What is the Difference Between Open and Closed Transport?


When a vehicle owner contacts an auto transport company, they’re asked what type of service they want: open or enclosed. This is a crucial question because it will impact the condition of your car during transport.

The answer depends on your budget and the amount of protection you want for your vehicle. This article will discuss the pros and cons of each method.


When choosing a car shipping company, read reviews and look at their services, price estimates, registration information, and insurance policies. Then you can decide which option is best for you. The type of vehicle and its value should also factor into the decision. For instance, if you have a classic or luxury vehicle that is not easily damaged, enclosed transport might be the better choice.

Enclosed vehicle shipping is more expensive than open trailer transport but offers the best protection. You can expect to pay up to 40% more for enclosed car transportation. For most people, this isn’t a problem, but it’s important to be aware of the cost before making a decision.

Open transport uses a flatbed tow truck or car hauler to move your vehicle to its destination. This is the most popular and convenient option for most people. The trucks are large and can accommodate many vehicles at once, which makes the process faster. Additionally, it’s cheaper than enclosed transportation, which can save you money if your car isn’t particularly valuable.

The drawback of open transportation is that your vehicle will be exposed to the elements while it’s in transit. This isn’t a problem for most cars, but it can be a concern for those who own specialty vehicles like exotic, classic, or antique vehicles. These vehicles can cost a fortune to repair or clean, so they need extra protection during transit.

If you are planning on transporting a regular, everyday vehicle, open transport is probably the safest and most affordable option. Just ensure you’re comfortable with exposing your vehicle to the weather and road debris during the shipping process.

It’s also a good idea to compare prices from several different companies before making a final decision. You can learn more about the various costs and services each company offers by visiting their websites. You can usually find the most accurate pricing information on their websites, including price estimates and customer reviews. Once you’ve compared prices, select the company that offers the most competitive pricing for your specific needs.


Open-car shipping is the most popular and affordable way to ship your vehicle. The carrier uses a standard truck with an open trailer to transport your vehicle. This type of transport is very common; you have likely seen it in action when new cars are delivered to dealerships. Open transport is a safe option because it protects your vehicle from weather elements and road debris. It is also very fast and efficient as the truck can move much faster than an enclosed carrier.

The main concern with this type of transport is that your vehicle will be exposed to the current weather conditions and road debris during transit. This can cause damage to the vehicle if the elements are extreme. Additionally, the open trailer can be a dust magnet. If your vehicle is prone to collecting dust, it may need to be washed before it is delivered. There are several types of open car carriers, including two-level trailers that can carry up to ten vehicles at once and single-level trailers that can accommodate one or more vehicles.

While open transport is generally considered to be safe, it is not recommended for high-end or luxury vehicles that need additional protection. If you have a vintage or exotic car, closed transport is a safer and more cost-effective option.

Closed transport uses a closed trailer that is designed to hold a specific number of vehicles. It looks similar to an open trailer but has a roof and sides that protect the vehicles from the elements. This method is typically used to transport classic, vintage, luxury, and custom cars. It is also the preferred method for luxury and sports cars because it offers the highest level of protection.

Choosing the right method to transport your vehicle depends on your budget and your priorities. The most important factor is the value of your vehicle and the degree to which you want to protect it. Enclosed transport is more expensive, but it offers the best protection for your car. However, open auto transport is a more economical choice for most average vehicles.


Open transport is the most common method of car/auto shipping. It involves using a double-decker trailer that can fit multiple vehicles at once. This is the type of truck that you often see on American roads, laden with cars for delivery to dealerships. The primary reason for the popularity of this transportation method is that it’s generally cheaper than enclosed shipping. This is because more open carriers are running routes, and the trailers are lighter.

However, there are some downsides to the open method of shipping that you should be aware of. First, your vehicle will be exposed to the elements during the trip, which might not be ideal for high-value or delicate vehicles. Additionally, your vehicle might get hit by highway or road debris along the way. These hazards are a possibility with any form of vehicle transportation, but it’s particularly likely with an open carrier.

On the other hand, closed transport uses a truck trailer with sides and a roof to protect your vehicle from the elements. This is the type of truck that you’re more likely to see hauling cars from a dealer to their new homes. It’s also a more expensive option, but it has its benefits. Most importantly, enclosed auto transport offers your vehicle a more secure, sheltered environment than open shipping.

You’d want to choose enclosed shipping if you own an exotic, luxury, or classic automobile. These vehicles require a level of care you can’t get with an open carrier. If you’re shipping an everyday driver, however, it might be fine to go with the open route. This is because cars that are driven for commuting tend to have low mileage and will be more resilient to the wear and tear that occurs during shipping. Ultimately, it comes down to the value of your vehicle and how much you’re willing to spend. If you’re interested in learning more about the differences between open and enclosed transport, contact us today to request a free car/auto shipping quote.


When deciding whether to ship your car via open or enclosed transport, balancing cost, vehicle type, and personal preference is important. Ultimately, shipping your vehicle to a company that offers full insurance coverage is best. This ensures that any damage caused during transit is covered. This is particularly beneficial if you are shipping an expensive or sentimental vehicle.

The majority of vehicles are shipped using open transport. This is because it is the least expensive option, and most car owners do not own a vehicle that would require enclosed transportation. Additionally, open transport companies typically have more trucks on the road than enclosed companies and can often ship cars quickly.

Despite the low cost, there are a few drawbacks to open transport. The primary concern is that your vehicle will be exposed to the elements during transit. This includes weather conditions as well as debris that flies up from the road. Although damage from these factors is rare, it is possible. The open trailer can also shake your vehicle when driving down the road.

If you decide to use an open carrier, read reviews and choose a reputable company with a good track record. You should also ask about their insurance policy and how much coverage is provided. Additionally, be sure to ask about any additional services that may be available, such as door-to-door delivery or expedited shipping.

Enclosed transportation is more expensive than open transport but is the safest choice for high-end and classic vehicles. In addition to protecting the vehicle from environmental conditions, enclosed carriers offer climate control and limited ventilation. While the increased cost can be a concern, many customers find that it is worth the peace of mind when shipping exotic, luxury, or classic vehicles.

The most important thing is that your vehicle arrives at its new home safely and undamaged. Choosing the right type of transport is critical for this goal. If you are unsure which option is the best for you, consult with an expert to discuss your needs and budget. J&S Transportation is a professional auto transport company that specializes in both open and enclosed trailers. We have shipped over half a million vehicles over the past 20 years. Contact us today to receive a free quote!

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