Cheapest Ways To Transport My Car Cross Country

Cheapest Ways To Transport My Car Cross Country
Summary: The cheapest way to ship a car is on open transport, which often costs hundreds of dollars less than an enclosed carrier. Whether you have to ship a car cross country or just a state or two over, we have put together 7 cheapest options to consider for car shipping cross country.

Vehicle shipping through a truck or car carrier is the most popular option. You can get this service from several auto shipping providers. Most vehicles shipped by vehicle dealers are shipped by auto shipping companies.

Even though it is the most popular option, it is not the cheapest means to transport a car across the country. Car shipping costs using a car shipping trailer can be costly if you need an enclosed carrier for door-to-door delivery.

We make a comparison of the options for shipping a car of standard size on a 1-way trip involving 3,000 miles.

Shipping by Truck Costs from $1,100 to $2,000

Probably the most popular way to ship a car across the country is to load it on a mid-sized trailer as car dealers do. Several factors determine the cost of transporting a vehicle on truck transport.

These include the type of vehicle as well as its condition, the distance, the season, and the two locations (start and destination) involved.

Shipping to a distant location but on popular routes may be cheaper than shipping to a short distance between small areas. 

Alongside door-to-door service, shipping companies also arrange shipping between two central places. This may not be as cheaper as other methods.

Usually, the price differs based on options like guaranteed pickup date against a delivery window or an opener against the enclosed trailer.

You can get a different kind of quote for a transport truck which starts at about $1,100 and up to about $2,000 from uShip, an online marketplace that connects people looking to ship or haul items.

Hiring a Driver costs $1,100

Hiring a driver to haul the vehicle lowers the stress and saves you time, but it can be dangerous and scary to handle your keys to a stranger. A popular way to reduce the risk is by working with an intermediary that researches drivers.

According to experts, a cross-country relocation cost about $1,100. Summer is the time you may find professional drivers in need of a cheap means to relocate across the country as well. 

The driver is responsible for food, gas, and lodging, and the vehicle owner will take care of insurance. According to experts, this option is not so common, and said many customers prefer a moving method that doesn’t add miles on their odometer.

Using the Tuckaway service that offers no guarantee on the delivery date will cost from $1,35o to $1,500.

Shipping by Rail costs from $334 to $1,500

Loading your car onto a train is another option. Suppose you are moving to a distance that exceeds 750 miles. In that case, shipping by train is cheaper than a truck, according to experts.

Delivering an SUV timely to Nebraska from Louisiana as obtained from a satisfied user was $1,500 for door-to-door delivery service. 

Car shipped by rail is transported in an enclosed car, even though a shipping company who had used train service before warned that cars can still be vandalized while in depots.

Train transport is specially made for vehicle dealers transporting multiple vehicles at once. Even though individual vehicle owners can sometimes get lucky to find a slot, it is almost impossible to guarantee a certain day.

This option is only available at certain locations. Pickup and drop-off still require the use of a truck, maybe at an extra fee.

Transport your Car with your Moving Company

There may not be a need to hire a separate shipping company if the reason behind your car shipping is because you are moving. Cross country moving companies also provide auto shipping services.

Although they may act as a broker between the car owner and the car shipper, or they may have the service among their other cross-country moving services. This is why you certainly need to hire one of the best cross-country moving companies.

They will ensure the experience you get will be only for household moves and auto shipping service. A dishonest moving company may pick the least expensive vehicle shipping company.

Cheap in their dictionary means cutting corners, and you might not get the best result from the cheapest vehicle shipping company.

In some cases, moving companies will transport the car in their moving truck. Be sure to ask your moving company if they offer this service.

Professional Car Shipping Company

The cheapest car shipping method is through open air. This is because 10 cars are loaded on one carrier truck with a single driver in an open transport option. In addition, open transport carriers can ship almost any car since they can be seen on almost every road.

If you are shipping your everyday vehicle, open car shipping is your best option, and it always doesn’t stress your purse. However, in your case, before you can determine the cheapest way to ship a car, you first have to identify your preferred type of truck to ship your car. 

Are you shipping a luxurious or collectible vehicle? If yes, the cheapest shipping method here would be the enclosed shipping.

Although this is way costly than open-air shipping, it offers protection to your vehicle from the road and weather elements, which is perfect if you own a rare or valuable car. That explains the trucks; now we discuss the methods.

Terminal-to-Terminal Car Shipping

Regardless of how you evaluate it, terminal-to-terminal delivery is the cheapest car shipping method. If you are not financially buoyant, shipping through terminals can be the best way to ship a car. However, it is not recommended.

The method is usually slower and not convenient, unlike door-to-door shipping. It is much more helpful as there are one or two terminals in most major cities where you can drop off your vehicle, and currently, these terminals are secure. 

However, you are still taking a significant risk by shipping through terminals because you will be required to leave your car there. Your vehicle is out of sight for several days or weeks in some cases.

Terminal shipping can also be time-consuming than door-to-door shipping because not all carriers agree to stop at a terminal. This can elongate your pickup times for terminal shipping services.


This is done in an open-air transport truck and is the standard way of vehicle shipping in the auto shipping industry. When it comes to standards, it is the best car shipping method for cheap.

We always recommend door-to-door car shipping for those shipping their standard and everyday vehicle. All shippers are properly insured as federally required at the least value of $750,000, with some up to $1 million worth of coverage on their truck.

The cheapest way to safely and securely ship a car is through the open-air car transport, and we can prove this statement any day.


Shipping a car across the country will start from an average of about $500 to $1,500 based on your preferred options, and the distance of the journey. The cheapest option may not be available in your location or may not offer you the reliability and trustworthiness you need.

Even though you might consider DIY car shipping as the cheapest option, shipping a car by train might be way cheaper if the option is available for you.