Car Transport Cross Country Guide

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Transporting your car cross country? Here are some top notch suggestions how to save money, prepare your vehicle and feel safe during the whole transportation process.

Ship a Car or Drive It Yourself? Pros and Cons

Whether buying a new car or moving your old car, vehicle owners across America must decide on the most effective auto transport solution. They evaluate factors of cost, convenience, distance, and time commitment. Naturally, the first decision is whether to drive the car yourself or hire a top-quality vehicle transport service like MoveWheels. Strictly in terms of costs, every potential customer receives an affordable shipping quote and compares it with estimated travel expenses. However, there are other significant considerations.

Car Shipping vs Driving

By moving yourself, you can take along your family, pets, plants and other personal items. You can stop wherever you like and enjoy the scenery. However, if these things are not so appealing for you, hire a licensed auto transport carrier. The benefits include:

  • avoiding vehicle wear and tear;
  • saving on gas, food, lodging and other expenses;
  • saving valuable time (especially due to weather and construction delays);
  • option to deliver luxury, unique, or inoperable cars in enclosed trailers.

Vehicle transport operations usually take a little longer than driving yourself, but they are generally safer, reduce the wear and tear on your automobile, and avoid all opportunities for police speed traps and other moving violations. You can also assign a driver to pick up your vehicle at a remote location and deliver it door-to-door to a destination of your choice. One minor drawback is that your vehicle can get dirty or wet along the way, but only if you select the open trailer option.

By driving yourself, the owner should carefully estimate fuel, tolls, parking, vehicle depreciation, and other indirect expenditures. Food and lodging costs for yourself and family members may be prohibitively expensive. Be sure to carefully estimate all of these expenses. Don’t forget to factor in fatigue and stress from potential delays due to bad weather or construction. So, taking all of these considerations into account, contact an experienced shipping agent at MoveWheels and receive a free, fair, and transparent shipping quote before you make a pivotal decision about your vehicle transport.

Prepare Your Vehicle for Moving

Customers who place an order for vehicle transport with MoveWheels know how much time they save by letting our dedicated agents perform a variety of tasks. We scrutinize all available offers, find the most dependable carriers, and hire professional drivers. We negotiate affordable loading and transportation rates for our customers and manage the pickup with auctions, dealerships, and private sellers. We also guarantee timely and secure delivery of your auto.

But there are some tasks owners have to do for themselves before car shipping. These preparatory measures are essential to minimize transportation risks and damages and to expedite a coverage policy with insurance agents.

Vehicle Transport Preparations

Nearly all used vehicles have slight scratches, paint chips, and dents on the body. Before transport, thoroughly wash your vehicle and take clear, detailed photos of these damages from different angles. Also, make and date a written record of existing problems and discuss them with the driver, estimator or insurance agent. Be sure to verify your records in official correspondence.

Before your vehicle is picked up, take out:

  • electronics;
  • aftermarket accessories;
  • personal items;
  • disable alarms.

Remove everything from the passenger compartment. Personal items are not insured before delivery. These items may be lost or damaged during transport and may spill, puncture, or otherwise impair the vehicle interior. Carriers do not claim responsibility for such cases.

Finally, before the driver takes charge of your vehicle, make sure that:

  • alarms and electronic passes are disabled or disconnected;
  • windows and vents are closed and properly sealed;
  • loose parts are secured or removed.

If the auto is driven or delivered in an open trailer, moisture and dirt can get inside through windows and vents, making a mess of the passenger compartment. Also, electronic parking passes and toll tags are to be deactivated, else they could be charged or stolen on route and the drivers can’t keep track of these items.

Washing and Inspection Vehicle Transport Preparations

Almost all used vehicles have some slight scratches or dents on the body. That’s why, to facilitate regular inspection, wash the car, examine it and take pictures of all chips and paint spots. Make and date written records of any existing damages, discuss them with the driver, estimator or insurance agent, check correspondence of the data in official notes.

The pictures are to be clean, taken from different angles, close-up. Additionally, before any car shipping operations, take out:

  • electronics;
  • aftermarket accessories;
  • personal items;

Remove everything from the passenger compartment. Personal items are not insured before auto truck deliveries. They may be lost or damaged during the loadings, impair the vehicle interior and any carrier don’t take responsibility for such cases.

