The best auto shipping company takes the hassle out of moving your vehicle over long distances. Of course, you can drive the car yourself or have someone do it for you, but it is much simpler and better to have an auto shipping company do it.
Nevertheless, not every shipper you come across fits the description of the best car shipping company. Consider which company has a higher carrying capacity and will do a great job, and of course, at a reasonable price.
Here’s how you go about choosing a vehicle shipping company.
A bit of digging goes a long way to finding the best car shipping company. First, find out all you can about the company and how they handle their customers. Then, read online reviews and ask the right questions for better insight on a particular shipper.
Connect with people with shipping experiences to share, and pay attention to the details provided. Some shippers will have numerous negative reviews and for the same issues. Be wary of them. If the shipper doesn’t have any reviews, pass. Check the total and the average of the reviews posted on the websites.
The best auto transport firms will have a presence on almost all review websites. Confirm from your local Better Business Bureau if there are complaints about the shipper. Did they follow up? How did it end up?
Get a Quote
After you identify the right auto transport company for the job, request an online quote. Keep in mind that some shippers only deal with certain types of vehicles, and so make sure they handle your type before asking for a quote.
Remember that larger vehicles will cost more to ship than smaller ones, and shorter trips cost less. So you may need to pay a little bit extra if you need your vehicle shipped faster. But you don’t need to pay a deposit to get an auto transport instant quote.
Any shipping company that asks for money or commitment upfront may not be up to the task. Some of them will take your money and head for the hills or deliver substandard services.
Contact the few companies that made your shortlist and enquire about the bond and licensing information. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) will help verify this information. They will also avail a safety record, insurance, and any complaints by customers.
The best practice is to give yourself time to decide after receiving all the information and combining the different quotes. For example, which particular shipping services interest you? Do you want the door-to-door transport and the extra cost is a non-issue?
Most people think that driving the vehicle across the country will save them a small sack of money. But it is not as easy it seems. Factoring some things such as fuel, hotel rooms, food, and wear and tear may drive the cost above that of using a shipping company.
Ask relevant questions to gain a better understanding of the shipping process. For example, how long is the whole shipping process, and are there covered carrier options? Even though an uncovered carrier is a budget-friendly option, it will expose your vehicle to the elements.
Who is going to do the actual freight? Some companies use third parties to do the actual shipping. Ideally, make sure you are dealing with the party that’s going to deliver your vehicle. A larger auto transport firm that handles everything from quotes to the actual shipping is the best. These big companies not only care about the cars but the whole shipping business. Therefore, they are more likely to solve a problem quickly if it happens.
Other important questions include the pickup scheduling process. In most cases, the shipper contacts you when a truck is available to transport your car. Again, this is to save costs as they make various stops along the way.
Does the auto transport company do terminal-to-terminal delivery, or is there an option for door-to-door delivery? The door-to-door option is the most convenient, but it is going to cost you extra.
Read the Fine Print
The terms and conditions may vary between shippers. Read them and understand so that you know what you are getting yourself into. Also, find out the liability insurance the company has if anything happens to the vehicle on transit.
Schedule the Pickup
Once everything is in order, schedule the pickup. Remember to bring all the relevant documents related to the shipping to save time if confirmations are necessary.
Car shipping is not an easy task, no doubt. But you can pick the right shipper that will do it for you stress-free. It is always better to have the vehicle inspected by a qualified mechanic before shipping. This way, you will have sufficient proof if it is damaged during transit.