When it comes time to arrange car transport, knowing the best way to do it can help save you both time and money. Although driving your car from place to place might seem like a no-brainer, it’s not always the most realistic option for car delivery.
There are lot of different ways that you can transport a car, and some are better than others. But some are better depending on the situation you find yourself in. From standard open transporters to flatbed haulers that only transport heavy equipment, there’s something for everyone who needs to transport a car.
However, knowing and understanding the best ways to transport a car is going to help a lot when figuring out what to do. Here are some of the best ways to transport your new car and the pros and cons associated with each one.
Open Auto Transport Services
One of the best ways to transport a car is via an open auto transport truck. Oftentimes the best car delivery services will use an open-air truck to transport your vehicles. Open transport trucks can haul up to ten vehicles at a time, reducing costs for both customers and carriers alike.
Open-air trailers are special trailers built to haul cars. They are often constructed of plank floors on wheels and metal rails that line the sides. This ensures that every vehicle stays protected while it is in transit. Because of their unique layout, open-air trailers are able to transport up to 10 cars at the same time. This helps car delivery services cut down on time and costs to provide the most efficient service to their customers.
With that said, not all car delivery services are created equally. To ensure that you are getting the best offer available, you will want to ask plenty of questions about the delivery timeline, transport methods, and the cost of the service.
You will also want to confirm that they offer door-to-door delivery, which means that they can deliver your vehicle directly to your residence, rather than to a city hub. The best car delivery service will be happy to answer your questions and tell you exactly what to expect from their delivery.
Enclosed Auto Transport Services
Another great way to ship a car is via an enclosed auto transport truck. Enclosed trucks help vehicles stay protected from the elements while they are being transported. Unlike open trailers, enclosed trucks are built to completely enclose the vehicles. This offers additional protection that the steel rails of an open transport truck.
Enclosed transport is often best for anyone who needs additional protection for their vehicles. Most vehicles will only need an open trailer. Damage on open transporters is quite rare, and it is recommended for any kind of vehicle you drive on a daily basis. However, enclosed is best for vehicles that are not driven on a daily basis. This option is best for show cars, high-end muscle cars, race cars, luxury vehicles, or any vehicle that is currently appreciating in value.
Enclosed auto transport is a great option too if the weather is expected to be bad. Protection from the elements is a key feature of enclosed shipments. This is especially true during the winter months when snow, ice, and other nasty weather can cause issues on the road. However, enclosed shipping costs more than open transport – and, for some people, it’s cost prohibitive. Enclosed transport services, on average, cost about 60% more than the cost of an open truck on the same route. So it’s definitely not for everyone.
But, it’s there if it’s something you need.
Drive it Yourself
If transporting a vehicle is outside of your budget, you can always drive it yourself. Driving a vehicle the distance instead of shipping it, however, has its advantages and disadvantages.
One of the main advantages is that you have total control over your vehicle. You don’t have to entrust the safety of it to anyone; it’s always in your possession and always under your control. It can also save you money – but this depends on a lot of things which we’ll talk about in just a moment.
Driving takes a lot of time. If you were to average 60 miles per hour non-stop it’d take over two days to get from one coast to another. And most people can’t drive non-stop for 3,000 miles, so driving cross-country usually takes 3-5 days depending on how often you stop.
This leads to a lot of money spent on fuel, food, and lodging – oftentimes adding up to more than the cost to ship it! A lot of people don’t think about those cumulative expenses when they are figuring out whether to drive or ship their vehicle. So make sure you do. Of course, there’s also the hazards of the road to worry about. With a transport truck, your vehicle is protected from damage by massive steel bars or even an entire enclosed trailer. This affords a lot more protection than you’d have if you were to just drive the vehicle yourself. And let’s not forget the wear and tear your vehicle endures while being driven. During normal operation, you wear the tires a bit, you put some miles on the odometer. But driving cross-country puts three months of miles on your vehicle in the span of a few days. That’s hard on any vehicle.
Driveaway Auto Transport Services
Another option for car delivery is what is known as driveaway auto transport services. Basically, you hire a professional driver to drive the vehicle instead of driving it yourself or shipping it.
Driveaway transportation can be a good option for short distance trips, but it’s not recommended usually. One major reason is that most drivers aren’t actually hired by anyone – you have to find someone willing to do it yourself. There are some transport companies that offer driveaway services with their drivers. But they are rare, and most have gone out of business over the years as standard transportation has eaten up their market share.
Really, you get almost none of the advantages that you get when you just drive your vehicle instead of ship it, but all the disadvantages. You lose the advantage of saving money because you have to pay the driver. And they still have to eat and sleep, and that money likely comes from the amount you pay them. But you don’t have control of your vehicle. That’s the big one – you aren’t driving it, someone else is. So you still have to pay all that money and your vehicle is still going to get all that wear and tear on it. But you aren’t driving. The risk of an accident goes up, and you can really only choose driveaway services if your insurance allows it.
We recommend against driveaway auto transport services if you can help it. But they are an option – a hard to find option, maybe, but it’s out there.
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