How to Select the Best Car Shipping Company

When shipping your car across the state or the country, you want to make sure your vehicle is in good hands. But with so many companies offering auto transport services, how do you know which one is the best for your needs?

Depending on your origin shipping location, where you need your car delivered, your transport preferences, budget and other factors, there is much to consider when determining the best car shipping company for the job. Keep reading to learn what you should look for and the best resources available to help you in your search.

What to Look for in an Auto Transport Company

First and foremost, verify that the business has proper licensing. All operable car movers must have a Motor Carrier (MC) number, as well as a United States Department of Transportation (USDOT) number. The MC number is a code granted by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) that enables a company to transport commodities owned by others or arrange for their transport across state lines when necessary. The USDOT number is a unique classifier the U.S. Department of Transportation uses to conduct audits and track accidents and safety information. If a company you’re considering using doesn’t have at least one of these numbers readily available, move on to the next one!

What is an auto transport company?

  • A carrier is the company that actually moves the vehicle. Their drivers operate trucks, typically schedule shipments through a broker and may have limited routes.
  • A broker is a company with a huge network of carriers usually serving the whole country. In most cases, a broker can give you a lower rate since they have multiple carriers competing to transport your vehicle.

To ensure you’re working with a reputable transport carrier or broker, confirm how long the company has been in business, how many cars they move or arrange shipments for and if they have a good online reputation. Check their geographic coverage as well to be sure that your vehicle can be picked up and delivered at your desired locations. If you’re shipping your car cross country, reference this article for more information.

One of the most effective actions you can take when researching car shipping companies is to hear from vehicle owners like yourself. Reading customer reviews provides first hand insight into the company’s experience. Google and Transport Reviews are both great places to start. You should also check out professional sites like the Better Business Bureau (BBB) and Consumer Affairs, which aggregate consumer reviews for a business to determine an overall rating. If you can’t find any reviews for a transporter you’re considering, it’s a sign the business could be a scam — we recommend avoiding these companies.