Cross-Country Moving: Driving or Shipping Your Vehicle

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Cross-Country Moving: Driving or Shipping Your Vehicle

Staff Writer · Jan 26, 2010

When moving long distances you should determine whether shipping your vehicle is a better option that driving your vehicle to your new home. In addition to cost there are several differences between the two options that may impact your decision.

Costs of Shipping A Vehicle

While driving your own car may seem the simple and easiest way to get it across the miles to your destination it may also prove more expensive. The cost of gasoline, food, beverages and overnight lodging raises the expense of this method. If your vehicle is leased, the traveled miles might push your mileage over the contractual limit, thereby increasing the cost of your lease. Possible damage to your car may also make driving your vehicle not the best option. The tires, engine and the body of your car will all experience some level of wear and tear. It is possible, too, that your insurance deductible may change should an accident occur outside of the original county or state of coverage.

Shipping your vehicle also raises concerns and questions. First and foremost is the cost of paying a company to transport your vehicle. This cost varies depending on the carrier-whether you choose a closed carriage over an open one and the speed with which you want delivery. You must also add the expense of an airline ticket for yourself, if applicable, to the cost.

Shipping Specifics

It is important to also investigate how the shipping company will handle your vehicle. Ask whether it will be driven by one or multiple drivers. If multiple drivers, determine where the changes are will occur and how they track the transporting vehicle’s progress. Take note if there are multiple carriers handling the shipment as this raises the possibility for errors. Research the reputation of all carriers that will handle your vehicle. Also determine the pickup and drop-off points for your vehicle. Oftentimes, vehicle carriers will merely pull to a side of a predetermined road for receipt and delivery and will not deliver your car to your home. Finally, inquire into the specifics of the carrier’s insurance and how your own insurance handles any damage that may occur during shipment.

Additional Benefits to Shipping Your Car

Keep in mind that your car may also prove to be a valuable packing tool for your move. Shipping companies often have no problem if your car is filled inside with personal belongings, and so that space may provide the best place for difficult to pack or delicate items. However, items still may break and often the carrier is not responsible for damage to anything but your vehicle. In contrast, driving your car may supply the best means to transport small children or to take a family vacation during the trip.

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