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Guide to Shipping Your Car to Alaska

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If you're moving to Alaska, shipping your car to Alaska has never been easier, if you know your best options.
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Alaska is one of those states that holds so much mystery that people from all over the United States want to move there at least once in their lifetime. 40,000 people move every year to Alaska. The beautiful landscape entices people to wonder if they can make it up there. If you’re moving to Alaska, you’ve probably wondered if you should ship your car. Shipping your car to Alaska has never been easier, if you know your best options.

This is a common problem. Most people who move need to drive the moving truck, which leaves their actual car as another thing they need to pack. The options, of course, are to tow it or ship it. Towing a vehicle is dangerous even in the best road conditions. The drive to Alaska is hardly the ideal road conditions to tow your vehicle. Shipping makes the most sense, and on a longer drive, it may just save you money.

Is Towing That Bad?

Trying to tow your car to Alaska presents multiple problems, especially in the winter. Even in the summer months, with ideal conditions, you have to think about how long that trip is going to take. Even if you’re coming from the northernmost point of Washington, the drive can still take 43 hours. That’s 43 non-stop hours of driving. If you cut that down to 8 hours of driving a day, that’s a trip of at least 5-6 days. On those days, you’re going to have to pay for food, road tolls, hotels, snacks, and, of course, gas. All of this adds up.

In the winter, it’s going to be worse. Many smaller gas stations and rest stops close down in the winter months. That means you’re going to want to stock up on food and gas to have with you for those long stretches. You’re also going to need to make sure you have winter weather equipment like snow chains and a shovel to dig yourself out if it snows overnight while you’re stopped. After all of that, you’re still going to have to cross the border twice. Border crossings are never easy, and they’re never quick.

Even if you choose to drive up in July, you can’t expect sunny skies the whole time. In Alaska, anything can happen. Even snow in July. Towing a vehicle adds extra dangers to driving, and towing in the snow is only advised for expert drivers.

So go ahead and get some quotes to ship your car, just to see.

Shipping Your Car to Alaska

When shipping your car, there are two options you can choose from. Open Car Hauler and Enclosed Car Hauler. These two both have their pros and cons. The open car hauler is the most common type of car shipper. You’ve probably seen them on the freeway. They’re the ones with half a dozen cars parked bumper to bumper on two levels of ramps. You’ve probably wondered how they got them on there.

Open Car Haulers

Open car haulers are the most common because they’re the least expensive option to ship your car. There are more trailers available, so not only can you save a few bucks, but oftentimes, you can find a faster pickup. If you’re on a budget with time constraints, the open car hauler is for you.

However, everybody knows that you get what you pay for. Open haulers have many drawbacks. Mostly, the car is always exposed to the elements. When driving to Alaska, there are a lot of elements. You may have to deal with snow, hail, sleet, and drastically changing temperatures. If you have a new car or a classic car, it’s probably best to avoid open car haulers. But, if you fill your car with anti-freeze and don’t mind getting a little dirt on your car, open car haulers are for you.

Enclosed Car Haulers

Enclosed car haulers offer a bit more protection from the elements. They range from canvas-covered trailers with other cars on board to hard-covered trailers with just your baby on board. Obviously, once you choose to go with enclosed car haulers, the prices are going to go up, but they’re worth it if you want to make sure your vehicle arrives without any issues.

Getting your car to Alaska doesn’t have to be the ordeal it once was. Today, there are fantastic options to make the process quick and painless. Alaska Auto Transportation, for instance, offers door-to-door pickup. That means they’ll pick your car up right from your driveway and drop it off at your new driveway. They are a fantastic option and can advise you of all the issues you might face when shipping your car to Alaska.

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