Proper vehicle shipping is necessary to make sure your car or truck arrives at its destination quickly and safely. Handing over your valuable vehicle to a trusted carrier can mak all the difference in your experience and peace of mind.

People trust uShip as a reliable platform for shipping vehicles. Through our nationwide network of carriers, we’ve created an easy-to-use marketplace that connects car owners with multiple transporters on one platform. There are many reasons to ship a car with us, whether you’re moving across the country or buying a car from another state.

It’s important to choose a trustworthy platform like uShip, so you know your car will be shipped with care and professionalism. Here’s everything you need to know about shipping your car—and how uShip can help you ensure a stress-free shipping process.


You can ship your car in several different ways, depending on your needs, preferences, and budget. The two most important things to consider are the location (domestic or international) and the type of travel (open or enclosed).


When you transport your car within the same country, it’s domestic shipping. For example, if you’re moving from New York to California and need to ship your car, it’s considered domestic shipping.

International shipping, on the other hand, means shipping your car across foreign lines. One example of international shipping is when you need to ship your car from the United States to Europe as part of your move.

When deciding whether to move your car within the country or internationally, consider where it’s coming from and where it’s going, as well as any rules or requirements that may apply.


When you move your car with open transport, it rides on an open carrier and is exposed to the weather. This is the most frequent and least expensive way to move a car. Open transport is generally a good choice if you want to ship a regular car from one state to another.

For enclosed transport, on the other hand, your car is shipped inside an enclosed container, completely surrounding it from inclement weather and road debris. This is often the best option when shipping expensive, rare, or valuable cars.

When choosing between open and enclosed transport, consider the value of your car and its needs, your budget, and the level of safety you want.


Preparing your car for shipment is crucial. This preparation helps ensure the security of your car and your possessions while in transit. Here’s how to get started.


Give your car a thorough cleaning before shipping it. It’s easier to inspect the condition of a well-maintained car before shipping. Additionally, this helps avoid disputes about potential harm later on. A clean car is less likely to get dirty or damaged during the trip, and it’s easier for the carrier to move.

To demonstrate the condition of your car:

  • Take several photos of the exterior and interior.
  • Note any dents, scratches, or other damage that you observe.
  • Put the mileage on your car in writing.
  • Verify that the gas tank is no more than 25% full.
  • This complies with shipping regulations and makes your car lighter. It’s also a good idea to clean and document your car because:
  • It enables you to check and document the state of your car accurately.
  • It lessens the likelihood of disagreements regarding damage claims.
  • It facilitates the carrier’s ability to move your car more easily.

With that said, it requires time and work to clean your car properly. It could also be challenging to record certain minor damages accurately.


Make sure to remove any items from inside your car before you ship it. That means your GPS, music players, extra change, and anything else that’s important to you. Taking these things out lowers the chance that they’ll be lost or broken during the move. It also makes your car lighter, which can help you save money on shipping.

Most shipping companies won’t be responsible for any personal belongings you leave in your car while it’s being shipped. So, it’s best to take your things out so they’re safe and there are no problems during shipping.

Getting rid of your items is a good idea for the following reasons:

  • It makes it less likely that your things will be stolen or broken.
  • If you reduce the weight of your car, it might be cheaper to move.
  • It makes sure you’re following the rules and duties set by the shipping provider.
  • It’s important to note that taking these things out and packing them up will take some time and work on your part.


A reliable carrier providing vehicle shipping services

When it comes to shipping your car, choosing a trustworthy and reliable carrier is crucial. You want to make sure your vehicle is in safe hands and will arrive at its destination on time and in the same condition as it was when it left. To make an informed decision, it’s essential to conduct thorough research on car shipping companies and read reviews from previous customers.


Start your research by compiling a list of potential carriers. Check out their websites to gather information about their services and experience. Some key factors to consider include:

  • The carrier’s history and years of experience in the car shipping industry
  • Types of vehicles they specialize in transporting (cars, trucks, motorcycles, etc.)
  • Geographical coverage (local, national, or international shipping)
  • Shipping options available (open or enclosed transport)
  • Insurance coverage or added protection for your vehicle during transit
  • Take note of the companies that align with your specific needs and have a proven track record in the industry.


Once you’ve created a list of potential carriers, it’s time to dive deeper into their reputation by reading reviews from past customers. Use platforms such as Yelp, Google, and the Better Business Bureau to gain insight into the experiences of others. Pay close attention to feedback regarding:

  • The carrier’s level of communication and customer service
  • The care and attention given to the vehicles during shipping
  • Timeliness of delivery and adherence to schedules
  • Any issues that arose and how the carrier resolved them

Choose a few carriers that consistently receive positive reviews and have a solid reputation in the industry. Then, reach out to these companies and request quotes for your specific shipping needs. Make sure to provide detailed information about your vehicle, its destination, and your preferred timeline. From there, compare the quotes to determine the best value for your money.

Bonus Tip: By creating a free listing on uShip, you can research multiple transporters all on one platform.


The cost to ship a vehicle can vary depending on a number of factors, including the distance your car covers. Typically, the price increases for longer journeys. Your vehicle’s size is also important. Because they take up more room on the truck, larger automobiles usually cost more to ship.

Shipping your vehicle in a specific way can also have an impact on the final price. Your vehicle will be better protected from the elements with enclosed transport, but it’ll cost you more than open transport. Shipping rates are also subject to seasonal fluctuations and fuel price fluctuations.


