Shipping Car From Texas To California

March 5, 2020

Whether you’re trading the charm of the Texas life for dreams of easy living in California or you’re already in the Golden State and have found the perfect vehicle online in the Lone Star State, shipping a car from Texas to California has never been simpler!

However, a successful car shipment is more than simply making a reservation and having your car hauled for the 1,500 miles or so between states.

There are universal and route-specific factors from Texas to California to consider when it comes to timing, pricing, and the availability of truckers to bring your car home. If you book a shipment at the wrong time with the wrong carrier, you’re in for a frustrating experience with potential shipment delays and inflated pricing for underwhelming service.

Don’t risk it! Contact Nexus Auto Transport right away. You’ll get an affordable quote from one of the most trusted vehicle shipping companies in the industry!

Rather than leaving you to figure things out through trial and error, we’ve created this definitive primer  on shipping cars from Texas to California.

We’ll give you tips specific to your particular shipping route while also providing you with everything you need to know about getting the best bang for your buck in auto transport.


How Much Will Shipping A Car From Texas To California Cost?

There are way too many nuanced factors when shipping a car from Texas to California to give you a flat quote. California and Texas are two of the biggest states in the Union when it comes to pure square mileage, and mileage is a key factor in determining just how much you’ll pay for your car shipment.

If you’re shipping your vehicle from a city or town in East Texas rather than West Texas, you’re looking at an extra 700-800 miles or so which will up your overall costs. Furthermore, it does usually cost a bit more to ship your vehicle from East to West.

The make and mileage of your car will also play a role in determining your per-mile cost. In addition, any car that’s currently not functional will cost extra for the added labor required to load and unload it from a vehicle shipment truck.

If you’re shipping a car from one rural area to another rural area which is off the beaten path and isn’t adjacent to a major highway, you’re going to see a boost in your overall bill comparatively to if you were shipping to/from a major city or thoroughfare. You’ll also be subject to major shipping delays.

The logistics and extra time it takes to ship to and from remote areas costs money, so budget-conscious consumers should look into ways to simplify their shipment routes when saving a few bucks is a key priority.

The longer the distance and the harder the route for your trucker, the more money you’ll pay. However, the ultimate cost determiner is the availability of truckers for a Texas to California route and the current demand for auto transport services in your area.

So, it’s a lot about timing. But, what time is right?


What Time Of Year Is Best To Ship My Car From Texas To California?

Just because you’re living in sunny Southern California doesn’t mean it’s going to be a breeze to get your car shipped from Texas to California during the winter and early spring months.

The auto transport industry goes through distinct seasonal fluctuations which affect the amount of trucks available, the time it takes to ship a particular vehicle, and the overall cost you’ll incur for the entire process.

From January through March, there’s a distinct decrease in contracted drivers willing to brave the elements and an increase in retirees returning to the shipment game for the first few weeks of the year to grab a hefty paycheck or two.

These “snowbirds” are called upon to ship cars to warm-weather states such as Florida and California, but a backlog of shipment orders leads to significant delays and increased prices. Steer clear of shipping your car from Texas to California during these months if you can or you may have to front an extra couple hundred dollars or so for expedited service.

Be wary of auto transport companies who promise low rates during these troublesome shipping months! Unless you’re paying for expedited service with explicit terms, your budget shipment will likely be delayed for weeks while the provider works through a backlog of orders.

The auto transport industry begins to pick up with a steady influx of contracted truckers through April and May. However, there’s still plenty of backlogged orders to be filled and potential for headache-inducing delays with the wrong shipper.

The summer months from June to August are teeming with auto transport business with everything from college kids on the move to a generalized boom in automobile sales. Prices tend to be higher during these months due to increased demand, though. If you’re not careful when choosing who to work with, an overloaded auto transport service could delay your shipment for weeks.

If you can, aim for September through early November when scheduling your car shipment. The weather’s still fine in most places, there are still plenty of truckers on the road, and you’re likely to get a much more reasonable rate for standard or expedited shipping.

While cheaper prices look good when balancing your checkbook, they can lead to logistical nightmares and major irritation when working with a less-experienced auto transport service which may struggle with handling seasonal fluctuations in the auto shipping industry.


Should I Ship My Car With Closed Or Open Transport?

If you’re shipping a prized sports car to your new dream house in Malibu, an enclosed shipping option may be best. We recommend enclosed shipping for most sports cars and luxury cars due to their extended security and safety.

Enclosed shipping is a more expensive option and generally takes longer to execute when demand is high, but it may be worth it to ensure your prized vehicle is in the best of hands.

If you’re shipping a regular car or truck and are looking for a more timely option, open transport is the way to go. It costs less than enclosed transport and offers much shorter shipment times due to these trucks’ capability to haul multiple vehicles at one time.


Is My Car Insured For The Duration Of The Shipment?

No auto transport service is allowed to take and fulfill shipment orders without a current cargo insurance policy. Any carrier that ships a vehicle without an active insurance policy on their shipment trucks is breaking the law.

However, do know that the cargo insurance policy which protects your vehicles does not insure any personal items inside the vehicle during transport.

Only your vehicle itself is covered, so you’re liable for any stolen or damaged items.


What Documents Will I Need To Ship To My Car?

While you don’t need any particular documents for pickup or drop off of your car, you will need to sign a Bill of Lading for both or have someone do so for you.

The Bill of Lading isn’t just a receipt of services rendered and to be rendered. It’s also an inspection report which notates preexisting damages and other key information about your vehicle.

An incomplete Bill of Lading presented by a budget auto transport service is a red flag. This is especially true if you do not receive a copy prior to the driver’s departure. An unethical provider could attempt to write off damage which occurs during shipment as preexisting.


What Should I Know If I’m Moving From Texas To California?

California is a majestic state which has anything and everything you’d want for your new home. From sprawling deserts to massive cities with 24/7 nightlife, California is the perfect place to relocate for any Texan looking for variety and a true taste of the West Coast life.

There are some extra costs to consider, though. Texas has no state sales tax, while California has a variable sales tax which can range from 6% to an eye-popping 13.5%.

In addition, rent and mortgage costs in California’s most populated cities such as Los Angeles or San Francisco often triple that of costs in Texas metropolitan areas such as Dallas/Fort Worth.

There are other extra tax and cost-of-living expenses to consider, but it’s not all doom and gloom!

California is a true cultural epicenter and haven of natural splendor. Some of the world’s most gorgeous parks and beaches are within California borders. It’s also home to a bevy of world-famous museums, concert halls, clubs, and much more.

The California life will be a change of pace for a lifetime Texan, but the rewards are rich and there’s so much to do which makes the move worth it!

Book your auto shipment with Nexus Auto Transport today or simply contact us to get a quote. We’ll make sure you get a fair price and get your car right when you need it for exploring the wonders of the Golden State.