Shipping your car can be stressful but when you know more about the process it can be much easier to plan your car shipping process and work it into your moving process. Whether you are moving your car to the state next door or across the whole country, you will want to know how long it will take for your car to be shipped to you. This is one of the first questions that people ask when they are talking to shipping companies and sometimes people are shocked when they are told variable dates for the delivery and pickup of their vehicle.
Car shipping works in specific ways and you will need to understand the process to be clear about when your car will be picked up and dropped off. Knowing how long to expect to wait for your car can help take the stress out of the process and you will be able to focus on your move without worrying. Working with a quality shipping company can make all the difference in your delivery expectations, and you will want to ensure that this is the first thing that you take care of as you plan your shipping needs.
If you are ready to learn some more about how long it takes for your car to be shipped.
Does the Season Matter?
The season of your car shipping trip can make a huge impact on the timing of your car’s arrival. Bad weather, winter mountain passes, and other variables can add lots of time to the trip. You will be given an estimate by the shipping company that includes this information, but at the same time, it is wise to be sure to plan for the possibility of further delays. Shipping companies cannot foresee issues with the weather that cannot be prevented.
The season of your trip is important to factor into your plans for the arrival of your vehicle. If you know that there will be winter weather impacting your cat’s journey, you will want to consider calling the dispatch or the company directly to check on the location of the trailer along the way. The season cannot be controlled by anyone, so you will need to keep this in mind as you plan for your car’s arrival.
The best time of year to send your car to a new location is the summer, but this can be the time that it is the most expensive. You will avoid increased costs and bad weather in spring or in fall in most areas of the US. These two times of year are the most ideal for various reasons and this can improve the odds that your car will be delivered on time.
What Kind of Estimate Will I Be Given For My Car to Arrive?
A shipping company will give you a range of days to expect your car to arrive. This will usually be a 2-3 day timeframe. This information will be laid out on the shipping contract and you will be able to refer back to them if there is something that goes wrong along the way with your car’s drop-off.
Shipping companies will try to stick to this estimate as well as they can and you can expect that most of the time, your car will be dropped off during this time period. Being afraid that your car will not be dropped off when you want it to be is not going to make the process any more enjoyable. You need to make sure that you just allow for some extra time that you were not planning on and if your car is delivered later than you expected you won’t be upset.
The estimates that you are offered are exactly that. They are estimates. This means that you need to treat them as such and you need to be sure that you are not counting them as set promises. This will help you to be prepared for any outcome that comes to pass. Many companies offer a quote calculator tool that you can use to look at their current drop-off and pick-up dates as well as their costs. This can be a good way to get a ballpark idea of what to expect when you actually contract with them. Remember that the estimator tool will not have the most current information about your specific shipping contract, however, and you might be able to get a much more favorable contract than you think once you speak with someone.
It can be easy to write off a company just because the online quoting tool doesn’t indicate that the trip will fit your budget or your needs for timing, but if the company has good reviews you should speak with them before you make a decision. There are many details that cannot be included in what the online quoting tool presents to you and you are almost always better off speaking to a representative to see what the current offerings are for your needs.
How Do Car Shipping Estimates Work?
Car shipping companies know that you need to be told when your car will arrive at your new home. This can be a variable process since there are lots of things that can come up to delay the truck. The company obviously wants to have their trucks arrive on time within the stated time frame that is promised in the contract that is offered to the customer. Customers are always told that they need to be aware that there can always be delays and good companies will keep customers informed about delays and other problems along the way.
The best way to plan for the arrival of your car is to remember that most car shipping companies can cover about 500 miles a day. This is a great way to figure out the total time that it could take for your car to be dropped off if you are not clear about the arrival date for some reason. The factors that cannot be predicated are weather, breakdowns, and deliveries of other cars along the route.
Another rule of thumb to remember is that larger open trailers will have many cars on them. This can lead to all kinds of delays and setbacks along the way as cars are dropped off. The other factor that can change the delivery time for your trip is terminal-to-terminal delivery. When your car is on this kind of travel plan, you will be much more likely to know the delivery date. This is because the whole trailer will be delivered to the same drop-off point.
When there is no need for the trailer to stop at all the different addresses of the other customers sharing the trailer, there is a lot of room for delays along the route. Terminal-to-terminal trips are much more predictable and this might be the right choice for your needs if you are worried about the predictability of the drop-off date.
Can I Make the Delivery Process Easier For Myself?
The best way to make the delivery process really predictable is to use terminal-to-terminal transport. The other thing that you can do to make your delivery process less stressful is to figure out if you have someone that you can trust to take delivery of the car if it arrives at a time that does not work well for you. The person who takes delivery of the car actually does not have to be you or anyone who owns the car. This is a common misconception that car owners have about the shipping process.
