While shipping your car across the country sounds like a complicated process, it’s actually pretty simple. Auto transport companies have made car shipment easier and more convenient than ever. Whether you are purchasing a new car in another state or you are embarking on a cross-country move, a car shipping company can transport your car with ease. Read on for more information about how to ship your car across the country.
Research Shipment Companies
Spend a little time researching auto shipping companies, as not all companies are created equal. Be sure to ask plenty of questions, check for proper licensing requirements, read reviews, and look into insurance options before selecting a company. Any reputable company should be registered with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration as well as the Better Business Bureau.
Request a Quote
There are many variables that will determine the exact cost of shipment including the size and weight of your vehicle, the distance it is being shipped, where you pick it up, and which type of carrier you select. By providing the shipping company with the necessary information, they should be able to provide you with a fairly accurate quote.
Choose Open or Enclosed Carrier
Most shipping companies will give the option to choose between an open-air carrier and an enclosed carrier. Open-air carriers are less expensive and are the most common choice for typical vehicles, though your vehicle will be exposed to the outdoor elements. Enclosed carriers are a good choice for luxury or antique vehicles that require added protection.
Check Insurance Coverage
Check with your insurance company about what kind of coverage you have and ask the shipping company about additional liability insurance. Most reputable companies will have some sort of coverage policy.
Schedule a Date and Location for Shipment
Once you have selected your shipping company and worked through the details, choose a preferred date for shipment as well as your desired pickup location. At this point you can schedule either door-to-door delivery or terminal-to-terminal delivery.
Prepare Your Car for Transport
Prior to shipment, there are several things you will need to do to prepare your car for transport:
-Clean your vehicle inside and out
-Check the exterior for any dings, dents, or scratches and take photos of your for proof of its condition.
-Your gas tank should only be ¼ full.
-Remove ALL personal belongings from your vehicle.
-Disable alarm system.
Drop Off Your Vehicle
Drop off your vehicle at the designated area or have your vehicle picked up from your location.
Inspect Vehicle Upon Arrival
When you arrive to pick up your vehicle, do a thorough inspection and make note of any damage that may have occurred. In the unlikely event that your vehicle sustained damage, be sure and report it immediately before signing the Bill of Lading.
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.