Car Shipping Rates

Auto Transport Prices By The Numbers – What Does It Cost To Ship A Car?

Want the the actual cost of having a vehicle shipped? You’re in the right place! Here, you’ll find information about what goes into the cost of moving a vehicle and cost estimates for different types of vehicles and transport services.

It can be challenging to get an accurate cost estimate for the price of shipping a vehicle from one location to another–many companies won’t even offer up a ballpark figure without your personal information. We wanted to provide our readers with an accurate breakdown of exactly what goes into the cost of moving a car, truck, motorcycle or RV, and how much it actually costs.

  • State to State & Same State Auto Deliver – Shipping a vehicle within the same state is usually more affordable, though the distance is a key factor. Here’s an example: El Paso, TX to Houston, TX is about 750 miles and would likely cost between $500 and $700, depending on the type of vehicle. By comparison, El Paso to Los Angeles, which is 800 miles would be slightly more, probably in the $600 to $800 range. 
  • Moving a car from one major city to another also increases the chances that you’ll be able to get it even quicker, which is also the most cost-effective way to have a vehicle shipped. Dallas, TX to Atlanta, GA is just under 800 miles and the cost would be in the same range as those mentioned above: between $600 and $700. If we look at smaller cities that are a similar distance apart but are not on a major delivery route, the cost will be slightly higher. For example, if you need a vehicle shipped from College Station, TX to Athens, GA (also around 800 miles), the cost would be slightly higher than the price quote you’d be able to get by shipping directly from Dallas to Atlanta.
  • RV Transport – Since recreation vehicles and motor homes come in such a variety of sizes and shapes the cost will vary accordingly. For example, the typically larger class A motorhomes will cost more than class B or class C RV transport. The weight of an RV is also a factor that can sometimes push the cost of shipping a motorhome above the $1 per mile figure mentioned below, particularly for RVs that are longer than 25 feet.


What Affects The Price Of Vehicle Shipping Estimates?

Generally speaking, the cost of transporting a vehicle is going to be between 50 cents and $5 per mile, depending on what type of payload and how far the vehicles needs to be shipped. Here are some of the factors how it breaks down:

  • Type of Vehicle – Obviously it will cost more to ship a van, bus, boat or RV than it would move a standard two or four door car. This has almost everything to do with the weight of the vehicle, which is obviously an important element when hauling cargo over a long distance. Motorcycles will be on the cheaper end of the spectrum, closer to 50 cents per mile. As an example, shipping a motorcycle between Philadelphia, PA, and Columbus, OH (about 470 miles) would cost around $300, as compared to around $450 for a car. An RV like a class A motorhome would naturally cost more due to the size and weight of the vehicle.
  •  Distance & Location – Distance and location are perhaps the two most important factors that affect the cost of shipping a car. If you’re hiring an Auto Transport Company to ship a car across the country or coast to coast, you really start to see the impact of mileage. Seattle, WA to New York City is nearly 3,000 miles and will generally cost over $2,000 even for standard shipping. San Diego, CA to Jacksonville, FL is a little over 2,000 miles and could be done for $2,000 or less.
  • Shipping Routes – Primary transport routes (those between major U.S. metro areas) will usually be cheaper than moving a vehicle between suburbs and smaller cities. Transporting a vehicle between New York and Florida can be done as cheaply as $700, even though it’s over 1,000 miles (we’re using New York City to Orlando for this example). The reason is that it’s one of the main transport routes on the East Coast between the Northeast and the Southeast.


  • Delivery Method – The two primary methods of shipping a vehicle are open and enclosed carriers. Open air auto carriers often carry several vehicles at once that are loaded onto a trailer. With enclosed shipping, the vehicle is completely secured in a closed truck carrier that guards against any potential damage or curious eyes. Enclosed auto transport is a premium service that is ideal for high value, performance and classic cars.

Auto Transport Pricing Resources

Driving Distance Calculator – Get accurate mileage information for the driving distance between any two U.S. cities by using the calculator feature from TravelMath.com.
Vehicle Weight – Get an accurate estimate of the curb weight of different types of vehicles, as well as the precise numbers for specific makes and models of vehicles. 

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