Comparing Cross-Country Travel Costs With Auto Transport Pricing

Shipping a car across the country when somebody is moving is not a cheap enterprise, but it can be much less expensive than driving the vehicle instead. To get an idea of what it costs to go from point A to point B, someone can look at Auto Shipping Quotes online. With this information in hand, it’s now possible to compare the price of auto transport to the costs of driving the car to the new location. All factors of a cross-country trip must be included.


Consider a trip that is 2,000 miles long at a time when regular gas is $2 per gallon. As of February 2015, the average gas mileage for passenger cars in the United States was about 25 miles per gallon, according to the University of Michigan Transportation Institute. At this level of fuel economy, the trip will require 80 gallons of gas, costing $160.

Of course, gas prices normally aren’t as low as they have been in late 2015. In 2014, the average price per gallon was $3.34. At that price, the same trip would cost nearly $270 in fuel.


Adding mileage means more wear and tear on the vehicle. This is why employers that reimburse people for driving their own vehicles on the job pay an amount per mile that that is significantly higher than the cost of fuel. In late 2015, the Internal Revenue Service increased the mileage deduction rate on income taxes to 57-1/2 cents per mile.

Viewing the trip expenses this way, the cost of driving the vehicle 2,000 miles is actually more than $1,000 due to the expected wear and tear plus the cost of fuel.


Now, quotes received from an Auto Transport Directory start to look distinctly more reasonable than they might have at first glance.

Lodging & Other Expenses

Most people aren’t going to hit the road and drive 2,000 miles without stopping somewhere to sleep along the way. With a minimum of three overnight stays, the traveler may expect to spend around $150 in total if staying at the cheapest chain motels. Factoring in costs for meals must be done as well.

Comparing Costs

A person considering shipping a vehicle will want to look at quotes for both Enclosed Carriers Transport and Open Carrier Transport. The enclosed option typically costs more, but the vehicle owner may decide that the extra protection for the car or truck is worth it. With at least a few different quotes to compare with the list of expected expenses for driving, the person planning to move across country can make the most cost-effective decision.