What Is Open Car Transport?

Open car transport is by far the most popular type of vehicle shipping service in the United States because it is convenient and excellent value for your money. Your car will be transported on an open-air trailer with other vehicles.

We'll pick up and load your car from a location of your choice and deliver it to your desired destination. Although it exposes your vehicle to the elements, it's still the most secure and safe option if you're on a tight budget. It is a fully insured form of auto transport (according to federal law enforced by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration) that comes with an extremely low price and full protection against any accidents to your vehicle throughout transport.

How Long Does It Take To Ship A Car With An Open Carrier?

Open auto transport is often the quickest way to ship a car. Open carriers are almost 90 percent of the whole fleet in the US and this makes them readily available. Open carriers also have a quicker turnaround time for pick-up and delivery than the enclosed options. Carriers usually travel up to 500 miles per day on average, so transportation anywhere within the mainland United States typically takes 2-10 days after pickup.

Typically, it will take the following number of days to ship your car across the country:

From the East Coast to the Midwest (2-4 days).

From the West Coast to the East Coast (7-10 days).

From the North to the South (2-4 days).

From the West Coast to the Midwest (3-5 days).

How Much Does It Cost to Ship a Car by Open Car Transport?

The price varies depending on a variety of things such as the distance, where the car is coming from, how far it is from the nearest highway, its condition, and even the make and model. If the automobile has been modified, the cost may vary.

In general, open car transport is much cheaper than other types of vehicle transportation methods. The average cost per mile for short distances (1-500 miles) is only $1.60 or less than $1 a mile for medium trips (500-1500 miles). For long journeys (1500+ miles), the expectant price per mile may drop to as little as $0.50 a mile.

The above numbers are dependent on various conditions such as the current weather, the state of the shipment, market demand, carrier schedules, and more.


Type of Transport

Avg. Price Per Mile

Sample Distance

Sample Price

0 - 500



250 miles


500 - 1000



750 miles


1000 - 1500



1250 miles


1500 - 2000



1750 miles


2000 - 2500



2250 miles


2500 - 3000



2750 miles





3000 miles


**The Avg. price per mile rates shown up above are reflective of current market conditions as of May 2022. The rates are subject to change due to seasonal fluctuations, price of gas, pick-up/delivery locations, etc.

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