Why Shipping a Van Can Be More Expensive

Dodge Grand Caravan 1Auto transportation companies are expected to ship a lot more than just standard automobiles. In addition to regular-sized cars, trucks and sport utility vehicles, auto transporters are expected to handle things such as work vans, minivans, construction equipment, motorcycles – really, anything with wheels that can normally be moved under its own power (as opposed to something like a wagon or a bicycle). In this blog post we’re going to discuss all things pertaining to the transportation of a van, be it a cargo van, minivan, work van, extended van, conversion van – you name it. If you own a type of van that we don’t cover here, make sure to call us at 800-930-7417 to speak to one of our live agents who can answer your questions and help you get quotes for whatever it is you’re looking to ship.

Let’s start off with minivans. As you know, minivans are built to haul a lot of people and cargo, which means they’re larger than most cars and some smaller SUV’s. When it comes to transporting a minivan it’s likely you won’t see any major price hikes over the cost of a regular car or smaller sport utility vehicle; generally they’re not any taller than a standard SUV and they usually don’t weigh much more. This makes it easier to find carriers willing to transport minivans like the Dodge Grand Caravan, even the newest models, since auto shippers are already keenly familiar with their size and weight. When it comes to cargo vans, the make and model will play a much larger role, since cargo vans are built for a more specific purpose. Some cargo vans are small enough to warrant the same pricing as a minivan, but generally they’re heavier than a standard minivan. Weight can play a major role in your price; heavier vehicles cause a drop in fuel efficiency for your carrier, and when a carrier is only getting 8-12 miles per gallon anyway, it can cost a serious bit of cash to keep the truck on the road if they’re hauling a bunch of heavy vehicles.

Of course, every vehicle is heavy, so what we really mean is that weight is relative. A standard car only weighs so much; a cargo van is going to weigh significantly more. This, in turn, tends to increase the price of the cargo van to offset the lower fuel economy of the transport truck. Cargo vans are commonly shipped; many businesses use them in their fleets, so fleet managers are constantly buying new ones, selling old ones, upgrading their fleet as they go along and making sure that everything is right in their little world. Cargo vans vary greatly in size; small ones aren’t much bigger than minivans, but as you go up in size you tend to go up in price, with Sprinter vans (the vans with the really tall roofs) being some of the most expensive type of vehicle to ship. Sprinter vans are generally the most expensive because of their height.

If you have questions about the information in this (or any) blog post, you can call us toll-free to speak a live agent. No time spent on a menu, no waiting for the next available representative; just call and get connected with someone who can get you the information you need and who can help get you free quotes. If you’re looking for an auto transport company and need some help getting started, you can get multiple free quotes by filling out our free online quote request form. It takes less than two minutes, depending on how fast you can type, and is always free. If you fill out our free form and submit it, you’ll receive 6-8 free auto transport quotes from reliable, reputable auto shippers that we pre-screen for reliability for you and that we make sure are all fully licensed, bonded and insured. You can’t go wrong with American Auto Shipping.

Household Goods Shipping Services to San Francisco

San Francisco 4San Francisco is the fourth-largest city in the state of California by population, with over 837,000 residents. It is officially a city-county, as the city and county of San Francisco was consolidated in 1856, and it is currently the only consolidated city-county in the state of California. This really doesn’t make much of a difference when you’re moving there, as the consolidation is mainly for government purposes, but it’s still a pretty nifty fact. For a time, San Francisco was the largest city in California by population; the 1906 San Francisco Earthquake, however, devastated the city, with over a third of the city completely leveled and left more than half of its population homeless. Rebuilding of the city was rapid, and by 1910 the population had recovered, though if there had never been an earthquake it’s quite possible that San Francisco today would be the largest in the state of California.

Though San Francisco’s planning department lists a total of thirty-six distinct neighborhoods, independent research has put this number closer to forty, with over a hundred smaller neighborhoods comprising those 36-40. Those neighborhoods sit in five distinct districts, which are: Central/Downtown (the main financial district), Richmond, Sunset, Upper Market, and Bernal Heights. These neighborhoods vary in demographic makeup, crime rates, median income, and much more, giving San Francisco a truly urban feel. Much of San Francisco was developed before the advent of the car, so many of the downtown streets feel crowded and cramped; this can make it more difficult for household moving companies to get to many of the areas in the city, which generally necessitates them using a smaller, in-town moving company to get your goods to you. This is a common practice; most interstate moving vans are huge 18 wheelers, and obviously those can’t fit in most urban environments. They instead get to the edge of the city and transfer your goods to the local moving company, who’s moving vans are smaller (think more U-Haul sized as opposed to semi-truck sized). These smaller vans can get to just about anywhere in the city, which will likely include your new abode.

