We believe the number one aspect in being a trusted auto transport service is clear communication. If you read the Auto Transport Review website you will find a recurring theme in most negative reviews that focuses on an inability to get a hold of an Auto Carrier for a status update. We have severed our relationship with a number of vehicle delivery carriers over this very issue, because it is very important to us as well.
Clearly answering the many questions our customers have about shipping vehicles is just another important aspect of a Dependable Auto Shipper. It’s hard to find good honest companies out there that will tell you the truth about the process of car carrier services. If you understand some fundamental things, it will go a long way to making your experience easy and simple. The first thing is to understand better is your car protection. Protection comes in the name of auto transport insurance. When dealing with auto shippers have a clear understanding of their insurance policies. That way you know if something goes wrong, you can feel comfortable knowing your vehicle is covered.
Next, when doing research on companies is to find out as much information as you can. Basically by visiting their websites as well as third party review sites and others like the BBB. This will give you an idea of where they stand with customer service. Reading experiences from others provides insight into the company’s practices and business ethics. Will they go the extra step? If the salesman says yes but the reviews say no, you may start thinking who has more to lose in this situation.
The most important part of the process for most people is getting the actual shipping quote. The smartest thing to do is get as many free quotes as possible. The price of the quote will depend on various things such as distance, size of the car, is it operable or not and whether or not you want your car enclosed or open air transit.
Another important fact to consider is the licensing of the auto carrier. Just like insurance, you need to know that the company is above board and stays within proper regulation for safety purposes and standards.
When looking at companies online, you want to compare apples to apples when it comes to their product offerings and services. Some companies offer services that are included that perhaps other companies might charge a fee for. Get a keen idea of what you need while understanding what is included and what is not. Hidden fees never put a smile on someone’s face. Know what services are useful to you and which ones aren’t. It’s useless for a salesperson to tout that they provide door-to-door service when you live walking distance to the terminal. Why pay extra when you don’t have to?
Also, when paying find out what are the clear methods of payment. Do you have to pay all or part upfront? Or can you pay cash upon delivery and fulfillment of services? Understand, most companies that ask for money upfront, do that to pay their salespeople commissions. Therefore, they may have little incentive to make sure everything is taken care of on your end. Ultimately, go with the auto transporters that offer the best payment method for you and your budget.
Vehicles are a significant investment, so naturally shipping them can be a nerve-wracking experience. Safe auto shipping requires you to understand some essential things that ultimately make the process and experience desirable and straightforward.
For this reason, you should work with a dependable, honest car transport company with open communication and a supreme level of service. As you move your vehicle from one point to another, it is essential that you feel confident about your car protection. Therefore, before committing to a shipping company, ensure you have a clear understanding of its insurance coverage and policies so that you know your vehicle is covered in case anything goes wrong. Also, find auto carriers that suit both your vehicle transportation needs and budget.
Our Auto Shipping Services
- Enclosed Vehicle Transport: An enclosed trailer is the best option for transporting special cars or luxury vehicles. These carriers protect your vehicle from dust, rain, road debris, and other harsh weather conditions during shipping. Because it provides the best protection for your vehicle during transit, enclosed car transport is a bit more expensive than different shipping modes, and we recommend it for exotic, antique, prototype, or classic cars.
- Open Auto Transport: About 90% of vehicle transport services operate an open car transport truck, making open transport the standard method of transporting all types of vehicles in the auto transport industry. It is also the most affordable method and offers the best coverage, whether you are shipping a new, used, or junk car. It is the best option for daily drive vehicles like work vehicles, family vans, and daily commuters. Our open car haulers are insured, licensed, and bonded to transport your cars from coast to coast.
- Door-to-Door Transport: Our auto carriers pick up and deliver as close as possible to your specific addresses. In case the addresses are not legally or safely accessible for a multi-car carrier, you can organize with the driver to meet at a nearby location where the hauler can easily get in and out and safely load or unload your vehicle.
What Factors Determine Cost to Ship?
The confusing bit about car shipping costs is that vehicle transport companies offer cost estimates that are not hard guarantees. The expenses change based on several variables, which differ on an individual basis. Below are the main determinants of the cost to ship.
- Distance: The distance between the pickup and delivery is a significant determinant of cost to ship your vehicle. The further the distance, the more the expense in terms of fuel, time, wear, and tear. The cost per mile reduces with distance while the overall shipping price increases. It is also less expensive to transport vehicles to and from major cities.
- The Car Transport Type: Open auto transport is the most cost-effective way to ship cars, while enclosed hauling is a safer way to transport a vehicle. The latter costs about 40 to 50% more than the former. This is partly because an enclosed auto hauler can only accommodate six vehicles per carrier, and an open car mover transports up to 10 vehicles at a go.
- The Vehicle Condition: When determining the best price, car movers need to know whether your car is operational. Can it run or drive well enough to get itself on and off the carrier? A non-operational car will restrict its flexibility and requires extra equipment to load and unload it; however, the car should still be able to roll and steer.
- The Vehicle Make: Your vehicle's specifications shed light on how much space auto haulers need to make on their carriers. The length, height, and curb weight all matter in car shipping quotes. For instance, transporting SUVs is typically more expensive than transporting shorter sedans. It forces lower-paying sedans to fit over or under them; for that reason, they have to compensate for the loss in revenue. The same applies to the longer and heavier vehicles, which require additional transport adjustments, making them more expensive to ship. Cars with a lower ground clearance — four inches and below — are more susceptible to damage, and they should be shipped enclosed where they can be treated with extra caution.
- Seasonal Fluctuations: Seasonal changes affect car shipment costs across the industry. Auto transport services generally charge more during the winter months as compared to the summer months. The closure of some truck routes due to the harsh weather results in higher pricing. Shipping costs during the holiday season are often affected by availability.
Why Choose Car Shipping Over Driving?
Shipping your vehicle across the country has many advantages when compared to driving it yourself. Shipping your car is a safe, easy, and convenient method that does not require you to spend sleepless nights trying to determine the best route to take. It ensures your family is safe from hazardous and irregular road conditions, especially during the winter months. Shipping also minimizes the risk of unexpected car breakdowns, road hazards, and accidents, all of which jeopardize you and your family's safety.
Many people downplay the costs involved in a cross-country move by assuming that they only need to consider fuel. However, they forget that the journey will take several days and include food, hotel stays, road tolls, and wear and tear costs. These costs add up quickly, and not forgetting time is money, you may be spending a lot of that on the road. Shipping your car reduces the stress of moving and gives you peace of mind because you are sure your vehicle will arrive in pristine condition.
How Can I Save Money on Car Shipping?
As mentioned earlier, the average cost to ship cars varies depending on various factors and your individual needs. Below are ways you can save on car shipping costs.
- Use open car shipping as it is the standard and most economical method of shipping.
- Ensure your car drives or runs because car transport services charge more when they are handling inoperable vehicles.
- Make pickup and delivery arrangements near major cities if you live in rural areas.
- Book and reserve at least a week in advance to save costs and final minute requests.
- Be flexible by having an open schedule. It almost always attracts affordable quotes.
- Shipping multiple cars on the same truck will save you money; you can talk to your friends and family so that you ship together.
- Discounts are available for repeat customers, seasonal travelers, and active military members, so do not hesitate to ask.
Whether you are relocating or shipping a new vehicle across the country, Ship a Car Direct can take the stress of the journey away from you. We take pride in the care and service we provide and ensure we make you happy and comfortable. Contact us with any questions or for a free price quote.
Frequently Asked Questions1
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.
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