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Moving to a new location can be an exciting adventure. You get a chance to try out something new, take on a dream job, or see how a new location can affect your life. While you prepare for the move, you may need to consider how to move your car with you.
The obvious choice would be to drive the vehicle. But if you have more than one vehicle to move and you want to drive together with your family, or you are interested in driving a moving truck so you can’t take the car along, you may need to look for other options to make sure the car gets to the right location.
Car shipping companies will be able to make this process easier. They can help pick up the car in your current location and then move the car over to the new location, having the car ready to go when you are.
As you choose the right car shipping company for your needs, there are a lot of factors to consider when it comes to the cost to ship your car. Let’s take a closer look at some of the top factors that will affect your car shipping costs so. You can make the best decision during your move.
What Factors Affect Car Shipping?
As you look through different car shipping companies, you may notice that there are different prices to get the same work done and to get your car to the same location. Each car transport company is able to set their own rates and this could be the key to helping you find a good deal.
No matter which car transport company you decide to go with, there are certain factors that each one will look at to determine how much it costs to transport your car. While each company may factor these a little differently, they all come together to provide you with a final price to move your car from one location to another.
With that in mind, some of the different factors that will affect the cost of shipping your car to a new location include:
The Location of the Move
The cost to ship your car is going to be a major concern for many people who need to move across the country. Most of the time, household goods movers will be great for moving all of the different things in your home, but most of them will have nothing to do with moving your vehicles at the same time.
This means that you will need to find the right auto transport company to make sure that the car will make it to the new location. And the location of the move will make all the difference in how much you will have to pay for all of this work.
If you are moving from one big city to another, you will be able to get a better deal in most cases. The auto transport company already has routes that go to these locations so they will not need to hire extra help or add to a route to get the car to a new location. This can make it easier if you have some flexibility in the pick-up and drop-off location.
However, if you plan to need the car in different locations that are in different areas, ones that are a little off the beaten path, then you may pay more to get them delivered to that exact location. The car transport company has a lot of changes to make to ensure the car gets there and this costs them more, so the costs will be handed back to you.
To keep some of your costs down with car shipping, you may need to consider the right drop-off and pick-up location. If you have some flexibility with this and can do some of the work to get the car to a different location, you could potentially save a lot of money on this process as well.
The Trip Distance Can Impact Auto Transport
The distance that your car needs to go will make a big difference in how much it will cost you to move it. A move that is only 200 miles is going to be a lot less expensive compared to one that is 1500 miles.
There are many factors that will determine why the trip distance is going to cost you more or less depending on where you need to go. There is more risk for potential damage to the car, you have to pay for the extra gas to get further away, and the truck drivers will need to be paid more for the extra work that they do.
Most of the shipping companies that you will work with will charge a price per mile. This means that you will need to pay based on how many miles your car will go. They may offer some discounts per mile based on how far you go, but you will still need to pay more for the longer drives.
When you need to transport the car to another country, you will have to pay different rates for the work as well. It is a good idea to discuss the rates with your car shipping company ahead of time. They will often charge differently based on international transport versus ground vehicle shipping for most customers so this will make a difference.
The Car Hauling Season
It may be hard to believe, but the car shipping business is going to have highs and lows and there are certain seasons when it will cost less to move the car, and seasons where it costs more to get it done. This is similar to what we find in other industries and when you have some flexibility in when to ship the vehicle, this can save you a lot of money.
With car shipping, it is going to cost you more to transport the car during the winter compared to doing it during the summer. This is because winter is considered the snowbirds season, which is the time of the year when retirees and others will head down to the southern states, like Arizona, Texas, and Florida
This results in more traffic on the roads and can make the road conditions more dangerous than before. This can drive up the costs for transporting your vehicle and may make it a bad time to do this move unless you have no other choices.
You will need to talk to your car shipping company to figure out how much they will charge at different times of the year. They may be able to offer you some deals to help you make the decision and to ensure that you are getting the best price possible. Choosing the right season is a big part of the price that you will get.
