Auto shipping is a convenient option for transporting your vehicle across a long distance. However, that’s not to say it doesn’t come without its challenges. Your vehicle is a valuable and highly-priced item so you want to be sure it is in the right hands and you are well prepared. Any time you are moving a valuable possession, it can be fraught with stress. Although you cannot anticipate every problem you may encounter with auto shipping, there are certainly a few challenges that are more common than others. Here are some of the most common challenges you may face with auto shipping and how to overcome them.
Though it is not expected, there is always the possibility that your car could get damaged during the shipping process. Between loading and unloading vehicles onto trailers and then driving those trailers over bumpy roads, there is always a chance that your car could incur damage. It’s also possible that damage could occur from heavy rain, ice, snow, or flying debris on the roadway. The best way to avoid potential damage is to choose a company that provides the right equipment and experience to handle your vehicle safely. As for the weather, you can always opt for an enclosed trailer if you are shipping a luxury, antique, or brand new vehicle that may require additional protection.
Delayed delivery is one of the most common challenges that can arise with car shipment. Though car shipping companies try their best to deliver your car on the expected delivery date, there are a lot of factors that can affect shipping times that are completely out of anyone’s control. For example, your driver could encounter bad weather, traffic jams, road closures, or even unexpected maintenance issues with the trailer carrying your vehicle. Keep in mind that it is impossible for any company to provide an exact delivery date, but try to work with a reputable company that has a history of timely delivery.
Unfortunately, not all companies are legitimate and there are scammers out there. The best way to avoid being scammed by a fraudulent company is to do your own research ahead of time. Confirm the company’s licensing and registration with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. This is also a good resource for checking their safety history. Inquire about insurance and make sure your vehicle is covered in the event it gets damaged. You also want to read reviews and ask around to see if friends or coworkers can provide a reference. Finally, ask for your estimate in writing and verify that there will not be any additional fees or charges.
Lack of communication is another common challenge in auto shipment and unfortunately can interfere with the shipping process. To avoid this, be sure your car meets the travel-specific requirements ahead of time and let the carrier know if there are any concerns or issues. You should also request to exchange contact information with the driver so you can stay up-to-date with your car’s delivery status.
Frequently Asked Questions
Answers to Your Car Moving Questions
The hardest thing for people researching car moving companies to understand is that the prices they are getting are not hard and fast gaurantees, but rather ESTIMATES of what one company thinks it will take to get a vehicle moved promptly versus another company's opinion of what it will take. Don't be fooled, there are not carriers committed to take your vehicle at these quoted prices, the company you choose will still have to get to work getting a carrier to commit to move it at the price they quote you.
Your total price breaks down into two parts, the broker's fee (or 'deposit' as everyone calls it) and the carriers fee (your COD amount) Make no mistake about this, EVERYONE YOU ARE GETTING SALES CALLS FROM IS GOING TO BROKER YOUR MOVE. In this industry, there are brokers who try to fool you into thinking that they are the actual carriers and there are an equal amount of carriers who sell themselves on the fact that they have a truck or two but are not being honest about the fact that they broker out 90% of the orders they book. Here is a quick easy way to tell, if a company takes an up front fee, whether they call it a deposit or any other name, they are a broker. Carriers do not take any payment until the vehicle is delivered.
In our opinion, you are crazy to do so. Have you ever been paid up front for the work that you perform for your employer? Why would you pay a fee up front when there are reliable and trustworthy companies like ours that won't ask for it until we provide you with your carriers details?
The average transit time from pick up to delivery on any vehicle going coast to coast will be between one and two weeks. From there you can figure your transit time based on how far your vehicle is traveling, i.e. from either coast to the Midwest might average 3-7 days.