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The Cost to Ship a Car

There’s a number of important factors that determine the overall cost of shipping a vehicle. First, there’s the matter of distance and location. In fact, these two components are significant when solving the pricing puzzle. However, these aren’t the only considerations as the cost is also determined by the vehicle type, its condition, the method of transport selected (open or enclosed) as well as fuel prices.

Cost to ship a car

Let’s do a deep dive on all of these factors:

Distance and Location

Obviously, the farther distance needed to travel almost always equals a higher price. Additionally, if the route to a location isn’t straightforward or sort of “off the beaten path” shipping cost will also increase. Common routes, aka “hot routes” are less remote and more direct and tend to be much cheaper.

Location is also important when it comes to pricing. When we say location, we’re talking about pick-ups and drop-offs that are close to interstate highways or near a big city.

Type of Vehicle

Larger cars tend to run at a higher price point for shipping than smaller, more compact vehicles. The explanation is simple. Larger vehicles that weight more take up more space on the trailer, limiting the room for other vehicles. Most shipping companies operate with four categories for vehicle size: sedan, SUV, truck, and van.

Vehicle Condition

This particular designation usually doesn’t occur to people when they think price. Still, it’s an important element that can dramatically affect cost. So, if your vehicle doesn’t run at the time it’s picked up, the cost will get bumped a bit. The reason for this is a non-functional car requires special tools to load and unload. Furthermore, steering or braking issues can also inflate the fees you pay.

Method of Transport

Auto shipping has two primary types of transport: open and enclosed auto shipping. The open variety is the more common style and is also cheaper. Here vehicles are transported in an open trailer. This is a very secure method, however, the car does remain out in the open and exposed to the elements.

Enclosed vehicle transport is most often utilized when the car being shipped is exotic, rare, or a luxury automobile. The enclosure guarantees the vehicle is guarded from weather conditions, road debris, and dust. However, selecting this method will raise the overall price.

Another factor that can impact pricing is the speed at which you want your vehicle delivered. If you want and or need it there asap you can select expedited shipping. Of course this will inflate the cost.

Transport Season

Cost can definitely be impacted by the time of year in which you have your vehicle shipped. For instance, shipping your car during snowbird season so that you can take advantage of warm weather somewhere else, will tick up the price of shipping. This is primarily because lots of people are shipping their car during this small pocket of time. As you can imagine, the higher demand will drive up the price.

Fuel Costs

As always, fuel cost has to be factored into vehicle shipping. However, since fuel costs are constantly fluctuating both up and down, it’s hard to say if this will negatively or positively impact the overall cost.

Hopefully, this breakdown provides some clarity with how we arrive at our car shipping costs. Remember though, AMPM offers some of the most affordable rates in the business.

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