Volkswagen waiting for the sunset

Should I Drive My Car Across Country or Ship It?


Estimated reading time: 10 minutes

There are many reasons why you might want to ship a car across country. You might be moving to a new city, relocating because of your job, or buying a vehicle online. In all of these situations, driving your car across country might seem like a great idea.

However, if you’ve never driven across the country before there are some things you need to consider. For example, weigh up the advantages and disadvantages of driving vs hiring an auto transport company. In this post, you’ll see the issue from both sides of the fence. With all the right information, you’ll be able to make the best decision.

Driving your car vs. car shipping across country - Which is best?

Understanding which option is better boils down to deciding what your preferences are. For example, if you’d prefer to save money, driving your car may be better. If, on the other hand, you’re looking for something that’s time-saving, safe, convenient, and hassle-free, you might decide to transport your car across country. 

Let’s compare the two options quickly before we go into more detail. 

Wear and tear

When you drive your car, every part of it is affected, not just the tires, but the suspension, brakes, and interior of the car. The more you drive your car, the quicker it’ll require regular maintenance and an oil change. If you fail to do these things, it can result in costlier and more serious mechanical problems in the long run.

On average, Americans tend to drive their car around 1,000 miles every year. However, if you decide to drive across country, you’ll put all of that mileage, and possibly even more, in a week. Just think for a moment, what that’s going to do to the condition of your car. You might not see anything straightaway, but in the very near future, you can expect to spend a considerable amount of money on repairs. 

Shipping a car across country, on the other hand, leads to no additional miles of driving. Your car sits safely and securely on the carrier’s trailer throughout the journey.

There’s an obvious winner if you want to keep the wear and tear of your vehicle to a minimum. 

Decrease in value

The value of your car is connected with its mechanical and physical condition, along with the number of miles showing on the odometer. 

If you choose to drive thousands of miles in one trip rather than shipping your car, you’ll be racking up the miles on the meter as well as causing mechanical and physical damage.

When the time comes to sell your car, it’s not going to fetch as much money as it could have with fewer miles and in better condition. 

Ease and convenience

Driving a long distance takes quite a toll on your body, not just your back but your arms, neck, and hips as well. Having to stay alert and sitting in the same position can put a strain on your health. After driving across country, it could take several days for your body to recover. 

If you choose to drive yourself, don’t forget that aside from damaging your health, it’s also going to take up a chunk of your time. A considerable amount of planning is also necessary if you want the journey to be as smooth as possible. Driving across borders could mean you’ve got paperwork to deal with, customs clearance to worry about, as well as meeting other regulations. All of this can be quite a hassle. 

Choose to ship your car across country with an auto transport company and you’ll be saved from all this hassle. You can simply relax and let the carrier do all the legwork for you. 

Safety of you and your car

Every mile you drive you’re increasing the likelihood of getting involved in a road traffic accident, according to statistics. That doesn’t necessarily mean you’re always at risk when driving around your city. What it does mean is that the risk increases when you’re driving long distances, especially in unfamiliar areas, over bridges, along motorways and highways.

Another thing to consider is the risk of your car being stolen. Car theft is not uncommon across the US. For example, in 2020, more than 810,000 vehicles were stolen. You can avoid this risk by shipping your car and it’s one of the main reasons why people prefer shipping their cars rather than driving themselves.

The pros and cons of driving your car yourself

Driving yourself is an option many people consider when they want to move their car across country. That is until they realize how complicated and costly it might be. If the distance you want to move your car is less than 500 miles, it’s certainly an option you should consider. 

However, if you’re looking at moving your car across country, which could be a distance of a couple of thousand miles or more, there are other things to consider when making your decision. 

If you’re the only driver, that means you must take several overnight stops along the way. This adds to the cost of moving your car across country. If you want to move multiple cars, the cost gets even higher. 


  • If you’re not pressed for time, you could turn the journey into a road trip
  • You’ll have the opportunity to make stops along the way
  • Think of all that scenery your passengers will be able to soak up during the journey
  • You could take time out to visit interesting attractions during the journey


  • Compared to the cost of hiring an auto transport company and shipping your car across country, you could pay out a lot more because of all the other costs that have to be factored in
  • All those extra miles cause unnecessary wear and tear and decrease the value of your car
  • Driving long distances can be very dangerous
  • Driving for long periods can be tiring and stressful
  • The success of your journey depends on traffic conditions and the weather
  • If there’s only one driver, it could take longer than a few days  

The benefits of hiring an auto transport company

Choose an auto transport company to ship your car across country and you’ll get a very convenient service that is more affordable than you think. 

