Car shipping scams are uncommon in the transportation industry, but they do happen. No matter how professional a car shipping website may seem, car shipping scams exist, and their rates are often too good to be true. When you transport your car across the country, we believe it should be a worry-free process. Today we will discuss how you can transport your car across the country and avoid any scams.
Consider Bob. He had just moved from City A to City B and had created the perfect moving plan — or so he thought. Bob decided not to drive his BMW to his new home because he wanted to take an airplane instead. He found an online car shipping company that promised him an unbelievably low rate to transport cars across the country, and the website seemed professional. Unfortunately, that wasn’t the case.
Bob got a quote to transport his car across the country and let the nice lady on the phone charge his credit card for the deposit. He hopped on an airplane and flew to City B. On the way to his new home, Bob received a call from the “nice lady” that took his credit card number. This time she called to give him the news that his BMW had been loaded but the cost of shipping would have to increase. Bob did not want to pay extra and the lady stated that they would have to hold his car until he agreed to pay the new price.
Apparently, Bob was not thorough enough with his research when choosing a company that transports cars across the country – he became a victim of a car shipping scam.
There are plenty of moving companies out there and quite a few of them have been caught up in the business of making easy money by scamming their unsuspecting customers. They have great-looking websites and promise very low cost and great service. Low-cost quotes end up costing customers a fortune once all the hidden fees are uncovered. And in some instances, to the horror of the car owners, vehicles get taken hostage until their owners agree to buy into a new list of demands and pay up. This is exactly what happened to Bob and his car.
How to avoid a car shipping scam when transporting your car across the country
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Car shipping scams are a sad reality. With so many companies out there it may be difficult to identify “The One” you can trust. Since you don’t want to find yourself in Bob’s shoes, you may want to follow the simple steps that will save you from a headache later.
4 Steps to Avoid Car Shipping Scams
Gather information on the car transport company
Get all the contact information on your potential car mover, i.e. full company name including any DBAs, addresses, phone numbers (local and toll-free). Ask them for DOT and MC licensing numbers. Once you have all this information, get online and investigate further. Make sure to check with the Better Business Bureau (BBB) and the Federal Motor Safety Carrier Administration (FMCSA) on complaints filed for the moving company you are considering.
Do not get discouraged if you see a history of complaints next to the moving company’s name. It is reasonable that a good mover will have some complaints. Just make sure to check the number of complaints and what the nature of the complaint was. To see if the mover’s license is current and find out if they received any federal complaints, you can go to FMCSA’s Protect Your Move site.
Read online car transport reviews
Reading online reviews have become a rule whenever you are buying a product or a service today. It is all about your friends and other people’s recommendations because this will help you understand the type of service/product you will get. Thus, reading reviews plays an important part when it comes to identifying a reliable car transport company.
Pay attention to your Car Moving Contract
Your contract for transporting your car across the country should include all the details about moving your car with no hidden charges. Your salesperson should walk you through all the charges in the contract and answer any car moving questions you may have in regards to moving your car.
Talk to the auto mover
Regardless of the deal, you were offered by the car moving company, you should trust your instincts. So pick up that phone and talk to a moving company rep directly. Try and find out how many personnel they have, how many trucks they own and operate, if they have a customer or express line you can call in case you need to speak to a rep. Highly reputable car moving companies will be more than happy to provide you with this information.
If Bob followed these simple steps to research the right auto moving company he probably would have saved himself a headache and would have been able to show off his BMW to his new neighbors a lot sooner.
You should learn from mistakes, and better yet if the mistakes are not our own. Your car is your prized possession and it costs money to transport it. So if you hire a mover based only on a price you will sacrifice service quality, delivery time and more. Do not fall victim of a car moving scam when transporting your car across country. Let your car have a safe move…Give yourself peace of mind.
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