Cars as we all know are designed to transport people from point A to point B. But there are times when the cars need to be moved across state lines or even internationally. In those circumstances, you need the services of a vehicle shipping company.
This industry is one that has witnessed a proliferation of companies because the demand is actually high. This brings about confusion in decision making about the right company to use. That is why anyone who needs to ship a vehicle has to carefully research before signing off on any company.
Check out this site for a brief history of the industry: https://facts.net/
In this article, we will share 4 tips that will help you make the right choice of the shipping firm to work with.
There may be times when you cannot avoid booking auto transportation at the last minute. However, the rule of thumb with vehicle shipping is that you schedule the movement ahead of time. The number one reason for this is that how fast you want your vehicle to get to you determines how much you will pay; well of course in addition to the location and distance.
What this means therefore is that the earlier you book your shipment, the more leeway you will have for negotiation. You will also have enough time to search for the best option for you. When you get the best option that you want to use, it is recommended that you book your shipment at least 2weeks before the desired date.
The fact is that if you book in a hurry, you might not get the desired slot or you may be forced to pay extra charges.
Conduct a Thorough Research
This point is somehow tied to the first one. When you start early, the first thing you do is research the available options and your first point of search should be online.
This is especially for folks who are moving their vehicles interstate or internationally. When you type in your search query, the search engine will throw up a lot of options. You are advised not to go with the first vehicle shipping company that catches your fancy. Rather take time to go through all the companies on the first page of the results.
Bear in mind that there are sponsored ads on the first page; these ads most times are brokers and not the companies themselves. If you want to work with a broker, you can go ahead and check them out but if you want to work directly with a company then ignore them.
Choose a Reputable and Reliable Company
Ensure that you check out the reputation of the company that you want to work with. The following are ways that you can determine the integrity and reliability of the company:-
- Read Customer Reviews – This is one fail proof means of finding out what whether a company is reliable or not. When you read at least 5 reviews from past clients, you will know the quality of service the firm offers and whether you can work with them or not. You can get these reviews from the firm’s website and also from third party sites such as Yelp and BBB (Better Business Bureau).
- Seek and Obtain Referrals – You can ask around for referrals from people who have relocated in recent times or reputable relocation companies.
- Be on the lookout for unconventional payment methods or demand for large deposits. Any company that insists that you pay them through wire transfer only is suspect. Another red flag is a company that asks for a large deposit. Most legitimate auto transport firm do not ask for deposits and even those who do, will only ask for a token amount as deposit. Most companies also will normally prefer that you pay in cash upon delivery of your vehicle. Click here for tips on how to avoid being scammed when paying for a service.
- Ensure The Company Is Registered– It is mandatory in the U.S. that every vehicle shipping company is registered with the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) and also the Department of Transport. Request for their registration number also known as MC (Motor Carrier) number. Use this number to check their status on the website of the FMCSA.
Request a Contract
When you have confirmed the reputation and the reliability of the option you want to work with, then go ahead and request for a contract. This is absolutely necessary so that both parties will know what is expected of them.
The following are some things that should be spelt out in the contract:-
- Estimated date of delivery
- Policies on cancellation
- Procedure for claims if any
- Insurance information
Ensure that you read the fine prints of the contract to understand every last detail before you append your signature to it. You are free to negotiate or disagree with any point that’s in the contract; just be sure you understand and agree to every point before signing the contract.
We have shared some of these basic tips so that you will have the best shipping experience whenever you need to transport your vehicle. Do not take these tips lightly as they will come in handy some day; it may be for you or your friends or loved ones.