Shipping An Airplane – Understanding Your Options & How It Works

Shipping An Airplane – Understanding Your Options & How It Works

Shipping an airplane is much less common than shipping another type of vehicle like a car, truck, or motorcycle, but there are some situations where a plane may need to be shipped to a location by using a truck – rather than flying under its own power.

In this blog from, we’ll discuss situations when aircraft may need to be shipped using ground-based transport, as well as the basics of the process. Let’s get started!

Why Ship An Airplane? Common Reasons To Ship Aircraft

Wondering what situations may require you to ship an airplane instead of flying it to the intended destination? Here are just a few common situations.

  • The airplane has not yet been fully assembled – It’s actually very common for airplane companies to ship aircraft fuselages and other components to a new destination for final assembly.
  • The airplane isn’t in working order – If your plane doesn’t work, and it cannot undergo the necessary repairs at its current location or you just want to get it to your current location without repairing it, shipping it overland may be a viable alternative.
  • The plane can’t handle an overseas or long distance trip – Some smaller planes may not be able to fly overseas. A Cessna 172, which is a common privately-owned plane, has a range of about 736 miles. Because of this, aircraft may be shipped overland or by truck and seagoing freight to destinations that are out-of-range.

How Much Does Shipping An Airplane Cost?

There is no single answer to this question. It depends on the type of the airplane, the length of the wings and fuselage, the total number of shipments required to transport the aircraft after it has been disassembled, and a lot of other factors.

The cost could be anywhere from $1,000 to $5,000 for a small prop-powered passenger plane to tens of thousands of dollars for a larger, jet-powered private plane. To learn more, consult with an experienced vehicle shipping company that specializes in shipping airplanes.

We recommend getting shipping costs using our cost calculator, or use the one on

When Shipping An Airplane, The Craft Will Need To Be Partially Disassembled

Even a small aircraft, such as the aforementioned Cessna 172, will have a very long wingspan that will exceed oversize load limitations – which are usually 8.5 feet. Aircraft wings will also pose difficulties due to overpasses, tunnels and other highway elements – so they must be removed before shipping.

In addition, other elements of the aircraft like the props may need to be removed. It’s common to ship the fuselage separately from the rest of the aircraft on an open-air flatbed, while the other parts will be packed and crated up, then transported in a standard truck trailer.

You will be responsible for disassembling your craft before it’s shipped, though your transport company will assist in the loading of your fuselage and crated-up aircraft components. Keep this in mind when arranging for the shipment of your airplane. You may need to hire help to disassemble and pack up the aircraft.

Need Help With Airplane Shipping? Contact Now!

At, we can help with the transportation of vehicles of all types – from cars and trucks to airplanes, boats and more. Contact us online or give us a call at 888-231-0113 to learn more and to learn more about airplane shipping.