What Affects Car shipping Costs While Exporting?

August 25, 2022

The price of exporting your vehicle depends largely on how much the car weighs and how far it needs to be shipped. However, that’s not all that matters when you are trying to determine how much it will cost to export your car overseas. In fact, there are other factors that affect the price of international shipping cars, like the size of the vehicle and the route it takes.

This guide covers some of the most surprising factors that affect car shipping costs, including distance traveled, vehicle age and size, and more. If you find that some cars for export in the USA seem unusually highly priced, checkout this list and make sure you’re not paying more than you should be!

1) Which country you are importing to

When it comes to car shipping costs, the country you're importing to can have a big impact. For example, if you're importing to a country with high import taxes, those taxes will likely be passed on to you in the form of higher shipping costs.

Additionally, countries with more stringent environmental regulations may also charge more for car shipping in order to offset the cost of meeting those regulations.

2) Which country you are exporting from

If you're exporting from a developed country with good infrastructure, such as the United States, you can expect your costs to be lower than if you were shipping from a less developed country. This is because developed countries have better port facilities and roads, which makes it easier and cheaper to transport cars.

3) Shipping options

There are a few different shipping options available when you’re looking to ship your car. The most popular options are door-to-door and terminal-to-terminal.

Door-to-door is the more expensive option, but it offers convenience and peace of mind as your car will be picked up and delivered right to your doorstep. Terminal-to-terminal is the cheaper option, but it requires you to pick up your car from a shipping terminal.

4) Delivery preference

Open carriers are the most popular and economical option for shipping a car. But there are some factors that might make enclosed shipping a better choice for you.

If your car is high-end or luxury, you might want to opt for an enclosed carrier to protect it from the elements and potential damage that can occur during transport. If you're shipping your car during extreme weather conditions, you might also want to consider an enclosed carrier.

5) Distance

The further your car has to travel, the more it will cost to ship. This is because long-distance shipments require more time and effort, and thus cost more to ship.

If you’re shipping your car a long distance, be prepared to pay a little extra. Otherwise, if you're not too far from where the carrier operates out of, then there's no need to worry about how much shipping costs are going to be.

6) Delivery speed

How quickly you need your car delivered will have a big impact on the cost of shipping. If you're in a hurry, you'll have to pay a premium to get your car moved to the front of the line.

On the other hand, if you can afford to wait a bit, you can save money by opting for a slower delivery. You might also be able to negotiate better rates with some carriers when they may not be as busy.

7) Time of year

When it comes to shipping your car, timing is everything. The time of year can have a big impact on car shipping costs. Summer is typically the busiest season for car shippers, which means rates are higher than usual. Winter is usually the slowest season, so rates are lower.

If you're flexible with your shipping date, schedule your shipment for the off-season to save money. You might also be able to negotiate better pricing or even get cheaper delivery by making your reservation during the slower months.

8) Type of vehicle

One of the biggest factors that affect car shipping costs is the type of vehicle you need to ship. The size and weight of your car will playa big role in how much it costs to ship. If you have a large SUV or truck, it will cost more to ship than a smaller sedan.

But, did you know that an electric car can cost more to ship than a gas-powered car? That’s because electric cars are heavier and require special equipment for shipping.

9) Insurance

As with anything, insurance is always a big factor when it comes to car shipping. Your shipment will likely be insured by the carrier for a certain amount, but you can also purchase additional insurance if you feel it’s necessary. The value of your car, the distance it’s traveling, and the mode of transportation are all factors that will affect your insurance rates.

10) Hidden fees

Most people are surprised to learn that there are a number of hidden fees that can affect the cost of shipping a car. These include things like fuel surcharges, documentation fees, and even environmental fees. Be sure to ask the company about all potential fees before you book your shipment.

11) Vehicle condition

If your car is in poor condition, it may be more expensive to ship. This is because damaged cars are more likely to incur additional fees, or even be refused by some shipping companies. Even something as small as a cracked windshield can result in a higher shipping quote! The best way to avoid this type of surprise is with pre-shipment inspections.


In conclusion, we can say that there are many factors that affect the shipping cost of vehicles. The overall cost includes not only the transportation but also documentation and logistic charges, cargo insurance charge, etc.

Thus, get in touch with us as we are the leading firm that helps with car export in the USA and takes care of everything right from selection to the logistics and compliance. If you need professional advice when searching cars for export in the USA, you can rely on us as we help our clients at every step of the process.

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