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RV Transport Services for Safely Shipping Your Motorhome
Shipping RVs like motorhome trailers and camper trailers may sound counterintuitive — they're great for road trips, acting as a home on wheels for your next adventure. That being said, RV shipping is actually more common than you think. The main reason people transport their motorhome camper trailer is to reduce stress, wear and strain. RV shipping can be especially helpful if you’re purchasing a new RV from across the country or taking one to get renovated or repaired. If your RV is your home in a stationary location, hiring a transporter may also be more cost-effective than buying a vehicle to haul it yourself.
Since RVs are large vehicles, it takes experience and expertise to successfully transport one to a new location. Whether you’re purchasing a motorhome to snowbird in Florida this winter, or looking forward to a travel trailer remodeling project, hiring an RV transport company will make the process smoother, safer and more cost-effective.
RV Transport: An Overview
Searching for a transporter that fits your specific RV shipping needs can be a tedious task. When you type “RV transport companies” into your search engine, it spits out hundreds of choices. Weeding through the results can be overwhelming and time-consuming, and it may be hard to know which businesses are legit.
Luckily, CitizenShipper’s marketplace saves you the headache of searching and sifting for the right RV hauler, only presenting you with the most reliable, cost-effective options tailored to your needs. Vetted, professional RV transporters come to you, bringing with them experience in hauling RVs of any type or size.
Choosing the transporter that’s right for you will depend on several factors, including the size of your RV and the price, distance to the destination and type of transport you have in mind. The following is a guide full of information and tips to help you make the most of your RV shipping journey!
Table of Contents:
Different Types of RVs That Can Be Transported
Identifying the kind of RV you own, or are planning on buying or transporting, helps you determine what type of transportation methods will work best. The class system categorizes motorhome trailers based on size.
Class A Motorhomes
Class A motorhomes are the majestic giants of the motorized recreational vehicle world, and typically look much like a public transit bus. They can weigh anywhere from 13,000 to 30,000 pounds and range from 20 to 50 feet in length. There’s a lot you can do with that type of space. Whether you’re looking for something simplistic or ultra-luxurious, there are styles to suit your needs.
Features of some Class A motorhomes:
- Full-sized furniture and appliances like a king bed or washer and dryer
- Heated floors
- Home theaters and Bluetooth capabilities
Downsides of Class A motorhomes:
- You may be limited on where you can park and hook up a Class A motorhome (because it is so large).
- Class A motorhomes have a lower fuel efficiency (around 10-12 mpg).
- Class A motorhomes can be difficult to transport.
Class B Camper Vans
There’s a reason van life is becoming a popular option in this economy — while small, camper vans are convenient and cost-efficient. They usually range from 17 to 23 feet in length and weigh around 4,000 to 9,000 pounds.
There are several beneficial qualities to camper vans:
- Compact: can fit in most parking spaces and campsites
- Easy to drive: closer to the build of a car
- Efficiency: better on gas mileage compared to Class A and Class C RVs (around 18 to 25 mpg)
Downsides of camper vans:
- They tend to be more minimalistic than Class A motorhomes (there’s not enough space for full-sized appliances, for example).
- Privacy may be more difficult: camper van owners typically spend more time outside to avoid feeling cooped up.
- It can be uncomfortable to house more than two people in a camper van.
Class C Motorhomes
Class C motorhomes offer a middle ground – they’re not as large as a Class A motorhome and not quite as compact as a Class B camper van. The feature you may recognize is the compartment that floats above the hood of the vehicle. This is usually used for a bed or storage. Class C motorhomes range from 20 to 30 feet in length and weigh anywhere from 10,000 to 13,000 pounds.
The benefits of Class C motorhomes:
- More affordable than Class A motorhomes
- More spacious than Class B camper vans: bigger sleeping area, more storage space and the option for smaller appliances
- Reasonable fuel efficiency (17 to 22 mpg)
The drawbacks of Class C motorhomes:
- Class C motorhomes are more expensive than Class B camper vans.
- They offer less storage and living space than a Class A motorhome.
- The cab is separate from the living space.
Have you ever wondered why it’s called a fifth wheel? You’re not alone there. Fifth wheels do add a “fifth wheel” of sorts to your vehicle, but not in the way you might think. Fifth wheels are large trailers that require a fifth wheel hitch to tow. This style of hitch is unique and requires the coupling to be in the bed of the truck. Fifth wheels are extremely heavy, and usually 25 to 40 feet long, requiring a one-ton truck to tow them.
