Ways to Make Vehicle Shipping in the USA Easier and Less Stressful

Brantley Kendall

14 Nov 2022 2 years ago

Let’s face it, transporting your vehicle in the USA can be a real hassle. Between the endless paperwork, unexpected fees, and all the different regulations, it’s no wonder many people decide to do it themselves. But before you give up and try to drive your car across the country, hear us out. There are ways to make vehicle shipping a lot easier. We’re here to help make the process as easy and stress-free as possible. By following these simple tips, you can rest assured that your vehicle will arrive at its destination in the same condition it left in. So whether you’re moving to a new state or just taking a road trip across the country, keep these tips in mind!

Choose an Enclosed or Open-Air Carrier

It can take time to decide whether to choose open-air or enclosed car shipping when transporting your vehicle. Here are some things to keep in mind:

  • Open-air car shipping is more common and can be less expensive, but your car is exposed to the elements during transport. This can be a concern if you’re shipping a valuable or classic car.
  • Enclosed shipping has several benefits, including weather protection and more secure transport. However, it can be more expensive than open-air shipping.

If you’re trying to decide between closed-car shipping and open-air, consider the value of your vehicle and your budget. Open-air shipping is the way to go if you have a limited budget. Your car will be exposed to the elements during transport, but it’s less expensive than enclosed shipping. Enclosed shipping is the better option if you’re shipping a valuable or classic car. It will protect your vehicle from the elements and make it more secure during transport.

Get Your Vehicle Ready for Shipping

Before you ship your vehicle, you will need to make some preparations to ensure that it arrives safely and in the same condition, it was left in. Here is a guide on how to properly prepare your vehicle for shipping:

  • Make sure the vehicle is in good working order. This means all fluid levels are topped off, no leaks, the battery is fully charged, the tires are properly inflated, etc.
  • Clean the inside and outside of the vehicle. This includes removing all personal belongings from the car.
  • Take photos of the vehicle from all angles. You will use these photos to document the car’s condition before shipping.
  • Disconnect the battery. This helps prevent any damage that could occur during shipping.
  • Drain the fuel tank. This helps avoid any spillage during shipping.
  • Remove any aftermarket accessories from the vehicle. This includes things like spoilers, grille guards, etc.
  • Lower the antenna. This helps prevent it from being damaged during shipping.
  • Make sure the doors, hood, and trunk are secured and locked.

Choose a Terminal-to-Terminal or Door-to-Door Service

One of the important decisions you’ll have to make is whether you want a Terminal-to-Terminal service or a Door-to-Door service. Let’s take a closer look at each option: With a Terminal-to-Terminal service, your car will be picked up and delivered to a transportation depot. This can be helpful if you’re short on time or looking for a more affordable option. However, with a Terminal-to-Terminal service, you’ll need to take care of all the paperwork and logistics yourself. Plus, if you still need to include any critical documents or taxes, your car might not be able to leave the terminal. On the other hand, a Door-to-Door service is more convenient but also more expensive. With this option, your car will be picked up and delivered to your doorstep. The driver will even help you unload it. This service is excellent if you need more time or want to avoid dealing with the hassle of paperwork and logistics. However, missing duties and taxes can be a big problem with this option.

Book Your Shipment in Advance

This will ensure you get the best rates and avoid any last-minute stress. Here are some tips to help you book your shipment:

  • Research different companies and compare prices. This is the most crucial step in finding a company you can trust to transport your vehicle. You want to find an affordable company with a good reputation.
  • Once you have found a company, you would like to use, contact them and ask any questions you may have. Feeling comfortable with your chosen company is essential, and you should never hesitate to ask questions.
  • Make sure you have all the necessary paperwork in order. The company will need to know the make and model of your vehicle, as well as your contact information. They may also require a deposit before they can begin transport.
  • Once everything is in order, the company will pick up your vehicle and transport it to your desired destination. They will typically give you a timeframe for when they expect to deliver the car so you can plan accordingly.
  • When the vehicle is delivered, inspect it for any damage that may have occurred during transport. If everything looks good, you’re all set! If there is damage, be sure to contact the company immediately so they can resolve the issue.

Consider time factor

The time it takes to ship your vehicle will be affected by several factors, including:

  • The type of vehicle you are shipping
  • The size of the vehicle
  • The distance the car is being shipped
  • The shipping method you choose
  • The time of year you are shipping
  • The availability of shipping carriers

Vehicles that are larger or more difficult to transport (such as boats or RVs) will take longer to ship than smaller, standard vehicles. Shipping a car a long distance will also take longer than sending it a shorter distance. The shipping method you choose (enclosed, open, or flatbed) will also affect the shipping time. Enclosed car shipping is the fastest option, as it only carries your vehicle, so the driver won’t have to make many stops. Open transport is the slowest option, as the company loads several vehicles onto open trailers, which may cause delays. Flatbed transport is somewhere between, as you can use it for both standard and large cars. Finally, the time of year you are shipping will affect the availability of carriers and the overall shipping time. Shipping during busy times (such as summer) will take longer than shipping during slower times (such as winter).

