Car Transport Guide: What You Need to Know

Car shipping is very popular in the United States, with many companies providing a unique service to the people. Car shipping is essentially what it means; the transportation of cars both cross country and internationally. This unique service is very safe and very convenient for those that need it, but there are things that you should know before hiring them.

1. The Risk Of Transportation


Generally speaking, shipping cars cross country is generally seen as safe. Although there are two main methods of shipping, open and enclosed carriers, shipping companies will do everything they can do make the process go as smoothly as possible.

Out of the two methods of shipping, enclosed shipping is generally safer. Since the carriers transporting the cars are protected by being covered, debris and external factors such as bad weather will not cause any damage to the vehicles transported. On the other hand, open carriers are open to the elements, and in most cases, the debris on U.S. roads.

But with all that said, unless there is an accident involved, both methods of carriers are considered quite safe.

2. Choose Shipping Companies Based on Reviews

It’s considered a general rule of thumb that you don’t employ any company, regardless of what they do, that has a low rating. Google ratings are an excellent way for you to see and understand how professional a car shipping company is. There are other platforms where you can do this, such as the official website of the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, asking loved ones, and going directly to your local car dealerships for recommendations since they mostly cooperate with shipping companies.

3. Avoid Auto Transport Brokers


There are many things that we are not aware of when hiring specific services. One such thing is an Auto Transport Broker. An auto transport broker will not tell you what he actually does if you don’t ask. These companies are essentially outsourcing your vehicle shipping to other shipping companies. In nearly all cases, you will not be aware of which shipping company has your vehicle. This is a very risky thing as in most cases these companies will give your vehicle to shady shipping companies and will do a poor job.

Why do they do this? You might ask. Well, it seems that the only reason as to why auto transport brokers exist is because they don’t own any carriers to transport your vehicle, so they sell your shipping order to 3rd party shipping companies. Auto transport brokers should be avoided at all costs, and never settle for hiring them even if they offer you favorable terms.

4. Never Give a Deposit

The car shipping industry is quite fair with prices and terms for shipping your vehicles. Professional shipping companies have all settled on not asking for a deposit and instead will ask for payment as soon as they’ve finished the job. This is especially the case when transporting exotic cars or old-timers. When transporting such cars, the carrier service will ask for your payment at the end when they handle your car. If a shipping company asks for a deposit when transporting your exotic car, you should instantly back off from the deal.

If you find yourself in the need of a car transport company, then you must never settle for anything but quality service.

5. Quality over Quantity


It goes without saying that quality over quantity is the slogan of the shipping industry. Car shipping companies will always try to give you fair terms, but you should never make the decision based on price. If a shipping company offers you extremely favorable terms, then that should be more than enough to put you off as a cheaper service is usually a poorer service.

When engaging in business with such companies, do have this in mind. A new enclosed carrier costs more than $500,000. These make enclosed carriers one of the most expensive transportation vehicles in the industry. Furthermore, a quality carrier must be driven by the best driver; otherwise, it could be bad news. So do expect the service to cost you anything from $500 to $2,250, depending on the distance needed to cover. Sure it might cost you a nice chunk of money, but in the end, you’re getting quality service.

6. Keep the Insurance Policies in Mind

Another factor to base the decision on is whether or not the shipping company has its own insurance. Most auto transport brokers do not provide insurance policies, and it is another reason why you should avoid them. When hiring such services, make sure that the company in question has sufficient cargo and cover insurance for both open and enclosed carrier transportation. Some offer up to $2,000,000 worth of insurance.

7. Your Scheduling Needs


When shipping companies need to deliver your vehicle, they will ask for a window of time when you need it done. In most cases, a shipping company will take up to ten days to make your delivery, and it can be as fast as one day. Naturally, some factors play a huge role in determining the delivery day. Factors include distance, traffic on the road, natural factors, etc.

When scheduling your date, make sure the company fully understands your scheduling needs.

8. Make Preparations

Shipping companies have a policy in which they will charge you with a non-run fee if your vehicle cannot be driven off from the carrier itself. Because of this, you should always have your tank filled up, your battery fully charged, and your antifreeze all stocked up. This makes sure that your car can go on and off the carrier, and you won’t need to pay for the non-run fee that these companies charge you.

9. Inspect Your Car


Once your car has arrived, your driver is required to run an inspection that will make sure no damage has been sustained during transport. If the driver does find your car damaged, then you will be owed compensation and will need to submit a claim. It goes without saying that both you and the car shipping company must perform an inspection before the car is even loaded up, to determine if any damage has been sustained.

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