How to Get the Best Car Shipping Quotes Online (2021)

·9 min read

Adobe Stock - Roman Babakin

Getting car shipping quotes online is the quickest way to find out how much your car shipping costs. However, not every car shipping company offers instant transport quotes.

It's a good idea to reach out to multiple providers when getting quotes. With several quotes, you can ensure you're getting the best deal on your vehicle shipment. We've researched and ranked the best car shipping companies of 2021 to help you get started.

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What Is a Car Shipping Quote?

A car shipping quote is an estimated cost from an auto transport service for a particular shipment. Some car shipping companies factor all fees into their quotes, including the cost of transport as well as service fees, additional insurance coverage costs, and increased carrier prices. However, most do not, meaning the final price you pay for auto shipping will likely be higher than the initial quote.

Auto transport prices vary based on several key factors, including your vehicle, distance of the shipment, time of year, and more. We'll explain each factor in detail and how to get cheap car shipping quotes online.

How to Get Car Shipping Quotes Online

Some auto transporters offer instant quotes, but you'll need to provide information about your shipment before you can receive one. You should have the following details handy when requesting car shipping quotes online:

  1. Vehicle age, make, model, and operability

  2. Pickup and destination location

  3. Preferred shipment timeframe

  4. Preferred shipping method: open, enclosed, door-to-door, terminal-to-terminal

  5. Name, email, and phone number

After inputting this information into an online form, you should receive an email or call with your online car shipping quote. Note that not all auto transporters offer online pricing. Some companies require that you call directly to receive a quote for your auto shipment.

Related: How to Ship a Car

Car Shipping Quote Calculators

Using a company's car shipping calculator is another way to get car shipping quotes online without the pressure to book a shipment. These calculators ask for fewer details than an official quote tool—for example, listing your vehicle as an SUV rather than its specific make and model—and can be less accurate, but they're a great way to get a general idea of your car shipping costs.

How Much Does Car Shipping Cost?

We reached out to multiple industry leaders for car transport quotes. Our data shows that the average car shipping cost is $1,200. This is consistent with the results from our car shipping survey where 41% of respondents reported paying between $1,000 to $2,000 for auto transport. Note that your own car shipping costs may vary depending on numerous factors.

Here are a few cost ranges we received for several shipping services for an operable 2018 Honda CR-V:

  • Open auto transport: Costs between $689 and $2,064

  • Enclosed auto transport: Costs between $1,200 and $2,775

  • Cross-country shipping: Costs between $1,389 and $2,775

If you choose to purchase expedited shipping, you can expect to pay more for transport costs.

How Much Does It Cost to Ship a Truck?

We compared open transport rates to ship a Ford F-250 Super Duty from Denver to Washington, DC with Montway and Easy Auto Ship. Montway quoted $1,299 while Easy Auto Ship quoted $1,256. These prices were about $400 above the cost to ship a standard sedan that same distance.

What Is the Cheapest Car Shipping Company?

According to our research, Montway Auto Transport, uShip, and Easy Auto Ship are all good options for cheap car shipping. The best shipping price for your situation depends on a variety of factors, so it's a good idea to compare as many quotes as you can.

What Affects Auto Transport Costs?

When reaching out for car shipping quotes online, you should be aware of the factors that affect the cost of auto shipping. This can help you know how to lower your vehicle shipping costs by leveraging some of the factors in your control. Below, we've detailed what impacts car transport costs and why.

  • Miles traveled: Cross-country shipments have better car shipping rates per mile than shorter-distance shipments, but they cost more overall.

  • Open vs. enclosed car shipping: Enclosed carrier vehicle transport costs more than open carrier transport, but it may be worth the increased price for luxury and classic cars.

  • Door-to-door vs. terminal-to-terminal: Door-to-door shipping, in which your car is delivered to your home, is more costly than terminal-to-terminal shipping, in which your car is delivered to a designated terminal.

  • Time of year: Demand is higher in January and summer months, making auto transport more expensive.

  • Carrier competition: When using marketplace-style car transportation services, higher competition between car carrier bids leads to lower auto shipping costs.

  • Price of fuel: Auto shippers may charge more to compensate for carriers' fuel costs if necessary.

  • Vehicle operability: Inoperable vehicles take more effort and resources to move, making them more expensive to ship.

  • Vehicle size: Larger vehicles, like SUVs and trucks, cost more to ship than a standard coupe. This also applies to specialty vehicles like recreational vehicles and all-terrain vehicles.

