How Much Does Horse Transportation Cost?

Written by: Staff

Since you can’t ride your horse long distances to get from point A to point B, you may be thinking about hiring a professional horse transportation service to do the job for you.  Hiring a professional horse hauler will depend on many factors such as the distance being traveled, if they have to cross state lines, the number of horses that need to be hauled and the company you choose.

Horses_trailer_window_2 by eXtensionHorses, on Flickr
Horses_trailer_window_2” (CC BY-SA 2.0) by eXtensionHorses

How much does horse transportation ocst?

When it comes to transporting horses, most companies will charge per horse and per mile.  For example, each horse may cost $2 each per mile.  On average, expect to pay $0.75 to $4 per horse, per mile, but some haulers may add discounts as you add horses to the trip.  This won’t include the unloaded mile rate most companies may charge if they have to come back.  For example, if you needed to haul your two horses 100 miles for a horse show and the company had to drive back, this could be a total of 200 miles.  Because of this, it’s often ideal to double the miles your horses have to be hauled to get a better idea of what it’s going to cost.  Usually, if the trip is less than 25 miles, the minimum cost will be $100.

One forum member on chimed in and let the community know what she charged.  She charged $1.25 per mile for one horse, $1.50 per mile for two horses and $1.80 per mile for three horses., a horse transportation company located in Florida, charges $1 per loaded mile for the first 1,000 miles and $0.70 per mile for every mile of 1,001.  A multiple horse discount of 10% is available for up to three horses and 15 percent for four or more.

What is going to be included?

The majority of the professionals out there will use a horse trailer to ship your horse from one point to another, and depending on the circumstances, your horse may be on board with other horses, while smaller trailers/companies may ship your horse only.  Before the horse is shipped, they will prepare your horse for transport and keep you up to date on the progress as the trip is completed.

Reputable haulers will ask for papers such as an original negative Coggins test signed by a vet within 30 days of transportation and registration papers.

What are the extra costs?

Some services may have a “hookup fee,” which often adds another $50 to $100 to the total quote.

Sedatives are sometimes used to calm horses that may have issues while being transported.  These sedatives can cost anywhere from $20 to $100 and will have to be prescribed by a licensed veterinarian.

The prices will fluctuate with the gas prices as well.  The higher the gas price, the more this price average can rise.

If the horses aren’t up to date with their tags, many shipping services will require that all tags are up to date before transport.  The same can be said about vaccinations as well.

Toll fees, if on the trip, can be an additional cost to consider.

Longer trips which require an overnight hotel stay may additional fees tacked on the bill.

Cancellation fees may apply if canceled within 48 hours.

Tips to know

When choosing any hauler, always make sure they are licensed and insured to protect your investment.  A reputable service will be more than happy to offer this information.

Most haulers will have a minimum charge, so be sure to ask about this before committing.

Before you even consider shipping your horse, make sure it’s trained properly to avoid any issues.  This will include teaching your horse how shipping works and checking your horse’s shoes before the trip begins.  It’s highly advisable to avoid a tranquilizer unless your vet recommends it.

How can I save money?

If you have more than one horse to be transported, it’s a good idea to look for a company that will haul the horses at the same time since most will provide discounts for two or more.

Be sure to compare at least three companies before signing a contract.  Companies such as UShip can help you find transporters in your area at a low cost.  Many are more than happy to provide a quote over the phone or on the internet before signing up.

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