If you’re moving from California to the East Coast or from Texas to the Pacific Northwest, you’re probably considering the average cost to ship a car across the country. According to our research, you can expect to pay between $1,500 and $2,000 to ship a vehicle across the U.S.

It’s important that you find the best car shipping companies if you’re planning a long-distance move. One of the easiest ways to do so is by getting free quotes from multiple reputable providers and comparing the car shipping services that you’re offered.

Why Trust Our Review Team Our review team has spent hundreds of hours researching car shipping companies to help consumers choose the best providers for transporting their vehicles. Writers and editors evaluate each brand based on industry data and real customers’ experiences, meeting high editorial standards to keep readers informed.
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How Much To Ship A Car Across The Country?

We reached out to Montway Auto Transport and uShip for cost estimates on long-distance car shipments. The following table features rate estimates for shipping operable SUV models across the country using open car transport services.

Car Shipping CompanyApproximate MileageEstimated Cost
Montway Auto Transport2,800 miles$1,719
uShip2,800 miles$1,966
Montway Auto Transport3,000 miles$1,809

Add-on shipping options such as enclosed transport, expedited shipping, and single-car transport could lead to higher auto transport costs. Some first-time car movers may choose these pricey options, but an open trailer and non-expedited shipping are often sufficient.

What Affects The Cost Of Cross-Country Car Shipping?

The distance of your auto shipping route is a major factor in figuring out the average cost to ship a car across the country. If you’re making a cross-country move, you’ll likely pay lower rates per mile than for shorter transports–but a higher overall price.

The following factors also play a role when companies set car shipping prices:

  • Type of transport: Enclosed carrier transport is more expensive than open transport. Most customers choose open carriers because it’s easier to find cheap car shipping options, but enclosed trailers are ideal for shipping luxury vehicles or classic cars. If you don’t have a high-end model, it’s probably best to choose open shipping.
  • Time of year: Due to snowbirds heading to warm states like Florida for the winter, you can expect vehicle shipping rates to be higher in January. And the fact that people often move during the summer contributes to elevated auto transport rates between May and September.
  • Pickup and delivery locations: Where your car is picked up and dropped off makes a big difference. Door-to-door service is more convenient but also more expensive than having your vehicle picked up from and dropped off at a centrally-located shipping terminal. Opt for terminal-to-terminal transport to save money.
  • Current fuel cost: Gas prices will play a sizable role in your cost to ship a car across the country. After all, truckers will have to fill up their tanks multiple times as they transport your vehicle.
  • Type of car: Your specific vehicle and its condition help determine your cost of shipping. SUVs, pickup trucks, and other larger vehicles cost more to ship than most sedans.
  • Operable or inoperable: If your car is inoperable, you can expect to pay more due to the added effort that goes into loading and unloading it.

How To Save On Car Shipping Costs

The cheapest way to ship a car across the country begins with booking early. When you allow more time for more auto shippers to bid on your transport job, you can easily discover competitive pricing for your delivery time frame.

It’s also helpful to stick with an open auto transport carrier unless you need extra protection from bad weather conditions and road hazards. Going with terminal-to-terminal shipping is another money-saving tip, though this service isn’t available from all providers.

Finally, make sure to compare car shipping quotes online. That way, you’ll be able to weigh the costs and services offered by various vehicle movers.

Best Companies To Ship A Car Cross Country

Our team researched various auto transport providers and found that Montway Auto Transport, SGT Auto Transport, and American Auto Shipping offer on-time services and minimal hassle. Regardless of which provider you choose, it’s best to check that it has a good reputation and is licensed by the U.S. Department of Transportation.

Below, we’ll explain why we recommend each of these auto transport companies:

Auto Shipping CompanyOverall RatingPrice RatingServices Rating
Montway Auto Transport4.74.54.8
SGT Auto Transport4.64.45
American Auto Shipping4.64.45

*Ratings are determined by our editorial review team. Learn more about our scoring methodology below.

#1 Montway Auto Transport: Best Overall

Montway Auto Transport offers services such as guaranteed pickup dates, expedited service, and door-to-door shipping. The company works with over 15,000 reputable drivers in order to give customers competitive shipping rates. Montway Auto Transport also allows up to 100 pounds of personal items with every vehicle shipment–a rarity in the industry.

Customers give Montway Auto Transport solid reviews online. The company has an A+ rating on the Better Business Bureau (BBB) website and earned 4.6 out of 5.0 stars on Trustpilot from over 1,100 customer reviews.

Further reading: Montway Auto Transport review

Montway Rating


Bottom Line

Montway Auto Transport is a reputable auto transport broker offering several car shipping services and cheap car shipping rates. We named it the Best Overall car shipping company for 2023.

#2 SGT Auto Transport: Best Service Options

SGT Auto Transport ships to the contiguous U.S., Hawaii, and to international locations. The company has moved nearly 30,000 cars since entering the auto transport industry in 2014. SGT Auto Transport offers excellent discounts to active-duty military members, students, and even snowbirds heading south for the winter.

SGT Auto Transport receives a large number of positive reviews online. The company carries a rating of 4.8 out of 5.0 stars and an A+ rating from the BBB. Trustpilot has given SGT 4.6 out of 5.0 stars.

Further reading: SGT Auto Transport review

SGT Auto Transport Top Pick
BBB Rating : A+ Phone : 864-635-4879 Coverage : 49 states
Pros & Cons
Pros Available in 49 states Offers price matching Has an option for a guaranteed pickup date Cons Doesn’t offer real-time tracking No terminal-to-terminal shipping option

We give SGT Auto Transport an overall rating of 4.5 out of 5.0 stars. This shipping broker has an outstanding reputation and offers affordable options for car transport services. Price matching, express shipping, and guaranteed pickups are other great features of SGT Auto Transport.

#3 American Auto Shipping: Best Customer Experience

American Auto Shipping offers auto transport services to all 50 states and to the U.S. territories. You can get an instant quote on the company’s website, and locked-in pricing gives many drivers extra peace of mind. American Auto Shipping sets itself apart from the competition by providing each customer with a personal concierge to guide them through the process.

American Auto Shipping’s reviews reflect the company’s customer service reputation. Drivers give the auto transport company an A+ rating and 4.7 out of 5.0 stars on the BBB, and a rating of 4.7 out of 5.0 stars on Google.

Cost To Ship A Car Across The Country: FAQ

How We Rate Auto Shippers

Our review process aims to deliver consistent and unbiased assessments of car shipping companies. While there are multiple qualities that make an auto transport provider successful, our review team focuses on those we believe are the most important for consumers:

  • Cost: Cost can be difficult to compare between providers because so many factors impact auto shipping rates. To determine our cost score, we perform a secret shopper analysis for a variety of vehicles and routes.
  • Services: Our team of experts looks at the types of services available, as well as insurance coverage and the ability to guarantee pickup and drop-off dates. Ratings also take into account whether the transport company is a broker or a carrier.
  • Reputation: It’s important that a car shipping provider is able to deliver your vehicle in a safe and timely manner. Companies with a strong rating from the Better Business Bureau (BBB) score well in this category. Established providers with a long history of reliable service also receive positive marks.
  • Customer Experience: We comb through consumer reviews on sites like the BBB to learn about customer experiences. Car transport companies with a low volume of complaints score well in this area.

*Data accurate at time of publication.