How to Transport Your Car By Train in India? Steps and Cost

car transport by train in india

Among the various options available, car transport by train has emerged as a popular choice for many. It offers a more economical alternative to driving the car yourself or hiring a transporter.

In this blog, we will look further into the aspects of car transport by train in India, exploring the process, costs, and the pros and cons of this method.

The Process of Car Transport by Train

car transport by train process

Transporting your car by train in India is a process that involves several key steps, each crucial for ensuring a smooth and hassle-free experience. Here’s a step-by-step guide to help you navigate through the entire process of how to transport car by train:

1. Booking Procedures

The journey begins with booking your car's transportation. This can be done at the parcel office of the respective railway station. It's advisable to book at least a week in advance, especially during peak seasons, to secure a spot for your vehicle. You will need to provide details such as the make and model of your car, the destination station, and your preferred dates of transport. Some railway zones also offer online booking facilities, which can be a convenient option.

2. Preparing Your Car for Transport

Before handing over your car for transportation, certain preparations are necessary:

  • Clean your car: This makes it easier to inspect and identify any existing damages or scratches before the transport.
  • Document the condition: Take photos of your car from different angles for a record of its pre-transport condition.
  • Remove personal belongings: Ensure that your car is empty of personal items and valuables.
  • Check for leaks: Any fluid leaks should be fixed as they might pose a hazard during transportation.
  • Fuel level: It’s recommended to keep the fuel level low (about a quarter of the tank) to reduce weight and risk.

3. Loading and Securing the Car on the Train

On the day of transport, your car will be driven to the railway loading area. The railway staff will then load your car onto a specialized car carrier wagon. These wagons are designed to securely hold vehicles in place during transit. The car is typically secured using wheel jammers and chains to prevent any movement while the train is in motion. It’s important to ensure that the car is properly secured and balanced on the wagon.

4. Documentation and Formalities

Several documents are required to transport your car by train in India:

  • Vehicle Registration Certificate (RC): To prove ownership of the vehicle.
  • Insurance Certificate: To ensure the car is insured against any transit damage.
  • Emission Certificate: To verify that your vehicle meets environmental standards.
  • Identity Proof: A copy of your Aadhar Card, PAN Card, or any government-issued ID.
  • Transportation Form: Filled at the parcel office, detailing the transport agreement.

Cost Analysis of Car Transportation by Train in India

car transport by train cost analysis

Understanding the cost implications of transporting a car by train in India is crucial for anyone considering this option. The costs can vary significantly based on several factors, including the departure and arrival cities, the type of car, and additional services like insurance. Here, we provide a comparative cost analysis from various major cities, delve into the factors affecting the cost, and present some example scenarios with estimated prices.

Comparative Cost Analysis of Car Transport from Major Cities

The cost of transporting a car by train in India varies depending on the origin and destination cities. Here's a general overview from some major cities:

  • Delhi to Mumbai: The cost for transporting a standard-sized car (like a Maruti Suzuki Swift) can range from INR 6,000 to INR 10,000.
  • Mumbai to Kolkata: For a similar car, the cost may range between INR 7,000 to INR 12,000.
  • Kolkata to Chennai: Expect to pay around INR 8,000 to INR 13,000.
  • Chennai to Bangalore: Being a shorter distance, the cost might range from INR 4,000 to INR 7,000.
  • Bangalore to Delhi: For this longer route, the cost could be anywhere between INR 10,000 to INR 15,000.

Factors Affecting the Cost of Car Transportation by Train

Several factors influence the cost of transporting a car by train in India:

  • Distance: The longer the distance, the higher the cost. Transporting a car from Bangalore to Delhi will be more expensive than from Chennai to Bangalore.
  • Car Type and Size: Larger vehicles like SUVs and luxury cars cost more to transport due to their size and the extra care needed in handling.
  • Insurance: Opting for transit insurance (highly recommended) will add to the cost but provides peace of mind against potential damages.
  • Service Type: Some services may offer door-to-door delivery, which includes picking up the car from your home and delivering it to the desired location. This convenience comes at an additional cost.
  • Seasonal Variations: During peak seasons, prices may be higher due to increased demand.

