15 Apr
How to Ship Your Car from New Jersey

Shipping your car from New Jersey to another state or even across the country might seem like a daunting task. However, with the right knowledge and preparation, auto transport can be a smooth and straightforward process. This comprehensive guide will walk you through the steps of shipping your car, ensuring that it arrives at its destination safely and efficiently.

Step 1: Research and Choose Your Auto Transport Company

  • Start by conducting thorough research on various auto transport companies servicing New Jersey. Look for customer reviews, ratings from the Better Business Bureau, and any relevant testimonials.
  • Compare quotes from multiple providers to find the best rate. Be wary of quotes that are significantly lower than others as they might not include all services or may indicate a lack of quality.
  • Verify the credentials of the companies you're considering. They should be registered with the Department of Transportation and have an active MC (Motor Carrier) number.
  • Consider the level of service you require. Options typically include open-air transport, which is more cost-effective, or enclosed transport, which offers more protection for your vehicle.
  • Ensure the company provides insurance and understand what their policy covers. You may want to consider additional insurance if their coverage is not sufficient for your vehicle's value.

Step 2: Get a Quote and Schedule the Transport

  • Contact the chosen company to receive an official quote and discuss the specifics of shipping your vehicle. Confirm the locations for pickup and delivery.
  • Discuss the timeframe for shipping. Depending on the distance, shipping can take anywhere from a couple of days to several weeks. Make sure the schedule works for you.
  • Once you are satisfied with the quote and the details, book your transport. You may be required to pay a deposit to secure the service.

Step 3: Prepare Your Car for Transport

  • Thoroughly clean your car inside and out. This will make it easier to identify any pre-existing damage during the inspection process.
  • Perform a maintenance check. Ensure the car is in good operating condition with no leaks and that tires and battery are in good shape.
  • Document any existing damage on your vehicle. Take date-stamped photos or videos from different angles to keep a visual record.
  • Remove any personal items or valuables from your car. Auto transporters are not responsible for personal items left in the vehicle, and these items might move around and cause damage during transport.
  • Disable your car alarm to prevent it from accidentally being triggered during the move.
  • Leave a small amount of gas in your vehicle – a quarter-tank is sufficient and helps minimize extra weight.

Step 4: Inspect Your Vehicle Upon Pickup

  • Be present when the transport company picks up your vehicle to conduct a walk-around inspection with the driver. The condition of the car will be logged in a report known as the "Bill of Lading"
  • Ensure that all pre-existing damage is recorded accurately on the Bill of Lading. This document will be important if you need to file any insurance claims for transport damage.
  • Provide the driver with any special instructions they might need regarding the operation of your car.
  • Exchange contact information with the driver in case of updates or issues during transportation.
  • Keep a copy of the Bill of Lading for your records.

Step 5: Track Your Vehicle's Transport

  • Many premier auto transport companies offer online tracking for your vehicle's shipment. Utilize this feature if available or keep in regular contact with the company for updates.

Step 6: Receive Your Vehicle at the Destination

  • Arrange to be available at the time of delivery so you can inspect your vehicle immediately upon its arrival. If you cannot be there, designate someone you trust to accept the car on your behalf.
  • Conduct a thorough inspection of your vehicle in the presence of the driver. Compare its condition to the Bill of Lading you received at the time of pickup.
  • If there are any discrepancies or new damage, note it on the Bill of Lading before the driver leaves. This step is critical for any insurance claims.
  • Once you have confirmed the vehicle is in expected condition, sign off on the delivery and finish the remaining payment if needed.

Step 7: Follow Up After Transport

  • If everything went as planned with no issues, consider leaving a review for the transport company. Your feedback can help others make informed decisions about their car shipping needs.
  • If you did encounter problems, reach out to the auto transport company to address your concerns. If damage occurred, initiate the claims process promptly using your documented evidence from the pickup and delivery inspections.

Remember, the key to a successful auto transport from New Jersey is in the details. By following these steps, doing your due diligence, and being vigilant about documentation and inspection, you can ensure your vehicle arrives safely at its new destination. Should any issues arise during the process, stay calm and communicate directly and promptly with the transport company to resolve them. Shipping your car can then become just another manageable aspect of your move or trip, rather than a source of stress.

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