7 Mistakes People Make When Shipping Their Car (And How To Avoid Making Them Yourself)

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Be thorough when shipping your vehicle

Don’t make these common mistakes

The best way to avoid these mistakes



Be thorough when shipping your vehicle

When you ship your car with any auto transport company you want to be absolutely sure that you are being as thorough as humanly possible. You definitely don’t want to make any mistakes in your preparation that end up costing you extra. “Success is the product of preparation” and shipping your car is no different. If you are unsure of where to start with your preparation for your car shipment, be sure check out our auto transport checklist.

Don’t make these common mistakes

  1. Not having the right documents ready when your driver arrives
    This is, quite simply, a waste of your own time and a waste of your driver’s time. When your driver arrives for the pickup, make sure you already have photo identification (valid license or passport). If someone else will be there in your place when your car is being picked up, they will need their own valid (unexpired) ID ready and with them.
  2. drivers-license

  3. Not looking into your shipping company
    This can be a critical error. You should research your potential auto shipping company the same way you would for any other service you might use such as landscaping or pet care.

    Use online review sites like Google to compare your options and choose whichever one is best for you. For auto transport, you should only trust a company that has over a hundred reviews. That way, you know that they’ve been doing business for quite a while.

    There are actually companies out there with well over a thousand reviews. So, as long as their ratings are good, we advise that you use those companies.

  4. man-researching-his-auto-transport-company

  5. Trusting a car shipping company who is guaranteeing a certain delivery date
    The auto transport industry has too many moving parts to be able to guarantee any specific date of delivery. Companies should be able to give you a window of 3 or 4 days in which they will deliver your vehicle.

    The more distance involved in the shipment the bigger the delivery window will be. If someone says they can transport your vehicle across the country and that they know for certain the exact date it will be delivered to you – run in the other direction. There are too many variables which could affect your delivery date such as traffic and weather for example.

  6. guaranteed-dates-are-asign-of-scams-in-the-auto-transport-industry

  7. Thinking that someone can ship your car across the country for only a couple hundred bucks
    In general, shipping an average sized car coast-to-coast will always cost at least $800. The vast majority of the time it will cost more than that.

    If someone says they can do it for $400, we guarantee they will ask for a full payment up front then proceed to not deliver your car anywhere close to on-time or even at all.

  8. car-shipping-scams-are-often-characterized-by-extremely-low-prices

  9. Leaving personal items in your vehicle
    If you leave personal items in your vehicle such as jewelry, electronics, clothing etc. you are leaving yourself at risk of having those items damaged or stolen.

    Now, you might ask “Shouldn’t I be able to trust a car shipping company to ship my car without stealing my stuff?” Of course, you should. That is not what we’re referring to though.

    During the long trips these drivers must routinely make, they inevitably must make rest stops and that’s when a passerby could see said personal items in your vehicle and potentially steal them. It hasn’t happened often at all, but it has rarely occurred.

    If you do leave your personal items in your car during shipment and this does happen to you, your items will not be covered by any sort of insurance policy that is tied to your shipment. This is the main reason that many companies do not allow people to ship anything else in their car.

  10. personal-item-left-in-a-car-while-the-car-ships

  11. Waiting too long to schedule your car shipment
    You should book your auto transport as far in advanced as you can. Generally, you should give your car shipping company at least a month’s notice.

    Think of it this way, there are a limited number of carriers out there who can take your car to its destination. When you wait too long, many of the spots on those carriers have probably already been booked. At this point it is more difficult to find a carrier to take your car. You will still get your car shipped but it could take longer or cost more than if you booked in advance.

  12. man-putting-off-booking-his-car-shipment

  13. Not taking note of damage at delivery on the Bill of Lading
    This is one of the worst, yet most frequent, missteps people make during the auto transport process. It’s a costly mistake too. If you don’t make note of damage incurred during transport on the Bill of Lading when the driver first drops your car off, then you will be responsible for paying for the damages in full.

    However, damage occurs very rarely. Do not let the extremely small possibility of damage to your car discourage you from shipping it. In fact, the “damage” being referred to is almost always a small scratch or chip, which could very well be covered by your auto transport insurance so long as you take note of it on the bill of lading. In fact, if it helps you rest easier while you ship your car, you can take photos of the car with timestamps prior to the car being loaded onto the carrier.

  14. taking-notes-on-the-bill-of-lading


The best way to avoid these mistakes

Use the auto shipping checklist. Check it over once you’re finished, then check it again. Once you do that, re-read this list to see if it jogs your memory of anything that you might have forgotten. You can never be too thorough when shipping your car.

You can always consult with someone you know who has shipped their vehicle in the past and ask them about their experience shipping their car. You can use that as a jumping off point to start your preparations. If you do have additional questions you can always call the auto transport experts at RoadRunner Auto Transport at (888) 777-2123.

Category: Auto Shipping, Auto Transport.

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