Auto transport is the act of transporting a vehicle from one location to another. This can be across town or across the country. A professional Auto Transport business is typically hired to transport the cars. However, there are differences in the quality of the transportation services each company provides. In order for you to choose a company which best meets your needs you will need to determine the type of service you want. Whether you are seeking to have a car, truck, or van shipped you will need to decide whether you want to request an open car carrier or an enclosed carrier as there are benefits and drawbacks to each method.
The most affordable option is to have your vehicle shipped in an open car carrier. This will typically be a 10-car open carrier. In an open carrier, the main automobile storage area of the carrier will be exposed to the elements. This means that your vehicle will have absolutely no protection from the sun, heat, wind, rain, hail, snow, etc. However, an enclosed auto carrier will protect your vehicle from the elements. The enclosed auto transport option is most often chosen by those shipping more valuable vehicles which can include classic and collectible vehicles.
Another choice you will need to make is whether you want door to door transport or terminal to terminal transport. A door to door transport is typically the safest option .The difference is that a door to door transport would pick up the vehicle from your house or other chosen location and deliver to the location of your choice. If you choose a terminal to terminal transport, this would involve your dropping off your vehicle in a designated open lot or location and the auto transport company would pick up the vehicle from there.
It is very important that the representative of the transport company which picks up your car inspect the vehicle and note and sign the accompanying bill of lading which specifies the overall physical condition of your car. If you have ever rented a car from a car rental place you most likely needed to accompany the representative to the parking lot and perform a walk around inspection and note any damages so you would not be blamed for causing them. The process is exactly the same if you turn your vehicle to an auto transport company.
Having appropriate insurance for your vehicle is a matter of prime importance. You should request copies of the company’s insurance certificates to make sure that is sufficiently covers potential damage to your vehicle. Also, you should check to be sure that the insurance coverage will remain in effect for the duration of the time that your vehicle is in their custody.
Try to accept delivery of your vehicle during daylight hours on a clear day so you can clearly inspect the vehicle for any damages. In the event that you must accept delivery after sundown, request that the inspection be performed under bright lights. If any damage has occurred to the vehicle during its transport you will need to note it on the bill of lading and have the driver sign it. Then you can contact the auto transport company to request reimbursement.
Many auto transport companies charge for shipments based on the weight of vehicles. If this is the policy of the company you have chosen, it is wise to have your fuel tank close to empty. All other items such as medical kits, emergency road kits, tool boxes, etc. should be removed from the vehicle as these add extra weight.
It is always wise to check independent references before making your final selection of an auto transport company. This is one of the best ways to assure that your vehicle will be transported safely to your chosen destination.