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How Much Does It Cost To Ship A Car To California?

California (CA), USA

What's in this article?
  1. Factors Influencing The Cost To Ship A Car To California
  2. Distance And Location
  3. Type Of Transport
  4. Vehicle Size And Weight
  5. Shipping Timeline
  6. Seasonal Demand
  7. Pickup And Delivery Services
  8. Vehicle Condition
  9. Insurance Coverage
  10. How To Get Accurate Quotes For Car Shipping To California
  11. Research And Compare Auto Transport Companies
  12. Provide Accurate Vehicle Information
  13. Choose The Right Shipping Method
  14. Consider Pickup And Delivery Options
  15. Plan Ahead
  16. Conclusion
How Much Does It Cost To Ship A Car To California?

The cost to ship a car to California typically ranges between $900 to $1,300 for a standard-sized vehicle transported via an open carrier. However, factors like vehicle size, transport type, and distance can cause prices to vary. Shipping a car to California can be a complex and expensive process, but it doesn't have to be. Whether you're relocating to the Golden State or need to transport your vehicle for other reasons, understanding the factors that influence the cost of shipping is crucial. In this comprehensive guide, we'll break down the various elements that determine the cost to ship a car to California and provide you with valuable insights to make the process smoother and more cost-effective.

Factors Influencing the Cost to Ship a Car to California

Distance and Location

One of the most significant factors affecting the cost to ship a car to California is the distance between the pickup and delivery locations. The farther the distance, the higher the cost is likely to be. California is a vast state, and the specific location within the state can also impact the cost. Shipping to major cities like Los Angeles, San Francisco, or San Diego is often less expensive than shipping to remote or less accessible areas.

Type of Transport

Covered Car Transporter For Sale California

There are two primary methods for shipping a car: open transport and enclosed transport. Open transport involves hauling vehicles on an open-air trailer, making it a more cost-effective option. Enclosed transport, on the other hand, provides extra protection as it shields your vehicle from the elements and potential road debris, but it is more expensive. The choice between these two options will significantly affect your shipping cost.

Vehicle Size and Weight

The size and weight of your car also play a significant role in determining the cost to ship it to California. Larger and heavier vehicles require more space on the carrier and consume more fuel, which increases the overall cost. Compact cars are generally less expensive to ship compared to SUVs, trucks, or luxury vehicles.

Shipping Timeline

The shipping timeline is another crucial factor in calculating the cost. If you need your car to arrive in California quickly, you may opt for expedited shipping, which is more expensive than standard shipping options. Planning well in advance and being flexible with your delivery date can help you secure a more cost-effective shipping rate.

Top Vehicle Transport Companies California

Seasonal Demand

The time of year can also impact the cost of shipping your car to California. The auto transport industry experiences fluctuations in demand throughout the year. Summer is typically the peak season for car shipping, leading to higher rates. If possible, consider scheduling your shipment during the off-peak months to save on costs.

Pickup and Delivery Services

The location for vehicle pickup and delivery can affect the cost as well. Door-to-door service, where the carrier picks up your car at your doorstep and delivers it to your desired location in California, is convenient but more expensive than terminal-to-terminal service. With the latter, you'll need to drop off and pick up your vehicle at designated terminals.

Vehicle Condition

Car Relocation Cost California

The condition of your vehicle can influence the cost of shipping. Inoperable or non-running cars may require special equipment for loading and unloading, increasing the overall cost. It's essential to provide accurate information about your vehicle's condition when requesting a quote to avoid unexpected expenses.

Insurance Coverage

Insurance coverage is a critical aspect of car shipping. Ensure that the auto transport company you choose offers sufficient insurance to protect your vehicle during transit. Additional insurance coverage can be purchased for added peace of mind, but this will contribute to the overall cost.

How to Get Accurate Quotes for Car Shipping to California

To get an accurate estimate for shipping your car to California, follow these steps:

Research and Compare Auto Transport Companies

Start by researching reputable auto transport companies with a track record of safe and reliable service. Look for customer reviews and ratings to gauge their reputation. Contact multiple companies for quotes, and be prepared to provide detailed information about your car and the shipping requirements.

Provide Accurate Vehicle Information

To receive precise quotes, it's essential to provide accurate information about your vehicle, including its make, model, size, weight, and any modifications. You should also specify if your car is inoperable, as this will impact the cost.

Vehicle Transport Near Me California

Choose the Right Shipping Method

Determine whether open or enclosed transport is the best choice for your car and budget. Consider your vehicle's value, the weather conditions during transport, and your comfort level with the selected method.

Consider Pickup and Delivery Options

Decide whether you want door-to-door or terminal-to-terminal service. Evaluate the convenience and cost implications of each option to make an informed decision.

