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How to Get a Donated Car from Goodwill

Get a Donated Car from Goodwill
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A vehicle can be a huge help, especially for someone who is striving to work hard and become self-sufficient. For someone taking the entire responsibility of their household, it becomes quite hectic to manage all – work, groceries, school, kids, etc. However, it is equally difficult to buy a car for themselves considering the price of it. But did you know that you can get a Donated Car From Goodwill?

To know more, keep reading further!

How to Get a Donated Car From Goodwill

How to Get a Donated Car From Goodwill

Yes. It is possible to Get a Donated Car From Goodwill. Goodwill cars for sale at low-cost financing plans can be used to get a car for low-income people. Many other organizations like the Salvation Army, OnlineCarDonation.com, Good News Garage, 800-Charity Cars, etc., can be used to Get a Donated Car for free. 

What is Goodwill?

Before we begin, for those of you who do not know, Goodwill Car Donations is a well-known organization that aims to provide essential support to low-income families, disabled people, and disadvantaged individuals with various services such as employment, job training, and other such required support.

Goodwill has been serving needy people by providing them with a life to live with dignity for over 100 years now. As a part of their various initiatives, one can also get a Donated Car From Goodwill. If you wish to know more about this, keep reading the article below. We have also included other organizations that can help you get a car for free.

Wheels for Work Program – Goodwill cars for sale

If you are looking forward to getting a donated car from goodwill, the best way to do so, in our opinion, would be by applying for the wheels for work program.

Wheels for work is a program that was initiated with the objective of helping low-income families in getting a vehicle that would further allow them to travel and do a job and continue with their day-to-day activities for a better life.

Through this program, one can get low-cost financing or leasing plans and even get a donated car for free with the Wheels for Work program. Just like any other program, this one has certain limitations with respect to its resources available. Thus, this program comes with eligibility criteria.

To apply for this program, you must provide certain documents for proof, such as that of residence, driver’s license, etc. You must also not have any car registered in your name already.

You should also not have any drug offenses and should be able to pass a background check. To get a car from goodwill, you should also have been working in the same job for the last six months to a year.

In case you do not fit eligible for the Wheels for Work program by Goodwill, you can always buy a car from a Goodwill auction. You can get any of the Goodwill cars for sale by participating in their auction. You can get more information about this from their official website, or you can also directly contact them to know more.

Contact the Department of Human Services

Apart from applying through the Wheels for Work program directly, you can also get a donated car from Goodwill by contacting your Department of Human Services. This is one of the best ways to get a car from Goodwill.

Just note that the process differs for each state, but mostly all the states require the person to work through the Department of Human Services in order to apply for and receive a car from goodwill.

Those who are in genuine need of a car are only given access to the Wheels for Work program. A local social worker makes the decision about the genuineness of the need. You can visit the official website of your state to find the nearby DHS office.

You can tell this department that you wish to apply for the Wheels for Work program and ask for the required application. Keep in mind to check any updates and deadlines with respect to the application so that you do not miss out on the opportunity ahead of you.

Contact Goodwill

At times it might happen that the department of human services might not work with good well in all the states at all times. In such cases, you can directly contact Goodwill through the contact on the official website, or you can also visit the nearby Goodwill organization office. They have a presence in over 3200 stores all across the US, so finding a local store would not be that difficult.

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Other Organizations that offer a Free Car

Other Organizations that offer a Free Car

Apart from Goodwill, there are numerous other organizations that offer free car for low-income and needy people. Given below are some of the most popular and reliable organizations that can help you get a donated car near me for free.

The Salvation Army

Now, does not know the salvation army? The Salvation Army is one of the most well-known non-profit organizations that work all across the globe for the betterment of people who are deprived of the basic needs of human living.

This organization is known to provide assistance to low-income families with a number of day-to-day requirements, such as food, clothing, shelter, furniture, transportation assistance, and much more. 

This Charity organization also conducts car and vehicle auctions so as to give vehicles to those in need. They generally get donations from different people who have an old car and want to get rid of it and make use of it for someone’s benefit.

In order to get assistance from the salvation army to get a car, all you need to do is visit their official website or nearby office, and their representatives will help you out with the further process.


Online Car Donation is a well-known non-profit organization that offers cars to needy individuals and families. Get in touch with them if you are looking for a vehicle that is free of charge and you meet the eligibility criteria for it.