San Francisco has always been a city that attracts new residents. It’s California attitude, the great Bay Area weather, and the beauty of the city – not to mention the entire Bay Area in general – is something that a lot of people want to experience. However, the cost-of-living in the city has risen substantially over the years, with a big factor behind that being the rise of the San Jose and cities in Silicon Valley. With the increasing reliance on technology today, Silicon Valley businesses such as Yahoo!, Apple and Google are bringing in more money than residents know what to do with, and this has helped reinvigorate San Francisco, with many new revitalization projects and citywide beautification projects currently in full swing. If you’re interested in moving to or from San Francisco, check out our household moving articles; there, you can read more about the household moving process as well as get free household moving quotes from reliable and dependable household movers. If you’re interested in moving a vehicle along with your household goods, you can actually just fill out our free auto transport quote request form; we have an option to get household moving quotes along with your car shipping quotes. You can also call us toll-free at 800-930-7417 to discuss it further with one of our helpful representatives.

Auto Transport Tips to Norman, Oklahoma

Norman 1Norman is a city located in the Oklahoma City metropolitan area, approximately 20 miles south of Oklahoma City proper. Home to over 118,000 residents, Norman is the third-largest city in the state of Oklahoma, after Oklahoma City and Tulsa, and serves as the county seat of Cleveland County. Norman was first settled during the 1889 Oklahoma Land Run, and was incorporated in 1891. Norman grew steadily over the next century, and its economic power has only grown over the years. Norman is known for its highly educated workforce and its affiliated jobs and fields. Norman is home to the University of Oklahoma, which is the largest university in the state, and its football team is highly popular, with over 80,000 fans going to games every Saturday. Norman is also the home of the National Weather Center, and much research is done in the city by the NWC in order to better predict weather patterns and gain a better understanding of how the weather works. This is partly because Norman sits within the heart of Tornado Alley, though despite this Money Magazine still named Norman, Oklahoma one of the best small cities to live in in the U.S.

Norman literally sits just miles south of Oklahoma City, which really increases its popularity among the shipping companies in the car transport industry. Oklahoma isn’t the most popular state in the country to ship a vehicle to or from, but it’s far from impossible and shouldn’t be too expensive, on the whole. Shipping to Norman may cost a bit more than shipping to Oklahoma City, which is easily fixed – just meet your shipper somewhere in Oklahoma City and you may be able to save a few bucks. Norman sits along I-35, a major north-south interstate in the Midwest, but it’s not the most popular route for auto shippers because there aren’t a lot of customers moving in and out of the Midwest, especially during this time of year. If you’re shipping in or out of Norman, make sure to talk to a representative at an auto transport company to get the full scoop about pricing, carrier availability, pickup and delivery windows and much more. Keep in mind also that most auto transporters running into the area will likely be traveling along Interstate 40, which is a prominent east-west interstate highway and surprisingly popular with auto transporters.

Still, though, Oklahoma City will probably be easier, at the very least, for your shipper to get into or out of. Its proximity to Norman may make it less expensive, but it’s really dependent on who is shipping your vehicle and what you’re already paying to ship it to Norman. If you’re interested in moving your pickup or delivery from Norman to Oklahoma City, it’s best to talk to a representative who can answer your questions, give you free quotes and advice, and more. Auto transport reps are a great resource that is always available to you, and you can call just about anyone who ships cars and ask them questions regarding the process or how to go about getting it done. They’ll answer every question you have, and if you take enough of their time you may end up just booking with them directly and getting your vehicle moved. How easy is that? If you need to get in contact with someone, fill out our free form or call us at 800-930-7417 to speak to one of our reps; we’ll answer your questions as best we can and help you get in contact with auto transport companies today.

Why Auto Transport Routes Vary in Price

Bellevue 1Your auto transport carrier ships vehicles along a specific route. This should be pretty much common knowledge, but we’ll go over it again anyway, just in case. Every auto transport carrier charges a price to ship a vehicle along their route, and if they have to deviate from that route they’ll likely charge more. Most every carrier company does this, and it’s sort of how the auto shipping industry works. With thousands of different carriers in all fifty states, as well as thousands of brokers across the country, finding a company that can ship your vehicle is as easy as filling out a quote form or two, booking your order, paying some money and waiting. But just because you’re paying Cindy Lou’s Car Shipping $X for your shipment doesn’t mean that Todd’s Auto Transport can’t do it for $Y less than what Cindy can. This is where – and why – auto transport prices vary, and sometimes it can be pretty drastic.

Auto shippers run the routes that they do for a variety of different reasons, but some of the reasons that are the same across the board include easy access to customers, lower-than-average fuel prices, knowledge of the route and others. These are big factors when it comes to auto transport prices, and auto shippers have a lot of expenses that they need to factor into the prices they charge, particularly fuel. Fuel is one of the industry’s most expensive costs despite the entire industry running on it – without diesel fuel, there wouldn’t be auto transportation services (or any other type of long-haul transportation, for that matter). But just like car shipping prices, fuel prices vary from place to place. Some areas of the country have cheap gas prices, while others have what seem to be exorbitant prices. Auto shippers have to factor that into their pricing, as well as other things such as how long they’ll be stuck in traffic (for the bigger cities like Los Angeles and the New York metro area, anyway), how far off their preferred route they’ll need to drive to pickup/deliver your vehicle, how many other customers are shipping along that route, when you need it picked up, and much, much more.