Plan Ahead

Booking your car shipment well in advance can often lead to more competitive rates. Avoid last-minute arrangements, especially during peak seasons.


Shipping a car to California involves various factors that influence the cost, and understanding them is crucial for a smooth and budget-friendly experience. By considering distance, type of transport, vehicle size, shipping timeline, seasonal demand, pickup and delivery services, vehicle condition, and insurance coverage, you can make informed decisions and secure the best possible rates.

To ensure a successful car shipping experience, research and compare auto transport companies, provide accurate vehicle information, choose the right shipping method, consider pickup and delivery options, plan ahead, and review and compare quotes. With these insights and proper planning, you can navigate the process of shipping your car to California with confidence and ease.

Top Rated Auto Shipping Companies California

Popular Shipping Routes

No matter the destination, we're ready for your next move.
Here's our most popular routes from California (CA), USA

California to New York
Sacramento to New York
Los Angeles to New York
Bakersfield to New York
Long Beach to New York
Stockton to New York
Chula Vista to New York
Irvine to New York
Santa Ana to New York
Anaheim to New York
San Jose to New York
Oakland to New York
Riverside to New York
San Diego to New York
Fresno to New York
San Francisco to New York
California to Chicago
Sacramento to Chicago
Los Angeles to Chicago
Bakersfield to Chicago
Long Beach to Chicago
Stockton to Chicago
Chula Vista to Chicago
Irvine to Chicago
Santa Ana to Chicago
Anaheim to Chicago
San Jose to Chicago
Oakland to Chicago
Riverside to Chicago
San Diego to Chicago
Fresno to Chicago
San Francisco to Chicago
California to Houston
Sacramento to Houston
Los Angeles to Houston
Bakersfield to Houston
Long Beach to Houston
Stockton to Houston
Chula Vista to Houston
Irvine to Houston
Santa Ana to Houston
Anaheim to Houston
San Jose to Houston
Oakland to Houston
Riverside to Houston
San Diego to Houston
Fresno to Houston
San Francisco to Houston
California to Phoenix
Sacramento to Phoenix
Los Angeles to Phoenix
Bakersfield to Phoenix
Long Beach to Phoenix
Stockton to Phoenix
Chula Vista to Phoenix
Irvine to Phoenix
Santa Ana to Phoenix
Anaheim to Phoenix
San Jose to Phoenix
Oakland to Phoenix
Riverside to Phoenix
San Diego to Phoenix
Fresno to Phoenix
San Francisco to Phoenix
California to Philadelphia
Sacramento to Philadelphia
Los Angeles to Philadelphia
Bakersfield to Philadelphia
Long Beach to Philadelphia
Stockton to Philadelphia
Chula Vista to Philadelphia
Irvine to Philadelphia
Santa Ana to Philadelphia
Anaheim to Philadelphia
San Jose to Philadelphia
Oakland to Philadelphia
Riverside to Philadelphia
San Diego to Philadelphia
Fresno to Philadelphia
San Francisco to Philadelphia
California to Jacksonville
Sacramento to Jacksonville
Los Angeles to Jacksonville
Bakersfield to Jacksonville
Long Beach to Jacksonville
Stockton to Jacksonville
Chula Vista to Jacksonville
Irvine to Jacksonville
Santa Ana to Jacksonville
Anaheim to Jacksonville
San Jose to Jacksonville
Oakland to Jacksonville
Riverside to Jacksonville
San Diego to Jacksonville
Fresno to Jacksonville
San Francisco to Jacksonville
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Joe Webster always knew the auto transport industry would be a great career option. And with decades of experience, Joe is now an established consultant for A1 Auto Transport.

Joe was born in Santa Cruz, California. During high school, Joe worked as a mechanic; a job continued to work part-time during his bachelor's degree.

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A-1 Auto Transport is a disclosed agent for the following shipping companies:

Trans Global Auto Logistics, Inc.
3401 E Randol Mill Rd
Arlington, TX 76011
NO. 018191NF
CFR Rinkens
15501 Texaco Avenue
Paramount, CA 90723
NO. 013055NF
ABC Worldwide LLC
2840 NW 2nd Ave #105
Boca Raton, FL 33431
NO. 025472F
CSI Logistics
435 Division Street
Elizabeth, NJ 07201
FMC 22206
Intl Cargo
45 Campus Drive
Edison, NJ 08837
NO. 17858N
ShipYourCarNow LLC
1160 South Rogers Circle Suite 1
Boca Raton, FL 33487
NO. 025646
Merco Air & Ocean Cargo, Inc.
6 Fir Way
Cooper City, FL 33026
NO. 021869F
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