How Much to Ship a Car from California to Illinois


In the world of vehicle transportation, car shipping, or auto transport, is a crucial service that facilitates the movement of motor vehicles over long distances. At Smart Auto Move, we understand the specific requirements of car transport in Chicago. We’ll explore the key factors that influence shipping, such as vehicle type, distance, condition, and transport method. By the end of this blog, you’ll have a clear grasp of the essential aspects of car shipping, empowering you to make informed decisions when it comes to relocating your vehicles.

Understanding the Basics of Car Shipping

Car shipping, also known as auto transport, is the process of relocating a motor vehicle from one place to another, often covering extensive distances. This service offers invaluable convenience and accessibility for both individuals and businesses. The car shipping process involves several essential steps, starting with booking, where customers provide vehicle details. Next, a price quote is generated based on factors like distance, vehicle type, and shipping method. Scheduling the pick-up date follows, along with a thorough vehicle inspection. The vehicle is then loaded onto a transport truck, either open or enclosed, and transported to its destination, with regular updates for the customer. Upon arrival, another inspection ensures the vehicle’s condition remains unchanged.

Vehicle Type

Size Matters

The size of a vehicle is a pivotal factor influencing the cost of auto transport. When individuals or businesses are estimating the expense of shipping a car, the vehicle’s dimensions play a significant role. Generally, larger and heavier vehicles incur higher transportation costs.

How much space and weight a vehicle consumes on a car shipping transporter will help determine the cost to ship a vehicle. Be sure to select your appropriate vehicle type (Car, SUV, Truck etc,) when requesting  auto shipping quotes.


How many miles?

Distance is a significant factor when it comes to auto shipping costs. Generally, longer car shipping journeys result in a higher overall cost, but they tend to be more cost-effective per mile compared to shorter trips. The distance your vehicle needs to be transported will directly affect the car shipping cost.

Vehicle Condition

Running or Inoperable

When it comes to shipping vehicles, the condition of the car plays a significant role in determining the cost. Typically, shipping inoperable vehicles will incur higher costs, as it often requires additional equipment and labor for the car transporter. When requesting a quote for auto transport, it is crucial to accurately specify the vehicle’s condition to ensure the most precise and competitive auto shipping rates.

Transport Type

  • Open Trailer Transportation
  • Enclose Trailer Transportation
  • Cross-Country Car Shipping

Open and Enclosed car shipping trailers serve as two primary options for Cross-Country Car Shipping. Open car shipping carriers, the more prevalent choice, offer cost-effective solutions, constituting roughly 90% of all vehicle transporters in the United States. In contrast, Enclosed auto transport, while providing enhanced protection, commands a premium of about 45% in rates and comprises only around 5% of carriers.

Enclosed car moving’s higher cost is attributed to the superior shielding offered by enclosed trailers, coupled with their limited availability. It’s essential to note that opting for enclosed transportation may entail a longer wait for pickup due to the scarcity of enclosed car haulers.

Car Shipping Location


The cost of shipping a car can vary based on the pickup and delivery locations. Generally, more popular and bustling locations tend to offer more competitive car shipping rates. If you need to ship a car from Illinois to California, you should be aware that the rates may be influenced by these factors. Transporting a vehicle to or from rural areas may result in higher prices, as carriers might need to deviate from their standard routes, incurring additional fuel costs. For more information about what we serve and our car shipping services from Chicago visit our website.


Shipping your car from California to Illinois involves several key factors that influence the cost and process. Vehicle type, distance, condition, transport method, and location all play significant roles in determining the final price. At Extra Mile Transport, we prioritize providing reliable auto shipping quotes tailored to your specific needs. Understanding these factors empowers you to make informed decisions when it comes to transporting your vehicles, ensuring a smooth and cost-effective car shipping experience.

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