Auto Transport 101: Tip-Top Tips On How Best to Ship Your Car


Cars take you from place to place. However, in some cases, your vehicle needs a lift, for example, when relocating to a distant state. In such a scenario, the biggest headache is ensuring your car reaches its destination safely and in good shape. While the major decisions boil down to the choice of the auto transport company, there are other essential considerations.

In this article, you’ll get tips on how to ship your car. That way, you’ll avoid problems like an inflated bill, a damaged car, or delayed transportation. If you follow this guide, your car will surely have the smoothest ride to its new destination. Let's delve right in. 

Schedule with the Auto Company Early 

Besides locations and distance, auto transport companies use shipping time to set their prices. For example, if you need your car moved immediately, an automobile transporter will charge you a higher fee. Therefore, you need to act smart.

Once you’ve picked the best auto transport option, schedule your auto shipment 2 to 4 weeks in advance. Make the down payment (which should be a couple of bucks). This arrangement will give you ample time to ask questions and get clarification.

Pick a Reputable, Reliable Company

In 2015, the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) received a dramatic increase in consumer complaints against auto transporters. Many of them are internet fraudsters, and they’re going to drag you along with their deceptive business practices.

In response, the FMCSA advised customers to avoid auto transport companies that don’t display their six-digit MC Docket code and seven-digit USDOT number on their website. The FMCSA gives these numbers to legitimate service providers. If you can’t trace these numbers, you’re dealing with a sham company.

Jump Into a Contract

Although contracts can be lengthy and convoluted, they easily save you from any liability that may come up during the shipping of your car. You only need to understand a contract’s basic elements before you sign it, and they include:

  • Quoted auto transport cost
  • Estimated time and date of delivery
  • Procedure for raising claims
  • Insurance and liability information
  • Cancellation policy and associated fees

If you don’t agree with any of the contract’s clauses, bring it up with the company and see if they can make changes. Don’t proceed if you don’t like what you read. 

Clean Your Vehicle and Get a Bill of Loading

If your car is messy, the pre-trip and post-trip inspection will be hard to do. Therefore, detail your car before the auto transport company gives you a big no and wishes you all the best with your transportation needs.

When the auto transporter comes, be present for the pre-trip inspection. That way, you’ll be able to note anything that went wrong during the transportation. Be sure to get a loading bill, a document confirming that the auto transporter picked up your vehicle.


Now that you have tips on shipping your car, reach out to a reputable auto transport company. American Auto Transport offers fast services at a reasonable price. Contact customer support today for a free quote.