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You can get a car shipping quote from many places, but not every service provider is equal
Setting up the cross-country shipment of a vehicle takes a surprising amount of work if you’re doing it on your own. The entire process starts when you begin gathering quotes and ends when you have a signed contract to ship your vehicle where it needs to go
It’s important to go through your auto transport quotes carefully to find the ones that meet your needs and budget. Here’s a look at some ways you might collect those quotes, along with the steps you should take to make sure you’re getting the best deal.
- There are multiple places to request auto transport quotes
- Provide accurate information to make sure you get accurate quotes
- A broker is the fastest and easiest way to get accurate quotes from a variety of vetted carriers
Where to get your quotes
You’ll come across dozens, if not hundreds, of places to get a car shipping quote. However, there are generally four types of quote-delivery systems available.
First, there are automated online systems. These may be the simplest ways to receive a quote because you’ll enter your information, and the system will instantly and automatically generate it for you. However, these systems aren’t the most accurate, so they’re more valuable as a ballpark estimate than as a full quote.
You can also receive an email quote from an auto transport company through their website. This process is also simple for an individual vendor — just enter your information, provide your email address, and wait for the quote to arrive in your inbox. But you’ll have to do this separately for every vendor you’re considering, which takes a lot of time and energy. It’s also worth noting that you could end up receiving spam if you request a quote from a disreputable shipping company.
Similar to the email quote is an instant quote via telephone. The benefit of this method is that you don’t have to worry about receiving marketing emails. However, you have to put in the effort to call all of your prospective vendors and get the information, and you can only call during business hours.
Perhaps the most convenient way to compare quotes from multiple shipping providers is through a broker. Your auto transport broker will take your information and come up with quotes from various vehicle transportation companies, allowing you to select the best one to meet your needs.
Using a broker ensures you’re getting the best price from a reputable shipper and that you won’t have to seek quotes from multiple vendors. A real human will contact you with this information, too, ensuring it’s accurate.
The direction you choose depends on how much time you have to spend on the process and your comfort level with automated systems. Brokers tend to offer outstanding results because they vet the carriers they present to you, as well.
Steps you can take to achieve ideal results
As you seek quotes from car shippers in your area, there are some things you can do to maximize their accuracy and minimize your expenses. The more uniform you keep the information you provide about your shipment, the easier it becomes to compare quotes.
For starters, you’ll want to provide accurate shipping information to every vendor. The transport company will probably ask you some basic questions, including the make and model of the vehicle you’re shipping and how far you’re shipping it. Give every shipping company clear, accurate information for the best results.
One way to secure lower rates is to look at the season you’ll be shipping. It might pay off to wait a few weeks for a slower time of year, if possible, because that can save you some money. Ask about different dates when receiving quotes to make a full comparison.
Price isn’t everything. The results these vehicle transport companies have achieved in the past matter, too. Ensure your shipping provider is fully insured and licensed with the Federal Motor Carrier and Safety Administration to avoid potential issues.
By taking these steps during quote selection, you can simplify the process and make the right decision.
Will the price change?
Once you have your auto transport quote in place, you might be wondering if that quote can change before the car is picked up.
In short, yes, but it’s a little more complicated than that.
A car shipping company will always take the highest-paying vehicles on its trucks. This idea makes sense because they’re in the business to earn money.
The problem is that some shippers might present a rate that doesn’t meet real-time market demand. So, if the vehicle owner doesn’t pay an amount that is in line with the current market rate, the vendor might end up rejecting the shipment until a slower time of year.
Make sure your quote provider uses fair market rates when coming up with a quote, so you aren’t left with significant shipping delays and additional costs.
An all-in-one solution
There are multiple ways you can go about securing a car shipping quote, and the method you use is highly dependent on your personal preferences. Those who have been down this road before often go with a broker because they provide fast, accurate offers from reputable carriers, streamlining the entire process.
Mercury Auto Transport is a car shipping broker that works hard to provide accurate market-based quotes that meet your exact needs. Once we receive your request, we’ll develop a custom quote and one of our representatives will contact you with the relevant information. Take a few minutes to contact us to get started on your auto transport quote today.
David is a Senior Logistics Agent for Mercury Auto Transport. He enjoys helping others navigate the auto transport process through his informational articles.