The benefits of fifth wheels:
- Most sleeping spaces are lofted, leaving room for a larger living area
- Usually feature slide outs which offer even more space
- Easier to maneuver than other types of trailers due to the hitch mechanism
The drawbacks of fifth wheels:
- A fifth wheel requires a truck that can handle its weight (if you don’t have one already, this can be a second major investment).
- The living and driving spaces are separate.
- Fifth wheels require ample space to park and store.
How are Motorhomes and RVs Transported?
There are three main ways to ship a motorhome, trailer or camper:
Using a Flatbed Trailer
Flatbed hauling is a common choice for RV transport. The transporter loads up your RV motorhome or camper trailer on a large flatbed trailer for delivery. This method can save you money because the transporter is able to “stack” routes, carrying multiple trailers or vehicles at once on a drop-off route. It’s also preferred for long distances because the motorhome or trailer will not experience wear and tear on the tires.
Using a Towing Service
While using a tow-away service, as the name suggests, the transporter hitches up your fifth wheel, camper or trailer and tows it to the desired destination. Towing requires special equipment that’s provided by the RV transport company.
Drive-Away RV Shipping
If you own a Class A, B or C motorhome, drive-away RV motorhome transport is another available option. Sometimes you need to get your RV to the destination in a timely manner, and you don’t have the time or ability to transport it there yourself. Drive-away RV shipping is convenient and cost-effective because there’s no extra equipment involved. You simply hire a professional transporter to drive the RV from your pick-up location to the desired drop-off location.
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What are the Legal Requirements for Shipping an RV?
The RV transport company you choose should be properly licensed with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). The FMCSA is the lead federal government agency responsible for regulating, tracking and providing safety oversight of commercial motor vehicles.
Knowing your shipping company is properly licensed to transport motorhomes and camper trailers will give you added peace of mind. This will help you protect yourself from shipping scams, fraudulent transactions and even the loss of your RV. Additionally, if your transporter is caught without proper licenses, their truck and equipment may be impounded, along with your RV.
Cutting corners to save money is a risk that can result in lengthy delays and even higher costs than hiring a licensed RV transporter.
It’s a simple process to check if a transporter is licensed with the FMCSA:
- Locate the RV transport company’s USDOT number and enter it into FMCSA’s electronic record system. Every RV transport company is required to have this number. It ensures that the company complies and adheres to commercial highway regulations, enhancing the safety of the driver and your RV.
- If you don’t have the USDOT number in question, you can search by company name on the FMCSA’s website to retrieve it.
- Now you can see any information the agency has associated with your transport company. If you cannot find the transport company in this database, this can be a sign the company is fraudulent or operating illegally.
Does Transporter Insurance Cover Your RV During Shipping?
Specific requirements for RV insurance are different on a state-to-state basis. However, most states require you to have basic liability insurance for RVs that have a motor and are self-powered. Just like insurance for your car, these policies typically cover bodily injury and property damage. Unfortunately, this likely won’t extend to circumstances when your motorhome is in the hands of a transporter.
RV transport companies are required to have insurance specifically covering motorhome transport. If the RV transport company is registered with the FMCSA, this policy must cover $750,000 at minimum. When choosing a transport service, be sure to communicate about what the transport insurance limit is.
A reliable way to fact-check their insurance coverage limit is by visiting the FMCSA’s electronic record system through the steps mentioned above. From here, you can see the RV transport company’s insurance information and make the decision of whether they offer enough to cover the value of your RV.
Most companies also offer an add-on insurance package for an extra fee to ensure total coverage. In the case you purchase it, read the fine print for exclusion details in the policy.
How Much Do RV Transport Services Cost?
Some of the most important factors that affect the cost of transporting an RV include:
Size and Type of RV — Larger RVs like Class A motorhomes are more expensive to ship than a compact RV like a Class B camper van.
Distance — The price of your RV shipment largely depends on how long the trip is to the destination. The general rule is that the longer the trip, the more expensive the RV transport will become. Each RV shipping company establishes their own rates, ranging from as low as one dollar per mile to nearly four dollars per mile.
Gas Prices — The rise and fall of gas prices has an impact on the RV transport cost per mile.
Pick-Up and Drop-Off Locations — If you live in a densely populated area, there may be more shipping companies to choose from and more transporters available. This works in your favor because a competitive market keeps motorhome transport costs down. If the pick-up or drop-off locations are remote, less traveled or hard to reach, additional costs may be added.
RV Condition — If the RV is not in running condition or without keys, there may be extra equipment needed to load up and unload it for transport depending on the size. This can add additional fees to the total cost.
