Moving a vehicle from one state to another requires careful planning and logistics Transporting a Vehicle. There are a few different methods to transport vehicles over long distances, each with their own advantages and disadvantages.

This article will explore the different options available, costs involved, required documentation, and tips for a smooth transition. Let’s get started!

Methods of Transport

There are three main methods to transport a vehicle from one state to another:

Driving It Yourself

The simplest and most affordable option is to drive the vehicle yourself. This allows you to maintain full control over the vehicle and schedule. However, it requires taking time off work and spending multiple days on the road.

Be prepared for long hours of driving and plan rest stops in advance. Check your vehicle is road ready with a full tank of gas, recent oil change, and no pending maintenance issues.

Enclosed Car Transport

For a more hands-off approach, consider enclosed car transport. A carrier service will pick up the vehicle from your residence using an enclosed truck. They transport multiple vehicles at once in a protected, climate-controlled environment.

This ensures the vehicle remains secure from weather and lack of attention during the long-distance move. However, it is typically the most expensive option, with costs varying depending on distance, vehicle size, and demand.

Open Car Transport

As the name suggests, open car transport involves securely tying down the vehicle to an open-air carrier truck. This method costs less than enclosed transport but leaves the vehicle exposed to elements.

Tarps may be used for some protection from rain but not ideal for long-haul trips in harsh weather conditions. Expect some dust and dirt inside upon arrival compared to enclosed transport.

Transporting a Vehicle – Required Documentation

In addition to arranging the transport logistics, certain documents must be prepared:

Document Purpose
Proof of ownership Show you are the legal owner of the vehicle, like your title or registration
Bill of lading Serves as a contract between you and transport carrier detailing the terms of service
Odometer disclosure statement Required only if purchasing the vehicle in a new state; discloses current odometer reading for new title

Depending on the destination state, additional forms like a bond release or a transport permit may be necessary. Check in advance with your local DMV for requirements to receive a new state title and plates upon arrival.

Cost Considerations

The budget will depend on your chosen transport method and specific considerations like distance, vehicle size, demand, tolls, and fuel prices. Here are some average cost guidelines to account for in your planning:

  • Driving yourself: only fuel costs and your time but no direct transport fees
  • Enclosed transport: $1-5 per mile depending on vehicle, most expensive method
  • Open transport: $0.50-2 per mile, cheaper than enclosed but less protection
  • Additional fees: long-distance tolls, DMV registration and taxes in new state

It’s a good idea to get quotes from multiple transport carriers to compare rates and services included.

Evaluate transit times as well to determine if scheduling meets your move timeline. Building an appropriate moving budget takes the stress out of financial surprises once underway.

Transporting a Vehicle – Tips for a Smooth Transport

Following some best practices can help your long-distance vehicle transfer go off without a hitch:

  1. Prepare your vehicle properly with full maintenance and protective wraps if using open transport.
  2. Only transport when your vehicle is devoid of all personal belongings and items of value that could get lost or damaged.
  3. Schedule pickup and delivery dates that allow time delays without urgency, especially if moving between regions with inclement weather.
  4. Pack important transport documents, registration, insurance, and contact information together in an easily accessible folder.
  5. Inspect vehicle thoroughly upon handoff for any pre-existing dents or scratches to note on the bill of lading form.
  6. Coordinate lodging if driving yourself and plan route without navigating through unfamiliar large cities after dark.

With careful preparation on transport method, required documentation, costs, and best practices, your long-distance vehicle move is sure to be a smooth transition. Safe travels on your relocation journey!