It is that time of year again. The winter weather is rolling in and the warmer southern regions are beckoning. For thousands of Americans it is time to fly the coop from the cold conditions of the northeast and the mid-west. The snowbird lifestyle is becoming increasingly popular in the United States, and the northern states loss is the south’s gain. If you are planning to migrate south for the winter like your feathered namesake, you have a lot on your plate. You may have to declare residency in a state that charges income tax, or you may find that you have excessive travel expenses. One of the biggest challenges that snowbirds face in moving from state to state is what to do with their automobiles when they move. It is one of the most important considerations when you are planning your move, and the decision that you make can have a big impact on your finances.
Driving To Your Destination
One option that you have to transport your car to the warmer climes of your seasonal home is to drive your vehicle there on your own. For some snowbirds, this will work out perfectly; but for many it will present too many challenges. If you are traveling a long distance like Maine to California it may be very unwise to make the trip yourself. Driving long distances without adequate sleep is one of the leading causes of fatal accidents. You also have to be aware of how many unnecessary miles you are putting on your car, which can lead to significant depreciation of your cars value and lead to higher insurance rates. Your journey can also cost you significant lost time that could be better spent on getting settled in your new home. Finally, you have to consider the cost of fuel, with gasoline prices being prohibitively expensive. According to AAA, the average fuel cost for a cross country trip in a fuel efficient vehicle is over $600, and the round trip for when you return in the spring can raise the total to over $1200. This cost is competitive with air travel, and you may even get a better deal on a flight if you plan ahead. With these costs in mind, you must pay close attention to the fuel efficiency of your car and the distance you are traveling before deciding to make that cross country trip.
Auto Transport For Snowbirds
A viable alternative to driving cross country is engaging the services of an auto transport company to move your vehicle to your wintertime destination. There are myriad benefits to doing this, but one of the most important ones is how much safer it can be for you and your vehicle. Putting your vehicle into the capable hands of a licensed and bonded transportation professional can keep you out of harms way: saving you from fatigue related accidents or mishaps that may be caused by getting lost in unfamiliar parts of the country. It also saves miles and wear-and-tear on your vehicle, which might prevent future mechanical breakdowns or save you from having to buy new tires. The cost may even be less than the cost of fuel you will incur by driving yourself. Best of all, you can fly to your new home and have plenty of time to move into and decorate your new home instead of spending that time on a long and exhausting cross country drive. No matter what decision you ultimately make, remember to take all of these factors into consideration when you are planning to take flight from your snowy northeastern home. Safe travels!