So You Want to Ship Your Car Cross-Country…
What Should You Consider?
Shipping a car across the country is the most efficient method of transport getting your vehicle from one state to another or from coast to coast traveling through multiple states.
It may appear as simple as choosing a provider and sending your car on its way. We strive to make the transport as pleasant and simple of a process as possible, but there are a few important factors you’ll need to consider when doing research, before making a final decision.
This is extremely important in getting the results you expect to!
Managing your expectations, and matching them up with the actual car shipping service promised is vital. Oftentimes, you might sign up for a transport company or offering that doesn’t deliver what you expected.
This can be managed by verifying your potential auto relocation companies. And this is exactly what we intend to do, guiding you throughout.
We’ll provide a vehicle shipping criteria checklist so your car is prepared for its journey!
Luckily, online research is your best friend when comparing car moving companies, assessing costs, vetting transporters, and mapping out your desired timelines.
Our intention is to provide you with clear and concise guidelines, decision criteria, and points to consider from A-Z when choosing the right auto transport company.
Let’s get started!
Here’s A Full List of Potential Shipping Considerations:
1. What Type of Transport Do I Need?
2. When Do I Plan to Ship By?
3. How Long Do I Want My Trip to Take?
4. Why Would I Ship My Car Across the Country?
Let’s dive into each one of these one by one.
1. What Type of Auto Transport Do I Need?
First off, the most common transport services consist of open auto transport.
This is the large, two-leveled 18-wheeler trucks you’re used to seeing on the highway, with several cars safely secured into position on the back. This option is used widely across America and is the base standard for most transport companies.
There are of course other options, like those for luxury vehicles, classic cars, and modified specialties.
You can opt (at extra cost) for an enclosed carrier, which significantly aids in protecting your vehicle from weather and road debris, over a long journey, like a cross-country auto transport shipment.
This usually isn’t necessary unless your car is a high-ticket luxury vehicle, a true collector’s item with original paint and parts, an exotic, or has special requirements such as low ground clearance where a hydraulic lift gate or special ramps will be utilized.
But of course, we all know how important our cars are to us; if you want to opt for a safer choice across hundreds of miles of highway, then an enclosed carrier is highly recommended!
Click here for an in-depth breakdown of what your auto transport cost estimate will consist of.
2. When Do I Plan to Ship My Car State-to-State By?
The second consideration you’ll need to think of in advance, is your desired vehicle delivery date.
A great way to start this process is to reverse-engineer it. Begin with the end in mind…
That is to say, map out what your plans are when you move to a new state (or ship a car there) and when you will ideally be needing to be driving it by.
This is an easy way to give yourself the best shot of having your vehicle transported to your delivery location once you are there to receive it. It’s an important idea for planning since so many have just ordered the transport without thinking how long their car will actually be inaccessible to them. Another consideration is do you want to hold onto your car longer on the pickup side vs. having your vehicle on the delivery side earlier. Many auto shippers will use a trusted backup contact person such as a family member, friend, neighbor, or colleague to assist with the process.
It all comes down to your desired date of final delivery...
So you might want to factor in a few extra days, etc... just in case. That way, you’ll be prepared for any situation and will get back in your car much closer to the time you need it.
And of course, if the timeline is not a sensitive factor for you, then bump it to the bottom of the list as you consider the ones that are important.
You can usually expect a car delivery across country to take an average of 7-12 days or 6-11 days depending on the auto transport route.
The variance will depend on a myriad of factors like vehicle type (large trucks or modified vehicles, for example, can at times take a little longer for a pickup to occur), pickup and delivery locations, time of year, type of carrier (open or enclosed) as well as the condition of your vehicle (operable or inoperable).
Going forward, you’ll want to be prepared for these… so let’s take your considerations one step further:
3. How Long Do I Want My Trip to Take?
Your needs here may vary, depending on the situation you find yourself in.
You may be moving across the country, and need wheels on the ground as soon as you move into your new home. Or, maybe you’re shipping a hobby or track car to a second house and the shipment is not time dependent.
These are considerations for you alone to make… but here are some other factors that influence them:
- what type of car you’re shipping: a daily driver or a hobby car?
- your moving dates, or desired delivery day
- how many cars you’re moving cross-country, and
- what do you plan to do if delivery is on the later side of the estimated timeline?
These considerations should act as a guideline for your perfect cross-country auto shipping service.
If the timeline isn’t too important to you, then this won’t be high on your list when choosing a car shipping company.
But if you want to get it there as quickly as possible, it’s important to research auto transport companies who provide an accurate auto shipping quote so your vehicle just doesn’t sit there as an underpriced shipment. All too often this is the case in this industry. A shipping company will provide a low or lower car transport rate and then when it's not getting picked up will often ask for more money. This is an unfortunate tactic in the industry and of course, something you do not have to worry about using a top-rated car shipping company like Patriot Auto Transport! Going in with this knowledge will equip you better for choosing a reliable source for your auto transportation.
4. Why Would I Ship My Car Across the Country?
So maybe at the moment, you’re asking yourself…
Who is in need of these services? When is a good time to use them?
And… what can I expect from a journey like this?
Well, there are countless reasons why our clients choose state-to-state transport when considering large life decisions. Here are a few:
A Work or Career-Related Change
Maybe your company just sold your division.
And now you’ve got the choice to either relocate or find some new work! Perhaps you’ve just gotten a promotion, with more responsibility and a shiny new city location for you and your family.