This is a big reason why auto transport routes vary in price. Some companies have six or eight cars coming out of wherever you’re shipping from, and maybe two or three heading to your delivery location. They’ll likely charge less than a company that only has two cars coming out of one area and you’re the only one going to your delivery location. Company A can charge less per vehicle because they have plenty of vehicles on their truck; Company B is likely going to have to charge more to travel the same distance because they have fewer customers paying, at least initially. Once your vehicle gets put on a truck, the price usually doesn’t change unless it’s for a major reason, so keep that in mind when searching for an auto transport company. This is also why you want to get multiple quotes before deciding on a company to ship with; sometimes, the best price doesn’t always stay that way, and sometimes the higher price gets your vehicle picked up more quickly. Talk to a representative for more information; to get a hold of one, you can call us toll-free at 800-930-7417 and speak to one of our own live agents, or you can fill out our free online quote form and get multiple quotes e-mailed to you from reliable and reputable shippers. They also have toll-free numbers you can call to speak to a representative, who can answer questions, give you quotes, book your order, and more.

Vehicle to Vehicle Communication May Be Standard by 2020

Carrier 13During the 1980’s, as the construction of the Interstate Highway System was nearing completion and National Highway System was already in place, the Federal Highway Administration started doing research into vehicle-to-vehicle communication, or V2V communication, in order to help reduce the number of auto accidents on state and U.S. highways. Back then, V2V technology was in its infancy, and expenses were prohibitive; fast-forward thirty years, though, and the Federal Highway Administration is once again giving serious thought to some of those ideas that they had way back then. The goal from the start has always been to reduce the safety risks that come with driving an automobile, and the creation of several bureaus including the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration have helped speed it up a bit. The most recent advancement came from the NHTSA, which proposed a new rule that all vehicles should have V2V systems in them by 2020.

Vehicle to vehicle communication is the next major step in vehicle safety; in an era where the idea of a driverless car is becoming more commonplace than ever before, and with companies like Google and Nissan getting in on the ground floor, the idea of vehicle to vehicle communication has never been more important. The NHTSA has released preliminary data to show that just two systems – left-turn assist (LTA) and intersection-movement assist (IMA) could prevent over half a million automobile crashes every year and save over a thousand lives. LTA helps prevent drivers from turning into oncoming traffic (something their eyeballs could do too, but we digress) while IMA warns drivers that might be going into an intersection with oncoming traffic. While these systems are really useful if you’re not paying attention, you probably should be paying attention if you’re driving a vehicle – but that’s none of our business.

Anyway, where the technology really has an impact is in the driverless car scenario – with sensor suites already a thing and vehicles that drive themselves having a ton of them, this may be one more thing that pushes the technology to the front of the line, as it were. Driverless cars were once science fiction, but they could be replacing our beloved vehicles sooner than you might think, especially if Google and Nissan and the others actually put out a prototype that does the job efficiently. And then there’s the bit about how vehicle to vehicle communication can help in the auto transport industry – and we’re not talking about CB radios here. V2V in auto transportation trucks can be useful for a variety of different reasons, namely the fact that they’d make driving and operating those huge transport trucks a lot safer.

Not only that, but V2V in auto transport trucks could make the road safer for everyone else, too. Auto transportation is one of many logistics-based industries that have government rules and regulations regarding how far they can travel or how long drivers can actually drive in a given day. Number-fudging for drive sheets and the like isn’t all that common, but it’s not unheard of, and too many hours on the road can lead to driver fatigue and drivers falling asleep at the wheel, or taking ever-more extreme measures to keep themselves awake and alert. These new safety systems – and there are more, too, that will likely be implemented in the near future – can make things that much easier for auto shippers to keep themselves and those people that they share the road with safer, and vehicle to vehicle communication between different trucks could lead to more efficient transportation services as well.

This is all just theory right now, but the NHTSA is working hard on implementing things that will lead to a change in how we drive and how we go about our day to day. Maybe it won’t change; there are already new safety features in automobiles that really haven’t had much of an impact other than keeping some people safe. They don’t do much in the day-to-day, so people tend to forget about them. This is how you want safety features to work – only there when you need them, unassuming and unobtrusive. If these types of features can go into the auto transportation industry as well, it may lead to fewer auto transport disasters and more confidence when traveling on the highway next to a large transport truck. If you need to ship a vehicle, you can call us toll-free at 800-930-7417 and speak to a live agent, and you can also fill out our free online quote form to get multiple free quotes e-mailed to you within about an hour.

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