Time of Year — The summer months are the most popular for vacations and travel in the United States. The kids are out of school, the weather is beautiful and campsites are quickly filling up. The demand is higher to buy a new RV or ship one to a destination. For that reason, RV shipping prices are likely to surge during springtime and the beginning of summer. If you plan on shipping your RV in the spring or summer, book ahead of time to beat the rush and higher prices. Fall and winter are typically the most affordable seasons to book an RV shipping service.
Shipping your RV or motorhome has never been easier:
How Much Time Does RV Delivery Take?
There are several variables to consider when predicting the time frame you can expect your RV to be delivered:
- Distance the RV will travel
- Market demand (which can fluctuate based on the season or where you live)
- Whether you choose individual shipping or “stacked” shipping (multiple trailers on a single hauling vehicle)
- Whether you choose expedited shipping or flexible delivery
Can You Ship an RV to Another State?
Yes! Long distance RV transport service is common because some shipping methods prevent wear and tear on your RV. Another reason you might choose to ship your RV is because you simply don’t have the time to transport your RV across the country, and that’s okay too! Motorhome transportation or camper trailer delivery to another state is a convenient way to get your RV from point A to point B.
How to Prepare an RV for Shipping
- Secure the doors, windows, vents and cabinets.
- If the windows or doors can’t be latched closed, use strong tape to keep them from opening.
- Remove objects that are loosely secured or hung on walls and store them in a safe place.
- Turn off all appliances and electronics, then disconnect the power supply and gas lines.
- Check the refrigerator and freezer to make sure that everything has been cleaned out. Defrost the freezer in order to prevent leakage.
- Ensure the brake light, turn signals and indicator lights are working properly.
- Check the pressure in all tires and check for excessive wear.
- Secure cargo doors and pop-ups.
- If your RV has slide-outs, make sure they’re locked in place.
- Check the engine and fluid levels (power steering and transmission fluid, motor oil and coolant).
- If using a tow bar or hitch, be sure they are secure and hooked up correctly.
- Test battery levels.
Once you’ve secured your RV and prepared it for shipping, be sure to take pictures of it from all angles. Document any damage including small dings and scrapes. This is a crucial step — if you forget to document the current condition of the RV, the RV hauling company may not be held responsible in the rare case damages occur en route. If you choose to file an insurance claim upon the delivery of your RV, these pictures will be used as evidence.
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Comparing RV Transport Companies: Services and Pricing
Choosing the right company is crucial. There are several factors to consider when comparing different RV transport companies, including insurance coverage, reputation, customer reviews, pricing structures, and additional services offered.
Proven Experience & Quality Services
Transparency is a key attribute of any quality business. RV transport companies should have reviews from past customers that reflect an honest representation of their services. If there’s evidence that the RV hauling company is removing customer comments or reviews, this may be a bad sign.
Customer reviews hold a lot of weight. Pay attention to the overall feedback of past customers:
- Are past customers satisfied with their RV shipments?
- Was the RV shipment delivered within the agreed schedule?
- Was there excessive damage during the motorhome transport or delivery of the camper trailer?
- Are there reports of missing property?
- Were there any hidden fees tacked on?
If the majority of reviews talk about being concerned or disappointed, this may be an indicator of lackluster services. If reviews mostly highlight positive interactions with the RV shipping company and satisfaction with the services this is a good sign!
Every motorhome and trailer transporter hired through CitizenShipper should have a detailed profile you can view before booking. Each profile features:
- The transporter’s average rating on a 5-star scale
- Number of completed transports and cancellations
- Detailed reviews written by past customers
Insurance Coverage Provided During Transport
One of the most important aspects to check when evaluating RV transport companies is the insurance coverage they provide during transit. Accidents can happen on the road, and having adequate insurance ensures that your valuable investment is protected. Look for companies that offer comprehensive insurance coverage for any potential damages or accidents that may occur during transportation.
Reputation and Customer Reviews
To ensure reliability and peace of mind, it's essential to evaluate the reputation and customer reviews of each RV transport company you're considering. Take the time to research online and read testimonials from previous customers. A reputable company will have positive feedback from satisfied clients who had a smooth experience with their services.
Being able to connect with your shipping company during motorhome transport or camper-trailer delivery is a must. Look into what type of communication is offered:
- Can you talk to the transporter prior to shipping to discuss rates and any questions you may have?
- Is it possible to directly message or speak with the transporter en route?
- Can you receive photo updates along the way?
