How to Move Your Car Fast and Easy – Cost and Advice

When you are moving and you own a car, you have to decide whether you will drive your car to the new location by yourself, or you will hire a transportation company to do the job for you. A few factors you should take into consideration are distance from your current place to the new location, your budget, your own schedule – time.

Moving your car – cost and services

If you want to save money on your move by driving your car to the new location, before making the final decision think of all the moving-related expenses – gas, occasional stops, hotels, tolls. If you are moving locally, intrastate it might be better to drive your car by yourself. Short trips are easy to handle. But if you are moving long distance, then it might be a reasonable choice to book a car transportation company.

Hiring a car shipping company may cost you from around $1,500 to $4,500 on average. The cost of shipping your car is based on a few factors – the time (most people choose to relocate summer, hence higher carriers’ rates) and the distance of the job, the make and the model of your car, the type of the shipping service provided – whether your car will be transported in open or enclosed trailer, or whether it is a door-to-door delivery or terminal-to-terminal delivery, and the car condition – is it a running or a non-running vehicle. Be prepared that most car shipping companies will ask for a deposit – shouldn’t exceed 10% – 25 % of the final bill.

When you are contacting movers to move you, make it clear that you require a car shipping service. Get at least 5 moving estimates from different carriers and do not compare the moving service providers only by the price. It’s a common practice that rogue movers give low estimates just to book your job, and then double or even triple the final bill. Also, avoid working with brokers, or at least ask your broker to confirm the carrier that will be responsible for the shipping of your car. Working with a carrier personally is easier and preferable as you can run a background check on the carrier. Work only with licensed and insured movers. Obtain the company US DOT number and pull out the company file from the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration database right from here to check out for violations and reports. You could also look through some reviews websites and forums to check out some consumer reports on moving companies, or even check company affiliation with organizations such AMSA and BBB.

Shipping a car overseas

In case you are moving overseas, then you don’t have a choice other than booking a professional carrier to move your car. But before even considering moving with your vehicle, contact the local customs agency and find out what are the requirements you have to comply with in order to import your car. Find out what taxes or some port-handling fees you might have to pay and what papers you have to fill in. You could check out the Consulate website of the country you are moving to, but it would be even better to speak to a government representative to learn all the details in advance. Mind that when your car is in customs custody for clearance, government officers will require from you to provide the original title or a certified copy of the title to prove ownership.

Prepare your car for the big move

  • Clean your car from the inside and the outside.
  • Remove any personal items you might have in your car, and by all means – the valuable ones. Mind that your moving insurance won’t cover any damage or even loss of your personal items in the car while in carrier’s custody.
  • Check your car tires. Your tires should be inflated.
  • Prepare your car for different weather conditions; check the antifreeze level.
  • If your car has any mechanical problems, let your auto movers know.
  • Also, ask how much fuel is allowed to remain in the car. Most auto companies prefer the tank to be less than 1/4 full.
  • Retract the antenna to avoid damage.

Before the company drives off with your car, they perform a full inspection and provide you with a report that you’ll have to sign, too. Confirm that the report accurately describes your vehicle condition. This report should also note the mileage, gas gauge and pickup and delivery dates.
It is very important to inspect your car thoroughly before signing the report after the vehicle is delivered to the new location. This is the time when you can claim any damages or missing items. Take your time and cover every inch of your car, both inside and outside.

To sum up, choose only legitimate and professional auto movers, and take the time to prepare your car for the big move. Let your car enjoy a fast and easy ride.

Author Bio: Manuella Irwin is a relocation professional and one of the esteemed contributors at

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