Hiring an auto transport company is a convenient way to move your vehicle long distances. However, it is important to do adequate research and ask the right questions to ensure you are choosing the right company for the job. Your vehicle is a valuable asset, so you want to work with an auto transport company that understands the importance of providing exceptional customer service. Research is the key to finding a reputable auto shipping company. Here are some of the most important questions to ask to ensure you find a trusted company.
Are you licensed and registered?
You want to be sure you are working with a company that you can trust to transport your car safely so you need to start by making sure they have the necessary licenses and certifications. Every transport company should be registered with the USDOT and they should be able to provide you with their USDOT # for verification.
What are your rates?
One of the most important questions to ask is, “How much is this going to cost?” A reputable company should provide you with their transport rates and offer an estimate with no obligation required. If the company doesn’t offer a complimentary quote, it’s a red flag that you should look elsewhere.
Are there any additional fees?
This is a very important question to ask because you don’t want to be surprised with hidden costs and fees. Ask the company for a comprehensive quote that includes all costs and any penalty fees.
Do you offer insurance?
Insurance is important when it comes to shipping a car. You want to make sure your vehicle is protected in the event of damage. Before signing a contract, find out about the company’s coverage options.
Do you have any references?
You can’t always trust online reviews as a legitimate reference. These online reviews can be easily manipulated. Ask for references from actual customers that you can contact directly. This way you can ensure you are getting an honest review.
Do you require a deposit?
Is it not uncommon for auto transport companies to require a deposit before shipping your vehicle. They should not, however, require full payment until your vehicle is actually delivered.
How will my car be transported?
When it comes to shipping a car, there are two primary methods for shipping: open or enclosed carrier shipping. They each have their own advantages and disadvantages and they vary in price so be sure you know how your vehicle is being transported.
Where will my vehicle be delivered?
Some carriers offer door to door shipping while others deliver the vehicles to a terminal for pickup. Ask the company what you can expect when it comes to delivery and which delivery options they offer.
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.