The automobile, an emblem of liberty and individual expression, holds considerable significance for most individuals. It could be a compact two-door coupe, a sports car, a sedan, or any other type of vehicle, but its value lies in the fact that it’s yours. As such, when you’re seeking car transportation services, you want your vehicle to be treated with utmost care and professionalism.
This article will provide you with an all-encompassing guide to car transportation services, discussing the most vital aspects of transporting regular vehicles and how they influence your auto transport prices and experience.
Note: The content in this article is extracted from multiple resources and organized systematically to provide you with an enriching reading experience.
- 1. Domestic and International Car Shipping
- 2. Affordable and Reliable Car Shipping
- 3. Crucial Factors Affecting Car Shipping
- 4. Different Types and Methods of Car Shipping
- 5. Frequently Asked Questions
- 6. Getting Ready for Car Transport
- 7. Shipping a Car with Personal Items
- 8. Vehicle Shipping Protection
- 9. Types of Cars Usually Shipped
- 10. Finally, Shipping a Car is Easy
1. Domestic and International Car Shipping
Automobiles have revolutionized transportation, taking us from horse-drawn carriages to modern conveyances that transport us everywhere from family gatherings to grocery stores.
When it comes to relocating or moving a rare car across the country, you probably wouldn’t want to drive it for thousands of miles. Car shipping is a service we all need at some point, and selecting the right company to transport your prized possession requires careful research and consideration.
The car transport business is not a one-size-fits-all solution, and there’s a considerable amount of preparation that should go into the process. There’s more to transporting your vehicle than just hoisting it onto a tow truck, especially if the vehicle is going to be transported over a long distance.
2. Affordable and Reliable Car Shipping
A standard car can range from the smallest subcompact cars to the enormous full-size sedans that feel like you’re driving a yacht. But all these vehicles are considered “standard” in the auto shipping industry, which means that all the prices and quotes you receive for transporting a standard car will be the most economical price you’ll need to pay.
The most important aspect of your auto transport price, when shipping a standard car, is the specific route that your vehicle will traverse. There are thousands of carriers running thousands of routes through thousands of different areas, regions, and cities.
Some carriers won’t pick up loads due to various reasons – it’s too far off the route, the delivery city is too far, the route isn’t busy enough, or they’re headed in the opposite direction.
With a standard car, it’s a lot easier to find a carrier. If you’re transporting a vehicle into or out of a rural area, and you’re struggling to find a carrier, moving the pickup or delivery city (or both) to a larger metropolitan area could be beneficial.
3. Crucial Factors Affecting Car Shipping
How Much Does It Cost To Ship A Car?
The cost of shipping a vehicle has several influencing factors. For instance, supply and demand play a crucial role. If there are many people shipping a vehicle on the same route and there are few carriers, the cost could be higher than average.
On the other hand, if your route has few vehicles moving but many carriers with open spots, you can secure a great deal. This kind of situation occurs frequently. For example, most people ship their car south for the winter, so if you’re shipping your vehicle north during that same time period, you can secure an excellent price.
There are other factors such as weather and fuel prices that can affect your rate as well, however, nothing impacts your rate so much as supply and demand. Rates do fluctuate month to month, however, there are some basic pricing indexes. A luxury or exotic car can cost around $1200-$1500 for 1000 miles but these prices can vary with different factors coming into picture.
You can refer to our car shipping cost guide to understand how much you may have to spend.
Understanding The Distance
If you plan to ship your car, the first thing that comes to mind is the distance. Is the car going to be shipped domestically or internationally? Yes, you can ship a car internationally, but it will cost a bit more than a domestic route.
Shipping companies calculate their quote by distance. Thus, providing an accurate address and distance is key to getting a fair and balanced quote. Tools like the auto transport calculator also help to take the guesswork out of getting a quote. You should also expect that most companies will offer a similar quote for the same amount of miles.
Vehicle Condition and Location
The condition of the vehicle also plays a significant role in the cost of shipping. A perfectly running car would be less expensive to ship compared to a non-running one. The location of both the pickup and drop-off points can also impact the cost. More populated areas with regular shipping activity often cost less compared to remote or rural locations.
The Season Makes A Difference
The season in which you choose to ship your car can also influence the cost. During peak seasons like summer and winter, when more people relocate or plan vacations, there’s typically a higher demand for car shipping services. As a result, the prices may be slightly higher due to increased demand. On the other hand, during off-peak seasons like spring or fall, when the demand for car transport is relatively lower, you might find more competitive pricing to ship a vehicle.
