How Much Time Does it Take to Ship a Car?


One of the most important questions on your mind when opting for a car shipping service is how long does it take to ship the vehicle? While it is a very valid question, most customers are not guaranteed date or time but offer more like a ballpark picture. 

Choosing a good transport service is essential as they can offer you the best solution according to your needs. If you are still looking at how to ship a car cross country, here’s a simple guide that will help you jot down all the essential details. 

Now keep in mind that even though you might receive a drop-off date and time. Several externals can impact the timing of the delivery. In this article, we will explore some of the reasons why shipping a car from point A to B can be delayed.  


One of the most obvious factors that will affect the timing of your delivery is distance. Keep in mind that the further the delivery, the longer it’s going to take for your vehicle to reach. If the destination is within 500 miles then you can expect delivery in 1-2 days and if between 500-1000 miles then it may take upto 2-3 days. Similarly, the more miles the more days it will take for your car to reach you. And if your drop-off location is more than 2,500 miles then shipping can take even 10-12 days. In any case, you will get a brief idea when you speak to your shipping service and you can plan your schedule accordingly. 


Distance and location are two different aspects that are kind of similar but they can add delay to your shipping delivery. Location is a major factor when it comes to shipping cars because the harder to reach, the longer it will take. Keep in mind that some locations are much easier to travel to and that’s one of the factors that can speed up your delivery. 

Most of these carriers travel through different highways and interstates, you can probably contact the driver and meet them somewhere near highways. By doing so, you shorten the time and also save money during the shipping. If you have opted for a home drop-off service then it might take longer if you reside in the rural side of the country. 

Shipping Season 

Right from late spring upto early fall, there is a huge demand for vehicle transport companies because it is easier to ship cars. During this time, there are several trucks available and if you choose to ship at this time you might even get your delivery done early. Because of the number of trucks available during this season, it is considered a peak moving season. 

Now that you are aware of this, shipping during the winters the pick and drop off of your car will be delayed. The reason is simple, during this time there are fewer trucks on the road and hence it affects the timing of your delivery. Some drivers are even unavailable because it is the holidays, so choose your shipping timing accordingly. 

Weather Conditions 

While you are focusing on seasonal shipping, it is also important to consider the weather situation. Even though your car is built to manage several weather conditions, when transported any change in weather can affect the delivery. Because these transporters carry several cars at a time, driving in harsh conditions can be risky and unsafe to drive. 

Every transport service will prioritize the safety of their employees so if they encounter hail, rain, snow, hurricanes, thunderstorms, etc, it will definitely slow them down or even make a stop if needed. That’s why summer can be a great option for shipping, however, consider all possibilities. If you own a luxury car, you can consider using this cover that can protect your vehicle from certain weather conditions, read more about it here.

Road Condition 

Since your transporter will be traveling on road probably from one location to another, road condition plays a huge role in your delivery. If the driver encounters unexpected bad road conditions, he is forced to drive slowly for the safety of the vehicles on this truck. 

Sometimes he may also encounter road blocks due to an accident or construction that will delay your car being shipped to the destination. Another reason why you might be delayed is traffic because these trucks usually move between cities making multiple deliveries, sometimes getting out of these places can bring about unforeseen traffic. 

Type of Carrier 

When you are choosing a transport service, you must also choose the type of carrier that you want your vehicle to be shipped in. There are different types of car shipping carriers like open car carriers, enclosed carriers, front door deliveries, boat carriers, air freights, and so on. Depending on your budget and vehicle types you can choose the right carrier. 

If you have a huge vehicle, then finding a carrier to transport your vehicle may take time. Or if you want to ship an expensive or rare car then you would be enclosed shipping. Additionally, you would have a service that is trained in handling these cars because they are unique and luxurious vehicles. 


While your transport service is the best option to get a definite delivery date, you should consider the aforementioned factors that may delay your shipment. If you have just got your license and are looking to purchase a new car? Here are some quick tips that you should consider before purchasing a car. 

Written by Megan Taylor
Megan is a beauty expert who is passionate about all things makeup and glam! Her love for makeup has brought her to become a beauty pro at Glamour Garden Cosmetics.