Hiring a professional auto transport company is a convenient and reliable way to ship your vehicle across the country. It can also be a helpful service when purchasing or selling a vehicle from a distance as well. That said, many people are unsure of how the process works and might feel uneasy about handing their car over to a complete stranger to transport it thousands of miles away. Here are a few tips to help you choose a reputable shipping company and ensure your vehicle arrives safely at its destination.
As with any service, it’s important to shop around and compare prices. Most reputable shipping companies should be able to provide you with a free quote. Be watchful, however, for prices that seem too good to be true. If one company’s prices are drastically lower than everyone else, this could be a red flag that the company is not legitimate.
Research the Company
Before selecting a shipping company, be sure and do some research to make sure the company is reputable. Legal carriers should be registered with the Department of Transportation and should have valid Motor Carrier Authority. You can also check the company’s safety record on the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s website. Finally, be sure and read all reviews and check the company’s rating with the Better Business Bureau.
Confirm Your Carrier’s Insurance Coverage
When choosing an auto carrier, you want to make sure the company is properly insured should anything happen to your vehicle. Most carriers will provide $50,000-$100,000 in coverage, with some offering additional coverage at a higher price. Your transporter should be able to provide a Certificate of Insurance to prove their coverage policy. You should also check with your own auto insurance company to see if your vehicle is covered during transport.
Prepare Your Vehicle for Shipment
Before handing your vehicle over to the carrier, there are certain things you should do to prepare your vehicle for shipment. First, you should clean your vehicle and document any existing damage. It is also a good idea to take pictures as evidence of your vehicle’s condition. You should also remove all personal belongings from your vehicle and leave your gas tank ¼ full.
Keep a Realistic Timeline
Transporting your vehicle across the country could take a couple of weeks. Therefore, it is important to plan well in advance. In doing so, keep in mind that your expected delivery time is only an estimation and is subject to change. Unlike standard parcel shipping, auto shippers can experience unforeseen delays such as bad weather, traffic jams, and road closures. Whenever you are shipping a vehicle across the country, it’s important to be patient and keep a realistic timeline.