5 Tips to Reduce the Cost of Motorcycle Shipping

Shipping a motorcycle can be an expensive endeavor, especially if you’re moving or selling your bike to a buyer in a different location. However, with some careful planning and smart choices, you can significantly reduce the cost of motorcycle shipping. Here, we’ll discuss five valuable tips to help you save money while ensuring the safe and secure transportation of your beloved two-wheeler.

1. Choose the Right Shipping Method

One of the most critical decisions you’ll make when shipping your motorcycle is selecting the right shipping method. Several options are available, each with its own cost implications:

a. Open Carrier: This is the most affordable option, but it offers minimal protection. Your motorcycle will be exposed to the elements and potential road debris. If you choose an open carrier, make sure to thoroughly clean and prepare your bike for transport to prevent damage.

b. Enclosed Carrier: Enclosed carriers provide a higher level of protection and are ideal for valuable or delicate motorcycles. While they are more expensive than open carriers, the extra cost is often worth it for the added peace of mind.

c. Crated Shipping: If you’re shipping a high-value or custom motorcycle, consider crated shipping. Your bike will be secured inside a wooden crate for maximum protection. While this is the most expensive option, it’s often the safest for valuable motorcycles.

2. Plan Ahead

Shipping costs can vary significantly depending on the time of year and demand. To reduce costs, plan your motorcycle shipment well in advance. Avoid peak shipping seasons when prices tend to be higher, such as the summer months when many people are moving. By booking early and being flexible with your delivery dates, you may be able to secure a lower rate.

3. Compare Shipping Quotes

Don’t settle for the first shipping company you come across. Instead, request quotes from multiple motorcycle shipping providers to get an idea of the motorcycle shipping cost. Compare their rates, services, and customer reviews to find the best value for your money. Keep in mind that the cheapest option isn’t always the best, so consider the reputation and reliability of the shipping company as well.

4. Opt for Terminal-to-Terminal Shipping

Many motorcycle shipping companies offer two types of delivery options: door-to-door and terminal-to-terminal. While door-to-door shipping is convenient, it can be more expensive because the carrier has to navigate residential areas and deal with potential accessibility issues. Terminal-to-terminal shipping involves dropping off and picking up your motorcycle at designated terminals, which can be more cost-effective. Just make sure the terminals are reasonably close to your starting and ending locations to minimize inconvenience.

5. Prepare Your Motorcycle for Shipping

Properly preparing your motorcycle for shipping can help prevent damage and reduce the likelihood of unexpected fees. Here are some essential preparation steps:

  • Clean your motorcycle thoroughly to make it easier to spot any pre-existing damage.
  • Remove any accessories or loose items that could become detached during transport.
  • Check for fluid leaks and address any issues before shipping.
  • Document your motorcycle’s condition with photographs.
  • Disable the alarm system to prevent any unnecessary activation during transit.
  • Ensure the fuel tank is only partially full, as a completely full tank can pose safety risks.


Reducing the cost of motorcycle shipping requires careful planning and consideration of various factors. By choosing the right shipping method, planning ahead, comparing quotes, opting for terminal-to-terminal shipping, and properly preparing your motorcycle, you can save money while ensuring your bike arrives at its destination safely and securely. Remember that cutting corners on shipping costs should not come at the expense of your motorcycle’s protection, so prioritize both affordability and safety when making your shipping arrangements.