Example Scenarios with Estimated Cost

To give you a better idea, here are a few hypothetical scenarios:

Scenario 1: Standard Car from Delhi to Mumbai

  • Car Type: Hatchback (e.g., Maruti Suzuki Swift)
  • Distance: Approx. 1,400 km
  • Estimated Cost: INR 6,000 - INR 10,000

Scenario 2: SUV from Mumbai to Kolkata

  • Car Type: SUV (e.g., Toyota Fortuner)
  • Distance: Approx. 2,000 km
  • Estimated Cost: INR 9,000 - INR 14,000

Scenario 3: Luxury Car from Bangalore to Delhi

  • Car Type: Luxury Sedan (e.g., BMW 5 Series)
  • Distance: Approx. 2,150 km
  • Estimated Cost: INR 12,000 - INR 18,000

Pros and Cons of Car Transport by Train

Transporting a car by train in India is a viable option for many, but like any mode of transportation, it comes with its own set of advantages and disadvantages. Understanding these can help you make an informed decision about whether this method suits your needs. Here, we explore the pros and cons of car transport by train.


  • Cost-Effectiveness: Compared to other modes of transport, such as driving the car yourself or using road transport services, transporting a car by train is often more economical, especially for long distances.
  • Safety and Security: Trains offer a secure environment for transporting vehicles. The risk of accidents and theft is generally lower compared to road transport. Cars are securely fastened and monitored throughout the journey.
  • Environmental Benefits: Train transport is more environmentally friendly than road transport. Trains emit significantly less carbon dioxide per ton-mile, making this a greener choice for those conscious about their carbon footprint.
  • Accessibility and Network Reach: The extensive railway network in India ensures that even remote locations are accessible. This wide reach makes it a convenient option for transporting vehicles across different parts of the country.


  • Time Considerations: Transporting a car by train can be time-consuming. The process involves not just the travel time but also time for booking, loading, and unloading. It’s generally slower than direct road transport.
  • Limited Flexibility and Control: Once the car is loaded onto the train, you have little control over the transit process. Unlike personal driving or hiring a driver, you can't make stops or change the route.
  • Potential for Delays and Damage: While generally safe, there is always a risk of delays due to logistical issues or damage during loading and unloading. These incidents, though rare, can be inconvenient and potentially costly.
  • Restrictions and Limitations: There are limitations on the size and type of vehicle that can be transported by train. Oversized vehicles or those with special requirements may not be accommodated. Additionally, certain routes may not be available for all types of vehicles.

(Tip: Rather than choosing car transport by train, one can hire any professional car transport service for a safe and hassle free transport. )

Preparing Your Car for Train Transport

car transport by train preparation

Ensuring your car is adequately prepared for train transport is crucial for a smooth and hassle-free experience. Proper preparation not only safeguards your vehicle but also helps in complying with the regulations set by the railway authorities. Here are the essential steps and tips to prepare your car for train transport in India.

Necessary Checks and Preparations

  • Mechanical Check-Up: Ensure your car is in good working condition. Check the brakes, battery, and tires. Any mechanical issues should be fixed beforehand to avoid complications during loading and unloading.
  • Clean Your Car: A clean car makes it easier to spot any damages that might occur during transport. Wash both the exterior and interior of the vehicle.
  • Document Existing Damages: Take detailed photos or videos of your car from various angles. Note any existing scratches, dents, or damages. This documentation will be crucial if you need to file a claim for any transport-related damages.
  • Fuel Level: Reduce the fuel level to about a quarter of the tank. This minimizes weight and reduces the risk of leaks during transport.
  • Disable Alarm Systems: To prevent any unnecessary triggers during the journey, make sure to disable your car's alarm system.
  • Check Fluids: Ensure that all fluids (oil, coolant, etc.) are at appropriate levels and that there are no leaks.

Insurance and Safety Measures

  • Transit Insurance: Opt for transit insurance to cover any potential damages during transport. While railway services offer a basic level of insurance, it might be beneficial to have additional coverage for complete peace of mind.
  • Review Insurance Policy: Understand the terms and conditions of the insurance policy. Know what is covered and what isn’t, and the process for filing a claim, if necessary.

