Transport car across country by train
There is no one perfect method to ship a car which will fit everybody and every particular case. There are a lot of small factors that can make one method more applicable in one case while in another one it doesn’t fit at all.
Here we will take a closer look at transporting cars across country by train. Long time ago it was the only possible option (except driving a car on your own) and you could see a great number of railway carriages filled with various types of vehicles. Nowadays you can also see this construction, but in the overwhelming majority of cases it’s governmental vehicles. Today for rail companies it’s not that profitable to deal with individual orders but you still have some options.
Advantages and disadvantages of car transport cross-country with train
The first you need to know about how to transport car by train across country is that you will need to take a trip together with it. It’s a common rule that for the car’s delivery you need to buy a passenger’s ticket at the same train which can not be so convenient for those who just need to send the car to another destination (for example, as a present to relatives). In such cases the company that transport cars by train cross country is not the best option and you should better consider a more traditional truck transportation of the car.
The price of the delivery is one of the most attractive benefits when dealing with train delivery of the car. Even with an obligatory passenger’s ticket the total cost will be essentially lower in comparison with the auto transport companies’ quotes. The difference can reach 500 dollars which is indeed a big sum.
If you decide to transport car across country by train, you can be sure that the negative effect on nature and environment will be much lower here than if you use a truck or drive it by yourself. The reason is that the trains produce much fewer levels of carbon footprint.
You can also have some basic options in regards to the way of transportation. Like in truck delivery service, you can arrange an open or enclosed transportation depending on your car’s value, weather conditions, length of the trip and some other factors.
Finally, considering the railway map of the United States, you can see that almost every important route is covered by rails while every state has at least a couple of strategically beneficial stations for the car’s delivery.
Let’s take a closer look at the disadvantages you may face:
- Additional costs. When you are comparing train and truck delivery, you need to consider the whole route and not only from one railway station to another as it will be your responsibility to arrange the car’s delivery to the mentioned points in time and in the most efficient way. Most probably you will decide to drive the car by yourself (as you still need to have a passenger’s ticket) or at least will ask someone to do it for you. Fuel consumptions, meals on the way and wasting of time are just a few of main cons of this trip;
- No flexibility. All the trains have their own schedule and routes, stops and estimated time of these stops, so it can become quite challenging to select a most applicable and convenient way;
- Time. It’s not only about the scheduling when you may wait for additional couple of days for your vehicle to be picked up by the train. Sometimes the route between two cities is not straight, therefore the whole trip will turn out even longer than it would take by truck. Frankly speaking, such loops of the railways are not a rare case;
- No personal approach. When dealing with any professional auto transportation company you can expect to discuss everything you are worried about and to arrange all (or at least most of) special requests and wishes. In case of rail companies, you should follow a particular procedure with no exceptions. Thus, it’s forbidden to transport any personal belongings or even additional equipment of your car inside it during the train trip. To compare, it’s allowed to have at least some small package inside the vehicle when moving it inside the truck, and for an additional price you can arrange to add some extra weight. Moreover, dealing with a moving company you can expect all your personal belongings and furniture to be delivered inside the trailer together with your car.
As we can see, far not every case is an appropriate basis for the train transportation of the car. But it’s still one of the cheapest options in the industry, and if the disadvantages are not turning you away, you can have a look at this option. Not too many rail companies are at your choice, but at least the Amtrak company can surely serve you as an individual car’s owner.