else.  Some things require a humans experience to do well. Shipping your car is one of them. 

Poor price quoting technology seems to be the fun thing for both large and new auto transport brokers these days.   After all, it automates the quoting process and helps quench their prospective clients’ thirst for a quite right away. However, when it comes time to actually deliver on the service promised by the broker, they now have to stay profitable within the confines of the quote that was generated without any of their own input.

Electronic quotes are based on an algorithm created by a super smart consultant with some help from dispatch or operations of a carrier. Sometimes they look at what everyone else is charging and come up with some kind of price in the middle. They’re mostly based on zip codes, data from previously moved loads, maybe the weight of the car. Maybe. This would be successful if everyone was shipping a car from main hubs, if everyone had the same costs, the same equipment, the same this and that and all about, but this is not the case.  

More often than not, people are shipping to and from odd, off-lane places in the country. These may be areas that carriers and owner-operators do not frequent, and these situations need to be analyzed by a good logistics person to determine what it would take to transport a vehicle in any situation. 


Are You Comparing Apples to Apples? 


Some large brokers quote pricing for door-to-door, without explaining what real door service is.  There is a difference between a truck showing up in front of your house and loading up your car and you having to drive 10 miles away to meet the truck in a parking lot. Again, you get what you pay for