How to Save Money When Shipping Your Car Cross Country

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If you’re used to moving a lot, you know that shipping your car is one of the best and most convenient ways to get your car from point A to point B. However, the costs can add up. Be sure to compare the costs of driving your car versus shipping. Don’t forget to include these factors:

  • Gas
  • Food
  • Lodging
  • Mileage
  • Wear and tear

Shipping Your Car

When you consider all the additional costs you’ll have on the road, you may be prepared to pay for the convenience of shipping one or more cars to your new home. Auto-shipping is not only easier than driving your own vehicle, but you can also save some money by following these tips:

Get Multiple Quotes

There are plenty of auto transport companies out there, and they will all tell you they have the best deal. Many factors go into the price of auto shipping, so you should be aware of the following:

  • Distance
  • Fuel Costs
  • Transport Type
  • Delivery Type
  • Time of Year

These are some of the factors affecting car shipping prices. Be sure to check as soon as you know you’re moving to lock in the best rate.

Reserve Early

Another way to lock in your best auto shipping rate is to book early. As soon as your move becomes definite, you can begin to shop for quotes online. The time of year has something to do with the price, so if possible, plan to move your car during the “off” months. You may find you can live without your vehicle for some time while living in your new home and can afford to wait. On the other hand, you may be in the best time slot available, so you can go ahead and move your car.

Be Flexible

If you know your travel dates, you can reserve your shipping early. If you are flexible on the dates of shipping your car or cars, then you will likely be able to get the best deal available. Be sure to check when the transport companies are busiest because that will be when they have the highest rates. Usually, the summer months and days directly following the holidays are the busiest time of year for auto shippers. Keep this in mind while you book your shipping dates and try to stay as flexible as possible.

Use Open Transport

Most shipping companies offer open, covered, and enclosed transport, and they get more expensive the more specialized they are. Open transport is just what it sounds like. We’ve all seen auto transporters on the road with two to 20 cars on board. That’s what your car will endure. Open transport is just as safe as the other options. But it is the cheapest because your car is exposed to the elements. If you’re shipping your family sedan or minivan, this is likely not a problem, and you can opt for open transport.

If you have a luxury or sports car, consider covered or enclosed transport. In an enclosed transport, your car is placed in an enclosure, so no one on the road can see your vehicle. This may protect it against vandalism and theft, so consider this option if you have a high-value car.

Choose Popular Ports

If you’re shipping overseas, the port you choose will affect your shipping price. In this case, the busier the port, the cheaper the price is. Check out port pricing if you’re going with port-to-port pickup. If you’ve opted for door to door, then your auto transport company is taking care of the shipping port part of everything. Double-check with your agent to make sure everything is good to go before you hand over the keys. You shouldn’t have any surprises when it comes to shipping your car.

Look for Discounts

Especially if you are a service member, veteran, or military family, look for special discounts that apply to you. Some of these may also include discounts for shipping to Hawaii, shipping more than one vehicle, etc. Know your situation and know to ask for certain discounts before you book your reservation. It’s likely if you book early, you will be in line for the best discounts available.

Read Reviews

Reviews can help you decide which shipping company is right for you. Be sure to look for other military families’ testimonials since this group moves around a lot and has to depend on overseas shipping more frequently than others. If you look for both positive and negative reviews, you should get a clear picture of how the company handles:

  • Pricing structures
  • Distance or mileage charges
  • Customer service
  • Driver friendliness

You can then choose what’s most important to you in a company and make your choice from there. Auto shipping should save you time and money no matter where in the country you’re moving. Be sure to check multiple quotes before you decide.

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David Pere

David Pere

David is an active duty Marine, who devotes his free time to helping service members, veterans, and their families learn how to build wealth through real estate investing, entrepreneurship, and personal finance!

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