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What is the Difference Between Open and Enclosed Transport?

What is the Difference Between Open and Enclosed Transport?
Even New Cars ship on Open Transport Trailers

There are tons of things that you need to think about when you are getting ready to ship your car. You need to pick an auto shipping company, figure out what dates to ship, and where you want to pick up and drop off your car. If this is your first time shipping your car, it would make sense that this is everything you need to know. However, there is one thing that your shipping company may ask which you might not know about. This question is whether you want to use open or enclosed transport. This refers to the type of trailer you want to use to ship your car.

Many people don’t even realize that there are different types of trailers or, more importantly, how they can affect your shipment. There are pros and cons to each. Let’s break them down so you can make the best decision for your car shipment.

Open Transport

When you think of car shipping, you probably think of open transport. This is the double-decker trailer that carries anywhere between six and ten cars on a trailer. You’ve probably even seen them on the highway. Over 90% of all transport trailers on the road today are open transport trailers. This gives them a lot of benefits that enclosed transport trailers don’t have. Since they’re so readily available, it’s often faster and always cheaper to ship your car using an open transport trailer.

It’s not necessarily that open transport trailers drive faster than their enclosed counterparts; it’s just that open transport trailers are just more readily available than enclosed transport trailers. This means you can book one at a moment’s notice and not have any delays or extended waits for the trailer to finally arrive. However, there are some cons to consider when opting for an open transport trailer.

Since the trailer is open, your car is exposed to the elements. At the very least, you can expect your car to arrive with a healthy layer of dirt. At the most, there could be some scratches and even dings from the elements. This is especially true if your car must travel through any heavy weather conditions, like hail or frozen rain. However, any respectable shipping company will have more than enough insurance to cover any incident. In fact, car dealers ship their brand new cars on an open auto transport trailer, which makes it a great option for most of the people out there.

Enclosed Transport

Enclosed transport covers a wide variety of trailers. All of these trailers use a canvas or hard-shell cover that surrounds the trailer for a layer of added protection for your vehicle. Most people who have either exotic or classic cars like to choose enclosed transport. Even though most auto shippers will have adequate insurance, it still offers some owners peace of mind to make sure their car is shipped without any issues. Additionally, some enclosed transport trailers have additional features that you cannot find on open transport trailers, like hydraulic lifts. Some vehicles with aftermarket parts or low ground clearance may not fit on traditional trailers. If your car cannot drive up the ramp to get on the trailer, you may need to use a hydraulic lift.

You are certainly going to have to pay for the added security and features of an enclosed transport trailer. Depending on your vehicle needs, it could be slightly more expensive or a lot more expensive than open transport trailers. Also, depending on how readily available a trailer is with the features you need, it may take some extra time to get a trailer scheduled to pick up your vehicle. However, for some, it is definitely worth the extra time and money to make sure their car is well taken care of.

The Best Transport Trailer Depends on Your Vehicle

When it’s all said and done, the best auto trailer for you depends entirely on your vehicle’s needs. For most people who want to save time and money, open transport trailers are the perfect choice. However, if your vehicle has special needs or is a classic or exotic car that you want to ensure is well taken care of, enclosed transport trailers are the ones for you. If you’re still looking for an auto shipping company, give Columbus Auto Transport a call today. For over 16 years, they have shipped vehicles all across the United States. Call them today for an instant quote with industry leading insurance right there in the quote. 

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