- Do they offer GPS tracking?
All transporters hired through CitizenShipper have access to an internal messaging system from which they can be reached throughout the shipping process. If you have any questions prior to booking, you can discuss them directly with the prospective transporter instead of communicating with a dispatcher or third party. Additionally, after booking, you can arrange with the transporter to receive pictures and updates at any point during the transportation of your boat.
Stellar Customer Service
In addition to communicating with your RV transporter, there may be instances where you need to speak with a customer support agent from the company. You don’t want to be left on hold in the rare case there is an issue on the delivery route. Check to see if customer service is easily accessible. Is the only option an automated chat system on the page, or are you able to call and speak with a real person?
CitizenShipper customer support agents are available anytime to address your concerns. In fact, they respond 324% faster than the industry average!
Pricing Structures and Additional Services Offered
Comparing pricing structures among different RV transport companies is also crucial in making an informed decision. While affordability is important, keep in mind that quality service often comes at a reasonable price. Look for companies that offer competitive rates without compromising on service quality.
Consider any additional services offered by the RV transport companies. Some may provide extra conveniences such as door-to-door pickup and delivery or expedited shipping options for urgent needs. These value-added services can enhance your overall experience and make the process more convenient for you.
When researching different RV transport companies' pricing structures, keep an eye out for discounts or promotions they may offer. Some businesses provide special rates or seasonal discounts that can help you save money while still receiving top-notch service.
A Simple RV Shipping Process
Using an RV transport service should be a convenient and simple process that makes your life easier — you’re leaving the logistics to the pros!
Benefits of Professional RV Transport Services
Professional RV transport services offer numerous advantages for individuals looking to move their RVs from one location to another. Whether you're relocating or sending your RV for repairs, hiring professionals can save you time, effort, and potential damage to your valuable investment.
Expertise in Handling and Transporting RVs
One of the key benefits of professional RV transport services is their expertise in handling and transporting these vehicles. These professionals have extensive knowledge and experience in dealing with different types of RVs, ensuring that your vehicle is handled with care throughout the transportation process.
Transporting an RV requires specific skills, such as maneuvering through tight spaces, securing it properly for the journey, and understanding the unique challenges associated with large vehicles. Professional transporters are trained to handle these tasks efficiently and safely.
Necessary Equipment and Knowledge for Secure Transportation
Another advantage of hiring professional RV transport services is that they come equipped with all the necessary tools and equipment needed for secure transportation. They have specialized trailers designed specifically for transporting recreational vehicles, ensuring a smooth and safe journey.
These professionals also possess the knowledge required to properly load and unload your RV onto their trailers without causing any damage. They understand how to distribute weight evenly, secure fragile components, and protect your vehicle from road vibrations or sudden movements during transit.
It can be a time-consuming process that involves meticulous planning, route mapping, and coordinating logistics. By opting for professional transport services instead, you can save yourself valuable time that could be better spent on other tasks or enjoying your travels.
Professional transporters take care of all aspects related to moving your RV. From organizing permits and insurance coverage to arranging pickup and delivery schedules, they handle every detail while keeping you informed throughout the process. This allows you to focus on more important matters without worrying about the complexities involved in transporting your vehicle.
Options and Services Offered By Top RV Transport Companies
Various Options for RV Transport
Top RV transport companies offer a variety of transport options to suit your specific needs. Whether you have a motorhome, travel trailer, fifth wheel, or any other type of RV, they have the right equipment and logistics solutions to ensure safe and efficient delivery.
- Open Trailer Transport: For those looking for an affordable option, RV haulers provide open trailer transport. This method involves transporting your RV on an open-air trailer, exposing it to the elements but offering cost-effective transportation.
- Enclosed Trailer Transport: If you prefer added protection for your valuable investment, RV transport companies also offer enclosed trailer transport. This option shields your RV from adverse weather conditions and road debris during transit, ensuring maximum safety.
Reliable Services for All Types of RVs
Whether you own a small travel trailer or a large fifth-wheel RV, top RV transport companies are equipped to handle your transportation needs. They recognize that each type of recreational vehicle requires specific handling techniques to ensure safe transit.
The best RV transport company uses skilled drivers who are well-versed in maneuvering through tight spaces and navigating challenging road conditions. They understand the importance of securing these lightweight units properly during transport to prevent any damage en route.
For larger motorhomes or fifth-wheel trailers, rv haulers utilize heavy haulers with advanced suspension systems capable of handling heavier loads. These vehicles require specialized equipment such as RGN trailers that allow for easy loading and unloading while ensuring stability on the road.
