Are you planning on moving across the country soon, or are you shipping your car off to a seller? Before you do anything, you want to make sure you are signing on with a trustworthy company. That way, you know there won’t be any mishaps on the road.
There are some questions you should ask the company before handing your car over to them. All of them are included in this article, making it easier for you to get a good idea of their policies and process. Let’s get started!
1. Are There Restrictions?
Before you consider a company, you should know what types of vehicles they can and can’t ship. If you own a car, you shouldn’t have any problems finding someone who can ship it for you. The trouble arises when you own something heavier or more valuable.
Some companies can’t handle oversized vehicles or charge you more since special equipment is required to load and ship them. With antique car shipping services, you also are likely to pay more. In short, you want to be sure the company can ship your vehicle. If they can’t, you will want to know right away so you can find someone else to do it. This detailed article from mercuryautotransport.com will help you to understand better how auto transport works.
2. Do You Have Free Quotes?
Next, it’s beneficial if a company can offer you a free quote. You will want to ask each shipping company you come across so that you can compare prices. It’s worth noting that getting a quote from a business doesn’t mean you have to use them.
Many shippers recognize that their customers collect quotes from various companies. However, you want to stay away from companies that only give you a quote after giving them money- that is never a good sign!
3. Are There Additional Costs?
You will want to ask this question before you sign anything with a car shipping company. That way, you know the quote you got is the exact amount you’ll have to pay. Sometimes, there are additional charges that you might not be aware of.
You should ask for an itemized quote if you are concerned. This receipt lists all the additional costs, so you can compare it to the quote you received. If you are unsure of a fee or charge added to the bill, make sure you talk with the company about it. Ask them how they calculate their rates.
4. What Are the Payment Options?
You should ask what types of payment the company accepts. Today, many businesses take a wide range of payment methods, so they should have something you can use. However, you also will want to talk with them about their payment plans.
Remember that most shipping companies won’t ask for the total cost upfront- they usually wait until the vehicle reaches its destination for the full payment. They may offer payment plans or partial payments before the car arrives.
You will want to know how the company expects you to pay beforehand since every business tends to be slightly different.
5. Are You Licensed and Fully Insured?
You also should always make sure that professionals are handling your vehicle. A reliable and trustworthy company will have all the proper licensing and insurance coverage. You can easily find this information online, but asking one of their representatives is a good idea- since you can see their reaction.
Shipping companies must have a license through the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. In contrast, international companies need permits through the Federal Maritime Commission.
Next, you will want to ask if the company is insured. All reliable car shipping companies should have full coverage- stay clear of those who don’t! U.S. law requires shipping companies to have full insurance coverage.
You want to know that your car has coverage in the event of an accident, so make sure you ask! Their representative should be able to show you a valid, current insurance certificate. Finally, make sure that you read your contract closely where insurance is concerned.
6. How Will You Transport My Car?
You will want to know how your car is reaching its destination. Different businesses may offer other transportation methods, which can change the price for you. You will want to choose a form with all of the features your car needs to get there safely while still staying within your budget.
7. Where Can You Pick It Up and Drop It Off?
Larger companies will have more options when it comes to dropping off or picking up your car. You probably don’t want to drive hours to retrieve your vehicle- so make sure you ask what your options are beforehand.
Most companies will have predetermined locations where you can retrieve your car. However, some will even offer to bring it to a site that you choose. While this service does cost more, many people enjoy the convenience of it.
8. What Paperwork Will You Need?
Finally, you want to make sure you know what documents the company needs to ship your car. You wouldn’t want to scramble to gather everything at the last minute. In most cases, they need to see your license or ID, registration, and insurance documents.
If you are shipping internationally, there will be more documentation needed. However, it will depend on the country you are sending the car to. You should call and ask international shippers what documents they require since it can vary slightly between countries.
Not knowing what you need could cause issues when your vehicle arrives in another country- it’s much better to ask ahead of time!
Will My Car Arrive Safely?
Overall, you want to make sure that your car gets where it needs to safely. By asking all of the above questions, you should get a good idea of what type of company you are looking at. The best ones will be clear and open while providing you with all the answers that you need.
You don’t want to choose a company that can’t answer your questions. That could be a sign that they won’t handle your car properly.