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When searching for a car shipping quote you should ask a few important questions

Learn more about the auto transport process and get answer to common questions.

  • How do you know you are getting a fair auto transport price?
  • Why does supply and demand matter with car shipping rates?
  • What is the difference between manual and an automated quote?

How do you know you are getting a fair auto transport price quote?

Now you know that most prices you receive online are not fair. More precisely, the quotes are not current market prices that will guarantee professional and timely shipping. This is the case when you get quotes from lead generator websites or auctions. With some brokers, or carriers, this can also happen. Not every auto transport company will quote you a realistic rate.

Many small companies try to low ball the price in order to get you to book with them. They usually ask you to pay a deposit upfront and this means you cannot cancel when they fail to pick up your car in the specified time frame. And they do fail often because their rate is too low and most carriers will not accept it.

On the other hand, some big companies exploit the market by quoting very high prices. It is exploitation because the rate is way above current market value and the extra goes towards the company itself, whether that is a broker or a large carrier company. The money do not go to the car carrier driver.

Usually the most competitive prices come from small to midsize companies. They are the engine of the auto transport industry in the US and they are what keeps the industry in balance. An established, small company is in business to stay in business and they understand the importance of quoting realistic market prices. A correctly quoted rate guarantees timely and professionally transport. Moreover, prices fair to the truck drivers help build a solid business relation between good brokers and good carrier. Broker-carrier relations are very important because this is what keeps the industry competitive. It is a very efficient system that prevents large companies from monopolizing the market.

An established broker company will provide you with realistic quote. A quote that will be the golden mean – neither too high nor too low. In order to verify the golden mean price you have to request several auto shipping quotes. It is important to see more prices and then position a reasonable middle ground rate.

What is the real cost to ship a car?

It is in your best interest to understand the real cost to ship a car. A realistic auto transport price is based on several factors. Distance does matter, but it is not the only factor. The real cost is somewhere in the middle of the price scale, between the high and the low rates. Below we have listed the factors that affect any car shipping price.

  1. The make and model of your vehicle matters.
  2. The transport type of auto transport truck matters.
  3. The distance from pick-up to delivery location matters.
  4. The exact location of pick-up and delivery also affects the price.
  5. The condition of your vehicle affects the price of shipping it.
  6. Supply and demand ultimately affects the final car shipping rate.

What is the difference between manual and automated quotes?

As we have explained, auto transport prices depend on supply and demand fluctuations. Daily changes to the supply or demand situation affect the prices. The way auto transport work is this – customers compete against each other for a spot on the car carrier. Brokers post their loads on national central dispatch boards and carriers choose. It all depends on the price. When a vehicle is priced correctly, a carrier will take it right away. A manual quote is always the closest to the realistic current market conditions.

A logistics expert can quote a very accurate price based on current supply and demand situation. This will be a quote that will ship a vehicle in a timely manner. Manual prices are rates calculated by logistics experts, not by software. This is the main difference between a manual quote and one coming from a calculator.

A car shipping calculator has preset parameters that determine the price. It never takes into consideration supply and demand fluctuations and this is what ultimately renders the price inaccurate. A software cannot ‘see’ what happens on the dispatch boards daily and thus can’t assess the situation and offer a realistic price.

For answers to more common auto transport question visit our How It Works web library. To discuss your shipping options and price call us now or request a quote online. Thank you!