For some people, a long-distance move means moving from one place to another in the same state. However, most consider long-distance as moving from one state to another. Interstate transportation is when you must transport your vehicle from one State to another. 

There are multiple ways to handle a long-distance move. For instance, you can move everything yourself. Load the moving van, drive it and tow your vehicle or have someone else drive your vehicle. Or, you can hire private moving and auto transport companies

Shipping cars across the country is not as easy as calling a local moving company. It is not pizza delivery; moving a vehicle requires time and understanding to have the best interstate auto transport experience. 

It is always recommended that you hire a professional auto shipping company for this type of job instead of trying to do it yourself. That’s where we at American Auto Shipping come in. We have helped thousands upon thousands of customers move their vehicles all across the United States. 

Before choosing an organization for cross-country car shipping, we recommend reading the following tips to have a good experience.

Hire Private Auto Transport Companies

Transporting your vehicle across the country can be a stressful experience. Still, if you take the time to research and ask the right questions, you can avoid common problems and make sure your vehicle arrives at its destination safely.

Do Your Research

Once you know you need to ship a car, start by looking up potential auto transport companies before anything else. There are a number of ways to find them. A quick online search yields a lot of quality results. You can also talk to friends or family who have shipped a car recently. 

You should get a list of possible companies specializing in interstate cross-country car shipping. Look at their reviews online – you should only book with those that you feel perfectly comfortable with. Every company will have some bad reviews, of course, as you can’t please everyone. But the best have mostly positive reviews that look like they were written by real customers. 

Of course, you could skip all of that and choose American Auto Shipping. With almost 25 years of experience helping customers ship their vehicles, there’s no vehicle on the road we can’t handle. We are top-rated on a number of platforms and give the best prices and the best service of any shipper out there today.

Get Quotes For a Private Car Transport Service

Some people, though, just want to shop around. We understand that. Once you have a few companies you feel comfortable contacting, call and get quotes to ship your car. While you’re on the phone, you should ask what services they offer and how long they have been in business. 

Each auto transport company works a bit differently, but most will include any and all taxes, fees, and fuel surcharges in their quotes. Still, though, you should make sure they include all those costs before you book with them. You should also ask about insurance as well. Every auto transport company that physically moves vehicles is required to carry insurance. 

Ask For References

The best way to find a reputable auto transport company is by asking for references from previous customers. Ask them about their experience with the company and what kind of service they received. If possible, ask for the names of other people who have used this company and call them yourself, so you have an idea of their experience with this particular company before choosing one yourself.

Most companies you speak to will tell you they only use professionally licensed and insured carriers, which is good because that’s the only kind of carrier on the road. But still, it’s important to know for sure because some companies are more lax than others, so you want to be sure you’re protected in case there is any damage to your vehicle during transit.

Check Reviews

You should also check reviews on websites like Google and Yelp, as well as Transport Reviews. The last is the industry-standard review website for auto shippers. 

These websites allow people to leave reviews about businesses in their area so that others can learn more about them and see what kind of services they offer before choosing who they will hire for their needs!

Here at American Auto Shipping, we work hard to maintain our high ratings on every review platform we are on. To do that, we provide excellent customer service and we only work with the best carriers on the road. We have stringent requirements that weed out the lesser carriers and leave only the best for our customers – requirements that other shippers do not have, and this is reflected in the many, many positive reviews we have from real customers.

Transport Reviews
Google Las Vegas Reviews
Consumer Affairs
Google Portland Reviews

Do They Offer Tracking Services

If you are planning to ship your car alone, it is important to know if the transport service offers tracking services. Tracking services will let you know the location of your vehicle at any time. 

Most companies can help you track the status of your vehicle at any time during its journey. However, unless your vehicle has a tracking device or a GPS unit inside it, most companies will only be able to tell you where the driver is and an estimate of how long it will take to get your vehicle to you.

If a shipping company says they offer GPS tracking, take it with a grain of salt. Most carriers on the road do not offer GPS tracking for their trucks; it’s expensive and often more complicated than the traditional method of asking the driver where they are.

