Should You Ship Your Car or Drive it When you Move? | Citizenshipper

Ulhas Sukhare Ulhas Sukhare · Updated: March 8, 2023 / Published: July 14, 2020

It is a truth universally acknowledged that convenience has a cost. Of course it is cheaper to drive your car to its new destination, discounting the price of gas. But that isn’t always an option, and even if it is, the time and labor involved can be off-putting to say the least. Of course.

Engage a reliable shipper with experience of car transport and you have guaranteed peace of mind. For people moving home, with a thousand other things to move from A to B and a deadline in which to do it, there is no time to be doing the driving yourself. Or if your car is headed one way over a long distance, how are you supposed to get back? There a million reasons why using a shipping service to transport your car just makes sense. 

But before you commit to either choice, you’ll rest easier knowing it was the right one. That’s where this guide fits in. Depending on your schedule, budget, distance and reason for transporting your car, which option to choose varies

We’re here to cut out headaches of that kind. Read on to understand which option you should pick, and the benefits and disadvantages of both. When you’ve finished reading, the choice will be clear to you, leaving you to focus on other things. 



Ah, the open road. Just you and the black top, no strings attached. You have the freedom to ‘deliver the shipment’ on your own timeframe, subject to changes in your own life. Booking in advance and then plans changing is no longer an issue. That kind of freedom comes for free if you choose to drive the car to its destination yourself.

Cost is also a factor in favour of this choice. Gas may be the only cost involved. That’s why a journey of 200 miles or less is better to make yourself, if possible. Your wallet will thank you, and if you are leaving your car at its destination and returning, the distance is still viable to return by train or plane and still be paying less.


Longer distances throw up downsides for this option. If the journey will take longer than a day, you will need to factor in hotel or motel costs, plus parking and gas. That can make the journey more expensive than a low-priced shipper. A good rule of thumb is that under ideal driving conditions, five hundred miles (or a nine-hour trip) is the recommended limit before tiredness makes it unsafe to drive. So a hotel every five hundred miles on average will need to be budgeted for.

At time of writing, midgrade gas costs on average $2.50 per gallon. Since you know how many miles per gallon your car does, and what your state charges for gas, these factors should eneter any calculations you make.

The time it takes is another disadvantage. If you are busy and/or working to a deadline, the time you’ll need to transport your car from A to B yourself becomes an impediment. Maybe you’re moving house, and need to organise other aspects of the move and be on hand to deal with them. That won’t be possible if you’re stuck on the road. Only if there is no deadline, or if the deadline is flexible, does driving become a time-effective solution. There is always the possibility of a breakdown, too.

Wear and tear is the final main disadvantage. If you are taking your car to be sold, or as a gift to someone, the strain of long-distance travel can reduce your car’s performance. This is a big consideration if the journey is across state borders.



Every part of your car has a limited before it needs to be replaced. Any option that reduces wear and tear has this going for it. Plus, the lower the reading on your odometer, the easier it is to sell your car or trade it in for a fair return. If you’re shipping to sell, hiring a car transporter is the obvious choice. Likewise if your car’s resale value matters to you.

Perhaps the biggest benefit of shipping your car is the convenience. Simply arrange a starting point, a destination and a timeframe with a good driver, agree on a quote, then you can relax. If you are busy or just prefer peace of mind, car shipping services like CitizenShipper have you covered. 

Another advantage to shipping that customers praise is the ease. All you need to do is post your shipment to an online marketplace of vetted professionals – mentioning your schedule, destination, origin and make of car – and let the quotes come to you. Drivers will bid and outbid each other to provide the best service for the best price. Agree a price and let the driver take it from there! This also means that, in case of emergency, you have direct contact with the driver working your job. This may not be the case for big hauliers like Montway, but expert sole traders will keep you abreast every step of the way, if you want to know.

If you’re feeling conscientious, here are a few things you can do to prepare your car for shipping.


The only main disadvantage to using a shipper over driving is cost. For shorter distances, the cost of hiring a driver will outbalance the cost of driving yourself, even accounting for fuel costs. But for long distances, from one side of a state to the other, for example, or across states, your best bet is to engage an experienced car transporter.

If the distance is long but budget is still a big concern, there’s no reason to be wary of being lumped with great expense. A marketplace means the lowest bidder wins, and costs are driven down. This allows you to pick and choose the right driver with the right expertise and the right quote for you.

It’s free to post a shipment and start receiving quotes, so there’s nothing to be lost by seeing how cheaply your shipment can be made. Give CitizenShipper a go, and find a cost-effective way to take the burden of driving long-distance off your hands without skimping on safety and expertise

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