Shipping a car overseas or across the country can get risky and expensive. But, you might not have many options, especially if you are relocating for a job, sending a vehicle to a relative or getting a car you bought from a private seller or out of state dealership.
Keep reading to how to ship your car safely and securely with these vehicle shipping tips.
Research The Vehicle Shipping Company
You’ll want to research a couple of carriers, and then check out the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. This resource lets consumers check out the shipping company’s insurance record, license, and company history.
The first and most important step in shipping a car is making sure you have a trusted shipper. There are many horror stories of people buying or shipping high -end vehicles, and then going with a second rate shipping company to save money.
Only to discover the company doesn’t have the proper experience and the car becomes damaged or ruined. Which is why you want to work with a reputable company.
When you find that company, get rate quotes. You might find that the best rates are in the winter when fewer people transport cars.
Check Insurance Coverage
You’ll also want to check your own insurance policy to see what is covered. You will want to ask the shipping company about its liability insurance coverage. The most reputable carriers should have coverage between $50,000 to $1,000,000, but you’ll still want to double-check.
Keep in mind that damage can happen even with a high-quality shipper, so you’ll want to make sure the shipper’s insurance will and can cover any repairs. You’ll want to confirm the kind of insurance your shipping company has before you agree to ship with them.
Leave Enough Time
Shipping a car isn’t the same as shipping a package. Cars are more expensive, bulkier, and slower moving. Even a domestic delivery of a vehicle can take weeks, and sending a car internationally can take months.
Because of this, you’ll want to plan you shipping way in advance. You’ll need to find a carrier and see what time timeframe is for loading and delivery. Know that unforeseen delays are common, so you must be patient.
You don’t want to be waiting for your car on the other side, so make there is a trusted representative who can receive the vehicle when it arrives.
Pick Your Location
Usually, a shipping company will contact you when a truck has an open slot that is headed to your shipping destination. Before the shipper arrives, you will want to make sure there is enough space on the street or in your parking lot to load your car off the truck.
You will also want to find out where the shipping company will leave your car once it gets to its final destination. Which is why having an exact drop off date instead of a window, which might cost extra, in the end, is worth it. Also, keep in mind that delivering a car between two major cities is less expensive than shopping between two small towns.
Covered Or Uncovered?
You’ll also want to decide if you want your car to be covered or uncovered during transit. Know that keeping your car uncovered is actually cheaper, but at the same time also leaves your car more likely to get dented from sheet metal and debris.
While a covered car or enclosed carrier gives your vehicle the most protection but can cost about sixty percent more.
If you are shipping a vintage, classic or luxury car, you will want to get an enclosed trailer, no question. Or you will want to have your car top-loaded, which is pricer but allows your car to be on the upper deck.
The upper deck is key because it’s away from the auto fluids that can leak from other cars or road debris which can dent and or damage your cars.
Inspect The Vehicle
Your shipping company should check your car for any damages like dents or scratches during a walk-around inspection before the car is loaded into the truck. You’ll want to make sure that you also inspect the car and agree with the report of the assessor.
You’ll also want to make sure you take pre and post shipping photos of your car as evidence in case you have to file a claim. When the car arrives, a member of the shipping company will do a detailed examination of the car for any damage. If you agree on the assessment, then you and the shipper will sign a form and you’ll get a copy as well.
You always want to do a full inspection of the car before it ships and make sure you note any damage in from of the shipper’s representative. Both parties will need to sign this inspection. You will also want to inspect the car after it’s arrived at its final destination and make sure it’s in the same condition as it was from the start of its journey.
If any damage has happened during the journey that is supported by the assessment than that damage should be paid for at the shipper’s expense.
Empty Your Vehicle but Leave Some Gas
Before your car is loaded on the carrier, make sure you empty your car. If there are any extra items in the car, this can compromise the safety of the car. Any goods in the car could also get damaged during the journey.
You also want to make sure that your car has at least a quarter tank of fuel. This way your car doesn’t run out of gas or get stuck when it needs to leave the carrier. Some shippers might ask that you disconnect your battery, so check with your shipping company before.
Hire The Right Vehicle Shipping Company Today
Now that you know what to look for in a vehicle shipping, it’s time to hire the proper shipping company for your needs. If you follow our tips, your car should arrive at its destination safely and securely. For more resources on cars, check out our blog.