In these situations, you will likely be moving a LOT of stuff from your home.
This means it won’t be feasible to put it all in the car you plan on driving when you get there. It requires that you pack up a U-Haul or hire a moving company to ship all of your personal belongings across the country.
This leaves the option for you to drive your car the whole way there, but that can be inconvenient for people. Especially if you have multiple vehicles.
Thereby, it’s a great, cost-effective way to hire an auto transport company that knows what they’re doing to get your car from the old home to the new.
School or Going off to College
Alternatively, maybe your kid just went off to college! Or maybe it's you who just gained acceptance to that university you’ve had your eye on since your junior year of high school!
Let’s say you live in Los Angeles and your young student just got accepted to a school in Boston, MA.
Again, one way to do it is to wish them the best and let them drive almost 3,000 miles of brutal highways, Interstates, and through the mind-numbingly flat Midwest…
OR, you buy them a ticket, ship the car, and send them on their merry way, so they can focus on getting adjusted to the new school and town.
This is another common reason we see our clients doing this big trip, to avoid the hassle of having to do it themselves.
Purchasing a Rare or Exotic Luxury Vehicle
Another reason you might want to look into shipping a car like this would be in case you’re purchasing a luxury car from out of state.
Imagine you just sealed the deal on a classic Ferrari or a brand-new luxury vehicle like a Mercedes.
One of your choices would be to drive or fly out, have someone drive your car back home, and drive the luxury car all the way home. That’s a hassle in time and energy.
A better option? Contracting an auto transport company (with an enclosed carrier) to not only protect the vehicle in transit but not have to run a luxury vehicle like a daily driver, exposing it to harsh temperatures and/or road debris over long distances.
In this case, an enclosed carrier is almost a must.
Either way, it’s better than you arranging the entire journey yourself, and coordinating with others to help you out.
Taking a Fun Car Out in the Sun During Snowy Season
And maybe you’re a full-on car enthusiast who loves to feel the roar of the engine all year round…
But you live in Denver, Colorado in December. Or Chicago, Illinois in February. And you’re not able to take the Ferrari, Porsche, Mustang, Chevelle, or Mitsubishi Evo on the road and rip it up.
This is another common reason for transporting a car to the warmer states, where you can feel the breeze on the speedways, tracks, and highway roads, unencumbered.
Longer-Term Storage in an Ideal Area
A second-to-last option we see clients adapting with is when they’d prefer long-term storage in some other state.
Possibly they don’t have adequate storage for their vehicle at home (this is typical in some highly populated cities such as NYC or Washington, DC), or can’t find suitable accommodations year-round for the car they love to baby.
In this case, it makes a lot of sense to go for a different location storage.
This is one of the most common reasons, considering the upkeep and maintenance of any reliable vehicle are paramount. This also ensures their vehicle will be there waiting for them on their next adventure!
And the last option?
Maybe it wasn’t your company that recently transferred your location… but your country!
In the noble duty of service, you’ve often shifted around from base to base, often near the popular ports of the country (depending on which branch you’re in).
So if this applies to you, it’s a similar situation when you move your family around every two or three years and need to also take the car, the home furniture, and much more.
This option with a company like Patriot Auto Transport can make life a breeze.
So… Why Choose Patriot Auto Transport Over Others?
Considering all we’ve shared with you today is a tall order.
However, it’s not that difficult, when you consider your mandatory needs and other factors that are just nice-to-haves.
We recommend ranking what is important to you on a scale from 1-10, going through each of the four points we’ve shared. For instance, if time is a high priority, rank that a 10/10 and look for carriers who have quick delivery times.
If safety and reliability are number one, rank that a 10 and look for auto transport companies offering enclosed carrier trucks, so your vehicle is protected.
In this case, you end up compiling what’s perfect for you, using an easy ranking system.
This is what we advise: give this a once-over, and soak up all the considerations for your decision.
Then, re-read this with an eye for which factors are most important to you, take out a pen and pad, and rank all four factors from 1-10 in your notebook or phone.
Then, with all your ratings mapped out on paper or digitally, you’ll see which ones you need to qualify all of your potential transport companies against.
This makes the decision pretty simple; when you find a company that offers the services that you deem most important, give them a call, or submit an instant quote form.
It can be that simple.
The Car Transport Services We Offer at Patriot Auto Transport:
Patriot Auto Transport is a full-service car shipping company.
We move cars; that’s all we do.
Specializing in this sector is what allows us to remain reliable, and quick, and invest in our people: our drivers, our staff, and our partners.
If we tried to do it all, serving every transport item like valuables, furniture, and collectible items…then we wouldn’t have our primary focus on your vehicle, and your vehicle alone.
Some important details could get lost in the mix. But since we’re ONLY focused on getting your car from point A to point B, we do it extremely well...
We provide forthright information and are here to assist throughout the journey so you’re both informed and educated on what’s going on with your vehicle.
You can place an order over the phone, or get an auto-shipping quote online here.
We offer auto transport to and from a large collection of major cities and towns, like D.C., L.A. Baltimore, Boston, Denver, Portland, Nashville, Seattle, New York, Dallas, Chicago, Houston, Atlanta, Austin, and several more across the nation! We are a nationwide top-rated auto shipper.
All you need to do is click the link and just give us some brief background info on your car’s journey, and we’ll do the rest.
We look forward to serving and supporting you throughout your auto-shipping journey. Your car is in good hands, and we’ll see to that.