Consider the cost

There can be many different factors that can affect the cost of ship your car. The following is a list of some of the more common ones:

  • The size and weight of your car: Larger and heavier cars typically cost more to ship than smaller and lighter cars. This is because they require more fuel and other resources to move them.
  • The distance of the shipping route: Longer routes will typically cost more to ship a car than shorter routes. This is because there are more miles to travel, which means more fuel and other resources are required.
  • The time of year: Shipping costs can vary depending on the time of year. For example, shipping a car during the summer months may cost more than sending it during winter. This is because demand is typically higher during the summer months.
  • The type of shipping service: There are several different shipping services available, each with its own cost. For example, door-to-door shipping services typically cost more than terminal-to-terminal shipping services.
  • The type of car: Some cars are more expensive to ship than others. For example, luxury or classic cars typically cost more to ship than economy cars. This is because they are typically more valuable and require more care during shipping.

Consider the Season You’re Shipping In

Your auto transport service experience may differ depending on the time of year. For example, during the summer months, there may be more demand for auto transport services, so you may have to wait longer for your vehicle to be picked up. There are a few ways that the season can affect your auto transport service experience.

  • During the winter, roads can be icy and dangerous. This can make it difficult for auto transport companies to safely get your car to its destination.
  • During the summer, roads can be crowded with vacationers. This can make it difficult for auto transport companies to deliver your car on time.
  • Severe weather conditions like hurricanes and tornadoes can disrupt auto transport services.
  • Some auto transport companies may offer seasonal discounts. For example, you can get a deal if you book your service during the off-season.

Inquire About Insurance Coverage

The transport company’s insurance policy usually covers damage to your vehicle during loading, travel, and unloading. You are responsible for repairing any faults with the car before shipping it, such as leaking oil or missing components. When shipping a vehicle, you should be aware of the following three types of insurance:

  • Carrier insurance: Your automobile is protected under the carrier’s insurance policy.
  • Broker insurance: The broker is not bound to offer coverage but may do so as a marketing ploy to win more clients.
  • Customer’s insurance: In most cases, shipping a car does not require purchasing additional insurance.

Track Your Vehicle during Transport

Most auto transport companies will provide some form of tracking for your vehicle. This is so you can see where your car is at all times and know when to expect delivery. There are a few different ways that companies track vehicles. The most common is GPS tracking. This uses satellites to track the location of your car at all times. You can usually see the car’s location on a map and estimated arrival times. Some companies also have a system where you can call a phone number and input your tracking number to hear an automated update on where your vehicle is. Other companies may require you to log into a website and input your tracking number to see your vehicle’s current status and location.

The most common car shipping issues

Here are some of the most common issues that you might face when shipping your car:

  • You need to get your car appropriately packed. This can cause damage to your vehicle and may invalidate your insurance. Make sure you pack your car according to the shipping company’s instructions.
  • You need to have the proper documents. Make sure you have all the documents the shipping company needs, including your driver’s license, registration, and proof of insurance.
  • You are not choosing the right shipping company. There are many shipping companies out there, but not all of them are created equal. Make sure you choose a company with a good reputation and is licensed and insured.
  • You are paying too much money. Shipping your car can be expensive, but it can be relatively inexpensive. Compare prices between different companies and find one that fits your budget.
  • You are having your car damaged or lost in transit. This is the worst-case scenario and can be costly to repair or replace. Make sure you choose a reliable shipping company with a good track record.

The Importance of Choosing the Right Shipping Company

When shipping your car, choosing the right shipping company is essential. A reputable shipping company will have years of industry experience and can offer you a wide range of services. They will also have a good reputation, so you can be sure that your car will be in safe hands. It is also essential to consider what services you need. Some shipping companies offer door-to-door service, while others only provide port-to-port service. Make sure you choose a company that offers the services you need. Finally, read reviews from previous customers to get a sense of what the company is like and how they treat their customers.

Benefits of shipping your car with an auto transport company

Here are the benefits of shipping your vehicle with an auto transport company:

  • You’ll avoid expensive long-term parking fees.
  • You won’t have to worry about wear and tear on your car.
  • You’ll avoid the hassle of driving in traffic and finding a place to park.
  • You’ll be able to travel with your family and friends without having to worry about everyone fitting in one car.
  • You’ll save money on gas and tolls.
  • You’ll avoid stress and frustration from driving in unfamiliar territory.
  • Your vehicle will be safe and secure in a highly-monitored transport truck.
  • You’ll have access to insurance coverage in case of an accident or theft.
  • You’ll be able to track the progress of your car online every step of the way.
  • When you receive your vehicle, it will be clean and ready to drive!

Frequently Asked Questions

What is an auto transport company?

An auto transport company is a company that specializes in the shipping of automobiles.

How does an auto transport company work?

An auto transport company typically ship a car from one location to another via truck or trailer. The company will pick up the car from the customer’s specified location and deliver it to the desired destination.

Are there any extra precautions I need to take when using an auto transport service?

It is always a good idea to have your vehicle inspected by a qualified mechanic before shipping. This will help ensure that your car is in good working condition and help the transport company identify any potential issues that could arise during shipping. You should also remove all personal items from your vehicle before shipping.

How do I choose a reputable auto transport company?

The best way to find a reputable auto transport company is to ask for recommendations from friends or family who have used such a service. You can also check online reviews to understand what others have experienced with different companies. Once you have a few options, get quotes from each company and compare the prices and services offered.

 How long does it take to ship a car?

The time it takes to ship a car depends on many factors. Such as the distance the vehicle needs to be shipped, the size and weight of the car, and the availability of transport services. Generally, it can take anywhere from 7-14 days to ship a vehicle.

What is the typical range for an auto transport company’s deposit?

Most companies require a deposit of between 50% and 100% of the total cost of the shipment.

Brantley Kendall