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Media post: 6 Questions to Ask Before Shipping Your Car

Buying a car or simply moving from place to place could mean driving or shipping your vehicle. To know you’re going to feel comfortable and confident with the company you choose, you need to make sure you ask some questions before shipping your car.

What Services Are Available?

Every car shipping company has different auto transport services available. Some companies may be available in certain areas, while others will ship across the country. There may also be restrictions on what types of cars are allowed. The company may or may not have open and enclosed transportation available, so that’s something else to think about. If you need to ship internationally, you need to know if that’s an option.

What Are the Costs and Fees?

Rates are different between companies, so you’ll need to verify car shipping cost with each provider. Compare prices, but don’t forget to ask about what is included in the fees that the company charges. Request a breakdown of information if possible, so you are not caught unaware of unexpected expenses. Get the information in writing, too, if you agree. You’ll need to have some information about your vehicle to find out your quote, so be prepared with your make, model, condition, and destination information. Fees may also be negotiable if you plan to ship more than one car. Ask about discounts because the company may have some other ways to save on money too.

Do You Need Any Documentation?

Documentation varies from company to company. For example, you might also need to prove ownership before the company agrees to ship your car. Information required may also include proof of insurance and registration. To verify what you need, you need to contact the company directly.

What Needs to Be Done to Prepare?

You can’t usually put stuff in the car when you move it, so you’ll have to make sure your vehicle is completely empty before handing it over to the transport company. You will also need to give your car keys to the transport while the car is being moved. You can’t have more than about a quarter tank of gas in most cases too. Following the preparation guidelines provided by your shipping company is essential because if not, you may face extra charges that you weren’t expecting to need to pay.

How Long Does Shipping Take? 

Shipping time is different for every company because of the way they function. For example, if you’re using a broker like Montway, the company will find a carrier to meet your needs.

Alternatively, if you’re using a platform like uShip, shipping is entirely reliant on the truck driver’s schedule. If you’re going directly through a shipping company without a middleman, they may also have different timeframes. You can expect that to go from one side of the US to the other will take up to a couple of weeks. You should also expect delays because things happen that are out of the company’s or the truck driver’s control, so be prepared to have a range of days instead of a specific delivery date.

What Is the Process if Damages Happen?

Upon pickup, your car is inspected and assessed for its current condition. Do yourself a favor and take pictures, too, that you can refer to if something were to happen. Make sure your photographs are time stamped because that can be a pertinent detail. Upon delivery, your car will also be inspected, and you’ll receive a report that you and the trucker have signed. If the vehicle is damaged in transit, you will need to have this documentation to file a claim. Most companies are pretty straightforward with their processes. You start by calling them, and they may ask for your documentation to get things started.

A Few Final Thoughts on Car Shipping Companies

When you start searching for a company, make sure you ask about available services and whether or not they will be able to transport your vehicle where it needs to go. Always ask for costs and any associated discounts to make sure you get the best rates. Be prepared with the documentation they request to get the car loaded and get your vehicle ready for transport. Be prepared with dates when you inquire about how long it takes, and once it happens, don’t forget to get everything you need in case you need to file a claim after your car is delivered.

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