7 Tips to
Ship a Car
- Get 3 quotes
Just like in any industry price is going to be part of the determining factor when you are choosing the company who is going to help you ship a car. Getting at least 3 quotes will help you put things in perspective and see if something seems abnormally cheap or overly priced.
- Check out the BBB
This is a step all too often forgotten by people who are considering shipping vehicles. The importance of this tip can not be overlooked. What can occur in some cases after you get your quotes is you feel comfortable because the person on the phone gave you a cheap quote and seemed nice and polite. However, some companies will quote very low prices but then when it comes time to have your car loaded and on the way, they aren't able to hold to their word. Therefore it is important to factor in the reputation of the company you are considering by looking them up on the Better Business Bureau. This will give you an idea of how many complaints they have had in the last 3 years and the number of years they have been in business.
- Avoid prepaying deposit
This is a method used by some companies to trap customers. This is of course not ALWAYS the case, but it is important to consider. Typically what happens is when you are thinking about shipping a vehicle you will call a few places to get quotes. Some companies will quote you very low rates and tell you they need a deposit to secure a spot on their truck. If they do not load your car after a week or so and you get angry you will be less inclined to cancel with them in fear of losing that deposit. It is important to be clear about exactly what they are asking for prior to giving any money before they load your car. Now, after they load your car charging a deposit is okay, because now it is on the truck and by law they have to deliver it. However until it is loaded it is best to avoid paying a deposit.
- Be aware of "review sites" reliability
There are numerous review sites on the internet with regards to various companies that deal with vehicle shipping. It is important to know that in a lot of cases companies can write reviews about themselves in a positive manner and their competitors in a negative manner, and there is no governing body verifying these statements. From experience, some of the companies with the worst reputation and the greatest complaints on the Better Business Bureau, have some of the most glowing "statements" from customers. So if you are considering shipping a car, be sure you do appropriate amount of research and keep in mind some of the review sites aren't all they seem.
- Get your quote close to the shipping date
Some customers think that auto transport is similar to booking an airline ticket in that if you schedule 4 months in advance it will be cheaper. Unfortunately this is not the case. Car shipping companies have to factor in the fuel, demand and possible weather delays when they are factoring in a price. When customers call several months in advance it is impossible to predict some of these variables and sometimes customers get over quoted or quoted with a high price to cover possible swings in fuel costs.
- Inspect car before signing Bill of Lading
A common mistake people make is when they receive their car they are so happy to get it they don't do a proper walk around. This is a big mistake people make when they ship a vehicle. The problem is that after you sign the Bill of Lading that you received the car you have no recourse to come back and say something was damaged during transport. It is important if you do notice damage that it is noted on the paperwork on your copy and the driver's copy. It would smart to ask the driver to take photos of it and do so yourself.
- Open or Enclosed Car Shipping
The rule of thumb American Auto Movers uses when determining if to ship a car open or on an enclosed trailer is "if there was a minor damage would it depreciate the value of the car even if repaired." For example, if you scratch the hood of a Ferrari and you replace the hood, the car will be devalued even though everything looks good. If you are uncertain how what would be best for your situation, feel free to ask one of our representatives and we can help you make a determination. Often people ask for enclosed shipment when it is unnecessary so feel free to ask our representatives questions.