Auto Transport Tips: Knowing Why Your Shipment Takes So Long
It’s important to understand why it is that auto transport companies can take days and sometimes weeks to deliver your vehicle after it has been picked up. The entire process, from booking an order to getting it picked up to having it delivered, takes time, usually at least a week – rare are the customers that get their vehicles picked up, moved and delivered in a few days. This is rule #1 of auto transport: be patient, and we really can’t stress that enough. The broker/carrier relationship is a strong one, but it’s also a fluid one; even with thousands of auto transporters on the road, most only run along specific routes, hitting the same cities over and over.
Auto transporters don’t like deadhead (empty spaces on their truck). They want to keep their truck as full as possible, and most auto shippers operate open, ten-car carriers, which means that they’re constantly picking up new loads and dropping off ones that are already on their truck. Pickup and delivery takes time; not only do they have to drive the vehicle on or off their truck (which doesn’t take too long), but they also have to work with the customer to sign the paperwork, do the inspection, and – for delivery – take the money that is owed to them. This is what takes time. That, and the fact that they hit probably half a dozen cities while en route to pick your vehicle up, and probably a half dozen more before they deliver it to you.
Then there’s the regulations and laws that they have to follow. Auto transport truck drivers can only travel so far during a single day, and they can only drive for so long before having to take a break. Some companies utilize tag-team drivers; since the regulations are per driver, they can get around those by utilizing driving teams, where one of them gets the required rest while the other drives. This can shave time off your shipment, but many carriers don’t work like that; it doubles the overhead for just about everything, including fuel, food, maintenance, and more. For more information on why shipments take so long, you can give us a call at 800-930-7417 to speak to one of our live agents, and you can also fill out our free online quote request form to get up to ten free quotes e-mailed to you within about an hour. You can also visit our articles page to learn more about auto transportation services and other aspects of the car shipping industry.