If you’re a motorcycle rider, you’ve probably dreamed of hitting the open road and riding your bike from one coast to the next. But sometimes life requires more practical, less dreamy solutions, including shipping your motorcycle across long distances. So what are your options if you’re unable to make the ride, you need to ship to a buyer or seller, or you need to keep miles down on your way to a rally? In this post, we’ll take a look at a few options and factors involved in shipping a motorcycle.

Size and Weight

When it comes to the cost of shipping a motorcycle, two of the biggest factors involved are the size and weight of the bike. A general rule of thumb is that the lighter the motorcycle, the lower the cost to ship. Popular smaller bikes such as Yamaha V Star 250s, Honda Rebel 300s, Kawasaki Ninja 300s, are lightweight and efficient to ship. If you’re shipping a Harley Davidson motorcycle, on the other hand, models of this iconic brand are closer to 500 pounds and will cost more. Be sure to have your specs ready to receive an accurate quote from your shipping company.


Another major factor in determining the cost of shipping a motorcycle is the distance of shipment. Once again, the logic follows that the longer the distance, the higher the cost of shipping. There also could be extra charges for shipping locations that are difficult to reach.

Pick-up and Dropoff

If you are receiving door-to-door pickup and delivery service, that means the shipping company will pick up the motorcycle at your home, business, or otherwise specified location and drop off the motorcycle at its specific destination. While this service is more expensive, it reflects well on dealers and ensures your shipment is properly received.

Enclosed or Open?

While we recommend shipping your motorcycle on an enclosed trailer or in another protected environment, you also have the option to ship on an open trailer or flatbed truck. An open trailer is a suitable option if you’re shipping your motorcycle over a shorter distance. An enclosed shipping environment is preferable because it provides protection from the elements as well as potentially lower costs if shared with other motorcycle shipments on a single trailer.

Special Considerations

When discussing your shipment with the freight company, make sure to bring to their attention any special considerations. Whether it’s a fresh paint job you’d like to safeguard or a fragile part on your bike, the more information the packers have, the better they can prepare your bike for shipping. 

Final Prep

Before the packers arrive to properly load your motorcycle, remove personal items from the bike and make note of and photograph any existing damages. In the case that your bike is damaged in transit, you can refer to these documents for compensation.

More than anything, do your research, and hire a freight company with experience shipping motorcycles. With more than 30 years of experience shipping the fragile, large, awkward, and valuable, Navis Pack and Ship offers the customized service that your bike requires. Contact your local Navis Pack and Ship for a quote today.

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