Open or Enclosed Car Shipping: What’s Best For Shipping Your Vehicle?

When shipping a vehicle, there are two main methods to consider: open and enclosed. Which one is best for your needs? The answer depends on your budget and timeframe. Enclosed car transport is typically more expensive than open. But it can also be much safer and more convenient for a specific type of vehicle.


Whether shipping a car from one city to another or moving across the country, the time involved in auto transport can be a significant factor. It is especially true if you own high-end or classic cars that need specialized protection during shipping.

Enclosed car transportation is a shipping method that protects vehicles from the elements. The trailers used for enclosed transport are insulated to prevent damage from rain, hail, snow and dirt.

Open car transport is a cheaper and faster California car shipping option that allows more vehicles to be shipped simultaneously. However, this method provides less protection than enclosed transport.

Enclosed transport is the best option for owners of rare or classic cars because it offers extra protection from weather and road debris. This specialized method is also recommended for cars with low ground clearance.


The cost of car shipping is influenced by many factors, including the type of transport you choose and the pickup/dropoff locations. For example, if you ship your car door-to-door, you will pay more than transport terminal-to-terminal.

Another factor that can impact the cost of enclosed auto transport is the weather. During winter, shipments are more difficult due to snowy roads and low visibility. It can add to the transport time and increase costs.

Enclosed carriers also have a smaller capacity, so they can only haul a few cars at a time. It makes open auto transport the more common option among car shipping companies.


Cars shipped in open trailers are exposed to the elements. Rain, snow, hail, dirt and other road debris may blow on top of the vehicle and cause damage.

Although open auto transport is cheaper, it doesn’t offer the same level of protection as enclosed car shipping. It is especially true for cars that are valuable or collectible.

Moreover, open car carriers have fewer experienced drivers unfamiliar with high-end vehicles. It is one of the reasons why they’re usually more expensive.

Enclosed car shipping is a specialty service that offers a higher level of protection. It’s ideal for luxury and exotic cars or those with unique features like low-ground clearance or roofless vehicles.


Many auto-shipping options exist, but deciding which is best for your needs can take time. You need to figure out which method is best for you and your vehicle to get it where it needs to go on time, safely, and within your budget.

Open car transport is a popular option, as it’s cheaper and faster than enclosed auto shipping. It also offers more flexibility when booking and scheduling pickup and dropoff times.

However, it’s important to note that open car trailers are unprotected from rain, snow, dust, road debris, or insects. It can result in damage to your vehicle’s bodywork and paint.

Enclosed car carriers offer extra protection for your vehicle and are more reliable than open auto transport. They also provide additional peace of mind that your car will arrive at its destination in perfect condition.