7 Steps to Avoid Getting Ripped Off When Transporting a Car

If you’re transporting a car for the 1st time, you’ll want to get it right and avoid being ripped off. Your car is a valuable asset and shipping your car can be expensive. While the internet makes it easy to research car transport companies, the volume of information can be overwhelming.

The following is a step-by-step description of the process you can follow to avoid getting ripped off when transporting a car for the 1st time.

Easy Step 1: Get Quotes

Getting quotes is usually the first thing to consider when thinking about moving a vehicle.

In fact, get quotes from multiple companies because this is the only way of knowing if you’re being offered a fair deal.

Shop around. Go online and get quotes from a number of vehicle transport companies. When people shop for other goods and services for the first time, they will look for the best value for their money.

You should consider doing the same when considering car transport for the 1st time.

Find out the cost to transport a car at a variety of companies. Remember, a cheap quote may not end up being the best value.

The saying “You get what you pay for” applies to the auto transport industry as well.

Easy Step 2: Evaluate Options

Do the maths on driving compared to transporting your vehicle with a car transport services company. You’ll be surprised how cost effective car transport can be. The time you save, plus the often cheap airfares is money in your pocket.

Also, compare quotes amongst different car transport companies. You will find that different companies operate different and are able to offer a variety of options.

Should I go for a cheap quote or the most expensive quote?

When it comes to car transport companies, you’ll hear a lot of debate about what makes a good price. Is it better to go for the cheapest option or the most expensive one?

On the one hand the more affordable option may offer a lower price for their service but this could come with significantly compromised quality of service. Be sure to find out what services they are not including in their contract.

As a first-time car transport customer, you might think that insurance coverage during transport would be included. Often it’s not!

If you’re unsure, it’s best to do a side-by-side comparison. In particular, highlight any services that are not provided.

Easy Step 3: Read the Terms & Conditions

Read over the terms and conditions carefully. Make sure you understand everything before making a booking. Also, ensure you understand the company’s policies and procedures.

Check whether you’re allowed to leave personal belongings in the vehicle.

Some companies will outright refuse to accept responsibility for stolen or damaged personal items. So it’s best to play it safe and remove them yourself.

Easy Step 4: Ask Questions

Don’t take things for granted. Ask lots of questions before choosing a car carrier.

Give them the opportunity of showing you what makes them the best car transport company in the industry.

There are a few cars transportation scams that consumers should be aware of.

Common Scams When Transporting a Car for the 1st Time

Most people are likely to transport a car only once in their lifetime. Companies are acutely aware of this and will prey on people transporting a car for the 1st time.

One common scam we’ve heard about is where car transport companies quote a low price, but then raise the price once the car is in transit.

Another scam occurs when a car is damaged during transport. The carrier tries to blame the damage on the you by saying it was there before. 

Always take photos of your car before it is loaded on the truck. This will give you the necessary proof of the condition of the car before it was transported.

Some car transport companies will try to overcharge customers for additional services, such as storage or insurance.  When shipping a car, it is important that you do your research and choose a reputable company.

Easy Step 5: Preparing Your Car for Transport

Get ready to transport your car.

Give your vehicle a good clean to help make vehicle inspection easier.

Make sure there is only 1/4 tank of fuel in the vehicle, the battery works and the tires are properly inflated.

Empty the vehicle of your personal possessions. Lower the antenna, turn off any alarms, and disable any automatic toll readers.

If the car is a convertible, make sure there aren’t any tears in the roof material. If there are tears, seal them to prevent further damage that can be caused by wind during transport. And, make sure to give an extra set of keys to the transport company.

Easy Step 6: Get That Condition Report

You’ll typically get a call within a few hours of pickup from the transport driver. This will give you a general timeframe of when you can expect them to arrive.

Once there, the driver will fill in a vehicle condition report. This lists any damage prior to loading the car onto the car hauling trailer.

After the condition report is accepted, your car will be considered “loaded” and officially be “in transit”.

Easy Step 7: Receiving the Vehicle

Similar to the pickup process, you’ll likely get a call within a few hours of the driver delivering the vehicle.

When the driver unloads the car, they will complete another vehicle inspection. They do this so as to verify the condition of the vehicle and to see if any damage occurred during transport.

And, similar to pickup, you’ll approve, agree to and sign the vehicle condition report.

At this point, you vehicle transport is officially completed.

There are a few things you can do to ensure you have the best car transportation experience possible.

First, be sure to choose a reputable car transport company.  Ask around for recommendations and read online reviews to get a sense of what others have experienced. 

Once you’ve found a company, you’re comfortable with be sure to communicate your needs clearly.

Let them know if you have any special instructions, such as an enclosed trailer for a classic car.

Be sure to also ask about their insurance policy in case of any damage during transport.

Finally, be prepared to pay a bit extra for premium services like door to door delivery or expedited shipping. 

By taking these steps, you can help ensure a smooth and stress-free experience when transporting a car for the 1st time.

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