PURPOSE: Radiotherapy of the neck is known to cause carotid artery stenosis. We compared the carotid artery dose received between volumetric modulated arc therapy (VMAT) and conventional fixed-field intensity-modulated radiotherapy (IMRT) plans in patients with early glottic cancer. MATERIALS AND METHODS: Twenty-one early glottic cancer patients who previously underwent definitive radiotherapy were selected for this study. For each patient, double arc VMAT, 8-field IMRT, 3-dimensional conformal radiotherapy (3DCRT), and lateral parallel-opposed photon field radiotherapy (LPRT) plans were created. The 3DCRT plan was generated using lateral parallel-opposed photon fields plus an anterior photon field. VMAT and IMRT treatment plan optimization was performed under standardized conditions to obtain adequate target volume coverage and spare the carotid artery. Dose-volume specifications for the VMAT, IMRT, 3DCRT, and LPRT plans were calculated with radiotherapy planning system. Monitor units (MUs) and delivery time were measured to evaluate treatment efficiency. RESULTS: Target volume coverage and homogeneity results were comparable between VMAT and IMRT; however, VMAT was superior to IMRT for carotid artery dose sparing. The mean dose to the carotid arteries in double arc VMAT was reduced by 6.8% compared to fixed-field IMRT (p < 0.001). The MUs for VMAT and IMRT were not significantly different (p = 0.089). VMAT allowed an approximately two-fold reduction in treatment delivery time in comparison to IMRT (3 to 5 minutes vs. 5 to 10 minutes). CONCLUSION: VMAT resulted in a lower carotid artery dose compared to conventional fixed-field IMRT, and maintained good target coverage in patients with early glottic cancer.