If you have a friend over 18 or a family member over 18 who can take delivery of the car, you don’t actually have to be there. The person that you pick for this job needs to be someone that you can trust to look over your car to make sure that it was not damaged before they take delivery of the vehicle. This is part of the process that is very important since the person who signs for delivery will be signing off on the condition of the car when it was dropped off. When the bill of lading is signed, it can be very difficult to open a claim for damages to the vehicle that happened when the car was with the shipping company.
The process of taking delivery only takes about a half-hour, so you will not be inconveniencing another person that much if they need to help you out. You can also make sure that you call the shipping company to see where your car is so that you can warn the people who are waiting to take delivery of your car.
How Else Can I Improve the Chances That My Car is Delivered On Time?
The other factor that you can use to your advantage to be sure that your car gets delivered on time is research. The more that you know about the company that you are working with, the more likely it will be that you will have a good experience. You can look at reviews online and see what other people have experienced with the companies that you are looking into. This can help you to avoid companies that have issues with delivery dates.
One of the things that you might also want to do is avoid working with a smaller company. Small companies might have limited resources which can lead to issues with delivery, particularly long trips cross-country. When you work with a major carrier, you will be more likely to have good luck with your delivery experience. Most people find this to be the most frustrating part of the shipping process, so you will see this mentioned in nearly every review from those who were not happy with their shipping experience.
Some companies also offer expedited services which can help you to be sure that your car will arrive on time for sure. When you pay extra for expedited services, part of what you are paying for is the arrival date that you were promised. This extra cost might be worth it for you if you really don’t want to worry about when your car will arrive and if you are not able to be flexible about the pick-up date. Some companies will also offer guaranteed pick-up dates too. You will pay extra for these things but you might find these fees to be worth it for your needs.
Lastly, you can select single-car shipping if you want to be sure about the entire process being expedited just for your plans. This is much more expensive in most cases, but you might also not have to worry about the cost if you are going to be sending your car just one state away or maybe two states away. Longer-distance trips can be hard to arrange for single-car shipping, but it might be possible to secure this kind of trip if you are willing to pay for it.
Does Working With a Broker Change Shipping Times?
Working with a broker will not change the shipping times that you will be offered. In some cases, this can actually make things less clear for you. The broker will actually not have any control over this part of the planning. The shipping company is the only one that can plan the dates for your car’s journey. When you call the shipping company directly, you will find out what the estimated arrival date will be for your car. If you are working with the broker, neither of you will probably have any idea until one of you reaches out to the shipping company directly.
Having a third party in the mix can actually make shipping dates and arrival dates more confusing. You will need to be sure that you consider carefully how the broker will change your communication with the shipping company. If you are worried about the communication with your shipping company, a broker will likely not improve conditions between you and the shipper themselves.
You will probably get a better rate with this kind of arrangement, but you will be missing some of the communication processes that can make things more clear. This is one of the reasons that many people avoid working with brokers and you might be in this camp. There is nothing wrong with not wanting to work with a broker, and you can easily choose to get quotes directly from shipping companies instead.
Always be cautious when working with a broker since this can directly impact your line of communication with the shipping company. You will want to look at reviews of brokers just as you would look at reviews of the transport companies you can contract with directly. Being able to see confirmation that the broker knows how to take care of customers properly is important and you should be wary of working with any broker who has a reputation for poor communication. While this can be a way to save some money for your transport job, you might run into roadblocks and issues that would not have to be a factor if you work with the shipping company directly.
Shipping Times Can Vary Depending on Many Factors
There are many factors that can go into the shipping experience that you will have when you need to relocate your car to a new place. The season that you are moving your car during as well as the distance that has to be covered can impact your car’s delivery date, as can the number of deliveries that the trailer will have to make along the way. There are other variables as well such as unexpected weather issues, truck breakdowns, and more that can lead to your car’s arrival being delayed.
While it is always a good idea to think of a shipping delivery estimate as a guess that you hope will be reliable, you should also be sure that you research the companies that you are considering contracting with carefully. Working with a reliable company that has good reviews can make all the difference if there are issues while your car is en route. You don’t want to have to wait for a long time while the shipping company figures out how to get your car onto another trailer, for example, and a skilled shipping company with a good reputation will not make you go through this.
Shipping your car doesn’t have to be stressful, and there are various ways that you can make sure that your car will arrive when you want it to without any delays. If you are willing to spend the extra money, you can elect to ship your car by itself, or you might choose expedited delivery. There are other options as well like terminal-to-terminal shipping. Working with a company that knows what they are doing will ensure that your car shipping experience is not stressful and that your car arrives at your location in good condition.