Shipping an automobile nationwide can be challenging, but it doesn’t have to be. Whether moving or buying a classic car from an out-of-state seller, several things can make the process go more smoothly and save you money.
Choosing open transport, being flexible with shipping dates, and doing a pre-pickup inspection are all factors that can help you get the best deal on your auto transport.
Prepare ahead of time.
Shipping your car is crucial in reaching your new home, whether moving across the nation or just down the block. While it may seem like a hassle, there are ways to make it more efficient and affordable.
If you plan on using a shipping company in shipping car across country, it’s best to book the shipment weeks or even months before your move date. It will allow you lots of time to compare prices and companies. It’s also a good idea to consult vetted review sites for auto transport companies to see what previous customers have had to say about their service.
Cleaning it out and checking it for damage are the best things you can do to get your car ready for transport. It will not only help the driver get a better idea of the condition of your vehicle, but it will also make it easier to identify any existing damage upon arrival at your destination.
Another critical step is to empty your gas tank to less than a quarter full. It will cut down on the weight of your car, which in turn will lower the cost of shipping. You should also remove any personal items from the vehicle. Most companies will not insure anything inside the car, so it’s best to leave everything but medication and essential documents behind.
Don’t leave personal items in your vehicle.
Most shipping companies ask that personal items be removed from your car before the shipment starts. It is because personal belongings add weight to the vehicle, which can raise the price of the transport. It’s also unsafe for the driver to carry these things around, and they could get lost or stolen during transit. The shipping company may want to inspect your car and its interior before loading it onto their truck or trailer, so they can ensure there are no damages.
During the transport, your car will stop in places like rest areas, and truck stops to give the driver time to grab food, take bathroom breaks, and fuel up. Leaving tempting personal belongings in your car can tempt thieves at these stops, so keeping everything below the window line is best.
It’s a good idea to wash your vehicle a few days before the pickup date and take close-up photos from all angles. It will help you notice any preexisting damage and log it for your records. Making a spare key’s also a good idea so you don’t have to give the carrier your main one. It’s always easier to prove that you weren’t responsible for any damage during transport when you have a duplicate key.
Make sure the top is secured.
The majority of car owners who use auto shipping services do so for a variety of reasons. Whether moving to a new city for work, getting married, or receiving a PCS order, shipping your car is much more affordable than taking the long drive yourself. It is also faster, more reliable, and safer.
If you have a convertible or another vehicle with an open top, ensure it is secured before the carrier arrives. A loose top can create a hazard and delay the shipment as runners have to stop to tighten it before continuing. Additionally, anything left on the top can get lost or damaged during transport, and insurance rarely covers items that must be appropriately secured.
Disabling your alarm before the carrier picks up your car is also best. It will prevent it from accidentally going off on the road and potentially delaying the shipment or draining your battery. Additionally, giving the carrier your only set of keys is never a good idea. Instead, keep the car key and bring a spare to the drop-off spot.
Try to schedule your shipment during the off-season. It will save you money as the peak time for shipping is between April and September. However, sometimes life throws you curve balls, and the best you can do is to be flexible with your dates.
Contact your insurance company.
Before transporting your car across the country, contacting your insurance provider is a brilliant idea. Not only can they provide you with helpful information about the process, but they may also be able to help you save money. For example, many companies offer a discounted rate for shipping vehicles during the off-season.
Your driver will carefully inspect your car while transporting it across the country. It includes looking for any scratches, dents, and chips in the paint and checking the condition of your tires, seat belts, steering wheel, and other mechanical parts. He will also take close-up pictures of your car to prove its condition.
Once he has finished his inspection, he will prepare your vehicle for transport and fill out a bill of lading you will sign. It is a good idea to have your insurance card and the keys to your car on hand to give the driver this documentation.
One important thing to remember when shipping a car across the country is that the shipment will likely take two or more weeks. It is because the driver can drive up to a certain number of hours on any given day. It would be best to discover this limit when you speak with the company shipping your car.