Posted on 11/01/21

5 Main Factors That Contribute To Car Shipping Rates

5 Main Factors That Contribute To Car Shipping Rates

What is the cost to ship a car across country? This is the question you should be asking yourself if you are considering cross-country car shipping. In any decision-making process, cost is always a major factor. The cost of shipping a car is not fixed, unlike many other services. It is difficult to determine the exact price of car shipping. There are many factors that influence the rates.

Move Car offers an online quote tool that instantly generates unique shipping quotes. Understanding the factors that contribute to the quote is the first step in understanding the cost of shipping a vehicle.

What is the cost to ship a car?

Let's look at the five major factors.


How much does it cost to ship a car in the mail? The general rule of thumb is that the farther your car travels, the higher the transportation cost. It will be more expensive to ship from New York City to California than from New York City to Illinois. Naturally, a rise in fuel costs will also mean an increase in price. Long-distance shipping requires more time from the truck driver. This means that the shipping company will have to pay more and the customer will be charged higher shipping rates.

You can determine if your vehicle will cost more by considering the distance it must travel.


Once you have determined the distance, it is important to consider your origin and destination locations as these are significant factors in shipping costs and time. You will find many trucks moving in and out of your area to pick up and deliver loads. These areas are densely populated so truck drivers have more options to pick up cars and make more money. This generally results in lower prices for customers.

If you live in rural or remote areas, there may not be many people willing to ship your vehicle. There are also fewer opportunities for truck drivers who want to make money. Truckers often have to travel off their route in order to pick up and deliver your vehicle. It may cost a little more to transport truckers to remote or rural locations.

Type of car

It is important to take into account the car's size and weight when determining how much it will cost to ship your car. A Chevy Tahoe, or another full-size SUV, will take up more space on the truck than a Honda Civic. The shipping cost will be slightly higher because the larger vehicle takes up space that could have been used by another customer who is fully paid. Your vehicle will be more expensive if it is heavier than an average car. Transport trucks must follow weight limits. A heavy car might mean that they need to transport fewer cars, which can increase the cost of shipping a heavy vehicle.

The vehicle's value is also important to car shipping companies. It is possible for a higher shipping cost to be charged for a more valuable vehicle.

Type of truck

The type of car you're shipping and your needs will determine the truck that is used to transport it. An open transport truck is best if you're shipping a family car or an everyday vehicle. Open transport is more affordable because it exposes the vehicle to the elements, weather, and open air. However, this doesn't make open transport less safe. Open transport is the most common method of shipping new cars to dealerships.

Enclosed transport is a good option for customers who ship vintage cars, high-value luxury vehicles, or sports cars. Enclosed transport means that the vehicle is protected from the elements like rain, sun, wind, and so on. Shipping by open transport is less expensive because it takes longer to transport the vehicle.


The auto transport industry is like all industries. It has high and low seasons. This can have a significant impact on the cost of shipping a car. The summer high season runs from early spring through to early fall. Shipping a car to this season may cost more than shipping during the low season. The price of shipping to, from or within the Northern States of the country during winter, especially to mountainous regions, may rise slightly because of difficult weather conditions like snow and ice. Truckers might ask for more money because it can be dangerous and difficult to drive large trucks in these conditions.

You may find routes with different high and lower seasons. It is more expensive to ship south-to-north in spring because many snowbirds will be returning their cars home for the summer. Most snowbirds are retired people from the Northeast and Midwest who travel south to escape the winter cold in the Northern States. It will be more expensive to ship a vehicle from the South in the fall because most snowbirds are traveling south to enjoy the winter.

These factors can have an impact on the shipping cost of your shipment. It is a good idea to compare the prices of various transport companies before you make a decision. Remember, the lowest price does not always mean the best option.