The season can also affect what type of transportation you are able to go with. If it is winter and you are moving up north, you may want to consider enclosed shipping to provide protection to the car from the snow and elements when you move. This can add to the costs even more than before.
In some situations, you do not have a say in when you are able to move. You will have to make the move when everything lines up and when it works the best for you. If you do have some of that flexibility in the schedule though, being careful about the season you move in can make all the difference.
Your Flexibility for Delivery Time Frame
You will find that the more flexibility you can have with getting the car delivered, the better the deal you will get when it comes to shipping your car. If you need to get it done on specific dates and it needs to be done on a rush order, then you are going to spend more along the way.
After the cost of getting the car shipped, customers can often become concerned with how long it will take to get the car to the new location. You need to know when your car will get to the new town so you know when to expect it and when you will be able to use it again.
In most cases, the faster the service you require, the more you will need to pay for that service. Fast car shipping will cost you more money, just like with any other shipping service that you may choose. The car shipping company will need to take extra steps to plan out a route that will get the car there on time, and they will give the extra costs to you.
When your request is more flexible, you can save money. This allows the shipping company to organize the delivery a bit better and they will be able to use the most efficient transportation practices, helping them to save more money, which would then help you to save money on shipping as well.
Type of Car Delivery Can Affect Shipping
The type of shipping that you would like to use will make a difference in the price as well. The more protection you want to provide to the car while it is being transported, the more expensive it will be as it gets to the new location.
Each shipping company will be a little bit different on the options that they provide, though many will offer the open delivery and the enclosed delivery option. If you add in more specifics to the transport, you will have to pay for those as well.
For the least expensive option, the open trailer delivery will be the best option. This is the type where the cars will be left uncovered, which can expose them to road conditions and the weather during the trip. There usually are not problems with this one and most car owners will receive their car back in good shape and no problems.
The reason that this method is less expensive is that the company is able to load many cars onto the transport truck at the same time and move them together. All the costs are shared between the different car owners, making this more affordable. This is the most common option that most car owners will choose.
Another option to go with is enclosed car shipping. This is a good option if you would like your car to have a bit more protection along the way. If you have a classic car or a sports vehicle, then it may make more sense to have it placed into an enclosed transport option.
While the enclosed trailer transport does cost more money, it allows you to move the vehicle as safely as possible, can prevent damage, and will help give you peace of mind knowing that your car will make it there safely.
The Size and Weight of the Vehicle
Your vehicle is going to make a big difference in the amount that you will spend as well. The modifications on the car, the size of the car, and how much it weighs will matter here. If there is anything special about the car, the transport company may need to charge more to help give it special attention.
Most transport companies are going to offer standard and premium shipping services to help handle all of the car shipping requests that they may get. For example, if you have made some modifications to your car, the company will need to do some special handling and shipping on it, which can affect the cost to ship that car.
There are different modifications that can count here. For example, it could include lifting or lowering the car, which then changes the overall height of the car. These modifications mean that the auto hauler may need to adjust the truck levels during transporting to accommodate the vehicle. This will cost you more too.
Then we have the size and weight of the vehicle. The more your car weighs and the more space it takes up, the more it will cost you to transport it. Smaller and more compact vehicles will take up less space and are lighter so it costs the transport company less money to move them to a new location.
On the other hand, large vehicles are going to be heavier and can weigh more. This will affect the amount of fuel that is consumed when you transport the vehicle and those costs are going to be passed on to you when it is time to move the car.
Make sure that the car weighs as little as possible when you take it to the transport company. Only put enough gas inside to get the car to the transport company and then off the truck at the new location. This can save some weight and the car does not need gas until you pick it up later.
Make sure to remove as much as possible from the car as well. If you keep a lot of items in the car that could add to the weight, you need to get those removed as quickly as possible. This will help you to keep the car light enough to move and not cost you more money than necessary.
