Moving across country: Should you ship your car or drive there yourself?

If you are moving across country, then you will need to figure out how to get your car there too. There are two main solutions to this problem: drive there yourself, or have a professional company ship the car for you.

The cost of shipping a car across country
Depending on what method is used to ship your car across country, the costs can vary significantly. Some companies to your vehicle across country, usually with a team of drivers who divide up the driving duties. This is the fastest way to get your car to its destination, but tends to be much pricier because you have to pay for the drivers and the fuel costs there and back. Another option is to have your car put into a large truck with other vehicles going the same direction. Because the costs are divided up between the other vehicles, it is cheaper. However, because the truck makes multiple stops along the way, you usually have to wait much longer to get your car.

To get a sense of how much it will really cost to have your car shipped across country, get quotes from at least 5 reputable companies. Make sure you understand the details of their services, as well as any hidden or additional fees which may be in the contract. Also pay attention to how much insurance coverage you get in case something goes wrong.

The real cost of driving across country
Driving your car across country yourself is a lot cheaper than having a company ship the vehicle – but the savings may not be as great as they seem. When you drive your vehicle yourself, you not only must pay for gas and tolls, but also for accommodation at night and meals. If your entire family (including kids!) is going to be in the car, then the expenses can really add up and any savings might not be worth the hassle.

Benefits of driving your own car
There are benefits of choosing to transport your own vehicle other than just the money saved. For starters, you will be able to pack additional items in your car – including the many items which the moving company won’t take like houseplants and perishables. You might even use the road trip across country as an opportunity to bond with your family. Turn the trip into an impromptu vacation. Map out some interesting destinations on the way and visit them.

Benefits of using an auto shipping company
If you are on a very tight budget for your move, then you may have no choice but to drive your car there yourself. But, if you can afford it, then having your car shipped across country is certainly the easier option. You don’t have to waste days driving and sleep in uncomfortable motels. There is also less likelihood that an accident will occur with professional auto shippers and, if something does happen, you are covered for damages.