A Guide to Shipping a Car to Alaska: The Cheapest and Best Options

May 2, 2020

A Guide to Shipping a Car to Alaska: The Cheapest and Best Options

Every year, 50,000 people move away from Alaska and 40,000 people move to the state. Whichever way you’re going, you probably want to ship your vehicle, or at least are thinking about it.

No matter what state you’re relocating to or from, it’s a huge move, considering Alaska isn’t a contiguous state. You have to get through Canada to reach the state, which may create additional issues.

Are you thinking of shipping a car to Alaska or from there? Then you’ll want to read this article. We’ll give you a quick guide on what you need to know to make it an easy trip.

Types of Car Shipping Available

When shipping a car to Alaska (military or otherwise), you have two options available: open or enclosed car haulers. Find out more about each type of shipping service below.

Open Car Hauler

An open car hauler is one you’d usually see hauling cars to a dealership. It’s completely exposed to the elements and can fit several vehicles on several rows.

This type of car shipping is great if you’re in a rush. This is because there are many more open car haulers than there are enclosed ones. So when you call and book an open car hauler, chances are, you can get one that’s close to your desired time and date, if not one that’s exactly what you wish.

The open car hauler is a good choice if your car isn’t brand new or a classic, and if you’re not that bothered about exposing it to the elements.

Enclosed Car Hauler

With an enclosed car hauler, your vehicle will be completely protected for Alaska car transport. The driver will hitch a trailer and carry several vehicles on their journey.

As we’ve mentioned earlier, there are fewer enclosed car haulers running than open ones. This means if you’re on a tight schedule, this may not be the best choice. An option is to call and book one as soon as you can, and hope to get a slot that works for you.

For people with brand new or classic cars, you’ll want to use an enclosed car hauler to ensure it stays perfectly safe while in transit. It’s also the better option if you know the vehicle will travel through weather such as sleet, hail, or snow. All these can definitely happen when you do vehicle shipping to Alaska.

Cheapest Way to Ship to Alaska

As you can see, you can do car shipping to Alaska by either open or enclosed car hauler.

Not only is the open car hauler option quicker, but it’s also cheaper. In fact, it’s the most cost-effective way for you to ship your vehicle.

But the one downside is that since it’s in an exposed hauler, your car will experience all sorts of temperature and weather changes in transit. This means it may get struck by debris if the weather gets bad. For that reason, it may be worth spending a little extra to ship to Alaska.

However, do note that whichever way you choose to ship a car from Alaska, your vehicle will be fully insured. So if you have a well-used car where you won’t mind risking small damages on and can get them fixed easily, choosing the open car hauler option is definitely worth it.

Why You Should Consider Alaska Car Shipping

In order to save some money, you might be thinking about making the drive all on your own. But in the end, it may be more trouble (and money) than it’s worth. Find out why below.

It’s a Very Long Drive

Even if you start out in Washington state, it can take over 43 hours to drive up to Alaska. We wouldn’t suggest driving for 43 hours straight; if you allocate 8 hours a day for driving, that’ll take you between 5 to 6 days.

Consider all the hotels you’ll have to pay for, as well as all the meals you’ll have to eat out instead of cooking for yourself. You’ll probably also have to make pit stops where you’ll grab some snacks and drinks. All these costs will definitely add up very quickly.

In addition, the drive is over 2,200 miles from Washington state. Even if your vehicle gets good gas mileage at 30 MPG, that’s over 73 gallons of gas you’ll have to fill up on. Plus, that’s a lot of unneeded wear and tear on your car.

Finally, you have to consider how exhausted you’ll be. Even if you have someone to switch off with, you may still get very fatigued, especially if you’re not used to driving long hauls. This can compromise your safety while on the road.

You Have to Cross Borders Twice

When you make the trip up to Alaska, not only will you have to cross the border into Canada, but you’ll have to cross again into the United States when you get into Alaska. This means you’ll have to potentially go through 2 border checks that are a hassle to deal with. Not to mention the traffic to cross each time may be bad as well.

When you take both factors into consideration, it’s a lot of unnecessary time spent waiting.

You May Have to Get Special Equipment

Depending on the time of year you make the drive, you might have to buy winter tires and chains for your car. This might actually be useful once you’re in Alaska, so that’s not a total loss if you’re moving there.

However, you may also have to stock up on extra gas cans, as some small gas stations may not be open on your way up to or down from Alaska. You don’t want to get stranded in the middle of nowhere, after all. This means you might also have to stock up on food and drinks for your drive so you don’t get too hungry if these small-town gas stations aren’t open.

The Alaska Auto Transport Process

Perhaps you’re now convinced that shipping your car to or from Alaska is the wisest choice to go with. But what exactly does the process entail? Read on to find out.

Request a Quote and Book

First, you’ll request a quote from the auto shipping company to see if their prices are within your budget. Typically, you can choose between 3 types of services: economy, standard, or expedited. If you’re in a hurry to get your vehicle, then you’ll want to choose the expedited option, as they’ll pick up your car on either the same day or the next.

If you’re happy with the quote, you can then go ahead and tell the company when you’d like your car picked up. With Next Auto Transport, you won’t have to pay a dime until later.

Car Pickup and Transport

The car shipping company will dispatch a driver to your desired location so they can load up your vehicle. If they aren’t able to, they’ll contact you and meet in a nearby parking lot to complete the job. Wherever they pick up your car, you’ll both go through a walkthrough of it to confirm all any preexisting damage.

While they’re transporting your car, you may have the option to track where it is. Some companies offer a tracking website while others let you contact the driver directly.

Receive Your Car

Once the driver arrives at your desired destination, either you or someone you appoint can go receive the vehicle. You’ll go through one more walkthrough to check that there’s no additional damage on top of what was already there.

After this, you’ll sign the bill of lading and get a copy. And that’s it!

Shipping a Car to Alaska Is Easy With Nexus Auto Transport

There are plenty of options when it comes to shipping a car to Alaska, but there’s no better choice than Next Auto Transport.

We understand that your car is very precious to you, which is why we’ll do everything to give you peace of mind about the whole process. For example, we’ll assign a designated driver to you. You can contact them at any given moment and they’ll update you with where your vehicle currently is.

In addition, we only hire drivers who are NAT-certified and know how to handle vehicles of all shapes and sizes. Plus, we carry insurance of $1,000,000 combined single limit and $250,000 per incident. It may happen very rarely, but should anything happen to your car while in transit, it’ll cover these damages.

As you can see, Nexus Auto Transport is dedicated to helping you get your car from point A to point B. You won’t even have to pay until we receive your order and have dispatched your vehicle! So choose us for your relocation to or from Alaska to ensure everything goes smoothly.

Want to find out how much Alaska car shipping is? Then use our quick and easy calculator now. We’ll send you a quote that’s based on real-time market pricing.