Additionally, they give away trucks, vans, and sometimes modified vehicles for those with special needs. To get a free car, you must apply online and fill out as much of the application as possible to make the best decision for your situation.

In case you are selected, you will be notified within 30 days of submitting your application. Just note that in case you do not get a reply from them, you should reapply to their website.


The Cars4Christmas group is an affiliate group of Cars 4 Heroes. As part of its mission, it provides free and basic transportation for all individuals instead of only military veterans and first responders.

This organization aims to help as many people as possible who are facing various difficulties like illness, tragedy, death, disability, or even natural disasters.

On an annual basis, they receive over 20,000 applications and give away around 20 vehicles, all of which are donated to them. Although your chances of receiving a car through this organization are slim, it still makes sense to apply for it.

There is a possibility that the organization might connect you to a private donor who wishes to help you, or you may find connections to another organization that can help you get a car if you qualify.

Good News Garage

Good News Garage is a not-for-profit, location-based, charitable organization that provides free cars to those in need through its programs in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, and Vermont.

To find out if you qualify for their state-funded Wheels to Work programs, check each state’s criteria. Also, they offer a JumpStart program to provide refurbished, donated cars at an affordable, subsidized price to qualified working individuals, and it was created to help those individuals who do not qualify for the Wheels to Work program.

You can also find links to free or affordable transportation options on their “Other Transportation Resources” page.


OnlineCarDonation provides free cars to target beneficiaries. This charity organization is part of the WithCauses.org network and focuses mainly on providing free cars for the disabled and the needy.

You’ll be eligible to get a free car from OnlineCarDonation.org if you are a Homeless person, a Disabled person, a veteran, a Domestic violence victim, a Military person or family of military personnel, or a family that is trying to become self-sufficient without government support.

The process of applying to them is very simple. You will only need to provide some basic information about yourself and a description of your needs.

After you submit an application, it will be reviewed by their staff, who will also check their inventory to determine if they can help you. Within the next 30 days, you will receive a call or e-mail if you have been selected for a free car.


Cars4Heroes is a popular organization that offers free cars to military veterans, first responders, and their families, as well as those who cannot arrange transportation on their own.

To apply, all you have to do is fill out the application form with details such as the military branch, the number of years served, or the first responder you served in, the reason why you need a car, and any other personal details that you consider relevant to your application.

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The application is kept on file for three years after you have submitted it, so if you don’t receive one on the first try, maybe at a later time, you will be able to get one. If, however, you do not receive a response within thirty days, you can reapply.

800-Charity Cars

If you are wondering, ‘Where can I get a donated car for free?’, then 1-800-Charity Cars is dedicated to providing accessible vehicles to a wide range of individuals and groups. To carry out the charitable organization’s mission, the charity is dependent on the donations of cars from car owners.

A family’s income threshold to be considered low-income varies from state to state. On average, if you are a family of four with an annual income of less than $40,000, you will be considered low-income.

As soon as the organization receives the donated vehicle, it is listed for allocation to needy families. If you are on the list of people who need a car, you can get one.

The organization is responsible for paying for towing arrangements and completing the repair work on the vehicle before giving it to you for free. You can visit their official website to get more information about car donations.

The people who can benefit from this program include – domestic violence victims, medically unfit people, Veterans and families of military personnel, those who have faced natural disasters, families transitioning from public assistance to being self-sufficient, poor people who are working, non-profit organizations, the families who are living in transitional living shelters, etc.

Vehicles for Change

As the name implies, Vehicles for Change is an organization that helps families in Maryland and Virginia with their transportation needs. The organization collaborates with other socially active organizations with the objective of helping low-income families receive a free car for their transportation needs.

This is a list of the requirements that you must meet to apply for a donated car: have a verifiable job offer, have been working at least 30 hours per week, hold a driver’s license in the state of residence, have No DWIs or DUIs on the driving record, can afford the ongoing cost of car ownership (fuel, insurance, repairs, etc.), can cover the fees for tags, taxes, and title.

A car award program operated by Vehicles for Change is also available to those who are members of the partner social service and job readiness agencies.

Under the program, vehicles are provided to low-income families that qualify for the program, along with low-interest loans. For those looking for a free or cheap car in those areas, they list several additional options where they can find one.

