How Can You Find the Cheapest Motorcycle Shipping Rates?

Patrick MacFarland Patrick MacFarland · Updated April 7, 2023

Motorcycle shipping is getting quite popular these days, especially as summer approaches and people go on vacation. You’re looking at locations where you can take that new bike of yours on a spin. Unfortunately, many of the best vacation locations are too far away to drive your motorcycle to — that’s where motorcycle transport comes into play. But you don’t want to bust your budget just getting to your destination. So how do you find the cheapest motorcycle shipping rates?

The first step is always researching companies that provide motorcycle shipping. Step two is perusing through several companies, submitting your information and getting quotes back. 

But we’ll make it even easier for you! In this article, we’ll provide you with all the ins and outs of how to find the cheapest motorcycle shipping rates possible.

Understanding the Factors that Impact Motorcycle Shipping Rates

There are various factors that determine motorcycle shipping rates. Let’s take a look at each of these factors in more detail.

Distance and Destination

The distance has a big impact on the shipping rate for motorcycles. The average cost per mile to transport a motorcycle is about $0.03 to $0.75 per mile. Not all locations are created equal when it comes to motorcycle shipping.

The destination, as said above, is also a factor in determining the rate. If you are sending your beloved Blondie to a remote location, then it’s going to increase the shipping rate. Likewise, certain cities in the United States may be more expensive to ship to than others.

Transportation Method

The rate will depend on whether you choose enclosed or uncovered transport. Enclosed transport is more expensive than open transport. You can read more about the methods of motorcycle shipping below.

Size and Weight

The motorcycle’s size and weight have an impact on the shipping rate. If it’s bigger and weighs more, then it will most likely cost more to ship it. The other factor related to this is the type of motorcycle and its value. A motorcycle that costs more or is more exotic/vintage will see a higher rate than a run of the mill motorcycle.

Time of Year

The season when you need to ship your motorcycle has a major effect on the car shipping cost. The slower months are usually in the fall or spring when things are more stable. When it comes to the summer and winter, the price goes up because more people travel during those times and because of the harsher weather conditions.

Pick Up/Drop Off Location

This can affect the shipping rate because if you live in a remote area, it may be hard to get to, which will increase the price tag of the shipping. Likewise, a remote area you are dropping it off will definitely have an impact, as well. Usually more urban areas or if you live in a big city will bring those prices down.

Additional Fees

If you would like door-to-door service or any other additional perks like GPS tracking for your motorcycle, then you’ll have to pay extra. Likewise, gas prices have an impact on shipping rates. If gas prices are high, then be prepared to see a higher price tag. The other fees that can surprise you are hidden fees that some traditional motorcycle shipping companies are notorious for inserting into the final bill. 

Negotiate with Motorcycle Shipping Companies To Get Lower Rates or Discounts

The honest truth is that it’s very hard to negotiate with motorcycle shipping companies once they have given you a quote. In fact, some motorcycle shipping companies actually charge for quotes to begin with. 

Before you accept a quote, you can do your best to negotiate with these shipping companies for a better deal or lower rates. You can also ask them for discounts if they are offering them. Some do, which can work to your advantage.

Of course, the other alternative is going with an online marketplace like CitizenShipper. CitizenShipper never charges for quotes and because transporters are competing for your business, rates are lower than traditional shipping companies. You can also negotiate for better rates with transporters, which can definitely leave you a satisfied customer. 

Shipping Your Motorcycle During Off-Peak Seasons for Lower Rates

As stated above, the summer and winter months can be especially tough for motorcycle shipping. Not only do the holidays interfere in the winter months, but the harsh weather conditions can have an impact on the journey to its destination. Rain, hail, sleet, and snow can slow down or even postpone the journey, which means that motorcycle shipping companies have to maneuver their next shipments accordingly. Likewise, the summer can be packed with tourists and traffic, as well as the heat can have an adverse effect on the journey.

If you decide to ship your motorcycle in off-peak months, like the spring and autumn months, then things can go more smoothly. You won’t run into any adverse weather conditions and won’t run into other incidents that can greatly affect the shipping journey of your cherished chopper.

Choose an Affordable Shipping Method

When it comes to motorcycle shipping, there are two motorcycle shipping methods available: enclosed transport and open transport. The terms come from whether you want your motorcycle shipped covered (or enclosed) or uncovered (open). It’s fairly simple, really. And the decision rests in your hands. Let’s take a look at both options.