Know Pick Up and Drop Off Addresses

When shipping your car, it is important to know where they pick up your vehicle and where they drop it off. The best way to ensure that your car gets picked up on time is by providing them with all the necessary information beforehand. Make sure that there are no mistakes in these addresses so that there’s no delay in picking up or dropping off your vehicle.

Of course, carriers drive large, sometimes 80-ft long trucks that cannot physically get to every address in the country. As such, it’s also important to understand that you may need to meet your carrier in a large parking lot near the pickup or delivery location. This gives the carrier plenty of space to load or unload your vehicle without issue.

Getting Ready For Cross Country Car Shipping

Less Than One-Quarter Tank of Fuel

Ensure there is less than a quarter gas tank in your car before you leave home. This will help prevent fuel spillage during transport, which could cause damage to both your vehicle and the truck used for transportation.

Not only that, but fuel is heavy. If all ten vehicles on a transport truck had half a tank of fuel, it is conceivable that the truck could be pushed over the government-mandated weight limits imposed on them. This can cause delays in your shipment and can result in additional fees if carriers have to deal with the headache of being overweight.

Removing All Valuables

Before transporting your vehicle, remove all valuables from it. This includes personal items such as CDs, laptops, or GPS devices. You should also remove all tools from the trunk, including jumper cables and jack tools.

Remove any tires from the vehicle that may be easily stolen, such as spares and winter tires. If there are things inside of your vehicle that you would like to keep with you during transport but cannot store in a different location because of limited space (such as camping gear), consider taking them out of the car for transport instead of leaving them inside for thieves to find and steal once it reaches its destination.

Check Your Car’s Battery

Another important aspect of auto transport is battery maintenance. As it costs more to transport a vehicle that does not run or start than a standard operating vehicle, knowing whether your vehicle starts and drives is important when getting quotes to ship it.

Carriers that can move inoperable vehicles load and unload them via a winch that is attached to their truck. If your shipper knows your vehicle is not running, they can make sure they find a carrier that has a winch. If they do not, a carrier may be dispatched to pick your vehicle up that cannot load it. This could result in inoperable fees being added to your price!

Making sure your battery is operating and your vehicle can start can go a long way to making your shipment as smooth as possible.

Remove Items From the Car

Remove all items from your vehicle before transporting them. There are several reasons for this:

Carriers are not licensed to transport any household items. This means they are not allowed to move any vehicles with any items inside.

Additional items are not insured by the carrier. As such, you put them in the vehicle at your own risk. Any damage incurred to personal items in your vehicle are up to you to fix or repair.
As mentioned previously, if a carrier is overweight, and it’s because of personal items in a vehicle, those items will have to be removed before they can continue. This could result in your items being dumped on the side of the road or at a weigh station!

Check Your Car’s Tires

Before loading private automotive transport companies, ensure all tires are inflated properly. Check for any leaks and ensure there are no nails in them. Also, check the spare tire's pressure and ensure it is inflated properly.

This is important because many carriers are not equipped to load or unload a vehicle with a flat or underinflated tire. If they try, it could cause damage to your vehicle - damage they would be liable for, as their insurance will cover loading and unloading as well. Most carriers will not even attempt it, so check your tires ahead of time!

Ship Today With American Auto Shipping

The key to a smooth car shipment is preparation. If you have done your research and know exactly what to expect, you will gain confidence in the process and likely have a better experience. 

You’ll find that every tip and piece of advice we gave in this article also pertains to us here at American Auto Shipping. Save yourself the hassle and guesswork of finding a reputable shipping company – if you’re reading this, you’ve already found one! 

We have been in business for over 20 years helping customers transport their vehicles. We know all the ins and outs of the industry and we know what it takes to move your vehicle on time and at a price that’s affordable. 

American Auto Shipping is here to help you every step of the way. We offer door-to-door transportation on every type of carrier on the road. So whether your vehicle is big, small, running or not, we can move it. 

So call us toll-free or use our online quote request form to get your free auto quote and get out of the planning phase of your car shipment today. 

Dave Armstrong
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