First time car shippers are often surprised to discover that there aren’t precise advance schedules for car hauling. Unlike trains or planes or buses that have regular schedules out of common hubs, car shipping schedules vary from week to week because every route is unique.
While car haulers serve the same general areas (some cover just the Midwest, for example), they don’t start and end at the same place. Car haulers don’t even follow the exact same route every time. They have new pick-up locations and different delivery locations for each customer. Some runs are longer than others, and sometimes the logistics allow for a quicker turn-around.
Not only are the routes different with each truckload of unique customers, car shipping drive times are always subject to the demands of weather, traffic, holidays and even maintenance issues. There are situations that arise that your driver simply cannot predict or prevent from behind the wheel, so no matter the season it’s realistic to allow for flexibility in your car shipping schedule.
That said, it should be no surprise that winter presents the most obvious challenge to predictable drive times. Obviously, the weather can be terrible – one bad snowstorm can effectively shut down in an entire region for a few days. And that slow down effects vehicles on trucks being hauled as well as vehicles waiting for transport. (In fact, there are some months when the backlog of waiting customers is so great that frustrated shippers cancel and resign with multiple haulers, as if there are some truckers not affected by the snow!)
Also important to note: drivers observe holidays just like you do! You may find that car hauler availability is limited between the weeks around Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Years. This reality tends to push up prices around the holidays – and even through January for some markets.
We know how precious your time is and we wish we could give you timing guarantees. But the truth is that this time of year the only guarantee is that there are no guarantees. It will save you frustration in the long run if you make contingency plans with friends and neighbors should your car hauler be affected by inclement weather or other seasonal issues. If you have questions about car hauling delays – or any other car hauling questions – please call us at 866-221-1664.