Transporting your car from one part of the country to another is no small feat. That’s where shipping companies come in handy. They handle all of the logistics of getting your car from Point A to Point B so you can focus on other things, perhaps like moving. That said, your car is one of your most prized possessions so you don’t want to hand it over to just anyone. You want to be sure you are working with an auto shipping company that is reputable, trusted, and reliable. Furthermore, you want to be sure you are getting a fair price for the shipment. For all of these reasons, it is important to do your research and contact more than one shipping company before choosing one for the job. Here are just a few things to consider when looking for an auto transport company.
First and foremost you want to check out various companies’ reviews before settling on one. You can browse reviews on the internet, check safety reports through the U.S. Department of Transportation, talk with the Better Business Bureau, and finally, speak with the company themselves and ask for references. The more you research reviews, the more likely you will find yourself worthing with a reputable shipping company.
As you would with many other services, it is important to shop around and compare prices. Call multiple car shipping companies and request a personalized quote based on your specific vehicle and needs. You also want to make sure this quote includes everything, so you aren’t surprised by unexpected fees and charges.
Auto transport companies are required by law to have up-to-date insurance. However, you should never assume they do. Ask for proof and check the details regarding the policy. Compare coverage between companies and find out how each one handles damage claims.
While most auto shipping companies are who they say they are, there are unfortunately some scammers out there. Therefore, you want to ask around and make sure each company you speak with can provide you with U.S. Department of Transportation number (DOT) as well as a Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) number. It is required by law that auto shippers be properly licensed, and these numbers can be used to check for verification and safety history.
Different car shipping companies might have different services available for shipping. For instance, some companies offer the option to choose between open and enclosed transport. Others may give you the option to choose between door-to-door pickup and delivery versus terminal-to-terminal. Be sure to speak with different companies to find the one that provides the exact services you need.
Frequently Asked Questions
Honest Answers to Your Car Shipping Questions
Yes, we always ask for your specific pickup and delivery addresses, if the carrier can get right to the addresses you provide, they will. If the addresses that you give us are not safely accessible for a Multi-car carrier, however, you will need to make arrangements with the driver to meet at a nearby location where the carrier can safely get in and out.
People do it all the time (rarely for free) but the official answer is no.
Not what you wanted to hear, we know, but that is the honest answer.
We are not licensed to broker the shipment of household goods and, likewise, no car carrier that operates in the USA is licensed to transport them from state to state either. Despite what you might be being told by other car shipping companies you may speak with.
Remember, at the end of the day we're all salespeople, and the true answer to this question is not a great selling point.
You will hear a lot of companies tell you that you can put up to 100 pounds of items in the trunk, but that is not entirely true. That fact is that items of that amount are fairly common and the department of transportation is probably not going to split hairs and fine the trucker over items of that amount, provided they are not over their weight limit. They could fine them, however, if they see a vehicle stuffed full of personal items so the car carrier will most likely try to negotiate something with you to cover themselves against any costs they could incur. It's not something we can build into your contract though.
We have a short and helpful video on this topic in our user videos.
Only in rare cases and car carriers will usually charge a premium to make it happen.
All dates given by car carriers are typically estimates and projections.
For this reason (and to keep your cost down) we ask that you build in some flexibility and give us the earliest possible date you would be WILLING to release the vehicle, even though it may not be your preferred date.
We'll put you in direct contact with your car carrier and the driver will also typically call you the afternoon or evening before your pick up and delivery (they won't just show up unannounced, and if they do we want to hear about it). However, car carriers are out on the road battling traffic, weather and any number of other factors that can and do throw them off of their pickup and delivery projections from time to time.
If the projected dates we give you come and you are unable to make contact with your carrier, please call our office immediately so that we may help resolve the situation.
The average transit time from pick up to delivery on any vehicle going coast to coast will average 7 to 10 days. 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.
Even better, we do not even ask for payment until we have you confirmed for pickup by a safe, reliable, fully insured, direct car carrier. If for any reason you do not ship your car with the carrier that we arrange for you, there is no fee.
The fees paid directly to the carrier however, (in most cases, their fees are not paid until your vehicle is delivered) are not directly controlled by us, so any requests for a refund of the carrier's portion would need to be addressed with the carrier directly.
Of course! And you are always backed by our Damage Free Guarantee policy.
Part of what you pay us for is to verify that the car carrier that we put you on is covered by the proper amount of insurance and that everything is up to date.
There is never any additional cost to you for this coverage, and their insurance is always primary.