When shipping your vehicle, one of the first things you would want to know is when the shipping company will pick it up. When you make your first call to schedule shipping, you will notice that it’s impossible to pinpoint an exact pickup date immediately. Why? We must find the right trucker for your particular location and your individual needs.
First available shipping date refers to the first day you’d be able to have your vehicle picked up by our transporter. This date doesn’t refer to the exact pickup date though. The date of your vehicle’s pickup is dependent on availability of the trucks in your location. Nonetheless, if we don’t manage to secure a truck to load your vehicle on that particular day, we will be able to load it a few days later. Usually, this shouldn’t take more than five business days counting from the first date you give us.
How the pickup window of 1-5 days works
- You inform us of the first date your vehicle is available for pickup. Actually, this is what is called the first available shipping date.
- Once we know when your car can be picked up, we start searching for a trucker that fits your needs. We also identify which truck can be available for that date. Much as we have a large fleet of trucks to work with, some locations take a bit more time to assign a pickup trucker.
- Once we assign a trucker to ship your car, we communicate, mostly via email to let you know of the transport arrangements. Normally, we include the truck drivers phone number for ease of communication.
- On the actual day of pickup, the assigned trucker calls you a couple of hours before informing you of the time they expect to arrive to pick up your vehicle. They do this so that you can have enough time to prepare any last-minute details before they arrive. Once the transporter arrives, they inspect the vehicle and load it onto the truck. By looking at the estimated times which are guided by mileage, you can estimate how long it will take have your vehicle delivered.
What to expect during the vehicle pickup date
Some things such as traffic and breakdowns can potentially delay the estimated pickup time. To have a positive experience, keep communicating with the vehicle transporter. Remember, some problems such as breakdowns on the road are beyond the transporter’s control so practice patience. You can also help ease the process by setting up a picking point that you and the transporter can readily access. For example, If the streets in your residential are hard for the truck to navigate, you could meet in a parking lot that is close-by. Also, if you’re not available to release the vehicle to the carrier, assign a trusted person to release it so that there are no delays on both sides.
The pickup day should be by no means the negotiation day. Rather, it should be the day to quickly confirm what you previously agreed upon. To avoid wasting time during the actual vehicle pickup, ensure that you and the transporter are very clear about payments days before. So that when you meet, you will jump right into confirming the insurance terms, payments information and the terms of your contract.
Before the truck arrives, prepare your vehicle accordingly following the transporters guideline. It’s a general rule that all vehicles in transit shouldn’t have any mechanical issues. But, just in case the vehicle has any mechanical issues, make sure you inform the transporter beforehand. Before your car is loaded on the truck, note the odometer reading. Although your vehicle car may be driven a little in order to load, there shouldn’t be major mileage discrepancies when the vehicle is delivered.
When your vehicle is delivered
A smooth vehicle delivery simply starts with you being on time to meet your transporter. Once you arrive, conduct another inspection, and the goal here will be to compare the current state of your vehicle against the records. In the rare incident that your vehicle has been damaged, having a record of the car's condition before and after transport will help ascertain the damages. Again, if you can’t be there to conduct the inspection, assign someone you trust to do it. Also, it's important to know that your vehicle will face the same dust, debris, snow, etc., just as if you drove it yourself. Finally, check the odometer and start the car to see if there are any mechanical problems.
If you need your vehicle shipped safely, talk to us and we will offer you a first available date that you will be comfortable with.
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.