Additional Safety Precautions

Many standard and luxury vehicles are outfitted with custom gear and equipment. As an extra precaution during transport, we recommend all of these custom products be removed and stowed in the trunk or delivered separately. These items include:

  • flood lights on the roof or bumpers;
  • GPS systems;
  • custom electronics(stereos, TVs, and CD/DVD players) and faceplates;
  • license plates;

As the auto shakes and bounces en route, everything inside should be properly organized and secured. Also, be sure to eliminate any fluid leakages; check the battery charge; inflate the tires; and fill the gas tank 1/8th to ¼ of capacity. Thorough maintenance and inspection is essential to avoid any unforeseen delays or damages, even if your car is inoperable. Once in the hands of a professional driver, your auto will be carefully transported with an earnest respect for traffic rules and safety.

Vehicle Transportation Methods

Your shipping agent will discuss all methods of vehicle transport when booking our services. Autos can be driven, hauled, or delivered door-to-door in open or enclosed trailers depending upon a variety of factors, such as:

  • auto’s technical condition;
  • customer’s preferences;
  • overall costs.

Driven cars should be in good working condition with a full tank of gas. However, if the vehicles are being hauled, only about 1/8th of a tank is needed so the driver can load and unload as necessary. Fluid levels should be maintained but nothing should be leaking from the vehicle to handicap these operations. Owners should also record and take pictures of the mileage from the odometer in case of any disputes with the driver.

Vehicle Transport Paperwork

The driver will carry all necessary documentation for each transportation method. All data is specified before the car shipping date, and all issues are discussed thoroughly beforehand. For example, in order to pickup the vehicle from a dealership or auction, the driver should know:

  • auto’s VIN code;
  • its lot number;
  • the office or warehouse working hours.

Additional paperwork is often necessary if the car is being delivered to a port. Usually, the driver will receive paperwork as well. These records will be handed over upon delivery.

Make sure it’s door – to – door delivery.

When looking to hire a dependable car shipping company, the first thing many customers desire is a way to cut delivery costs across the USA. They are absolutely convinced that door-to-door options are too expensive. However, this is usually not the case. If terminal-to-terminal service is selected, you will be charged additional reloading and storage fees at every cargo station along the way. Comprehensive vehicle transport services provide many other benefits as well, even for the most demanding customers.

Advantages of Door-to-Door Vehicle Transport Delivery

American car owners are usually very busy working hard at their jobs and studies. That’s why they prefer to rely on professional services for a variety of tasks so that they can stay focused on their own areas of interest. By selecting a door-to-door car shipping method, they hardly need to be involved in the delivery process, and thereby greatly reduce the time, effort, and stress of managing the task themselves. Additionally, the auto hauling technique is preferable because it is:

  • safe;
  • fast;
  • coordinated;
  • trackable.

Your valuable luxury, vintage or collectable auto is loaded onto the trailer only once using specialized lifting equipment; it is then unloaded only at the destination with the same professional care. Direct door-to-door vehicle transportation is preferable as only one certified driver is responsible. They are highly experienced operating a hauler along a dedicated and well-known route to your delivery destination. So the owner can relax and wait for the driver’s call on the day of arrival. Moreover, all car shipping companies offer comprehensive insurance coverage for this transport option, so it is also the safest one.

Check broker authority

Before hiring a broker check their license, you have to be sure that authority is active. Just ask their MC number or legal company name and check it over here.

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Then press on HTML button and make sure that license is active and bond is in the file. I would recommend doing the same thing with carrier company once it’s assigned to the order.

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This step is very important, so make sure you check all information prior to signing the contract.

Bill of lading

Bill of lading is one of the most important documents for customers. The driver has to fill it out, sign it and give you the copy on pickup location. Make sure that driver indicates mileage on the odometer. Take your time and inspect your vehicle on delivery location. If the vehicle is being delivered during night time, ask the driver to meet you at the nearest parking lot where there is enough light to make an inspection. If something is wrong BOL is the most important document for an insurance company. So make sure that driver provides you with the copy of the same BOL he signed on pickup with information about the car on delivery location.

Thus, some vehicle transport preparations are to be performed by the owners. These precautions will help minimize delivery complications, prevent any disputes with the driver, and avoid documentation delays and lengthy inspections. For all other issues, rely on our dedicated professionals to manage your safe and secure transport as scheduled.

Car Transport Cross Country Guide
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