Personal Items You Add to the Vehicle
Be careful with the personal items that you decide to leave or add to the vehicle. Many customers try to take advantage of all the room in their cars and they will load it up with personal items.
In most moving situations, this is going to be a great option. You can use some of the passenger and cargo spaces in the car to transport all of the goods while you move the car. This is a great idea if you are driving the car to the new location, but could cost you quite a bit if you are moving the car through a transport company.
Adding all of these personal items is going to increase how heavy the car is, which will then affect the cost to ship the car. Even if you do not mind paying a little bit extra for this weight, many car transport companies do not allow their customers to add personal items in the car because it becomes a big liability if someone breaks in and steals the item.
You will have to talk to your car transport company to see what their rules are about this. Some require you to have extra insurance. This, plus the extra weight in the car, will affect how much you pay for transporting the vehicle and you will have to decide whether this is a good option for you.
It is usually best to just keep your personal items with you in the moving truck. If something does happen to your car during transport or you get separated from it for longer than planned, then you will be happy to have the personal items in your possession. This will also save you money on having to pay more for your insurance and more while transporting the car.
How to Choose a Car Shipping Company
Now that we know some of the different things that will factor into the cost that you pay to ship your car, it is time to decide which shipping company that you would like to use. There are a few different things to consider along the way when it comes to choosing the right shipping company including:
One of the first things that you should do when choosing a car shipping company is look at some of the reviews that other customers provide for that company. This can tell you a lot about the company and can be a big factor in which company you decide to work with for shipping your car.
Make sure to check out the reviews on more than websites if this is possible. This will help you get a more complete view of what the company is able to provide and whether they will take good care of your car. Once you have taken a look at the reviews of the company, you can decide whether to add it to your list or not.
The first thing that most people will look at when it comes to choosing the right car shipping company is the cost. You want to make sure that you are getting a good deal on the shipping while still having good customer service and the best care for the whole car.
You should talk to more than one car shipping company before you decide to go with one over the other. You may find that they will offer different prices based on the exact services that they are able to offer. You could get a better deal by shopping around rather than keeping with just one company because it is easier than doing your research.
Which Routes They Have Available
You may need to choose a shipping company based on the routes they have available. Some companies may not go in the direction that you want, or they may not have a stop on their route that is anywhere near the location where you would like them to drop the car off at. When this happens, you will need to pick a different company to work with.
This can be even more likely if you want to move the car to another country. Not all of the different options for car shipping will allow you to ship to another country. You may need to discuss with the company to see whether they are able to get to the location where you need to be.
You may also need to have some flexibility with the pickup and the drop-off locations that you choose. By picking a slightly different town for both of these, you will be able to save money and may find a route that works out better for you.
The Customer Service
Always take a look at the customer service. You can find this a bit in the reviews that you read for the company. But you should also give them a call and discuss your move with them. The way they work with you on the phone and the attention they provide you should give you a better idea of how well they value customer service.
When you are moving your car a long distance, you want to trust the people who will be in charge of your car. If you are uncertain about the customer service that this company is able to provide, then it is best to work with a different company.
Transporting Your Car to Your New Home and The Factors That Impact the Process
Transporting your car can make life easier as you work on a move. You may not be able to drive the vehicle on your own while handling a moving truck and other options, but you still need that car to end up by your new home to ensure you can drive around while there.
Car transport companies can be one of the best ways to get your car to the new location without the hassle of driving it yourself, but the amount it costs will be determined by a number of factors. The distance you need to go, the amount of flexibility you have, and the shipping method you choose will all factor into the final price of moving that vehicle.
When you are ready to make that big move and are trying to plan out a budget that makes the most sense, make sure to research the companies you would like to use and pick the one that helps get the work done while providing you great service and an affordable price.
David is a Senior Logistics Agent for Mercury Auto Transport. He enjoys helping others navigate the auto transport process through his informational articles.