Top Companies That Offer Car Shipping Quotes Online

If you're looking for hassle-free online auto shipping quotes, we recommend reaching out to Montway Auto Transport and uShip. Both car shipping companies scored well in our 2021 best car shipping companies review and offer instant online quotes. We've detailed more information about each company below.

Montway Auto Transport: Best Availability

Established in 2006, Montway Auto Transport provides car shipping services to all 50 states. The auto broker works with over 15,000 vetted carriers nationwide. Customers praise the company's low-cost shipping options and timeliness, making it easy to understand why 100,000 cars were shipped with the provider in 2019 alone.

Montway Auto Transport offers instant online quotes for open, enclosed, door-to-door, and expedited car transport services. It also provides guaranteed pickup dates and free additional insurance coverage.

Montway Auto Transport Pros:

  • Affordable pricing

  • Good customer service and industry ratings

  • Free shipping insurance

  • 24/7 online chat feature

  • Guaranteed pickup dates

Montway Auto Transport Cons:

  • No real-time tracking or mobile app

  • No shipping services for RVs or personal watercraft

Read more about the auto broker in our comprehensive Montway Auto Transport review.

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uShip: Best Auto Transport Marketplace

uShip is a unique company in the auto transport industry. It's neither a broker nor a carrier. Instead, uShip is an online marketplace for shipping services, much like eBay. Customers can post their shipments online and have different carriers bid on the booking. uShip also offers an instant quote option for car shipping. However, these prices may be more costly than the alternative bidding option.

uShip holds an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau (BBB) and a 4.4 out of 5.0-star Trustpilot rating. The company ships not only cars but also household items, heavy equipment, freight loads, animals, RVs, and more. It provides international shipping services as well.

uShip Pros:

  • Reduced research time

  • Complimentary tracking

  • Military moving discounts

  • Ship with Confidence Guarantee that covers damage and payment disputes

uShip Cons:

  • No auto transport carrier or broker vetting process

  • Instant quotes are often more expensive than traditional car shipping companies

  • Low mobile app ratings for Apple and Android devices

You can find more details about this auto shipping company in our uShip review.

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Frequently Asked Questions

How can I get my car shipped for cheap?

The cheapest way to ship your vehicle is through open, terminal-to-terminal shipping during non-peak seasons (i.e., avoiding January and summer months). These shipping methods are often the lowest-cost options available. You may also want to consider a company that offers discounts to further reduce your car shipping costs.

What is the best car shipping company?

In our industry-wide review of the best car shipping companies, we named Montway Auto Transport, AmeriFreight, Sherpa Auto Transport, Easy Auto Ship, and uShip as leading providers in the industry. We evaluated each company based on its reputation, costs, services, and customer reputation.

What is a car shipping quote?

A car shipping quote, or car shipping estimate, is an approximate price from an auto transport company for a particular shipment. Your auto transport quote may not be the final price you pay for shipping, as many companies tack on service fees, additional insurance coverage costs, and increased carrier prices when your vehicle is delivered. Some companies, such as Sherpa Auto Transport, offer a price-lock guarantee that ensures you won't pay more than your quoted price.

How do I get my car shipped?

If you're wondering how to ship a car, there are a few steps you'll need to take. Initially, you'll need to reach out to an auto broker or carrier and ask for a quote. Most companies require information about your vehicle, pickup and delivery locations, preferred shipping method, and preferred shipping timeline to give you a car shipping quote. From there, you'll book your car shipment.

Which car transport companies offer international shipping?

Easy Auto Ship and uShip both provide international auto shipping services. Montway Auto Transport does not currently offer this service but can help you work with international haulers to meet your needs.

What is the average cost to ship a car?

There is no average car shipping cost as each quote is influenced by a number of factors. However, nearly half of respondents in our 2021 car shipping survey reported that they paid between $1,000 to $2,000 for auto transport.

What's the best moving company?

If you're shipping a car, you may also be wondering how to choose a moving company that's right for your needs. Read our review of the industry's best long-distance moving companies to learn more about top providers, pricing, and services.

Is a car delivery service worth it?

If you buy a car online from a dealership or from a private seller out of state, you can use companies like Montway Auto Transport and uShip to arrange a car delivery service. You can negotiate with the seller on who pays for shipping, but it's cost-effective if the car has good value.

Methodology

Auto shipping ratings are based on a comprehensive comparison between every major car transport company in the industry. We rate providers based on cost, available services, company reputation, and the customer experience. Each auto transporter receives scores in these individual categories and an overall score out of 5.0 stars.

To formulate rankings, our review team considers a company's offerings compared to competitors, ratings from experts like the BBB, and customer reviews. We also collect sample quotes across a variety of shipping routes, distances, and transport types to measure pricing against the industry average.