A car in an enclosed trailer

Is Enclosed Auto Transport Really Worth the Extra Cost?


When it comes to shipping your car across the country, auto transport companies tend to give you two options. You can ship your car using an open trailer which is a very safe and secure method of transportation. The other option is to use enclosed auto transport. 

Enclosed auto transport companies can keep your car safer than an open carrier because your vehicle isn’t exposed to the elements during shipping. However, there is a question of the price tag. Auto transport enclosed typically costs 30% to 40% more than open auto transport.  

What is enclosed auto transportation?

Top rated enclosed auto transport companies move vehicles in an enclosed trailer. This means the vehicles inside are completely protected from the weather and any traffic grime. They are also protected from would-be thieves. 

These trailers are specially designed and your vehicle could be on its own or with several other vehicles, depending on the size of the trailer. 

Choosing the best enclosed auto transport companies is hands down the best option if you’re shipping an antique, classic, exotic, luxury, or valuable car.

Pros and cons of enclosed car shipping

While enclosed shipping may be the best option for valuable cars, it can be quite expensive and usually takes longer to transport than open shipping.


  • Provides security and protection during transport
  • Opens up access to carriers that are more experienced with high-end vehicles
  • Removes the potential of damages due to flying road debris or bad weather
  • Enclosed trailers have hydraulic lift gates which as essential for cars with low ground clearance
  • Carriers that offer enclosed auto transport have increased insurance coverage because the cargo they generally transport is worth more than than the standard car


  • Costs 30% to 40% more than open car shipping
  • Less fuel-efficient
  • Enclosed car transport can take longer

Different types of enclosed auto transport trailers?

There are a range of different enclosed auto transport trailers available. For example, there are trailers that transport only one or two cars. There are also multi-car enclosed trailers and these are the best option if you’re concerned about your budget.

Large box-style trailers can usually hold up to seven cars, so your vehicle will have company during its journey. 

Catching a ride on a trailer with multiple other vehicles headed in the same direction cuts down on the cost. This is because essentially, you’re sharing the expense with other customers.

If you need your vehicle shipped quickly, for example, if you’ve got an antique car and there’s a car show coming up, or you’ve purchased a classic vehicle online and need it in a hurry, a one or two car trailer is the answer. It will cost more because there are no other customers sharing the cost. But, the investment is more than worth it because your car arrives in the same jaw-dropping condition it left in and it’s ready to be shown off.   

When should you use enclosed auto transport?

Choose enclosed auto transport and your car, truck, or motorcycle will be transported in a fully enclosed trailer. The trailer has a roof and four sides, thereby providing a safe and secure environment for your car while it’s being transported. 

Enclosed auto transport is the method of choice for owners of antique, custom, high-value, luxury, or expensive sports cars. They choose this method for shipping their cars because it provides the highest level of protection and security. While the cost is higher, for prestigious car owners, no price is too high to pay for total peace of mind.

If you’re still undecided as to whether enclosed auto transport is right for you, ask yourself the following questions:

  • Do you consider your car an investment?
  • Does snow or cold weather concern you?
  • Are you worried about your car being exposed to dirt, dust, pollution, and other types of debris while it’s being transported?
  • Is your car old?
  • Does your car have a unique or custom paint job?
  • Would you like additional theft protection for your car?

If you can answer yes to any of these questions, enclosed auto transport is the right choice for you. 

The cost of enclosed auto transportation

The cost of enclosed auto transport is a little more than open car transport, usually around 30% to 50% extra. The reason for the higher charge is the higher demand for enclosed vehicle transport as fewer carriers offer such a service. The fact that fewer cars can be transported on a trailer also affects the overall cost. One other determining factor is the reduced fuel efficiency. 

If you want to know how much it costs to transport your precious vehicle to another state, use our online instant quote calculator. 

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If you’re ready to make your auto transport arrangements, please give us a call at (864) 546-5038 or use our Live Chat option. 

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