Open Vs. Closed Auto Transport: What’s To Choose?


Moving your car across the state and country borders can be stressful and expensive. Not only will this mean that you will have to invest in enough fuel to take you all the way, but you will also have to stay behind the wheel for long hours with limited rest. Additionally, this has the potential to expose your vehicle to the wear and tear that results from long hours of driving.

In such situations, choosing to work with an auto-transportation company can be wise. While there are a diversity of options to choose from, the kind of service you choose to work with will determine the state in which your vehicle will get to your desired destination. In most cases, you will have to choose between open and enclosed vehicle transport options.

Here is a short guide to help you decide on the option that best suits your situation:

What is Open Auto Transport?

This is one of the most common options for auto transport. The shipping company will mainly use trucks that have open-ended spaces to transport your vehicle. In most cases, the trailers will be 70 to 85 feet long and will be divided into two levels, one at the top and one at the bottom.

The bottom level typically houses shorter rows of vehicles in comparison to the upper level so as to allow enough space for the cabin of the trailer. Since the trailer will barely have a roof or even walls on the side, your car will basically be transported while being exposed to the weather elements.

The Perks and Downsides of the Open-Air Option

This is the least expensive transport option. It also allows the driver enough freedom to inspect the vehicles in transit and make any necessary adjustments to how they are placed. Lastly, since the trailer is typically light, it is a fuel efficient option and is great for the environment.

The downside is that your vehicle will be exposed to different elements along the road, but working with the right company will help mitigate this risk. In case there is debris falling from the side of a hill, it might damage your vehicle. As a result, most companies will offer to pay for any damages amounting to a certain fee to guarantee that your car will arrive safely.

Enclosed Auto Transport

In this option, you will use an enclosed trailer to transport your vehicle. It has a roof and walls that help to protect your vehicle from outside elements.

Perks and Downsides of This Method

The good thing this method is that you will be almost completely assured of the safety of your vehicle. It will be tough for it to be harmed from roadside debris or even affected by inclement weather. On the flip side, this method is more expensive than the open-air auto transport option. It is also tough for the driver to make routine inspections of their vehicle during transit as it is in an enclosed area. Lastly, it is not as fuel efficient as the open-air option.

Your Vehicle Should Dictate Your Choice

What kind of security would you desire for your ride? If you have an antique vehicle or even a sports car, then it might be wise to use the enclosed method. Yoou can read more about it here –

On the other hand, if your vehicle is of an older version, then it might not be worth the cost of using the enclosed option. However, ensure that you at least shop around to get the best quote for the services from reputable companies. Additionally, you should consider looking for ways to reduce the cost of shipping your vehicle such as not filling the gas tank to the fullest to reduce the vehicle’s weight.


Your choice of transport option will mainly depend on your current situation. If you have a tight budget, then the open-air option is wise. In case safety is a priority, then the enclosed option will suffice.