How do I become a car transporter? Step By Step Explained

CitizenShipper CitizenShipper · Updated February 23, 2024

Shipping Your Car?

  • Fast and easy
  • Only pay when you book

Cars loaded on a red carrier truck

Most people you know have a car. Most bought their cars from dealerships or second-hand sellers. Ask yourself, how did those cars get there?

As long as people need cars, transporting them is a rock-solid industry. Need proof? 17 million new cars were transported in 2019 in the US – and that’s only new cars. Demand for car transporting is huge, and there’s a great living to be made from getting them from A to B. Someone’s gotta do it, and be well-paid in the process. The best part is, according to ZipRecruiter, the average salary for a car hauler is $70,000 per year. Why not you?

Two factors to consider side-by-side: The more cars are bought, the more cars need transporting. And secondly, the more in-demand car-transporters are, the more they can profit. 

Rocket science it is not. A growing market needs good drivers who can earn more with every job. Ship one car long-distance and the rewards increase thereafter. That’s the promise of a free market!

Finding work

As a sole trader, car transporting can seem a hard career to break into. Big commercial firms with huge budgets to advertise and promote their services tend to squeeze out the little guy, which is true of almost any line of work. An advert in the local paper paid for out of your own pocket does not attract the same business it once did, especially next to a professionally designed full-page ad for an established household name. Unless you have a personal connection to anyone who regularly needs cars to be transported, you’re unlikely to find more than a few jobs a year this way. And that’s not enough to live on.

More and more car transporters use shipping marketplaces to advertise their service. Do you specialize in a particular state? Do you have expertise and equipment for motorcycle or boat transport as well? These will help gain a specialized market share – the more particular, the more in-demand the service is and therefore more profitable – but with or without, the challenge is being visible to the customers who need you. That’s where online marketplaces advantage you.

Take CitizenShipper. With only a driver’s license, basic vehicle insurance, and a fair result from our super-quick screening process, a marketplace like CitizenShipper will promote you and your services to customers nationwide. Now you can be your own boss, accept work that meets your schedule and give quotes to customers directly. Register as a driver and bid on the jobs there, or sit back and wait for the ideal job to come. There are hundreds to pick from every day, so you can afford to be picky. That’s an advantage no sole trader can enjoy.

How to win the customers you want?

When you reach out to a customer with a quote on their posted job, the first thing they’ll look at, besides the quote, is your profile. Here are some tried-and-true tips on how to beef up your profile and appeal more than other drivers, even when they give lower quotes.

  • Pictures. They tell a thousand words and don’t take as long to read. A picture of you smiling is proven to gain a customer’s trust in the second it takes them to view it. Bonus points for pictures of your vehicle and any necessary equipment (trailers, straps). That way the customer knows at a glance who you are and how you’ll handle their car, more immediately than can mere words.
  • Experience. In as few words as possible, mention what you do and for how long you’ve been doing it. Shipped a four-by-four from New York to California? That’s a definite plus. Been transporting cars within Florida for three years? Mention it. In the customer’s mind, experience equals skill, and skill equals trust. Bullet points of your skills and experience add measurable value to your service in an online marketplace.
  • Testimonials and reviews. Don’t be afraid to reach out to a happy customer for a review – the more glowing, the better. Did you arrive exactly on time with no delays? Did the car arrive without a scratch, or even washed, or with a full tank of gas? Customers notice these details and are often more than happy to mention them in writing if you ask. A good review or two will give you an easy lead over your competition.

And don’t forget to respond to customers quickly. They appreciate someone who can keep them in the know about their car’s shipment. It’s a big load off their mind, which means a big load in your pocket!

To choose the area or state you want to work in, head to the dashboard once you sign up and select “routes”. Now you can input the land you want to cover. Remember, the more area your service covers, the more customers you’re likely to attract. You have the option to receive notifications by text or email as soon as shipments are posted in the areas you have selected. Populated areas naturally tend to have more postings. Hundreds go up each week, so make sure you are ready to accept and give a quote as and when.

How do you get paid?

Here’s good news, and the reason CitizenShipper edges out other online marketplaces for shipments. CitizenShipper doesn’t take a cut. It’s you who does the work, so you receive the full payment. We believe that’s only fair, and you won’t find a better deal with any similar marketplace. The customer pays a separate fee to CitizenShipper that does not interfere with yours.

Payments are made once a job is complete. You’re free to use any payment gateway you want, but we recommend accepting credit cards and PayPal.

Get started today

Register as a new driver today and start bidding and accepting work. Our marketplace is only growing, and the sooner you complete your first car shipment, the more edge you’ll have over drivers who sign up later. Make CitizenShipper work for you! 

For additional information, please visit our Help Center, or drop us an email at

Featured Images Credit: