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8 Things To Know About Shipping a Car From Boston to California


Estimated reading time: 9 minutes 

If you’re thinking about shipping a car from California to Boston or vice versa, there are probably some things you’re not too sure about. If this is your first time shipping a car, you might also be feeling a little anxious. There’s nothing unusual with feeling that way, but rest assured, once you’ve made all the arrangements and accepted delivery of your car, you’ll be wondering what all the fuss was about 

To put your mind at ease and help you feel more confident about shipping your car from California to Boston, we’ve gathered together some of the things you need to know. Keep reading to find out the benefits of California car shipping, how much to ship a car from Boston to California, how to get a quote, how the process works, how long it takes, and more.    

1. What are the benefits of car shipping from Boston to California?

The distance between Boston and California is a massive 3,100+ miles. Coast to coast could be a great road trip, but have you got the time for such an undertaking? A much better option is to ship your car from Massachusetts to California. You’ll save lots of time, money, stress and hassle. Aside from that, there are several benefits you can expect to enjoy if you choose to ship your car from Boston to California rather than drive it. 

  • It’s safer: Driving your car over long distances can be quite dangerous. The risk of being involved in an accident increases, you’re putting your body under considerable strain, and sitting in traffic can be very tedious and frustrating. 
  • It’s more convenient: Shipping a car from California to Boston with the help of an auto transport company is very convenient. You’re not going to feel tired after driving from coast to coast and you’ll be far more relaxed. This is because you’re able to make the journey in the relaxing and comfortable environment of a train or plane. 
  • It costs less and is quicker: You’ll have lots of additional costs to cover if you decide to drive your car from California to Boston or vice versa. You’ve got the cost of the gas to consider, accommodation, meals, and maybe even car breakdowns. 
  • Flexibility: When you want to ship your car from Massachusetts to California or vice versa, the auto transport carrier gets your vehicle where it needs to be. You’re left to travel however you choose, whether it’s flying, taking a train or bus.  
  • Stress-free: Traveling from Boston to California is bound to be less stressful if you take the train, plane, or bus. With the shipping of your car taken care of, all you’ve got to do is sit back, relax, chat with friends and family, read a book, watch a movie, or simply enjoy the scenery. 
  • No unnecessary wear and tear on your car: When you drive long distances, for example, from California to Boston, you’re putting unnecessary miles on your odometer and increasing the wear and tear on your car. When you let an auto transport company take care of shipping your car, you don’t have to worry about repair bills, maintenance, or new tires sooner than you’d planned.    

2. How much to ship a car from Boston to California?

“How much to ship a car from Massachusetts to California?” is a common question. It’s difficult to give an exact answer because it depends on several things. For example, the size of your vehicle and how much it weighs, the distance your car has to be shipped, the route taken, and the cost of fuel. 

Which shipping service you use also makes a difference to the price. Specialist auto transport services such as enclosed auto transport, express car shipping, or guaranteed pick-up, all cost more than the standard open car transport.  

3. Getting a quote for car shipping from Boston to California

If you want to know how much it costs to ship a car from Boston to California, the best thing to do is get a quote. SGT Auto Transport can give you a free instant quote. All you’ve got to do is use our online quote calculator. It takes just a couple of minutes of your time. 

Get a quote today

You’ll need to provide a few basic details. For example, the city and state where you want your vehicle to be picked up, the city and state where you want us to deliver your vehicle, the make, model, and year of the vehicle. In addition, you’ll need to let us know whether your vehicle is running or not, how you’d prefer us to ship your car, and when it’ll be ready for pick-up.  

4. How long does it take to ship a car from Boston to California?

You can expect an experienced car shipping company to cover several hundred miles in one day. However, the time it takes for your car to be delivered varies. Firstly, it depends on the distance the carrier has to travel. If the distance is more than 2,000 miles, it can take between 7 and 9 days. If the pick-up or delivery locations are remote, rather than a city, it could take longer.

Several other factors can affect the overall time frame. These include the following:

  • Traffic flow
  • Number of stops
  • Detours
  • Weather conditions
  • Heavy traffic
  • Road constructions

On top of these factors, there’s also the legal limit drivers can stay on the road. The mandate from the US Department of Transportation is 70 hours each week. 

5. Different ways to ship a car from California to Boston

If this is the first time you’ve wanted to ship a car from California to Boston, you might be wondering whether there are any options. The two most common forms of auto transport are open and enclosed car shipping. Each of these has their pros and cons. 

Open car transport

The most common way to ship a car is using an open auto transport company. It’s also the cheapest way to ship a car. The carrier loads your car onto a large open trailer along with several other vehicles. As many as 10 vehicles can be transported at the same time using this method. 

The trailers used have no sides or roof which means your car is exposed to the elements. Nevertheless, it’s still a very effective, safe, and cost-effective way of shipping cars between California and Boston. 

Enclosed auto transport

A carrier who offers enclosed auto transport will ship your car using a fully secured truck or trailer. The vehicles are completely protected from the elements, dirt, traffic grime, or dust because they are transported inside the truck or trailer. 

If you want to ship a classic, vintage, luxury, or exotic vehicle, you should choose enclosed auto transport. The extra protection provides means you can be confident your vehicle will arrive at its destination in the same condition as when it was picked up. 

There is one major difference compared to open car shipping and that’s the price. You can expect to pay between 30% to 40% extra. 

6. How to find the best car shipping company

Google is a great research tool when you’re looking for a car shipping company. However, there are so many providers to choose from that finding the best one can be a challenge. It’s very tempting to choose the first company that appears at the top of your list of search engine hits. But it’s not necessarily the best course of action. Always do some research before making your final decision. Some of the things to consider include:

  • Good customer reviews and feedback
  • Whether there’s an option for free car shipping quotes
  • Whether the quotes are all-inclusive
  • Whether car transport insurance is included in the price (ask for a Certificate of Insurance if you want proof as this will contain details of coverage, cargo limits, workers comp, and deductibles
  • Compare prices and services
  • Read and understand the contract before signing
  • Check if there are likely to be any additional costs
  • Ask if there is a policy to cover shipping delays
  • Only choose an auto transport provider that is licensed by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA)

7. Shipping a car from California to Boston - how the process works

If you’re wondering how to ship a car, the way to ship a car from California to Boston is very straightforward. All it takes is three easy steps.

Get a quote and book your service

It’s easy to get a free quote. Simply use our instant online quote calculator. Input a few basic details and with just a few clicks, you’ll find out how much it costs to ship a car from California to Boston. 

If you’re satisfied with the price, you then book your order by speaking with a representative of the car transport company. You can generally do this by telephone or Live Chat. 

Your car is picked up

A few hours before the arranged pick-up time, your carrier will contact you to confirm the pick-up information. They’ll also want to verify that the location is accessible for large commercial vehicles. Don’t worry if this isn’t the case because an alternative location can be arranged. The carrier also wants to confirm that you’ll be available to release your vehicle. If you can’t be there don’t worry. You can appoint a third party to act on your behalf. 

Before the carrier loads your vehicle onto the trailer, you both have to inspect it for any existing damage. Record any dings, scratches, dents, or chips on the Bill of Lading. 

As soon as the paperwork is complete, the driver will load your vehicle onto the trailer. You should receive regular updates by email, Live Chat, or telephone. You can also check on the progress of your vehicle by checking in regularly with the driver. 

Your car is delivered

Before the carrier reaches their final destination, they will give you a call to let you know how far away they are. They also want to check that you’re available to receive your car. You can nominate a third-party to act on your behalf if you’re otherwise engaged.

When the carrier delivers your car, you’ll be given the opportunity to inspect it. Make sure you do this just to make sure everything is in order. If you’re happy, sign the Bill of Lading to accept delivery of your car.   

8. Preparing your car for shipping from Boston to California

When you’ve made your booking with a reliable auto transport provider, there’s only one thing left to do before your car is picked up for shipping. You must get your car ready for shipping. It’s a simple process that includes a few quick checks. 

  • Clean your vehicle inside and outside, make a note and photograph any existing damage no matter how small or insignificant you think it might be
  • Remove all personal items
  • Leave only a quarter tank of gas
  • Ensure the battery is fully charged and the tires correctly inflated
  • Secure any removable parts
  • Deactivate any alarms, parking passes, and toll tags
  • Check your contact information is correct

If you’re interested in learning more about the car shipping between California and Boston, our shipping advisors will be more than happy to answer any questions you might have.

On the other hand, if you’re ready to make arrangements to ship a car from California to Boston or from Boston to California, get the ball rolling with our online instant quote calculator. 

If you prefer to speak directly with our shipping advisors, call (864) 546-5038 or use our Live Chat option.

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