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How to Sell?

Cars com vs Carvana Offer in 2024

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Written by: Michael Becker
Last Updated:

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Which is Better for Selling the Car?

cars com vs carvana which is better for selling the car

Of the two featured companies, Carvana is the better option if you’re selling your car. Its instant offers are specific to the vehicles they accept, eliminating any confusion from potential sellers. 

Also, its offer validity is extended, thus better than‘s three-day validity. Regarding logistical matters, Carvana offers free pick-up and drop-off, letting you choose what works best for your vehicle and schedule.

Carvana Summary

  • Get an online quote within 2 minutes
  • Free pickup wtihin 100 miles of a hub
  • Offer valid for 7 days or 250 more miles
  • Haggle-free process to sell your car Summary

  • Useful resources to help you sell a car
  • Excellent place to research the market
  • Instant cash offer from a dealer
  • Smooth and easy to use interface vs. Carvana Comparison

Cars acceptedEligible vehiclesIn good condition, 1992+
Requesting quotesOnline applicationOnline application
Offer validity3 days7 days or an additional 1,000 miles
Payments offeredCash or trade-inCash or trade-in value
PayoutDepends on the dealershipCheck, direct deposit, direct debit
Car pick-upDepends on the dealershipFree pickup or drop off
Physical locationsThrough partner dealers in the US33 Car Vending Machines
Turnaround timeUp to 72 hoursUp to 72 hours
Customer serviceChat, call, faxPhone, email, online form

Consider Best Alternatives

Best for Older & Damaged Cars

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Buys used, damaged or junk cars

Free tow and no hidden fees

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Top Pick for Junk Cars

Wheelzy logo

Free, no-obligation cash offers

Offers free paperwork service

Pays on the spot upon pick up

Highly Rated by Customers

CarBrain logo

Excellent customer service ratings

Honors guaranteed offer for 7 days

Can pick up a car within 48 hours

Great for Low-Mileage Cars

Carvana logo

Gives a real offer in 2 minutes

100% hassle-free online process

Free car’s Value Tracker available

Cars Accepted

cars com vs carvana cars accepted accepts vehicles that are not any of the following:

  • Trade-in commercial vehicles
  • Vehicles with a taxi, police, fire, or livery history
  • Vehicles with no VIN
  • Vehicles not built in the US or imported illegally
  • Vehicles registered at auto auctions

Carvana, meanwhile, accepts vehicles that are in good condition and with the year model of 1992 or newer. 

Fees charges no fees when selling your vehicle to their partner dealerships through the Instant Offer option. Similarly, the platform doesn’t charge anything when you list your car there and sell it to private buyers

Carvana is also completely free to use when selling cars.

Requesting Quotes

cars com vs carvana requesting quotes

To get an Instant Offer at, visit their website and go to the Sell Your Car webpage. Here, you’ll find the options to list your car or to get an Instant Offer. Make sure to choose the latter. 

You’ll need to enter your zip code first to confirm if Instant Offers are available in your area. Suppose that it’s available, the website will load to another page where you can enter your car’s VIN or license plate number. 

Ideally, enter the VIN so the website will auto-populate the year, make, and model fields. From there, you’ll need to provide the following details:

  • Mileage
  • Color
  • Number of keys you have
  • Whether you’re the original owner
  • Whether you’re still making payments on the car
  • Whether you want to upload photos of your car
  • Condition

After providing these, will ask for contact details, such as phone number and email. Once done, you’ll start receiving offers from participating dealers. 

Carvana’s online application works similarly. You’ll also need to provide details and the condition of your vehicle. Lastly, the company requires your contact information to send you the instant offer.  

Offer Validity

Offers you’ll receive from partner dealerships are only valid for 3 days. Whereas with Carvana, offers are valid for 7 days or additional 1,000 miles, whichever comes first. 

Payments Offered

The Instant Offers at are technically from their partner dealers, and as such, you might come across dealers that can offer cash and trade-in. Others might just offer cash for your vehicle.

Similarly, Carvana offers cash and pays through checks. You can also opt for a trade-in and credit the amount towards your new vehicle purchase.

Payout doesn’t provide any specific information on receiving payments for your car. It’s because payout methods may vary across participating dealers where you can get Instant Offers. 

On the contrary, Carvana will hand your payment in check when they come to pick up your car. 

Car Pick-up

In this step, once again didn’t provide any general information. However, it’s safe to assume that the pick-up option is something you can discuss with the dealer where you intend to sell your car. 

Carvana, meanwhile, offers a free pick-up option. You only need to schedule the time for them to come and take it. 

Physical Locations

You can sell your car to through their participating dealerships. Once you complete your online Instant Offer application, dealers will contact you. By then, you confirm whether you can bring your vehicle to claim the offer or have them pick it up. 

On the other hand, Carvana works as an independent company that buys and sells cars. Considering that, you can also drop off your car at any of their car vending machines.  

Turnaround Time

For both and Carvana, completing the online form takes a few minutes as long as you can provide the information asked. You can also accept the instant offer right away, so you can proceed to the logistics part of selling your car. 

From there, your preferred dealership will inspect your car and finalize the offer. Once you present all necessary documents to close the sale, you’ll get paid. Overall, it can take up to 72 hours to sell your car to either of the two companies.  

Customer Service

You can contact through a chat option available on its Contact us page. It also has a phone number in case you need to reach their offices. You can call or fax 312-601-5000. 

Carvana lets you contact their Customer Service team through any of the following:

  • Chat
  • Phone: 800-333-4554
  • Text message: 800-333-4554

Note that their hotline is only available between 9 AM to 8 PM EDT. 

Reviews received a 2.3 rating at Trustpilot, while Carvana has an average of 2.7. At the Better Business Bureau, has an accreditation rating of A+, with a 1.31 customer rating average. 

Carvana is updating its profile at the BBB, so its ratings are not shown. Still, the company received some positive reviews, with some sellers finding their offers more than reasonable. Others also liked that they were able to sell their vehicle within 24 hours.

On the other hand, a few sellers at Carvana complained about not receiving the agreed amount for their car.

Consumer Affairs4.12.6

Most of the positive reviews for are from buyers who are happy with their purchased cars. Others also liked that the platform has excellent customer service.

In contrast, other users found themselves locked out of their accounts. As a result, they were not able to sell their car on the platform and ended up selling it somewhere else. 

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Michael Becker


About the author:

Michael Becker is a car enthusiast and expert who has been working in the automotive industry for over 15 years. He started his career as a salesperson at a local dealership, where he learned the ins and outs of the car market. Then he moved on to flipping cars for a profit.

Michael has also helped many of his relatives and friends to sell their cars, using his knowledge and skills to get them the best deals. He will guide you through the process and help you avoid the common pitfalls.

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