There are a few different factors that impact the timing and cost of vehicle shipping. We will review those factors to help you better understand the car shipping process.

What is Vehicle Relocation “Transit Time”?

Transit time is an estimated time frame that starts when a vehicle is loaded onto a transport trailer and ends when it is unloaded at the destination location. Transit time does not start from the day the order is placed. A quote from a transport company usually includes the transit time. When you make your car shipping reservation you establish the pickup time frame by choosing a first available pickup date and last available pickup date.

Pickup Time Frame

Large Car Carrier Transit Time

You create the pickup time frame when you make your car shipping reservation by choosing a first available pickup date and a last available pickup date.

What is the “First Available Pickup Date”?

The first available pickup date is the earliest date you are ready to release your vehicle to the transit driver.

What is the “Last Available Pickup Date”?

The last available pickup date is the latest date the driver can get your vehicle. A professional car shipping specialist will question you about your upcoming plans (airplane reservations, booked vacations, etc.) when you place your order. This information helps to determine the last available pickup date for your vehicle.

Type of Transporter and Vehicle Shipping Transit Time

Although distance is the main factor, car carrier type also effects transit time. The bigger the car carrier, the longer a car transport will take. A small car hauler will transport your car if you are only going a short distance. The pickup and delivery times for these carriers are usually quicker because there are fewer cars to load and unload. For example, shipping a car from San Francisco to Los Angeles typically takes only one day. Most car carriers on this route are hauling between 1 and 4 cars. The transit time is shorter because they load and unload less vehicles. On the other hand, long distance car carriers frequently use 7 to 10 car trailers. They must load and unload 7 to 10 cars each way, sometimes more if they have stops between cities. This process adds significant time to the transit.

Car Carrier on the Route San Francisco, CA -Los Angeles, CA

Driver Regulations and Vehicle Shipping Transit Time

Truck and trailer drivers have very strict work rules that effect transit time. Commercial vehicles have an 11-hour driving limit mandated by HOS regulations. Therefore, a driver can only drive approximately 500 to 650 miles per day. Traffic conditions can also decrease a driver’s ability to cover the allowed mileage resulting in a delay.

Time of the Year and Vehicle Shipping Transit Time

Transporting your car during the holidays or over a holiday weekend can add to the transit time and may require a larger pickup window. The drivers typically take time off during these periods to be with their families.

Typical Vehicle Shipping Transit Time between Different States

Transit times vary depending on the city and distance. The more popular transport routes usually have shorter transit times than the routes that have less cars waiting to be shipped. Popular vehicle shipping routes, New York, New Jersey, Philadelphia, Connecticut to Florida, usually take 3 to 6 days. Shipping a car between California and Texas typically takes 4 to 7 days and a car can be shipped from Colorado to California in 3 to 6 days.

Delays in Car Shipping

The shipping company always does its best to get the delivery completed as soon as possible. Transit time is never guaranteed because of potential circumstances beyond the control of the transport company.

Delays can occur because of inclement weather. Excessive rain, snow or high winds may force the driver to stop or delay the transport. Delays can also arise due to truck breakdowns, emergencies or the driver’s health. Traffic and road construction also can slow down the driver. Patience is key to car shipping!

However, it is also possible to get your vehicle delivered ahead of schedule. Cooperative weather and traffic potentially mean faster delivery.

How to Find Out More about Transit Time?

Call a ShipCar24 vehicle relocation specialist to discuss your transit time needs. We are here to explain and educate our customers. ShipCar24 is an expert in car shipping and will guide you through the entire vehicle relocation process. Please call 916-701-2701 or email us at .

Please visit our Blog for additional educational articles about car shipping.