When you’re asking yourself “Should I drive my car across country or ship it?” There are some important benefits to consider if you choose a full service auto transport company.

You’re going to save lots of time and hassle, plus your car will arrive safely and securely while you get to travel to the final destination in a more relaxing and stress-free way. 

Let’s explore the benefits in more detail.  

Less planning and worry

If you like the idea of driving your car to your destination, think about all the planning that’s involved. You’ll need to factor in gas and rest stops, find overnight accommodation along the way, decide what you’re going to eat, and a whole lot more. 

On top of that, you’ll also need to have plans in place should there be any vehicle breakdowns, traffic congestion, lengthy road works, and other unforeseen travel nightmares. Don’t forget as well that there are all those other road users you’ve got to deal with. 

Choose to transport your car across country with an auto transport company and all those worries disappear. The transport company will make all the necessary arrangements to ensure your car is shipped to your final destination safely. All you’ll need to worry about is being there to release your car and accept delivery after its journey. 

Saves time

One of the main reasons people choose car transport across country is that it saves a lot of time. When life is so busy, few people have the time to spend on the road. Finding the time to take several days out of a busy schedule can be difficult. Sitting behind the wheel for eight hours every day can also be very daunting.

Schedule your car shipping across country with an experienced auto transport company and you can schedule a specific time window for the delivery of your vehicle. 

You won’t have to coordinate travel plans with work, family, and other obligations. Instead, you’ll be able to arrange to fly to your destination and be there in time to accept delivery of your car. 

Saves money

So many people think that shipping a car is an expensive thing to do, but that couldn’t be further from the truth. If you add up all the costs involved in a road trip across country, you’ll soon realise that auto transport services cost a similar amount. 

With a car shipping service, you won’t be spending money on travel expenses during transport. Maintenance and repair costs before, during, and after the road trip are avoided. In addition, there will be no expensive breakdown costs or flat tire issues to deal with.

There are other significant savings too. You won’t have to take time out of your working week to drive across country. There will be no missed days at the office or lost wages. You won’t have to use up your valuable vacation days either.

If you want to know how much it will cost to get your car shipped across country, get your quote today. 

Safer for you and your family

If you travel long distances in the car with your family it puts you all at greater risk of being involved in a road traffic accident. We’re not trying to imply you’re a bad driver, on the contrary. Other drivers and inclement weather could just as well be the reason for an accident. 

You also put your body under considerable strain when sitting behind the wheel for several hours in a row. It can lead to back pain and soreness. 

When you let a reliable auto transport company ship your car across country, you and your family get to sit back, relax, and enjoy your journey whether you travel by bus, train, or plane. 

Lower insurance costs

The amount you pay for your car insurance coverage depends on several things, one of which is how many miles you drive every year. If you add a long distance road trip to your annual mileage it could lead to higher premiums. Should you be unfortunate enough to get involved in an accident while on the highway, your insurance premiums will be even higher. 

If you ship your car across country with an auto transport company, there are no additional miles on your odometer and your car is covered by the carrier’s cargo insurance. Damage to a vehicle is extremely rare, but should it happen, repair costs won’t come out of your pocket. 

Multiple car shipping is an option

An increasing number of households in the US own more than one car. This can make moving them across country a challenge, especially if you’re thinking about driving. 

However, with auto transport services, you can easily ship more than one vehicle simultaneously. If you’re a household with more than one car, the family can travel together while an auto transport company takes care of the transport logistics for all your vehicles. 

It’s also an invaluable option for people selling or purchasing multiple vehicles in an online dealership or an auction.

When you get in touch to make your booking, ask the auto transport company whether there are any discounts for shipping more than one car.  

Reliable and professional service

Choose to book an auto transport service with a reputable auto transport management company like SGT Auto Transport and you won’t regret it. We only work with carriers who have years of experience transporting vehicles and who have passed various background checks. 

Choose us as your car shipping company and you can be certain your car will be shipped safely and securely using the right equipment. The car shipping process will be smooth and your vehicle will arrive at its final destination on time and with no complications. 

Attractive rates and discounts  

The final benefit you should bear in mind is that many auto transport companies offer competitive rates together with attractive discounts. You can count SGT Auto Transport as one of those companies.

We offer lots of opportunities to save money when you choose to ship your car across country with us, especially during the less busy seasons. You can check our rates online, using our instant quote calculator. All you’ve got to do is enter the details of your vehicle and shipping requirements. With just a few clicks you’ll get your quote and make comparisons. 

If you’d prefer to speak with a representative, simply call (864) 546-5038 or use our Live Chat option. If you like the price, click to make your booking or confirm the details with the SGT Auto Transport representative.

Get a quote banner