How much does it cost to ship a car?

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The cost to ship a car is based on several factors. Distance, location, and vehicle make and model are just a few variables that affect car shipping rates and quotes.

When you ask ‘how much does it cost to ship a car’ we will first tell you this – our rates are real time, current market prices manually checked by our logistics associates.

We track fluctuations of the market constantly and our prices are all inclusive, with no hidden fees.

Request your vehicle shipping quote online now.

Is it Operable? YesNo
Transport Type: OpenEnclosed


Review our guide to understand all about the cost to ship a car.

  1. How is car shipping cost calculated?
  2. How many days in advance should I book in order to save?
  3. What auto transport service options do I have?

How is car shipping cost calculated?

Or, otherwise asked how much does it cost to ship a car? Whether it is about shipping a vehicle acorss the country, or across a state, the factors that affect the price are the same. The car shipping cost is calculated based on several factors such as distance, location, vehicle make and model and type of transport. Supply and demand fluctuations are also a major factor that contributes to price hikes or drops. We work with national dispatch boards tracking market conditions constantly.  We will quote you the most current market price with no hidden fees. When you call or request a quote online our logistics experts will discuss your options, budget and preferences.

Factors affecting your cost to ship a car


Smaller cars are always cheaper to ship, while bigger, heavier vehicles are more expensive. Auto transport carriers have a weight limit that they must observe when accepting vehciles. Thus, the make and model of your vehicle, as well as any modifications done to it, and whether there will be any personal items loaded inside, all matter for the total weight of the vehcile and hence of the carrier. This will, of course impact your final shipping price.


The type of carrier you choose will affect your rate as well. Open auto transport is the standard shipping method in the industry. It is used for all vehicle types and it is the less expensive option because the availablity of open carriers is much higher. Enclosed auto transport is more expensive and often used for sports, luxury or classic automobiles. Enclosed trucks are less available, specilized and thus often taking longer to reserve and more expensive as a service.


The distance almost always affects the price to ship a car. The longer the distance the less it costs per mile, but that is never the decisive factor in the cost of shipping a vehicle. Shorter distances still consume gas and require the same amount of work, but in the end it is fewer miles travelled. This means that shorter distances often cost as much as shipping a car across the country.


The pick-up and delivery locations also affect the price. Auto transport to and from rural areas is a more complex and economically challenging process. Fewer auto haulers are willing to go to remote towns and villages to pick-up or deliver a single vehicle only. This often means higher prices and longer wait for pick-up, or delivery. The majority of the truck drivers prefer to travel to major metro areas where they can more easily load their auto carriers.


Whether your car is running or not will affect your final rate. To ship a non-running vehicle we need a truck that can winch it onto the trailer. This requires more work, more time and additional equipment that not every truck has. Moreover, it trequires more skills from the truck driver. A special truck, and special skill set means a higher rate. In some cases, we may even need a forklift to load a fully inoperable vehicle, which additionally increases the price.


Now, this is a major factor when it comes to the costs of shipping a vehicle, and we would like to explain this as fully as possible. The basics principles of supply and demand are known by most people, and they apply in the auto transport industry as well. When supply is higher than demand, prices drop, but when demand is higher prices go up. In auto logistics, when demand is high the truck space is limited and this means the prices increase. That is why a quote is good for one week only because demand changes on almost every route. Supply and demand fluctuations often happen daily, and even hourly. Thus, manually tracking the auto dispatch boards is crucial. A price that you receive today is usually not the same in a week or two, let alone in a month or two. Understanding supply and demand is very important in the auto transport industry we are always upfornt and honest with our customers. We want you to understand how it works, so you can ask the right questions and have peace of mind when shipping a vehicle.

Additional factors to consider:

Do you need an expedited service? If the answer is yes, keep in mind that expedited auto transport service costs more. If you need your vehicle picked-up or delivered on an exact date, or by an exact date, expect to pay a premium.

Do you need door-to-door or terminal-to-terminal? Door-to-door is the standard shipping method of Corsia Logistics. Terminal to terminal auto transport is an option as well, and contrary to popular opinion, it often costs more due to storage fees and travel time to the terminal.

Do you need a top load for your vehicle? Top load means loading a vehicle on the top deck of the vehicle transport trailer. This ensures against possible leaks from other vehicles, from flying road debries, and it is generally safer.

Getting a grasp of how auto shipping price formation works, in a market economy, will help you understand why manual pricing is better. Just like with the stock market, in logistics supply and demand fluctuations happen daily. This means that a hot out of the oven, current market price is what you need.

The most accurate price is calculated manually by logistics experts tracking national dispatch boards.

Corsia Logistics provides manual pricing. A car shipping quote calculator often delivers misleading prices. Only an accurately determined price, verified with the national dispatch boards, will ship your vehicle in a timely and professional manner.

How many days in advance should I book in order to save?

We recommend to our customers to book their service about two weeks in advance. Any time earlier than that does not guarantee a lower rate or a faster service. The auto transport industry is heavily influenced by the supply and demand, and prices often change daily. Sometimes, even same day bookings can get a lower price than orders made a week or a month in advance due to a sudden cancelation, for instance. Thus, it is important for customers to stay informed, and work alongside their logistics agent.

What auto transport service options do I have?

You will have a few options to think about. First you should choose the type of carrier you want your vehicle transported in, and then whether you want a regular service or an expedited delivery.  All services we provide are door-to-door deliveries, if your home or business allows for a big truck to maneuver.

You will find two main types of auto transport carriers to choose from – open and enclosed. As you may have guessed, there are operational differences in the two types of services, as well as in the price. Open auto transport is cheaper because it is readily available, insurance for open carriers is generally lower and they do not offer the complete protection as enclosed carrier do. Shipping a car via an enclosed trailer means higher protection and higher cost of shipping. Such carriers provide higher insurance coverage, which is recommended for high-end vehicles.

When it comes to moving a car, it is in your best interest to understand how the process works. In this guide, we have included the most important information you should know when booking an auto transport service.

Rates of recently shipped vehicles from across the country:

Rate: Pick-Up: Delivery:
$1,289 Los Angeles, CA New York, NY
$1,389 Naples, FL Portland, OR
$1,049 Sunnyvale, CA Orlando, FL
$998 Chicago, IL Los Angeles, CA
$998 Miami, FL Oceanside, CA
$1,049 San Jose, CA Washington, DC
$989 Baltimore, MD Houston, TX
$1,149 Cleveland, OH Sacramento, CA
$1,389 Boston, MA South Pasadena, CA
$889 Boulder, CO Austin, TX


Note: Prices listed here are for a small sedan, shipped via an open carrier. These prices are estimates subject to change on daily basis. For current market price please call or request a quote online.


For more answers please review our ‘How To Ship A Car’ section and our ‘Questions’ page in the footer, or call now. Thank you.

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About the Author:

I am the marketing director and the content curator. I believe in creating useful contnet for our customers and readers. I have been involved in the auto transport industry for several years and I enjoy it. If you would like to contact me please do so via our contact us form or any social media channel. Thank you.
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