Auto Shipping FAQ: Is it Cheaper to Ship or Drive my Vehicle?
If you’re trying to figure out solutions for getting a vehicle from one end of the country to another, one of the most common arguments is driving it vs shipping it with an auto transport carrier. They’re both legitimate ways of getting your vehicle across this vast nation of ours, but which one is more cost-effective?
This is an important question, especially if you’re looking for auto transport services on a budget, and figuring out just what you’re looking at in terms of total cost for each. But that requires some research on your end, namely when it comes to driving it yourself, since it’s a lot harder to figure out costs of driving vs shipping – the latter, of course, all you need to do is call an auto transport company, get a price in a minute, and book your order.
So when you’re trying to plan out how much it’ll cost to drive your vehicle to or from wherever it is you need it to go to, the first thing you should do is figure out the total driving distance – this is how far you’ll need to go on highways and whatnot, not overall distance regardless of route (or, in layman’s terms, “as the crow flies”).
Know how big your fuel tank is and calculate the miles per gallon that your car gets, if you don’t know it (though most cars will have that info online somewhere). With some basic math, you can figure out how much fuel you’re going to be using – and how much you’re going to need to buy along the way.
But fuel expenses are tough. Are you traveling across the country, coast-to-coast? If so, that’s at least a three-day drive, closer to five if you’re by yourself and not a speed demon. At sixty miles per hour driving for twelve hours, it’ll take you about four days to go 3,000 miles, which is the average distance coast-to-coast.
So, where are you going to sleep during those four days? Or eat? Or use the restroom? Almost everyone that takes a cross-country trek will stay at a hotel overnight, and they will eat at dine-in or take-out places (usually fast-food, as it’s cheap and easy to consume in a moving vehicle). These also cost money.
When you ship a car, everything will be included in the quote you receive. It’s a total price – doesn’t matter if it’s $5 or $5,000, the price you get should be the price you pay. You don’t have to calculate anything, you don’t need to figure out a fuel and food and lodging budget – you just get your price, hire a company, and wait.
So, which is cheaper? It depends on a lot of factors, like where you’re shipping from and to, how much hotels cost at the time, fuel prices, how fast you can drive, how fuel efficient your vehicle is, and so on – there are so many costs associated with doing that trip yourself that I doubt we can list them all out. When you ship a car, it’s just…easy. Time-consuming and expensive, sure, but cheaper than driving all that distance and a lot easier to boot.
For a free auto transport quote, make sure you take a minute and fill out our free online auto transport quote request form. You should also get some other quotes to compare against, but we’re sure you’ll be satisfied with our prices. Once you have your quotes you can then compare prices and services and, ultimately, find the right shipper for your needs. If you have further questions, or need some help getting your free quote from us, you can always give us a call toll-free at 800-930-7417 to speak to one of our live agents.