Nationwide Delivery You Can Trust
With CitizenShipper's vast reach across North America, drivers are able to offer nationwide delivery services that you can rely on. Whether you're purchasing an RV from a dealership or need to transport your own vehicle to a new location, top rated RV transporters can handle the logistics.
Door-to-Door Delivery Services
One of the standout features of top rated RV transport services is their commitment to providing door-to-door delivery. Their experienced drivers will pick up your RV from its current location and deliver it directly to your desired destination anywhere in the United States. This convenient service saves you time and effort by eliminating the need for additional transportation arrangements once your vehicle reaches its destination.
Tracking Capabilities for Peace of Mind
RV transporters understand that entrusting them with the transportation of your cherished RV can be nerve-wracking. That's why they offer tracking capabilities that allow you to monitor the progress of your vehicle throughout transit. By providing real-time updates on its location and estimated arrival time, The best rv transport companies ensure peace of mind throughout the entire journey.
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Obtaining RV Transport Quotes from CitizenShipper
Are you in need of reliable and affordable RV transport services? Look no further than CitizenShipper, the convenient platform that allows you to obtain multiple quotes from different RV transport providers. With just a few simple steps, you can receive competitive quotes quickly and easily compare prices to choose the best option for your needs.
Submitting details about your shipment is all it takes to kickstart the process. Provide information such as the size and weight of your RV, the pickup and delivery locations, and any specific requirements you may have. This ensures that the quotes you receive are accurate and tailored to your unique needs.
One of the most significant advantages of using CitizenShipper is the ability to obtain multiple quotes with minimal effort. Instead of spending hours contacting individual transport companies or browsing through various websites, CitizenShipper brings all the options directly to you. By filling out a single form, you can access a range of quotes from reputable RV transport providers who are ready to assist you.
The convenience factor cannot be overstated. The platform streamlines the entire process, saving you time and energy so that you can focus on other aspects of your move. Whether you're relocating across town or embarking on an epic cross-country adventure, obtaining RV transport quotes has never been easier.
Once you've received several quotes for your RV transport needs, it's time to compare them side by side. This step allows you to evaluate each option based on price, services offered, and customer reviews. Consider factors such as insurance coverage, delivery timelines, and additional services like storage if needed.
To make this comparison process even more straightforward, create a list of pros and cons for each quote received. This will help ensure that no detail goes unnoticed as you weigh up your options. Remember that choosing an RV transport provider isn't solely about finding the lowest price; it's also essential to consider the reliability and reputation of the company.
When comparing quotes, keep in mind that some providers may offer additional services such as door-to-door delivery or expedited shipping for an extra fee. Take note of these options and factor them into your decision-making process. While price is undoubtedly a crucial consideration, it's equally important to choose a provider that meets all your specific requirements.
Post a free listing on CitizenShipper today to get a free shipping estimate and affordable rates within minutes!
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Frequently Asked Questions
Is it free to list an RV transport shipment?
Absolutely. There are no "listing fees" involved. You don't pay a dime before negotiating the cost of RV transport with the driver you choose to hire.
How do I choose the right RV transport company?
When selecting an RV transport company, it's crucial to consider factors such as reputation, insurance coverage, delivery timelines, and customer reviews. Thorough research will help you find a reliable provider that meets your specific needs.
What are some common challenges in RV transportation?
Common challenges in RV transportation include road restrictions or limitations based on size or weight restrictions. Weather conditions or unforeseen circumstances may pose obstacles during transit.
How can I prepare my RV for transport?
To prepare your RV for transport, you should remove all personal belongings, secure loose items inside the vehicle, disconnect utilities, and ensure that it is clean and in good working condition. You may need to make arrangements for any necessary permits or inspections.
What are the different methods of RV transportation?
There are various methods of RV transportation, including flatbed trailers, towable trailers, drive-away services, and professional drivers. The choice depends on factors such as distance, budget, and specific requirements.
Is DIY RV transport a viable option?
DIY RV transport can be an option for those with experience in towing or driving large vehicles. However, it requires careful planning and consideration of road restrictions and safety measures. Hiring professional services often provides a more convenient and secure solution.
The easiest, safest way to ship your RV.
- All RV transporters are background checked for felonies and DUIs
- Carrier and shipper addresses and contact information are verified for additional protection.
- Photos of RV shippers and their vehicles help confirm who and what to expect.
- Detailed RV transporter reviews provide insight and transparency to the selection process.
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