tow dolly vs auto transport

Tow Dolly vs Auto Transport: Which One Is Great Option For You?

Are you worried about how to transport your car from one state to another? Don’t worry. There are many ways to quickly get your vehicle from one place to another, but tow dolly and auto transport trailer are the two most popular ways.

With the help of these two ways you can easily transport your car, but the confusing thing is which would be a suitable decision for you to transport your vehicle in a safe and cost-saving way because there are so many differences between tow dolly vs auto transport. That’s why to remove your confusion; we come with a complete guide about tow dolly vs auto transport, where both ways have been analyzed in detail part by part so that it is much easier to reach your final decision.

What is a Tow Dolly?

A tow dolly is basically a two-wheel car carrier designed to load and unload quickly. It can be easily carried from one place to another by keeping your vehicle’s front wheel in the dolly, and then the rear wheel always touched in the ground. However, before using a tow dolly, many factors need to be considered, such as the weight of vehicles, length, width, ground clearance, and front or rear distribution.

tow dolly
Tow Dolly

What is an Auto Transport?

An auto transport is basically like a cargo broker. Who can simply pick up your cars, motor-cycle, boats, RVs, and many other vehicles from one location and deliver them to another location at a specific time with the help of a big cargo truck? In this way, vehicle owners can safely transport vehicles without any hassle.

Auto transport
Auto transport

Tow Dolly vs Auto Transport: 5 Key Differences

Features Tow Dolly Auto Transport
Compatibility It has weight restrictions, That’s why it is a great option for car and medium-weight vehicles. There have no weight restrictions
Maneuverability It is challenging for beginners, you need to drive slowly, and keep eye on towing vehicle The driver has complete carrier control of the vehicle, making it much easier to drive safely
Setup Process Little bit difficult Easy process
Safety Not much safety as auto transport Auto transport is a safe way to easily transport your car without any wear, tear, also you’ll get security for your vehicle.
Costing Affordable option It is expensive than tow dolly

READ MORE: 6 Best motorcycle center stand dolly

The 8 Key Differences of Tow Dolly vs. Auto Transport was well described on

Auto Transport vs Tow Dolly: A Detailed Comparison

Anyway, in this section, we will discuss in detail the key differences of tow dolly vs car carrier, which will help you to understand the differences more efficiently and which will be an excellent option for you.


A tow dolly is mainly suitable for car and medium-weight vehicles, and it is perfect for front-wheel-drive vehicles, but the rear, all, and four-wheel drive vehicles can also be carried in some cases. A tow dolly is not a great option for heavy-duty and heavier vehicles due to weight restrictions.

On the other hand, auto transport trailer has no weight restrictions, so you can pick up vehicles of any size and any weight and deliver them to your destination. If you deliver the car through auto transport, you can rest assured.


A tow dolly is really challenging for beginners, especially those who have never lifted a car in tow before. Lifting the car safely, placing it in the right position, unloading it again is very complicated. If you have never been experienced in this work before it chances of an accident, it is better to avoid it.

On the other hand, auto transport is carried your entire car in the carrier. As a result, the driver has complete carrier control of the vehicle, making it much easier to drive safely.

Setup Process

When you hook up a car with a tow dolly, you have to set everything up very accurately. Because you have to keep in mind, when you tow the car, you will not have a way to the emergency brake. So to avoid accidents, you need to make sure that the front wheel of your car is hooked securely with a tow dolly.

The process of hooking a car on a tow dolly is very difficult for newcomers, but it becomes more complicated when you go to rear-wheel tow. If your car is a modern or very old model and the distance to the ground is less, or the rear and front side are much longer, then a tow dolly is not an excellent option for you.

On the other hand, in the case of auto transport, there is no so difficulty because car loading and unloading are all the responsibility of the transport company. You do not have to take any kind of hassle like tow dolly.


Safety is very important when you try to transport your vehicle with the help of any transporting system. The trailer sway is one of the most critical issues in car dolly. The main reason is when a driver is driving at a slightly faster speed than average, the dow dolly starts to sway. Moving faster with a tow dolly is risky, and it is the main cause of accidents in most towing vehicles.

Auto transport is much safer than tow dolly, and a special reason is that when you tow your car with the help of towing dolly, you need always to keep an eye on the towing car. Also, when there are bad weather conditions and the road is slippery, it becomes much more difficult to operate the car properly with a tow dolly.

But on the other hand, auto carriers do not require so much observation to drive, the driver can safely carry the car from one place to another by focusing on his driving, and safety is much more secure than tow dolly.


Auto transport always takes more fare than tow dolly. Though there are many reasons for renting, such as; how far your distance is, your vehicle’s size, weight, etc.

If you rent a tow dolly from U Haul, you will get around $95, but when you go for auto transport, it will cost around $115 or more. There may include some more charges, including fuel consumption. So tow dolly is a very inexpensive option in terms of cost.

Tow Dolly or Auto Transport

Undoubtedly tow dolly is an affordable option, but it is not suitable for operating and carrying a car over long distances; it carries higher risk. However, for a short distance like a state, you can transport within the budget.

On the other hand, auto transport is a safe way to easily transport your car without any wear, tear and hassle in any long distance. As well as a transport company offers you security, you can be very confident. The car carrier does not have any kind of weight limitations, so it is also an excellent option for heavy vehicles.

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