The face of the auto transport industry has changed since the development of the internet. Prior to living our connected lives of immediate access, finding and comparing auto transport quotes was a bit of a challenge, and a time-consuming one at that. It involved cracking open the phone book and calling up shippers, giving them all your information, and getting a cost estimate. Repeat that several times and you have a host of options to choose from.
Now, the same process can be done online in a matter of minutes. That’s not to say that you should discount the tried and true method of using the phone book that can be a great way to find a local option if you get caught in the whirlwind of options available on line. That said, there is no more efficient way of getting and comparing price quotes from car shippers than using the internet.
If you’ve done any amount of web searching in hopes of finding the right auto shipper, you may noticed that there are a staggering number of websites out there offering auto transport services. A quick glance over a company website can give you a good insight into the quality of their service and the experience they bring to the table. If you find a simple five page website that only offers basic information, that’s a pretty good indication that they only provide the most basic services.
The Nitty-gritty: Contacting Shippers & Comparing Prices.
As we’ve discussed above, getting competing price quotes and comparing them is now easier than ever, but you should come armed with some information to make the process easier. In this section, we’ll go over what you’ll need to have in order to get an accurate cost estimate from an auto shipper.
Basic information - The vehicle make, model, and year, as well as its current location and the destination you’re having it shipped to.
Type of transport - Determine whether you need an open or enclosed auto carrier. An enclosed carrier handles one or two cars and completely covers all sides during shipping, whereas an open carrier hauls multiple vehicles and is open to the wind, weather, and elements. The other major option involves having the vehicle shipped directly to a specific address or picking it up at a nearby delivery terminal. As you might expect, enclosed transport and door-to-door shipping are premium services.
Timeframe - When you need your car picked up and delivered is an important part of the equation and you should have an idea, if not specific dates, that you need delivery by. If you’re able to maintain some flexibility regarding delivery timeframe, it can save you some money.
Contact companies - Now you’re ready to contact companies and start comparing prices. You should not deal with any company that charges you upfront, or requires a commitment of any kind, before giving you an estimate. The industrywide standard is to give cost estimates for free. It’s generally suggested that you compare 3-5 companies to find the right fit.
Want to start comparing prices and get an instant quote right away? Contact us today, either by calling us at the number at the top of the page, or by using our online contact form! We’re happy to answer all your questions and all cost estimates are FREE all the time!
Written By:Joe Webster
Joe Webster began his journey in the auto transport field by attending the University of Southern California (USC), where he graduated with a Bachelor of Business Marketing.
After college, he started his career in the auto transport industry from the bottom up and has done virtually every job there is to do at A-1 Auto Transport, including but not limited to: Truck Driver, Dispatch, Sales, PR, Bookkeeping, Transport Planner, Transport Manager, International Transport Manager, Brokering, Customer Service, and Marketing. Working with his mentor Tony Taylor, Joe Webster has learned the ins and outs of this industry which is largely misunderstood.
With over 30 years experience in the industry, we've been helping people ship their vehicles, motorcycles, RV's, heavy equipment, household goods and more across the country or overseas without a hitch. Ask us anything.