Enclosed Transport

As you probably have guessed from the term, enclosed motorcycle shipping is when your motorcycle is being shipped in an enclosed transport. Enclosed motorcycle shipping is ideal if you don’t want to get the motorcycle damaged in any way. Owners of expensive, rare or vintage motorcycles should choose this option, as it is the best way to protect your bike.

The only downside to this option is that it’s more expensive. So if you’re looking for a cheaper option, this definitely isn’t it.

Open Transport

Uncovered motorcycle shipping is the total opposite of covered motorcycle shipping. CitizenShipper can transport your motorcycle in an open trailer, which can be the most risky option in terms of damage from dust and debris on the road.

Because of this, it’s also a more affordable option. Sometimes, an even more economical option exists if you decide to ship multiple motorcycles at once because they can use an open trailer big enough for multiple motorcycles, which lowers the price for you.

The downside to this option is, as stated above, there could be damage done to the motorcycle based on inclement weather or any outside variables. 

At the end of the day, it’s your choice which method you decide to use. Every motorcycle shipping company has both available for your shipping needs. CitizenShipper also has this and many more options available.

Research Available Shipping Discounts

The key phrase we have to be cognizant of here is how to get the cheapest motorcycle shipping rates. Sometimes traditional motorcycle shipping companies can really take advantage of customers by doling out hidden fees. When you see the final bill, you’ll end up getting a surprise.

The best thing to do prior to confirming with a particular motorcycle shipping company is to research if there are any shipping discounts anywhere. Each company may have special discounts available, so asking them can be a great idea. For example, if you have multiple motorcycles to ship, you may be able to get a discounted rate. Researching online is another way to look into discounts and which companies are able to offer them.

Use An Online Marketplace to Find Affordable Motorcycle Shipping

It’s simple to find motorcycle hauling services. You can research online to see which shipping companies haul motorcycles. But if you find that the transporting companies are too expensive to haul your dear Harley to another location, how about looking into an online marketplace like CitizenShipper?

CitizenShipper is an affordable, easy, and seamless process. It’s 60-70% more affordable than traditional motorcycle shipping companies because drivers compete for your business. Plug in your motorcycle’s information and within minutes, you’ll have quotes from various haulers.

Once you have the quote from the transporter you like best, you can choose them and coordinate the entire shipping process with them. You can even get updates during the transporting process to make your life easier and give you peace of mind. That’s it, it’s literally that easy.

Using CitizenShipper and its Benefits

CitizenShipper really takes top prize in ensuring that the process is as smooth and comfortable as it could possibly be for the customer (YOU). We pride ourselves for being trustworthy, affordable and easy. 

There are great benefits when you choose CitizenShipper. Let’s briefly take a look at each one.

  • You can compare each motorcycle hauler’s information based on their experience, as well as their ratings and reviews that other customers have published.
  • You can negotiate the price of the quote they send you to a price you think is more reasonable, which is very rare when it comes to traditional motorcycle companies.
  • Every single quote you receive from a motorcycle hauler is free and the best part is there won’t be any hidden fees added on after you receive each quote.
  • You get transporter updates in every step of the way, making sure your lovely Delilah is in safe hands and you know where it is at all times.
  • CitizenShipper also has added benefits and perks convenient just for you, which is something traditional motorcycle companies may not have.

Bottom Line

Motorcycle shipping can be a pain and can cause headaches, especially if you don’t know how it’s done. Step one is doing the research, which is the best way to find motorcycle shipping companies. But the real work begins in determining which ones are the cheaper options out there.

Getting quotes from several companies and comparing each one is a great way to start. But if you are not satisfied with any of them, you should consider CitizenShipper as an alternative. At CitizenShipper, we pride ourselves in being easy, seamless, and affordable. 

We ensure we have excellent customer service, and there’s proof to show that. We have a 4.9 rating on Google and a 4.7 rating on TrustPilot because we make sure our customers are satisfied with their shipping needs. That beautiful and speedy bike is in good hands with our qualified transporter. They’ll provide frequent updates through our internal messaging system. The reality is that with CitizenShipper, you will have peace of mind every step of the way.

Speed into the motorcycle transport page, punch in your motorcycle’s info, and get quotes faster than being stuck behind a slow driver in the carpool lane!