Working Cars for Working Families

This organization works with the NCLC (National Consumer Law Center) to assist working families in obtaining a car at a fair price and in reliable condition. The organization collaborates with several other organizations to improve public policy, collect data, and promote nonprofits that assist struggling families in finding transportation.

They have a huge database of places that can help you find a free car nearby. In the database, there may be several organizations that have different requirements, so make sure you look at those that fit your circumstances and apply for them.

Other Ways to get a Free Car for low-income people

Other Ways to get a Free Car for low-income people

Apart from the ones mentioned above, there are numerous other ways using which you can get a free car or car at a lower price. Given below are some of the ways that we think could be helpful in finding a free car income families and needy people. 

Check Craigslist

Craigslist is one such platform where you can find almost any and everything at a lower price. If you are looking to get a car for free or at a lower price, then do not miss Craigslist. Craigslist is basically a website where you can find many sellers and dealers who wish to sell their old cars and other items at lower prices.

Check Facebook Marketplace

Facebook Marketplace is a part of the social media app Facebook which is quite similar to Craigslist. On this app, you will find a lot of listings of various items in your local area. You can also post if you are looking for something specific. It is definitely worth giving a try.

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Look for a Job that offers a car

There are a number of jobs out there that can help you get a car as well. For example, if you join the job of a delivery person who is required to carry heavy-duty materials, then you might be given your own truck or car to conduct these activities. this is a great way to get a car for free if you are in need of one. The best part about this ISS is that you do not have to pay for any car maintenance.

Request for a car from a local dealer

If you look around, you will find a lot of local car dealers as well as automobile garage owners who have plenty of cars lying around them. Although these cars might not always be in the best condition, they certainly can do the work. There would be no harm in asking the nearby car dealer if they have a spare car that can do the minimum job.

Ask for help at Church

The church is one such place that you can reach out to in any situation to seek help. Almost all the churches receive use donations from various people and organizations to help those in need. You can certainly apply for a donated car near me by asking for help at your local Church. The respective authorities can help you with the assistance required. There are many church donated cars for sale out there.


Crowdfunding is one of the most well-known ways to arrange money for any expense that you cannot pay for yourself. You can get the help of a nonprofit organization like GoFundMe to buy a car at a cheaper price.

If you are comfortable opening up about yourself and your story, then you can appeal to people for why you need a car, and those who find your story to be true will donate a certain amount that you can gather and buy a car for yourself. You can post requests for donations on websites like ModestNeeds.org or GoFundMe.

How to Donate a Vehicle to Goodwill

How to Donate a Vehicle to Goodwill

Many times, after buying a new vehicle, our old one becomes useless and just lies around. You can, however, put it to good use by offering it to someone who is in need of it. If you are someone who wishes to donate a vehicle to Goodwill, then firstly, it is an amazing decision, and secondly, here is a detailed step-by-step guide on how you can do so.

  1. To donate a car or vehicle to Goodwill, all you have to do is first visit their official website and fill out the form to donate a car. Or you can also call them at 866-233-8586 to directly get in touch with a representative to know the further process.
  2. After filling out the form, you can expect a reply from them within 24 hours. They will arrange for the pick-up process for the vehicle without any charge.
  3. When the vehicle is picked up from your location, you will be given a receipt as an acknowledgement and record of your donation.
  4. Once the car is with Goodwill, they will send it to a public auction. The money collected in such auctions goes to the mission-focused programs of Goodwill.
  5. Once Goodwill sells your vehicle, you will be sent all the documentation needed for tax deduction purposes.

Donated Vehicles Available at Goodwill

Goodwill accepts and provides the below vehicles for donation. Note that your vehicle does not necessarily be in a working condition to be accepted by Goodwill as a donation. However, the vehicle you are donating must have all the tires for an easy process of towing. The donor of the vehicle must remove all their belongings as well as the license plate.

Vehicles donated at Goodwill: 

  • Cars
  • Trucks
  • Vans
  • Motorcycles
  • Boats
  • RVs


Indeed a vehicle can be a huge help to someone who is trying hard to be self-sufficient in their life. Transportation is the need of today, and many jobs can easily be handled with the help of proper transportation services. We hope that the above article helped you in getting access to a vehicle.

Goodwill, the Salvation Army, Good News Garage, Online Car Donation, etc., are some of the places that offer great help to those in need by providing a donated car for free or at a lower cost. You can certainly try all of these websites and get the best deal available.

Do let us know in the comments if the article was helpful and what more you would like to see!