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What Do Personal Car Transport Services Include? How Much Will You Pay?

Cross Country Car Shipping

What Do Personal Car Transport Services Include? How Much Will You Pay?

Suppose you want to ship your car to another state location, but you don’t like the idea of it being loaded onto a carrier with other vehicles. Alternatively, you need special transport conditions that regular shipping simply doesn’t offer.

In that case, personal car transport services might be the right solution. But what are those services exactly and how much do they cost?

This article will answer those very questions and provide all the essential information about personal car transport.

What Are Personal Car Transport Services?

In essence, personal vehicle shipping is precisely what it sounds like. It’s a type of vehicle transportation geared towards your personal requirements. This option is much more flexible than the standard shipping modes via regular carriers.

For clarity’s sake, when talking about standard modes of vehicle transport, we’re referring to hauling and shipping by air or sea. In that case, your car will be loaded onto a carrier alongside other vehicles.

On the other hand, personal vehicle transportation is intended for a single vehicle, which for our purposes is your own. This can mean that the car will be hauled individually on a transport or even driven by a professional driver.

Depending on the type of personal service you choose, this transportation mode could allow for additional conveniences. For example, it will be much easier to set up expedited shipping as there’ll be no other vehicles and destinations that need to be considered along the way.

Also, this method allows for shipping car and belongings together. This could be the single most important deciding factor when it comes to choosing personal transport.

In fact, shipping a vehicle with personal effects inside, which can cut down on overall moving expenses, is likely the number one reason why people are interested in personal transport. Under regular circumstances, having your belongings in the car as it’s being transported can lead to various complications and is generally not allowed.

The most used type of personal transport includes a hauler equipped for shipping individual vehicles. This is usually a single-car flatbed truck, which is much smaller than the usual haulers that can carry up to 10 vehicles.

Such transport is a good choice if you don’t feel comfortable sharing the trailer with other cars. Granted, there are very few reasons why this should be the case, but you might have a unique vehicle that really doesn’t belong in a crowd where other cars can bump into it and possibly damage it.

Personal shipping functions much the same as the regular. The truck comes to your location and your car is loaded onto its platform. Then, the carrier drives away with the vehicle, delivering it to the designated destination.

One of the greatest advantages of this transportation type is that door-to-door shipping will be almost always available. Smaller flatbed trucks have no issues approaching residences or driving through narrower streets. Generally speaking, they require less space to operate. In contrast, a large hauler might be unable to fit the streets and roads to your final destination, and that’s if the carrier even offers door-to-door transportation.

The other type of personal transport is a drive-away service. This doesn’t count as shipping in the literal sense. Instead, you employ a driver who will get your car to the new location simply by driving it there.

There are several advantages and only a few disadvantages to this method.

Firstly, you’ll get even more flexibility regarding pick-up and drop-off locations. Since no other vehicle but your car is involved in the transportation process, there’ll be no restrictions in terms of vehicle space.

Furthermore, the driver who’ll be handling your car will be a seasoned professional. In other words, they’ll be able to take care of your vehicle on the road, avoiding any risks or damage. And for additional peace of mind, you might be allowed to go along for the ride and not have to worry about driving.

Finally, drive away is an ideal option for personal effects transport. Your car doesn’t fall under the same scrutiny as professional haulers and can carry all legal items you place in it.

When it comes to disadvantages, those will amount to higher car mileage, potential road hazards, and a greater cost.


Estimating the Total Shipping Expense

The base cost of shipping your vehicle will depend on the distance. It could range from several hundred dollars to well over $1,000.

In addition, if you’re shipping a larger vehicle, you might need to pay $100-$200 extra. Requesting a single-vehicle flatbed might qualify as expedited shipping with some companies, which could easily increase the cost by up to 60%.

One other factor that might bump up expenses is enclosed shipping. Most transport companies charge extra for enclosed shipping. Choosing this transport type could result in a 50-80% higher price.

Finally, you might pay more for personal vehicle transportation if you pick a popular time of year. For instance, transport during holidays can cost up to $800 more than during seasons with less demand.

As you might’ve noticed, most of the numbers mentioned here aren’t exact. This is because shipping costs can change yearly, seasonally, and sometimes even monthly. Plus, precise pricing will vary from one company to the other.

If you want to get as precise as possible, it would be best to get in touch with a transport company and ask for a direct quote. Even better, you could do this with several companies to get to an average amount. At the end of the day, nothing will get you a clearer picture of industry pricing than some due diligence.

Selecting the Right Option for Personal Transport

Choosing the best transport company for personal shipping requires much research the same as finding regular shipping carriers. You’ll need to investigate the available options in as much detail as possible.

The first thing to do is determine your budget. The best way not to overpay for a service is to draw a line at the maximum amount you’re willing to spend. That way, you can see if the available services can fit into your budget or will break it.

