Shipping Your Collector Classic Car: How to get it there in One Piece
Your collector classic is probably one of your most prized possessions. So, what happens when you have to transport it? How do you get it from Point A to Point B completely unscathed?
Here are our tips for a worry-free transport.
Broker or Carrier?
When you want to ship your classic car, you have two choices: a broker or a carrier. A broker will take your order and then assign it to a company or individual for transport. Your deposit is their commission and they are a middleman in the transaction. They have no part in the actual shipping of your car. If you go this route, keep that in mind.
A carrier, on the other hand, is a company that owns its own equipment such as trucks and trailers. When you contact a carrier, you are speaking to a representative of the company that will be transporting your vehicle. For many collectors, this is the preferable transport method.
Choose the Right Company
One of the best ways to find a good car transport company is to talk to people who have shipped their classic cars. Other collectors, car restorers, big auction companies, car club members, and even museums are great resources who can point you to a car shipping company that will handle your car right.
When you are checking out a car transport company, consider these points:
- Check the company’s insurance status, company type (carrier or broker), and safety record at the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration.
- Check the company’s profile at the Better Business Bureau
- Check several review sites or classic car forums to see what actual customers have to say
- Pay attention to how long they have been in business, if the company was under any different names, as well as background and experience
Price isn’t Everything
When you are looking for a company to transport your collector car, don’t make your selection based on price alone. The professional equipment needed to safely ship your car, is very expensive. Most reputable car carriers will have similar prices. When you see a company with a much lower price, don’t jump on it. It should e a red flag.
The equipment that your transport company uses could mean the difference between your car arriving at its destination without a scratch and not faring so well. Nylon straps and wheel nets will protect your car. Steer clear of companies that use chains or don’t use straps properly.
You also need to decide whether you want an open trailer or an enclosed carrier. An open trailer is usually less expensive, but an enclosed carrier is safer and there is less of a chance that your car will be damaged.
If your car isn’t running, let your carrier know. Some companies charge fees for non-running cars – and they can get prices. Lay it all out there up front so you don’t have any nasty surprises when you are ready to ship.
Tips for Preparing Your Classic for Transport
When you are preparing your classic car for transport, follow these guidelines:
- Make sure it is clean inside and out
- Remove everything from the trunk and inside the vehicle
- Be present at the inspection by the carrier so each dent, scratch, and imperfection is documented
- Take photos of your car from all angles
- Give your driver written instructions regarding operating your car (especially if it is not straightforward) and any other information they need to know such as hidden switches, fuel cut off switches, tricks to starting the car, and alarm instructions
- Make sure your battery is fully charged
- Most carriers recommend that your fuel tank only be half full
- Check the fluid levels, especially antifreeze to ensure that it is adequate for protecting the car in its destination climate
At Woodside Credit, we have the easiest terms and best rates in the business. Whether you are buying your car from a seller across town or across the country, we can help you put that little beauty in your garage quickly and easily. Apply for a loan or call and speak to one of our knowledgeable, friendly team members to find out how we can help you.