How to Estimate Vehicle Shipping Costs | Car Transport Estimates

When moving out of the country or out of state, getting the vehicle shipping company to get your car safely across is always the best idea. However, most of the time, people get scammed for the price because they don’t calculate by themselves. 


Well, you don’t have to worry because if you want to save yourself from any pricing scams of auto transport companies, we are here to help. In this article, we will talk about all the factors that influence car shipping prices and also will tell you the current average price. 

The Average Cost to Ship a Car

Although car shipping charges vary depending on a variety of factors, you can expect car transport rates to range from around $500 for short, cross-state excursions to more than $1,700 for cross-country shipments in the USA.

What Factors Affect the Cost of Vehicle Shipping?

Given these average estimates, you must also understand that the cost of shipping an automobile is not a fixed-price trade. Costs are frequently established via bidding and can alter after the initial proposal. Many supplier websites have car shipping calculators that can assist you in estimating your costs. 


The cost of car shipping is determined by various factors, including the entire distance traveled, the kind of carrier selected (open or enclosed), and the company you chose. Below, we will discuss all the factors to help you better understand pricing estimates. 

  • Distance: 

The overall distance your car needs to cover, as well as the destination, has a considerable impact on the cost. Longer shipping routes are normally more expensive but cost less per mile than shorter distances. You should expect lower charges if you transport your vehicle to a major city.

  • Type of Vehicle: 

The fee depends on the size and weight of the car being transported. Larger cars are more expensive to freight since they are heavier and take up more space. Smaller, lighter cars are easier and less expensive to ship than larger, heavier vehicles. Longer and taller vehicles necessitate additional vehicle transport changes, which may increase your overall charge. Roof racks, wider tires, and other vehicle modifications can all have an impact on your overall expense.

  • Operability of Vehicle: 

Inoperable cars necessitate more care and time to load, so they are also more expensive to ship. Vehicles in good condition are frequently less expensive to move than inoperable ones. If your automobile is inoperable but steers, rolls, and brakes, a truck or forklift may be required to winch it onto the trailer. This will very certainly raise the cost of shipping.

  • Type of Transport: 

Shipment that you choose will also have an impact on the pricing. So, you need to know that enclosed transport is more expensive than open transportation. However, Enclosed transportation is also safer. Still, the more security you wish to give the car while transporting it, the more expensive it will be when it arrives at its new location.

  • Carrier Bidding: 

Carriers bid on transport jobs/auto transport companies, and routes or times with fewer available shippers are often more expensive. Moreover, they are always changing, so there is nothing to fix.

  • Delivery Time Flexibility: 

You should expect to pay less if you are more flexible about when you need your automobile delivered. This enables the auto shipping company to plan the most effective routes and operations, allowing for more time and no rush.

  • Season: 

Like many other businesses, car shipping experiences high and low demand periods. Car shipping prices are affected by seasonal demand. Prices are higher in the spring and summer since more people want to transfer their autos during those seasons. Prices are lower in the fall and winter because demand is lower. However, shipping during vacations and severe weather raises costs.

  • Location: 

Pricing is also affected by the pickup and drop-off locations. It should go without saying that the longer your vehicle must be transported, the more it will cost to send it. However, the type of place is also important. They may provide a lower estimate if you need to ship your vehicle to a destination on one of the auto shipping company’s most popular routes. 


If you need your vehicle sent to a rural place where the carrier must deviate from their usual route, the shipping cost will most certainly be higher. This is because carriers prefer to pick up and drop off passengers along major highways and in larger cities. You may also have to pay more if you reside in a congested city or a mountainous area.

Bottom Line 

Finally, if you don’t want to be fooled by shippers, always compare different carriers for required services. Ultimately, it is always best to hire professional vehicle shipping services that can guarantee the car’s safety at a reasonable price. 


This is especially beneficial if you’re hiring a moving truck and don’t have another person to help you move your automobile. Professional transportation services also provide some protection for your car if it is damaged while in transit.