4. Different Types and Methods of Car Shipping
Type 1: Open Transport Car Shipping
You’ve probably seen auto transport trucks on the highway. These big open trailers can house up to eight vehicles. However, that’s not the only type of auto transport. There are quite a few options. You can choose from the enclosed trailer form of auto transport. This is ideal for protecting rare vehicles that you might not want to be exposed to the elements. Similarly, the enclosed transport is also great for recreational vehicles and motorcycles. Although the enclosed form of auto transport can cost a little more, the added benefit of the protection is definitely worth the price when your vehicle makes it to its destination.
Type 2: Closed Transport Carriers
If you’re dealing with an exotic or classic car, you might want to opt-in for a closed car transport, which will provide much more safety for your vehicle. Closed car transports are what you generally see transporting supercars and race cars!
Car Transport Methods
There are several methods of transporting your vehicle. In this section, we will discuss more about the method of transportation that will be used to move your vehicle.
By far the most common method of auto transport is door-to-door auto transport. Door-to-door is what most carriers prefer as it allows them much more control over where they are driving their truck, the routes they use, and they can avoid some harder places to ship in and out of which they cannot do via other methods.
Terminal To Terminal
Terminal to terminal auto transport is not nearly as popular as door-to-door transport, but it is still a valued part of the industry today. Some companies will not provide terminal-to-terminal shipping, as there are not as many carriers that provide terminal-to-terminal shipping than door-to-door, but it is still available out of most major cities in the U.S.
Standby Auto Transport
Standby auto transport services are when you pay a lower price on purpose and essentially wait for a carrier to be willing to pick your vehicle up at a lower price. Because of how long they take to arrange, we don’t usually advise these services, yet they are available. Interested in them? Check out the link for more.
Auto Transport By Rail
Auto transport by rail is the last method of auto transport that we will break down for you. It is only available on select routes, and we don’t really work with any rail transportation companies. However, it is a method of auto transport that is still quite popular despite its slow disappearance.
5. Frequently Asked Questions
HOW DO I INSURE MY VEHICLE FOR SHIPPING?
You can insure your vehicle up to $100,000 from the FMCSA licensed carrier that is shipping your vehicle. Similarly, you can request the insurance certificate from any licensed carrier and will provide you a copy. With Mercury, all carriers have their insurance verified with every shipment.
HOW DO I PREPARE MY VEHICLE?
6. Getting Ready for Car Transport
Getting your car ready for transport may require some effort, but the results are well worth it. To ensure a smooth shipping process, consider the following steps:
- Gather all necessary documents, including insurance papers, the vehicle title, and your driver’s license.
- Thoroughly clean your car inside and out, and carefully document any existing damage for future reference.
- Remove all valuables and personal items from the vehicle to prevent any loss or damage during transport.
- Keep the gas tank at only a quarter full to ensure safe transportation.
- Perform any necessary maintenance to ensure your vehicle is in optimal condition for the journey.
- Remove any exterior accessories, such as luggage or bike racks, to minimize the risk of damage.
By taking these precautions and preparing your car for transport, you significantly reduce the chances of encountering complications during shipping or causing harm to your vehicle.
7. Shipping a Car with Personal Items
When shipping your car, it’s essential to be aware of guidelines regarding personal items inside the vehicle. While it may seem convenient to pack personal belongings in the car during transport, it’s generally not recommended. Carriers typically have limitations on personal items due to safety and insurance regulations. To ensure a smooth and hassle-free shipping process, it’s best to remove all personal items from the vehicle before pickup.
8. Vehicle Shipping Protection
When it comes to shipping your car, purchasing additional protection is not obligatory, as the Department of Transportation mandates all auto transport companies to carry liability insurance. However, it’s a good practice to ask your carrier for proof of insurance before your vehicle is picked up. For ultimate peace of mind, you have the option to purchase a Protection Plan right at checkout. This way, you can sail through the car transport process with total confidence, knowing your vehicle is protected in the rare case of damage or loss.
9. Types of Cars Usually Shipped
Carriers are equipped to transport a wide range of vehicles, regardless of their condition. Whether you need to ship a standard vehicle like an SUV, pickup truck, minivan, sedan, or coupe, they have you covered. Many transporters also specialize in the safe transportation of classic cars, ensuring your treasured Ford Model T or Packard 120 arrives securely. For those dealing with auction cars, they can connect you with professional transporters experienced in shipping to and from car auctions.
10. Finally, Shipping a Car is Easy
List your car at the price you want to pay and select a carrier that suits your needs. The more you know about the auto transport process and how we work, the fewer surprises will be waiting for you. You can fill out our free online quote request form right here on our website.
For assistance, you can give us a call toll-free or contact us through the given form. The free auto transport quote is calculated by one of our friendly and experienced staff members. We work hard to make sure your transportation experience is the best we can make it, bar none, or request a quote online.