Everything To Know About Shipping a Car From State to State

Shipping cars across the country is easier than you think. Your experience depends on different factors like the kind of vehicle you have, how much time you have for shipment, your budget, and more.

In this post, we’ll talk about the entire process of shipping your car from one state to another. Use this information to ensure your automobile remains safe during delivery and arrives at your destination for a reasonable price.

Find an Auto Transport Company

A vehicle transport company will help take care of shipping your car to your desired location.

However, with many auto transport companies to choose from, finding the best one for you isn’t as easy as it seems.

For starters, here’s what you should expect from a car shipping company like Guardian Auto Transport:

Step 1: Get an Auto Transport Quote for Free

Car transport companies will have a section on their website detailing fees and rates. However, if you’re looking for something more personalized, all you need to do is fill out the information required to get an instant quote.

Step 2: Car Pick-Up

You will then get in touch with your driver as they travel to your location to pick your car up. Before transporting your car, it’s wise to check for any issues and leaks at a mechanic. 

Once that’s done, your driver will do a final check before loading up the vehicle. Guardian’s own process involves a 22-point checklist performed on pick-up and delivery. 

Step 3: Receive Your Care Safely and On-Time

The professional driver will let you know when they’re near so that you can prepare before your car arrives. The best car shipping company will make another round of inspection and have the designated delivery contact sign off on the Bill of Lading (vehicle inspection report) before releasing the vehicle on delivery. 

At Guardian, we go the extra mile by keeping you alert with personalized text messages and frequent updates for peace of mind.


Here are a few ways to help you narrow down your choices to the car shipping company that suits your needs:

  • Look at features they offer — Not all auto shipping companies are the same. Some offer different services not available through other car shipping companies and vice-versa. This is why you should look closely at the services provided and ensure this matches your expectations for a car shipping company.
  • Check their reviews — If the car transport company gets rave reviews from hundreds of unbiased customers, include them in your shortlist of potential car shipping companies.
  • Talk to them — After filling out a quote form, they’ll reach out to you soon to answer questions you have about their car shipping services. From here, you should be able to determine which auto shipping company has excellent customer service through this one-to-one conversation.

Determine Car Shipping Costs

Another factor that plays a role in choosing the best auto transport company for you will be the cost.

You want a car carrier that has a reasonable average cost for the car shipping process. However, prices vary depending on factors such as:

  • Location — Car transport is less expensive when the destination is at popular destinations and routes like Los Angeles,  New York, Chicago, etc. Travel costs become higher if the car is shipped to less popular, rural areas.
  • Season — The cost of transporting cars during high seasons like summer is higher because of the demand for car shipping services. Low seasons tend to be during the winter when fewer people want to relocate or ship cars cross-country. That’s true despite the trickier weather conditions.
  • Vehicle size and weight — The heavier the car is, the more expensive the shipping costs will be.

Based on these factors, it’s best to plan and ship your car during the low seasons to avoid unwanted expenses. Also, reduce the car’s weight by removing your personal belongings in there and not filling up your gas tank to the fullest.

Choose Between Enclosed Transport vs. Open Air Transport

Part of what affects auto transport cost is the shipping method you will choose. There are two methods, each of which has distinct pros and cons.

Method #1: Enclosed Transport

This transport method is the best choice if you are shipping a car with delicate items or looking to ship classic cars across the country. Enclosed carriers protect your vehicle from extreme weather, dirt, and debris. However, in exchange for the safety and security of enclosed car shipping, you’ll have to pay a premium. 

Method #2: Open-Air Carriers

The open-air method offers more space for loading because they don’t need to accommodate doors or other openings that would otherwise take up cargo room. They also travel faster than an enclosed carrier, making this express auto transport method great for cutting down on delivery time and costs.

Open-air carriers run cheaper but may not be the best option if you’re looking for additional protection for cargo like a luxury vehicle.

Prepare Your Car for Shipping

To prepare to transport your car to another state, ensure that all its parts are in tip-top condition. This includes oil levels and tire pressure.

Also, look for mechanical and electrical issues that you must get fixed before the car shipping date.  You want your vehicle to be functioning well so you won’t encounter problems.

Finally, take photos of your vehicle before shipping. This way, you can provide evidence that the damages made to your car happened while it was being transported. Also, make sure you have adequate insurance coverage for your vehicle so the auto transport company will cover the costs.

Four Common Questions About State to State Car Shipping

#1: How Much Does It Cost to Ship a Car State to State?

Multiple factors influence the cost of your transport service:

  • Type of vehicle: size and weight
  • Condition: running or not running. means the car does not start.
  • Type of trailer: open or enclosed
  • Distance/mileage: the number of miles between your pickup and

delivery locations

  • Location: urban/metro or rural area
  • Modifications: lowered, lifted, larger tires, racks on top, etc.
  • Seasonal fluctuations: seasonal supply and demands change on certain routes

#2: What’s the Cheapest Way to Ship My Car?

Open Transport is going to be the most budgetable way to ship your vehicle. Over 95% of vehicles in the auto transport industry get transported via open trailers. It is considered very safe and used to transport new vehicles to dealerships. Also, building flexibility into your shipping schedule will allow for the transport company to assign the most cost-effective scheduling option.

Enclosed transport is more expensive due to only a small percentage of drivers having this equipment. We recommend enclosed transport for luxury, exotic, or classic cars.

#3: How Long Does It Take to Ship Cars From State to State?

The average time it takes to ship a vehicle in the continental United States usually is 6-12 days or up to two weeks. The range can be shorter or longer, depending on your location.

#4: How Can I Get My Car Shipped to Another State?

You can get your car shipped to the state of your choice by searching for a transportation service. Ensure to vet the service thoroughly before booking, however, as plenty of people have ended up paying more out of pocket or had their timelines shifted unexpectedly due to poor service from shippers. .


By being mindful of the steps above, you can better prepare how you can transport your car to another state.

It all boils down to your state-to-state auto transportation provider of choice. They will ensure that your car will reach your desired state safely and on time.

For the best car transport service yet, trust the expert team at Guardian Auto Transport to get you where you need to be, with exceptional customer service and competitive rates. Just ask our customers, who have granted us a 99.4% satisfaction rating!

If you’re ready to find a route to car shipping, get a quote from our booking agents online or by calling (877) 924-1452 today!