Start by using internet calculators or creating a free listing on uShip to better understand potential costs associated with shipping your vehicle. Factors like distance, vehicle size, and shipment type can help you find a ballpark figure.

If you want an exact figure, consult with seasoned shipment coordinators. They’re well-versed in the field and can give you a more accurate estimate by taking everything into account. When it comes to shipping, they can advise you on the best solutions. These experts can also help you with paperwork, explain the various shipping methods, and determine the most cost-effective solution.

With the right knowledge and the assistance of professionals, you can transport your automobile without breaking the bank.


After you’ve decided to ship your vehicle, the next step is to plan the dates for both pickup and delivery. Planning and making reservations for your transportation well in advance is necessary, especially during peak seasons like the summer and the holidays.

Most trustworthy vehicle shipping service providers recommend making reservations at least two to four weeks before the date you want your vehicle picked up. When scheduling your pickup, it’s also important to consider your availability and your calendar’s flexibility.

Keep in mind that the carrier will require access to your vehicle; therefore, you or someone you can rely on should be present to release the vehicle and sign any required paperwork. It’s also a good idea to have a backup plan in place in the event that unanticipated events occur that could influence the date of your pickup.

When it comes to delivery, be sure to offer the carrier a secure and easily accessible site where they can unload your vehicle. Make sure there’s sufficient space for a large truck to maneuver and park in the neighborhood where you’re having the vehicle delivered.

If you’re unsure about the accessibility of your delivery site, talk to your transport coordinator. They’ll be able to assist you in locating a suitable alternative if necessary.


Before making a reservation for the transportation of your vehicle, make sure you have a thorough understanding of your carrier’s insurance coverage. The majority of carriers provide basic liability insurance, which protects against any losses that the carrier may cause while the shipment is in transit. Therefore, it’s possible that even basic coverage will not be adequate to provide complete protection for your vehicle, especially if it’s a high-value or antique automobile. When in doubt, consider purchasing a uShip Protection Plan at checkout.


If you want to be sure that your vehicle is completely covered during transport, consider investing in additional protection from uShip or supplemental insurance. Certain carriers provide additional insurance alternatives, or you might investigate third-party insurers who specialize in providing coverage for vehicle movement.

When it comes to payment, the majority of carriers require a deposit at the time of booking, and the remaining part of the payment is due upon delivery. Before you book your shipment, make sure you have a thorough understanding of the carrier’s payment terms and the methods that are accepted. Credit cards, bank transfers, and cashier’s checks are all accepted by a diverse range of businesses. However, it’s imperative to verify this information with your carrier.

Vehicle shipping example of open transport


It’s essential to maintain an open line of communication with your transport coordinator, research reliable carriers, familiarize yourself with various shipping options, and prepare your vehicle for transport. These steps will ensure that your shipping experience goes off without a hitch.

Ready to take the next step with your vehicle? Get free quotes on uShip and put your vehicle in the hands of our nationwide network of carriers. Take advantage of our first-rate car shipping services for unmatched ease and peace of mind. Get your free estimate today and move forward with confidence.


How much does it cost to ship a car?

Car shipping costs vary based on variables such as vehicle dimensions, weight, distance, and mode of transportation. Estimates for long-distance moves may start at several hundred dollars and reach over a thousand for cross-country relocation. For a more accurate estimate, create your free listing on uShip to get no-obligation quotes from transporters today.

How long does it take to ship a car?

Shipping times for cars also vary. Cross-country shipments may take a week or more, although local moves might take just a few days. The delivery timeframe may be affected by several logistical considerations, such as the form of transit, traffic conditions, and more.

Can I ship a car with personal items inside?

Typically, it is OK to ship a vehicle with personal belongings inside, provided that the combined weight of the vehicle and its contents is not above the weight restriction set by the transport provider. Make sure everything is securely fastened, and let the shipping provider know if there are any goods inside the vehicle.

What’s the difference between open and enclosed car transport?

Car transport options include open and enclosed options, with the former offering more protection for the vehicle than the latter. Although covered transport provides greater security for your vehicle, it’s more expensive than open transport, which leaves your vehicle vulnerable to the weather.

Is it safe to ship a car internationally?

It takes more preparation and organization, but shipping your vehicle worldwide can be dependable and secure. For safe and trouble-free shipping, consider factors like customs clearance, foreign rules, and extra insurance.

How do I prepare my car for shipping?

Turning off the alarm system, securing any loose components, taking pictures of the vehicle’s present state, and removing any personal items are all necessary steps to prepare your vehicle for transport. You should also document its condition in case of later disputes.

What happens if my car is damaged during transport?

The carrier’s insurance policy should cover the repairs to your vehicle if it sustains damage while in transit. Nevertheless, to guarantee a successful claim, it’s essential to carefully examine the vehicle upon delivery and record any damage promptly. If you purchased a uShip Protection Plan, you can open up a case from your uShip account and let us handle the rest.

Are there any hidden fees when shipping a car?

Gas surcharges, special handling costs for large or valuable automobiles, and extra fees for pickup or delivery outside of the carrier’s usual service area are some of the frequently hidden expenses that may be applied while shipping a car.

Do I need to be present for vehicle pickup and delivery?

The carrier will usually arrange for the collection and delivery of your car. However, you should be present to inspect the vehicle and sign any necessary paperwork.

Can I track my vehicle during transport?

Most reputable car transporters provide tracking services that offer real-time updates on your vehicle’s location and estimated time of arrival, ensuring you’re well-informed during the transport process.


Article Provided by uShip