Ship a car across the US: Shipping Quote Calculator | Nationwide Auto Transportation

Ship a car across the US: Shipping Quote Calculator

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How much to ship a car across the US?

Found a new job across on the other side of America? Congratulations! It’s always exciting to be moving up in the world, and moving home to start afresh in a new city holds much adventure and new experiences… That’s once you actually arrive there. First, there’s the heavy lifting (literally) of packing up your house, submitting change of address notifications, finding a relocation company to ship your household goods, resigning from your current job, notifying the kids’ schools and doctors to transfer records and so much more. Afraid you might forget something? Well, Nationwide Auto Transportation is more than just a  professional car shipping company! We’ve prepared a helpful moving checklist to help you remember all those pesky details. That’s just one of the ways in which we’re trying to make your life a little easier.

Some people are brave enough to pack up their homes every winter and head to Florida, California or Texas for a month or three. They recognize the fact that it’s much easier to fly down there than to drive across country for days on end. However, it’s also important to have your car on hand so that you have the convenience of driving around at your leisure and exploring your surrounds. Besides, hiring a car for more than a week at a time can become quite expensive. It makes sense to ship your car across the country to your destination.

Driving such long distances across the country and back is not only hard on your car, but also on the person who does all the driving. If you have younger kids, you know that being cooped up in a small space can truly wear on everyone’s nerves. Stopping every two hours can maintain everyone’s sanity, but it can quickly become more expensive than what flying and shipping cars across country cost. Save yourself the trouble. Call your number one auto transportation company to find out how much it will cost to ship a car across the US. You’ll see that it is well worth the price, and it will also likely give you a few more days to enjoy the warm, sunny beach weather down south.


ship a car across the us

How much does it cost to ship a car across the US?

If you’re asking this question, you’ve probably already decided that it makes sense to ship a car across the US to your new home or vacation destination. But in order to make an informed decision, you need to know how much it will cost to ship a car across the US. The easy answer is “It depends”. The average sedan, in good working condition, can can cost an average of $800 to ship a car across the country, depending on the distance.

Several different factors are involved in determining the cost to ship a car across the US, and seemingly insignificant factors can have a drastic effect on the price. So while the factors below affect the cost, it is by no means an accurate formula to determine the exact cost to ship a car across the US. The best way to find an accurate rate to ship your car, would be to make use of our auto shipping calculator. This software program uses sophisticated algorithms to determine a price based on the latest data, compiled of information, including:

Dates: Peak or off-peak

Auto transportation during the holidays or during winter when the snowbirds head south will always affect the cost of shipping your car across the country, or during summer when there’s a higher demand for carriers. Seasonal fluctuations can increase auto shipping quotes for shipping a car across the US by as much as $500.

Type of transportation: Open or enclosed

There are different shipping methods to choose from, and many factors that determine the best option for your needs.

Open carrier shipping is suitable for most vehicle types, and it is also the most cost-effective. Vehicles are transported atop a truck along with six to twelve other cars. Since carriers can transport in bulk, this is the cheapest method. However, when you work through a professional auto transportation company, you do not have to worry about the safety of your vehicle. About 90% of people who ship their cars across the country make use of this method.

Enclosed auto shipping involves transporting a car in a truck with soft or hard sides that provide additional protection from the elements and road debris. This method is ideal for luxury vehicles, classic or antique cars, and supercars, as it also shields it from prying eyes. This is typically recommended for cars valued at more than $50,000.

Roll-on / Roll-off (RO/RO auto shipping) can be containerized or open shipping via train, plane or ship. The term comes from the fact that the vehicle is rolled onto and rolled off of the vessel via a hatch. Non-operational vehicles should ideally be shipped via container.

Distance: Near, far, wherever you are…

It goes without saying that the cost to ship a car across the US is influenced by the distance that needs to be covered by the car carrier. Interestingly enough, the per-mile rate tends to become cheaper the further the delivery location is from the collection address. This does not apply to international shipping, as limitations and taxes come into play. For instance, shipping a car less than two hundred miles can cost just under $3 per mile, while it can be less than a dollar to ship a car across the country (1,000+ miles).

Pickup or delivery locations

While well-established vehicle transportation companies have carriers that run on all the major routes, opting for cheaper services could end up costing you more in additional fees upon delivery of your vehicle. Always verify that you have the correct addresses, and save yourself and the driver time by ensuring that the collection and delivery addresses have sufficient space for the truck to park and load or unload your vehicle.

Fuel price

Economic conditions can affect fuel rates, and auto carriers adjust their rates to ensure that they remain profitable. It’s hard to say to what extent this might increase your cost to ship a car across the US. However, it will usually be in line with the inflation rate.


Reputable auto transportation companies will provide insurance and Auto Transport Gap protection. This insurance will provide protection for out-of-pocket expenses in case the carrier’s insurance declines the insurance claim. You are protected for up to 48 hours after delivery, because damage is not always detected right away.

Type of car 

Auto shipping companies transport ship a variety of vehicles across the country, including golf carts, motorcycles, sedans, SUVs, minivans, buses and trucks. Extra costs are factored in based on the type of car you wish to ship across the country. The extra cost for a mid-size sedan would be around $50, while it can be $75 for an SUV or $150 for a full size truck.

Condition of vehicle

However, some car carriers do ship cars that are inoperable on trucks, but they do charge a premium. A car that steers and brakes can fetch an additional fee of about $100, whereas a car that has to be winched or forklifted onto the truck can easily require up to $500 more in handling fees, depending on its size.

Expedited car transport

It’s usually best to start shopping for auto shipping across the country two weeks before your travel date, and to book your service 7-10 days from that date. This enables carriers to arrange their logistics in a way that makes the trip worthwhile. But sometimes, you have to get to your destination fast. This is often the case with military personnel who are transferred to a different base and have only a few days to report for duty.

When you’re under pressure to obtain fast auto shipping, get in touch with Nationwide Auto Transportation and ask for expedited shipping. Since this will affect the car carriers’ pre-arranged route plans, which will involve additional cost of as much as $100 if you want your vehicle to be available within five days, or $500 same day or next day availability – if it is practical.

Special requests – storage / be present for delivery

If you have special requests in terms of storage, or specific delivery and collection times, this will most likely affect the cost to ship a vehicle across the country. It’s important to ask your auto shipping company about these fees before you book, rather than during process, when it might fetch additional penalties.

ship a car across the us

Get a Quote to Ship Your Car Across the Country

The Nationwide Auto Transportation online car shipping quote calendar uses special algorithms to quickly and easily create an accurate quote so you know exactly how much it will cost to ship a car across the US.