How to Save Money on Vehicle Transport

The first question most people ask when shipping a car is how much will it cost?

Car transport costs will vary from one company to another but there are things you can do to ensure you are getting the best price.

There are several factors that determine the cost of shipping a car so here are a few tips for finding the most cost effective way to ship your vehicle.

Get Multiple Quotes

In the same way you would shop around for many other services, it’s best to shop around and compare quotes for vehicle transport. This will ensure you are getting a fair price.

Be sceptical of prices that are too low. Chances are if it appears too good to be true, it probably is.

Choose an Open Trailer

Many car shipping companies will give the option to choose between open and enclosed trailers.

While enclosed trailers do offer additional protection, they come at a premium and, some would say, aren’t usually necessary unless you are shipping a luxury or collectible vehicle.

Open transport is less expensive and is generally the best option for most vehicles.

Book as Early as Possible

The more flexible you can be on your timeline for shipping your vehicle the better off you will be.

The more time you give the shipping company to coordinate pick up and delivery, the more money you may be able to save.

Some companies offer express car transport but booking at the last minute will usually increase your price.

Confirm Depot to Depot Pricing

Although it may be more convenient, door-to-door delivery can end up costing you more.

It’s usually cheaper for you to pick up your car at a depot where they can drop off multiple cars at once.

Also, it can take extra time and therefore additional cost for carriers to travel on local roads.

Ask About Additional Fees Upfront

Another way to save money when booking car transport is to ask about all fees and additional costs right up front.

You don’t want to be hit with hidden costs when you pick up your vehicle. Make sure you know the exact price before you sign with any company.

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Customer Success Story

Why Car Transport Services Exists Today!

When I had to move my car from Melbourne to Perth, the journey of finding the right transportation service felt almost as daunting as the 3,400 km drive itself. Through trial and error, a bit of luck, and a few missteps, I learned a great deal about how to select the best service for such a task. Here’s my experience, and I hope it can guide you smoothly through your own process.

Start with Research

The first thing I learned was the importance of research. Initially, I made the rookie mistake of choosing the first service that popped up in my Google search results. Big mistake. The company had hidden fees I hadn’t anticipated, and the service was far from satisfactory. What I learned was to dig deeper. Read reviews on multiple platforms, ask for recommendations from friends or family who’ve undertaken similar moves, and don’t skip on checking the forums where real customers discuss their experiences.

Check for Licensing and Insurance

One good decision I made was ensuring the company was licensed and insured. Insurance is important. Transporting a vehicle across such a long distance has its risks, and you want to ensure that your car is covered in case of any mishaps. Verify the transporter's accreditation with transport authorities and ensure they have valid insurance that covers your vehicle during the transit. This gave me peace of mind, knowing my car was in safe hands.

Compare Quotes

Getting multiple quotes was another area where I initially faltered. I assumed all prices would be roughly the same and didn’t bother shopping around. However, after a pricey quote from the first company, I decided to get several more. The price differences were significant, and some companies offered more comprehensive services at lower costs. Always compare quotes from at least three to five companies. This not only gives you a better idea of the price range but also allows you to negotiate better terms.

Understand the Service Types

I wasn’t aware initially, but there are different types of car transport services: door-to-door, terminal-to-terminal, open carrier, and enclosed carrier. Each has its pros and cons. I chose an open carrier for its cost-effectiveness, but in retrospect, considering the long journey across Australia, an enclosed carrier would have been better to protect my car from the elements. Understanding these options beforehand helps in making a more informed decision based on your needs and budget.

Communication is Key

One of the best decisions I made was selecting a company that had excellent communication practices. They provided updates at every major juncture of the journey, which eased my anxiety. Ensure that the company you choose has a point of contact who is reachable and willing to update you throughout the process. This is vital for peace of mind and to ensure that any issues are quickly addressed.

Timing and Flexibility

I learned the hard way that flexibility is key when transporting a car such a long distance. The initial service I chose promised a delivery within a week, but it ended up taking more than two weeks, which disrupted my plans significantly. Ask about the expected delivery times and check if the company can offer guarantees or compensation if they exceed the estimated delivery times.

Avoid Rush Decisions

A bad decision I made was rushing into booking without fully understanding the terms and conditions. This led to unexpected charges for additional services I wasn’t aware I had agreed to. Take your time to read the fine print or have someone else review it. Make sure you understand every aspect of the service contract.

What I Wish I Knew

If I knew then what I know now, I would have placed more emphasis on checking customer feedback about their post-service experience, especially regarding how companies handle damage claims and disputes. Knowing a company's track record in these areas can save you from potential headaches if something goes wrong.

Open vs Enclosed Car Transport

Open car carrier with new vehicles

Open Car Transport

Open car transport involves shipping vehicles in an open-air trailer, exposing them to weather and road conditions.

This method is cost-effective and widely available, making it a popular choice for transporting vehicles quickly and economically.

The main benefits include lower costs due to multiple vehicles being transported simultaneously and quicker delivery times. However, the downside is the potential risk of damage from environmental elements and road debris.

moving cars in an enclosed car carrier

Enclosed Car Transport

Enclosed car transport uses fully enclosed trailers to provide maximum protection for vehicles against weather, theft, and damage during transit.

This method is preferable for high-value, classic, or luxury vehicles requiring extra security. Enclosed transport is more expensive and less readily available but offers higher insurance coverage and peace of mind.

Specialised services include GPS tracking and expert handling, ensuring vehicles are delivered safely and discretely.

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