When looking for an auto shipper to pickup your vehicle, it’s important to understand what exactly an auto shipper does and how the industry works. The first thing you will want to look for from an auto shipper is a quote – make sure you get multiple quotes from multiple vehicle transportation companies as the lowest price you get may not always the best.
Once you’re finished comparing and contrasting the companies who bid on your vehicle transportation, book your order with one of them. From there, the company you booked with will work to find a physical carrier in the vicinity of your vehicle to move it.
The auto shipper will probably ask you to pay a deposit beforehand – some auto shipping companies take their deposit when you place an order with them, and others don’t take payment until they actually find a carrier to move your vehicle. We don’t take any payment until we find a carrier for you.
Some will take full payment up front – this means that the payment to them and the payment to the carrier are paid together as opposed to the deposit up front and the rest of the balance upon delivery to the driver. Payment up front tends to lead to higher prices overall as well as longer wait times, since fewer carriers want to have to send a broker an invoice to get their payment.
Once your auto shipper finds a carrier, they’ll let you know when the carrier will be there to pickup your vehicle. Once the carrier arrives, you and the driver of the auto shipper truck will inspect the vehicle for any prior damage – this makes sure that any new damages that are incurred will be covered by the auto shipper’s insurance, and won’t be up to you to take care of.
Before the inspection, make sure the vehicle has been washed, drivers have been known to reject inspections due to dirtiness. To account for all scratches or damage, make sure the inspection is done in the light. From there, your auto shipper will drive the vehicle to the destination. After the vehicle is in transit, your auto shipper may or may not have a method to track where the vehicle is. You can track your vehicle right here on our website if you book with us, by the way.
Most auto shippers don’t have tracking methods, but they can call the auto shipper who is transporting the vehicle and find out where exactly they are, and then give you an update. However, the auto shipper driver can’t be on the phone while driving, so be prepared to have to wait a bit for the auto shipper to get back to you on the location of the vehicle. If you’re interested in charting the progress of the auto shipper precisely, considering working with a company that has a GPS in their trucks.
When the auto shipper is close to the destination location, they will give you a call to notify you that they’re on their way. Once the auto shipper actually arrives, you and the auto shipper driver will do another walk around the vehicle, this time noting any new damage to the vehicle. This is why it is important to have a thorough pre-inspection, if you find any new damage and can not prove it, then you’re out of luck.
This inspection, again, is to ensure that the auto shipper’s insurance is only covering new damage. (Keep in mind that damage only occurs to 5% of vehicles during transport.) When the driver initialy picks up the vehicle- this is where the payment comes in, if the auto transporter has made it a cash on delivery payment. No shipper takes personal checks – they accept payment through cash, cashier’s check or money order ONLY. This is because the auto shipper has no recourse if a check bounces – they’re long gone by the time they try to cash it.
You can get a free, customized quote to ship your vehicle by filling out our free online auto transport quote request form. You can also call our toll-free number at 800-930-7417 and speak to one of our live representatives if you are interested in getting some of your questions answered before you even start the quote process. Regardless of what you’re looking to ship, American Auto Shipping can help you move it.