Choose an auto shipping company that is trustworthy and reliable

John Roehll Executive Vice President and Co-owner Dependable Auto Shippers

More than half all moves in the U.S. take place during the summer months. In addition to packing up household items, more and more consumers are opting to ship their car or motorcycle for a number of reasons - saves time vs. driving, saves money when you consider hotel and food costs, and there is less impact on the environment.

If you’re looking to ship your car for a household move or relocating for your job, you’ll likely find a large pool of car shippers to choose from. Before you book a move with the company that offers the cheapest quote, read over this expert advice when choosing a company to trust with your second most expensive possession.


Do your research

There are hundreds of auto transport companies nationwide, so there are plenty of options to choose from. Don’t just compare prices and go with the cheapest rate. Pick up the phone and call the company to be sure you can actually get someone on the phone. If you can’t get someone on the phone, you might not be able to get ahold of them when they have your car. A well-established car shipper will have a dedicated customer service team to answer your questions.

Do think beyond your wallet

Although you can always find a cheaper option, many of the cheapest quotes come from companies that do not own any trucks and will offer your move to online bidders with whom they have no relationship. Reputable auto shippers will cost an average of $800 - $1000 to ship a vehicle, depending on the type of shipment package for which you are looking.

Do plan ahead

When planning to have your household goods shipped, make sure to book your car shipment far in advance. The average time period for a car shipment is anywhere from 2 to 14 days, even if the car isn’t being shipped far. This is because auto shippers typically drive standard routes across the U.S. The sooner you can get your car in the hands of a reputable auto shipper, the sooner your car can be slated for a specific route.

Do determine your priorities

Reputable car shipping companies will often offer a variety of shipping options, each with its own benefits. Is it imperative that your car arrive by a particular date? If so, consider selecting expedited delivery service. Or is a competitive price your #1 goal? If so, ask the shipper how you can trim the cost. A good auto shipper will offer customers a reduced price for dropping off and picking up the vehicle at one of their licensed partner facilities. This cuts down on the time and labor involved in shipping each car.

Do make sure you’re protected

Unfortunately, there are times when vehicles are damaged during the shipment process. Be sure you are aware of the necessary steps should your car get damaged. When you are quoted a shipping price, make sure it includes vehicle protection up to $50,000 worth of physical damage coverage, and serves as primary coverage to better protect customers. All claims should be handled by a licensed, in-house vehicle protection team.


Do not jump on the lowest price

Quickly choosing the auto transport company with the cheapest price can open the door to a whole host of problems, including things like late car delivery, damage to your vehicle (with no one willing to accept responsibility for the mishap), and even complete failure to ship the car in the first place. In many instances, the saying holds true - you get what you pay for. When shipping your car, be sure you’re putting it in the right hands.

Do not forget about experience

Shipping a car takes specific equipment, personnel and skills that are different from those needed to move household goods. When selecting an auto shipper, be sure you choose a company that specializes in what you need.

Do not stress

Although shipping a car for the first time can be a stressful process, a good auto transport company will have the answers you’re looking for as well as dedicated teams to address your concerns about price, timing, and possible claims.

Do not be left without tracks

Because of factors like weather and road conditions, shipments are sometimes delayed. To help put customer’s minds at ease, you should be able to track your vehicle anytime online. If you choose an auto shipper that allows you to track your car, you’ll always know where it is.

Do not settle

Reputable car shipping companies will have a variety of service options and price points. If you’re working to get a quote from a company and only receive one flat rate, you’re probably limiting yourself and your shipping options. You should choose an auto shipper that offers door-to-door and terminal-to-terminal service options along with a variety of additional choices to ensure you can tailor your move to how you want it.

Jumping cartoon

The first time you ship a vehicle can be a stressful process, however if you do your research when selecting a vehicle shipping partner and follow the tips provided above, the process should be a simple and worry-free one.

More expert advice about Moving

Photo Credits: Ford Model A car - unloading from transporter by Flickr: Glen; Check Man, Cross Man and Jump Man © ioannis kounadeas -

John RoehllExecutive Vice President and Co-owner

John Roehll serves as executive vice president and part owner for Dependable Auto Shippers, one of the largest vehicle relocation companies in the U.S. representing corporate and retail clients since 1954. Roehll manages the company’s corporate ...

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