Your car is part of you, so you want to make sure it is in the right hands. The shipping industry is growing and attracting stiff competition. Fortunately, the availability of many companies gives you a wide range of choice. Unfortunately, there are scammers among the good businessmen. Finding the most reliable car shipping company requires a thorough research. Here are some of the most important things to look out for.
Usually, you will find your shipper through an online search. It is hard for you to visit their offices. You, therefore, need a way to pick out a legitimate company online. As a requirement by the Federal Motor Carrier Administration (FMCSA), auto transport companies should be registered. The most reliable car shipping company will have an MC Docket number.
This six-digit number should be displayed on the company’s website in a visible manner. This is your only guarantee that the company is legitimate. If you are in doubt, check the FMCSA website and verify whether your shipper is registered or not. On this site, you can also see complaint records and the history of the company. It goes without saying that you should start looking elsewhere if the company is not registered.
Check online reviews
The most reliable car shipping company should have a good rating online. Make sure that the reviews are informative. They should tell you about the good and the bad about the company. If the company is wowing other people then it will probably interest you as well.
It is a pity that some companies manipulate reviews to attract clients. In addition to checking the company’s site, check other neutral reviews from Better Business Bureau and Transport Reviews. However, even these sites have been questioned at one point. Therefore, do not rely on these reviews as your sole informer. Call friends who have shipped before and hear their stories. In short, learn from others.
Compare car shipping prices
There are thousands of car shipping companies out there. The most reliable car shipping company should compare well with others. Although you might be tempted to get a cheaper option, don’t. Cheap is often equated to poor services. It is impossible to get quality services at prices below the market rate. You also do not want to go for exaggerated prices. Check for few companies and ask for their quotes. Pick the companies that are consistent with the market rates.
Your shipping consultant should cover your car while on transit. This is your sure bet that your car will be delivered in good shape. Again, ask the company for their insurance details. Understand what is covered and what is not. Basically, the insurance cover should be more for high-end vehicles and longer distances. If a company does not take responsibility for your car while on transit, what should you do?
Contact the company
Even scammers have nicely put websites. Do not fall for it. Make a personal contact. Ask some questions. Once you call your potential shipper, gauge whether their customer service is relational. You want someone who understands your worries and assures you. A company that does not clearly explain their services probably does not know how to do their job either. If at the end of the call you are left with some questions, those are red flags to be wary of.
Available shipping options
A company that offers a variety of shipping options will be flexible with your needs. Again, the consultant should simply display their options and let you choose the one that suits your needs. If a company manipulates your choice, it probably has no other options. Most companies will offer:
Listen to your intuition
You know that voice that tells you to trust a stranger? Listen to that one. If you are still uncomfortable with a company at the end of your search, leave it. You are better researching again than regretting later.
The shipping industry is filled with good, as well as bad business people. These points should guide you to a reliable shipping company. Researching the companies is not an easy job. But if your car is precious, you will find it necessary to spend some time looking for the right shipper. Remember not to get confused by the variety of choices online. Checking 5 companies should be enough.
You can talk to us if you need a reliable shipper.
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.