Tips for Securing Personal Belongings

  • Remove Personal Items: Clear out all personal belongings from the car. Personal items are not covered by insurance, and they might shift during transit, causing damage to the vehicle’s interior.
  • Secure Loose Parts: If your car has any loose parts or accessories (like antennas, spoilers, or external mirrors), secure them properly or remove them if possible.
  • Lock the Car: Once the car is loaded onto the train, ensure it is locked. This prevents any unauthorized access during transit.
  • Keep a Spare Key: Always keep a spare key with you. Do not leave the only set of keys in the car.
  • Documentation: Keep copies of all relevant documents, including registration, insurance, and transport paperwork, in a safe place.

Legal Aspects of Car Transport by Train in India

legal aspects of car transport by train in india

Navigating the legal and regulatory framework is a critical aspect of transporting your car by train in India. Understanding these requirements ensures compliance with the law and a smooth transportation process. This section outlines the key legal considerations and the necessary documentation required for train-based car transport.

Understanding the Legal Framework

  • Railway Regulations: The Indian Railways, governed by the Ministry of Railways, has specific regulations for transporting vehicles. These regulations cover aspects like the type of vehicles allowed, packaging standards, liability in case of damage, and insurance requirements.
  • Liability and Insurance Laws: The Indian Railways Act and related regulations outline the liability of the railways in case of loss or damage to goods (including vehicles) during transit. It's important to understand the extent of railway liability and the need for additional insurance.
  • Environmental Compliance: Vehicles transported must comply with the emission standards set by the Central Pollution Control Board. Ensure your vehicle has a valid Pollution Under Control (PUC) certificate.
  • Interstate Regulations: When transporting across states, be aware of any specific regulations that might apply, such as entry taxes or permits for certain types of vehicles.

Necessary Documentation and Compliance

  • Vehicle Registration Certificate (RC): This is the primary document proving your ownership of the vehicle. Ensure it is valid and up-to-date.
  • Insurance Certificate: Your vehicle should have an active insurance policy. This is crucial not only for legal compliance but also for claiming compensation in case of any damage during transit.
  • Emission Certificate: A valid PUC certificate is mandatory to comply with environmental regulations.
  • Identity Proof: A government-issued ID card (like Aadhaar, PAN, or Passport) is required for verification purposes.
  • Transportation Form: This form, provided by the railway parcel office, details the terms and conditions of the transport service. It must be filled out accurately and submitted along with the other documents.
  • No Objection Certificate (NOC): In certain cases, especially if the car is under a loan or hypothecation, an NOC from the financier may be required.
  • Booking Receipt/Railway Receipt (RR): This is issued by the railway parcel office upon booking and is a crucial document for tracking and claiming your vehicle at the destination.

Wrapping Up: Your Essential Guide to Transport Car by Train in India

As we reach the end of our comprehensive guide on car transport by train in India, let's recap the key points that have been covered. Transporting your car by train is a cost-effective, safe, and environmentally friendly option, especially for long-distance moves. The process involves a series of steps, including booking, preparation, loading, and documentation, each playing a vital role in ensuring a smooth transit. While the method offers significant advantages in terms of cost and safety, it also comes with certain limitations like time constraints, limited control over the transport process, and potential for delays and damages.

For those considering this mode of transport, it's crucial to understand the legal and regulatory aspects, ensure all necessary documentation is in order, and prepare your vehicle adequately for the journey. Opting for additional insurance coverage is highly recommended for added peace of mind.

Final Thoughts and Recommendations

  • Plan Ahead: Given the various steps involved, it's advisable to start the process well in advance of your desired transport date.
  • Stay Informed: Keep yourself updated about the rules and regulations of train transport, as these can change.
  • Document Everything: From the condition of your car pre-transport to all necessary paperwork, keeping a thorough record is essential.
  • Insurance is Key: Invest in comprehensive transit insurance to safeguard against any unforeseen incidents.
  • Choose Wisely: Consider the pros and cons in the context of your specific needs. If time is a critical factor, explore other options even if they might cost more.

Transporting your car by train in India is a viable option that balances cost, safety, and environmental considerations. By following the guidelines and tips provided in this guide, potential users can navigate this process with greater confidence and ease. Remember, the key to a successful car transport experience lies in meticulous planning and preparation.

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