22 Crucial Signs Of A Reliable Auto Transport Company
There are likely to be more results than you anticipated when you search for reliable auto transport companies to transport your car. There are many auto shippers available. The challenge is not finding one. It's finding the right one to move your vehicle to at the best price and time.
Although it might seem that all shippers are the same, reliable auto transport companies are rare. Although there are many budget shippers, they are not known for their reliability or customer service. Although they will be happy to move your vehicle anywhere in the country, many free-lancer drivers don't have the experience or insurance that you need. Although it may feel great to book your move with a local mom-and-pop shop, they are unlikely to be the best choice for long-distance moves.
These are the issues you will face when searching for reliable auto transport companies. These challenges are not easy to overcome, but they will pay off in the end. Your car or truck is likely one of your most valuable assets. It is crucial to choose a shipper who will safely deliver your vehicle. We've listed the steps to help you find reliable auto transport companies so that you feel confident in the company you choose.
They won't rush you
Because there are so many shippers available, you shouldn't rush to find reliable auto transport. Plus, you will pay more if your booking is made too late. You should plan ahead and allow yourself enough time to find a company that will move your truck or car. The minimum time you should start searching for a shipper is three weeks prior to your desired ship date. Keep in mind that the whole process (researching, booking, shipping, and pickup) can take up to a month. Companies should not push you to book as soon as possible when you speak with them.
These appear in your research
It's not enough to search for auto transport companies online and then choose the first one you find. Any shipper worth booking with should have a strong website presence, including at least a site and many reviews.
They are highly recommended
Perhaps no one in your circle of friends and family has ever shipped cars but they know someone who has. Ask your family and friends to recommend companies. People will only recommend companies that they are happy with.
Their website is easy to use and well designed.
A website that is not up to par can be a problem for a reliable auto transport company. Yes, it is possible. However, a company that puts so much effort into creating a user-friendly website will likely also invest the same time and energy in its customer service. You should be wary of typos and obvious misinformation. Also, avoid forms that ask you to book immediately (rather than getting a quote).
They are current in their registration
Many people don't realize that the Department of Transport's Federal Motor Carrier Administration can verify the registration of a trustworthy auto transport company ( FMCSA ). Legitimate shippers will always have a 6-digit MC (Motor Carrier) Docket number as well as a 7-digit USDOT number. These numbers will be posted by many companies on their websites. However, you can always ask a representative to obtain them. Search for the MC Docket number to check the registration. Shippers who do not have a current registration can't legally operate in the US.
They will provide a no-obligation, free quote
Once you have compiled a list of trustworthy transport companies, it is time to request quotes. Reliable auto transport companies will be more than happy to provide a quote for shipping your vehicle. Because prices can differ between shippers, it is important to get multiple quotes. You can expect the best auto transport companies to give you a quote that is based on many factors such as the vehicle's make, condition, travel distance, pickup and drop-off locations, type of transport, and more. You should not accept a quote from a company without asking for detailed information about your shipping requirements.
You can compare quotes quickly with them
People who ship vehicles will receive quotes from several companies. Beware of shippers who pressure you into making a decision. A hard sell is usually a sign of trouble.
They will give you a quote that isn't too high or low
Reliable auto transport companies will provide you with a competitive quote that takes into account your shipping requirements, your vehicle, and the market. If you get quotes that look too good to be true, it is probably because they are. An excellent rule of thumb is to expect a long wait for your ship date if the price is too low.
They are clearly priced
What exactly are you paying? The shipper should inform you upfront about pricing and whether it is fixed. You can adjust the options, such as drop-off and pickup locations, to alter the quote if the price seems too high.
They won't conceal costs or charge additional fees.
Your quote should be yours, no exceptions. Many companies that offer the lowest prices will charge more for shipping, while others may quote very low prices. So there are no surprises, make sure you get a quote that includes your vehicle, its distance, and the type of transport.
They are covered by verifiable insurance
While most vehicles arrive on time and unharmed, reliable auto transport companies are prepared for anything. Ask the shippers what their liability is in the event of your vehicle being damaged. Natural calamities might not be covered. Negligence is almost always covered. If the worst happens, you can be confident that your truck or car will be covered.
They are proud of their reviews
Let's suppose you find a shipper who looks promising but can't find any reviews (positive or not). This should be a warning sign. If auto transporters have a good reputation for getting the job done and getting it done, they will have many reviews online that may be reposted on their company website. You can find more information about past customers by looking for companies with a lot of reviews, even if some are negative.
They are responsive
Reliable auto transport companies will post their phone number online so that you can actually call them. They'll return your call quickly if there is no one available. To give your business, you don't need to chase down anyone. Reliable companies will provide LiveChat online customer support.
You can talk to someone.
Although you can do most things online, such as to get quotes or book transport, it is still a good idea to contact shippers and speak to someone. It doesn't matter if it is impossible to contact a live person over the phone for more information. If your vehicle is on its way to its destination, it will likely be equally difficult to reach someone.
They are helpful and friendly
When you give your vehicle to a company, customer service is important. Your representative's demeanor, overall helpfulness, and general manner will tell you if the company regards customer service as important or a nuisance when you first contact them.
They’re willing and able to answer questions
If the representative you talk to sounds like they’re reading from a script, proceed with caution. They should be able to answer basic questions easily, and if they don’t know the answer to a particular question, they should be able to find out the answer quickly. If you get the sense that the person on the other end of the line is avoiding giving you an answer or if they outright refuse to give you certain information, take your business elsewhere.
They’re not offering the very lowest low price
There’s nothing wrong with shopping for deals, but some shippers lure in customers with extremely low bids knowing they won’t be able to get their vehicles onto the truck in the desired shipping window. They get the down payments and the customers get to wait… and wait. In some cases, these deposits are non-refundable so if no spots open up on trucks, the customers forfeit their deposits.
They accept only check and credit card payments
Most reliable auto transport companies will not ask you to submit your payment through a wire transfer. Shippers that ask you for a wire transfer may take your money and disappear.
They offer multiple shipping options
You may be looking for basic open-carrier shipping for your vehicle, but there is a good reason to choose a transport company that offers white-glove service and enclosed transport in addition to basic service. You can be reasonably sure that a transporter that has a lot of experience handling valuable vintage cars, luxury vehicles, and race cars will treat your vehicle with great care.
They don’t push the upsell
Most operable cars and trucks can be shipped across the country in open carriers with no problems, so shippers shouldn’t harangue you into upgrading to more expensive closed transport or a higher tier of service for your everyday vehicle. You are the best judge of what kind of service you need.
Before you sign, they let you review the terms.
It's time for you to make a booking once you have found a reliable auto transport business. Although you may be used to signing the contract without reading it, don't do this when you are handing over something as valuable as your vehicle. You might miss important details that could change your mind about the company so resist the temptation to skim.
They have a clear policy regarding delays
Auto transporters understand that delays can happen and will be prepared for them. Honest companies will also have policies in place regarding late deliveries. Each company handles delays differently. Some offer money back, others don't. You should know what to do if your vehicle is delayed.
All the checklists can't protect you from dishonest shippers , except when they are actually shipping cars and trucks . When you feel a strange feeling while looking at a company's website or talking to someone about your quote, you should respect it. It's better to continue your search than book with a company that you don't trust. While they may charge a fair price and do a good job, you will spend your entire vehicle's journey stressed out.
There are many great shipping companies. This checklist will help you find the best one for your needs. This includes military auto shipping as well as international car transport