If you are in need of auto shipment, it is important to keep in mind that auto transport companies are required to adhere to certain rules and regulations. It is in your best interest to learn more about transport rules and regulations, as they could have a direct impact on your auto shipping experience. In order to avoid confusion and ensure an easy and efficient shipping process, consider the following federal regulations and guidelines that all auto shipping companies must adhere to as well as tips for proper shipment.
Tip #1: Never Pack Personal Belongings Inside Your Vehicle
As per federal law, drivers are only allowed to carry a certain amount of weight in cargo. These weight restrictions are determined by the number of axles on the transport vessel. Nearly every road in the country has axle weight regulations and the carrier will have to stop at several weigh stations along their route. The weight of your vehicle is based on the make and model of the car, but you want to avoid adding additional weight. This means you should never pack personal items inside your vehicle when it is being shipped. While it might seem convenient to load up your trunk with personal belongings, this could put your vehicle over the weight limit and could result in fines for breaking federal law.
Tip #2: Never Leave Prohibited Items Inside Your Vehicle
There are a few items that you might keep inside your vehicle such as a tire changing kit, but it is recommended that you remove all other personal items prior to shipment. Certain items are strictly prohibited during auto shipment including alcohol, medications or drugs of any kind, guns, ammunition, and flammable items.
Tip #3: Consider the Height of Your Vehicle
Another factor to consider regarding rules and regulations is the height of your vehicle. All standard carriers have a height restriction of 7’ or less. If you have a vehicle that is over 7’, it will need to be transported on a special type of carrier. For example, trucks with a lift, RV’s, and any other oversized vehicle will not be permitted on a standard carrier. If you are unsure about the height of your vehicle, be sure and let the shipping company know ahead of time so they can check. Failure to do so could result in delays or fines, as hauling a vehicle with the wrong type of carrier is illegal.
Tip #4: Be Flexible with Delivery Date and Time
Some shipping companies will try to lure you in by promising an exact date and time of delivery. However, be aware that it is impossible to promise an exact time of delivery for several reasons so you should always be suspicious of such claims. First, weather and road conditions can cause unforeseen delays. Second, drivers are regulated by federal law to only drive a certain number of hours in a day, which could naturally result in delays. Be mindful of these regulations and plan for a little variance in your delivery schedule.
Michael starting working in car shipping over 20 years ago, in 2002; back in the days when fax machines ruled the roost, being the first name listed in the yellow pages was King and google wasn’t yet a verb. Sometimes he foolishly thinks he’s seen every situation imaginable when it comes to shipping a car, but about once a year he’s proven wrong.
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.