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Did you know that transportation costs made up the fourth-largest expenditure among American households which spent an average of $9,737 each on transportation costs? The bulk of this cost is vehicle purchasing ($4,001) followed by other vehicle expenditures ($3,603) which can include insurance and repairs. Perhaps not surprisingly, fuel and motor oil made up the smallest expenditure in the personal vehicle category at $1,968 annually. These numbers indicate that in the United States, vehicle ownership is an expensive endeavor. Americans spent significantly less on any other travel than on vehicle ownership and maintenance. Under 5% of all transportation spending was spent on local, ground, or public transportation. It is worth noting that vehicles are depreciating assets, so their value is almost never regained upon resale.
Looking at the expenses after buying or shipping a car you’ll agree with me that it’s better to start calculating one’s cost before the arrival of the car. And to be on the safer side the calculation should start from shipping a car with a secure and cheap method to reduce high cost.
However, are you wondering what the most affordable way to ship a car is? We have thousands of auto shipping carriers in the world each with its own rates based on different factors.
The best way to find cheap car shipping is to use a reputable broker, which works with a network of carriers to find you the best rate. In this article, you’ll get enough information on how to ship a car in accordance with your budget, and find a way to save money when you’re planning to ship your next vehicle.
Whether you’re planning to ship a vehicle across the country or just within the state, we’ve put together the best way to find the cheapest shipping method in 2022.
1. Get multiple quotes
One of the best ways to find cheap car shipping is to get multiple quotes from different auto shipping companies or auto transport brokers. By getting multiple quotes across different companies you’ll understand the p[rice range and be able to know the best auto transport quote that meets your budget.
Not only does it help with your budget, but you’ll also understand the present market rate of how things are going.
2. Understand the shipping method before choosing
Car shipping methods are divided into two forms which are terminal to terminal and door to door shipping methods and the method you choose will determine if you’ll end up spending more or if you’ll end up saving some cost. Almost all car transport service providers offer both of these transportation methods so let’s check them out:
- Terminal to terminal vehicle shipping: In this case the scenario is simple. You’ll drive your car to a specified drop-off terminal where your vehicle remains until your carrier collects it. Once picked up, the carrier transports your vehicle to the destination terminal location, where you will pick up your car.
It is a great way to save some cash because you won’t be charged money for vehicle pickup or drop-off as you will be responsible for these things.
- Door-to-door vehicle shipping: this is different from terminal to terminal shipping. You’ll pay more because the car is picked up at the owner’s door and delivered to the recipient door. Even with the fact that door-to-door vehicle shipping is cheaper than the terminal, some companies also give discounts on door-to-door vehicle shopping.
However, understanding the shipping methods will help you decide on which shipping method meets your budget.
3. Choose an open transport carrier over an enclosed transport carrier
Choosing Open transport carriers is one of the most effective ways to save cost when shipping. In fact, this has caused a lot of competition amongst vehicle transport companies which allows them to do their best while shipping, providing quality shipping services at a lower price.
Another advantage in using open transport carriers is that you can ship more than a vehicle on a truck, at least an open transport carrier can take up to 10 standard vehicles on a go. This method is the most cost-effective means to transport numerous cars on a single trip.
Open transport carriers are the beast to save cost unless you’re transporting a very fragile and expensive car that might not be safe with open transport.
4. Hire an auto transport broker
The fact that auto transport brokers have access to hundreds or thousands of cheap car shipping companies throughout the country. You can use their network as an advantage to get your car shipped at a lower price. Hiring a broker can be fantastic because of the low price but make sure you’re not carried away with the excitement of shipping at a low cost.
You need to know if the broker is reputable and trustworthy. Imagine waiting after weeks of payment before you realize that it’s not possible. However, in case you’ll be hiring a broker it’s advisable to get a reputable one to avoid stories that touch.
5. Get a binding price quote
A binding price quote is the agreed price given by the auto transport company before transporting your vehicle. This means the company is bind to that same agreed price until the end of your shipping process. The price cannot be changed again until your car is delivered.
For example, a company offers you their total shipping rate at $600 and they later want to change the original price to $800 because their new carrier is asking for $200 extra. You know it’ll be difficult to just terminate the appointment especially if your car is already with them, you might want to agree to pay the extra $200 considering the time you’ve wasted and the stress it’ll take you to take your vehicle away from them.
To be on the safer side, it’s important to know if the price is binding or non-binding before you agree to start the journey. Most importantly, you can read reviews on any company you choose to use and see what people have been saying concerning their price.
6. Ship your vehicle in the offseason
The busiest month where most people decide to ship is June to August. You can decide to avoid shipping around this period and shift it to the slower month which is from December to February.
You need to understand that the shipping rate you will pay in January will be much leaser than the shipping rates you’ll pay in July because of the rush.
7. Have flexible pickup and delivery locations
Your delivery location can also have an impact on the amount you’ll be paying the company. In case the pickup and delivery location are in a remote area far away from the city you’ll end up paying more to ship your vehicle.
However, you can decide to meet in a good location and you’ll do the remaining driving yourself top your house.
The cheap car shipping process depends on many factors we’ve discussed in this article which are distance, open vs enclosed, the time of the year, price of fuel, vehicle condition, and clearance. Understand how to use all this to your advantage and you’re good to ship your car at a minimal cost.
Daniel Moayanda is a Digital Marketing Expert/Consultant. Thought Leader. He’s also a Guest Contributor to InfoSecurity Magazine, Huffington Post, Dzone, SAP, etc.