Next, you’ll need to define what you require from personal car transport services. Do you need open or enclosed shipping, additional insurance, or door-to-door transport? Also, are you planning on shipping belongings within the vehicle?

Answering these questions will make it easier to work out the details with your company of choice. It will help you decide on the right transporter for your needs.

You’ll also want to get some crucial questions ready to ask the companies you’re considering:

  • How long have they been in business?
  • Do they have experience with personal shipping?
  • Is the company licensed and insured?
  • Did they handle your vehicle type before?
  • Are they familiar with the route, starting location, and your destination?

Lastly, you should check the company’s references, reviews, and customer feedback. This might be the best indicator of whether they are a legitimate shipping business.

If you’ve opted for a professional driver, you should interview potential candidates.

A reliable driver should be able to answer most if not all your questions with confidence. If they are direct, clear, and quick to address any concerns you might have, they could be the right person for the job.

On the other hand, if you notice the driver can’t answer your questions or is avoiding a direct response, that might be a sign that you should move on.

Having someone handle your vehicle and your vehicle only requires plenty of trust and reassurance. Even if you can ride with them in your car, you’ll want to know that the wheel is in the hands of a driver who knows what they’re doing.

This is especially true if you’re shipping car and belongings together.

Open carrier shipping

What You Need to Know About Shipping Personal Items

When you decide to ship your car with personal belongings inside, the first thing you’ll need to consider is the type of items you can pack.

Item limitations during personal shipping will depend on the type of carrier. Transporters won’t have issues hauling a vehicle containing items made of soft materials. This includes fabric, linens, clothing, shoes, and similar things.

You also won’t encounter any problems shipping books in your car. Even small furniture pieces will be allowed in.

But all of this comes with an important caveat. Everything you pack into your vehicle will contribute to its weight. Most carriers have limitations when it comes to how much load they’ll carry.

If you’re going for personal vehicle shipping with a driver, all those considerations won’t apply since they’ll be driving the car with the items inside. However, you still won’t be able to load oversized items into your car since they could weigh down the vehicle, making it less reliable or even dangerous to drive.

In terms of items that are prohibited by law, those include all materials deemed dangerous, such as flammable, poisonous, radioactive, and explosive items. Note that you can carry some of these materials in your vehicle, but in a very limited amount.

Naturally, you shouldn’t pack any illegal items for transport. Personal vehicle or not, it still must comply with federal and state laws.

Shipping Car and Belongings Together: Potential Risks

If the main reason why you’re interested in personal car transport services is because of the opportunity to also move personal items, you should be aware of some potential risks that may arise in the transportation process.

Firstly, there’s the rather obvious risk of damage. If your car is on the move while packed with items, they could easily start bumping around the cabin or trunk. At that point, the items, the vehicle, or both could suffer damage.

Even worse, your car might have insurance against damage, but the items you transport in it won’t be covered by the policy. In other words, should something break during transport, you won’t get any compensation for it.

The best way to avoid this risk would be to do everything you can to secure the items. The first step in that regard should be to pack everything with utmost care.

It would be recommendable to use boxes of appropriate size and insulate them with packing paper or, even better, bubble wrap. Similarly, you should be extra cautious when packing fragile belongings.

Another step you should take for the sake of item safety is to pack things only in the car trunk. After all, the trunk’s express purpose is to carry items, and that’s what it should be used for whenever possible.

It will be much easier to secure your belongings if they’re in the trunk. The cabin of your car is ill-equipped for item transportation and will more likely lead to damage.

Another risk of personal vehicle transportation comes in the form of theft.

Unless you’re shipping your vehicle in an enclosed, tightly secured trailer, the vehicle could attract potential thieves. And if your belongings are left in plain sight within the car’s cabin, the odds of a theft attempt will only grow.

An attempted theft doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll lose any of your belongings (any potential thievery might be prevented in time). However, the perpetrator may try to access your vehicle through a window by breaking it. In that instance, the damage will be significant, regardless of whether your things have gone missing or not.

The risks of damage and theft are more than enough reasons to carefully choose what you’ll leave in your car. Proper caution in this regard might prove priceless whether you’re transporting your car with a personal transport service or a professional driver.

cross country car transport drivers

Pick Your Personal Car Transport Options Carefully

Personal vehicle shipping can be an excellent solution for several reasons. It’s highly convenient, customizable to your requirements, and it allows you to pack your belongings inside.

If done correctly, personal transportation can make moving to another city or state easier. It might also be a safer way to transport your vehicle, which will be particularly important for unique models. And if you take all the crucial considerations into account, this service might turn out to be well worth the cost.

But the most important thing you’ll need to do is find the right company to handle your personal car transport.

If you’d like to see what personal transport options our company has to offer, feel free to contact us. You’ll be able to get a free quote without any further obligations and you might just find what you’re looking for.