Open Air Auto Transport | The Cheapest Way To Ship A Car
If you need a car shipped (or any other type of vehicle, for that matter), there is likely one key question on your mind: how much does it cost? While the answer to that question can depend on a number of things, the simplest answer is open air auto transport. In the paragraphs below, we’ll dive into some of the reasons why this is the case and explain some of the many things that can influence the price of vehicle shipping.
Things That Will Affect Car Shipping Prices
Ultimately, there are a few main factors that affect how much you’ll pay for car shipping, but there are a few minor elements at play as well. Here are the things will be most likely to impact how much you pay to have a vehicle shipped, as well as the reasons why.
- Distance – This is the most important thing to consider because it obviously costs more money to transport a vehicle over a longer distance. While it may only cost a few hundred dollars to have a vehicle shipped to a nearby state, or within the same state, shipping the same car across the country will likely approach or exceed $1,000.
- Type of Vehicle – Another key ingredient is the type of vehicle, which mainly has to do with the size and weight. The larger and heavier a vehicle is, the more it will cost to ship, just as a heavier package costs more to transport when you send it through the mail.
- Fuel Prices – As the cost of fuel fluctuates, so too does the cost of transporting vehicles. The large trucks (known as carriers) used to move other vehicles require a lot of gas and engine power to drive and that will understandably affect the cost.
- Method of Transport – The two main types of transporting a car are in an open air carrier, which is cheaper and hauls more vehicles at once, and an enclosed carrier, which is smaller and moves fewer cars.
- Delivery Requirements – The common way of transporting cars involves pickup and delivery from a depot or terminal, which is cheaper than the more convenient door to door delivery option.
The Most Affordable Car Shipping Options
We covered this briefly in the opening section of this post, but let’s go into some more depth as to why open air carriers provide the cheapest method, as well as where terminal to terminal shipping fits into the picture. Though the larger open air carriers require more fuel to move vehicles, they typically move between six and 12 cars at once, if not more. Since there are more vehicles, as opposed to the one or two moved in an enclosed carrier, the costs are split among more vehicles, resulting in a lower overall cost.
If you couple terminal to terminal shipping along with open air transport, you’ve got the absolute cheapest way to ship a vehicle. When you ship a car using terminal transport, that means you have to drop off the vehicle at a transport depot (they are usually located in major cities) and pick it up from another depot when it’s delivered. Naturally, this saves time and money for the car carrier, which then passes the savings on to you.
Auto Transport Discounts
You may be surprised to hear that many auto transport companies offer discounts that can provide further savings beyond the method and type of transport you choose. In fact, A-1 Auto Transport has one of the most robust discount programs in the industry that apply to seniors, military, students, first time shippers, multiple car transport, online booking, and more! Sometimes these discounts are not prominently displayed or advertised, so always be sure to ask when you’re requesting a price quote from a car shipping company.
Written By:Joe Webster
Joe Webster began his journey in the auto transport field by attending the University of Southern California (USC), where he graduated with a Bachelor of Business Marketing.
After college, he started his career in the auto transport industry from the bottom up and has done virtually every job there is to do at A-1 Auto Transport, including but not limited to: Truck Driver, Dispatch, Sales, PR, Bookkeeping, Transport Planner, Transport Manager, International Transport Manager, Brokering, Customer Service, and Marketing. Working with his mentor Tony Taylor, Joe Webster has learned the ins and outs of this industry which is largely misunderstood.
With over 30 years experience in the industry, we've been helping people ship their vehicles, motorcycles, RV's, heavy equipment, household goods and more across the country or overseas without a hitch. Ask us anything.