While it may seem straightforward, motorcycle shipping can be a complicated process. If you’re looking to ship a motorcycle across the country — or across the world — there are a lot of factors to consider, from the type of transport you choose, to pick-up and drop-off location, to insurance coverage.
Keep reading this blog post to discover some best practices for motorcycle shipment.
The dos and don’ts of shipping a motorcycle
When shipping a motorcycle, follow these tips to make sure you not only protect your vehicle but also get the most value for the cost.
Motorcycle transport do’s:
Just as with any high-cost product or service, you’ll want to take some time to explore motorcycle shipper options based on where you live, your timeframe for shipment, and your budget. In your research, you’ll likely come across various carriers, brokers, and lead providers. Carriers are the companies that execute the actual shipment, while brokers work as experts and act as personal representatives for the vehicle owners. They arrange motorcycle transport aligned to individual scheduling and need requirements.
Unlike brokers who personally organize and arrange your shipment, lead providers are sites that generate a list of potential carriers based on the vehicle owner’s search criteria. Customers submitting their needs with a lead provider should expect to receive a large volume of calls from individual carriers looking to transport their motorcycle. Brokers eliminate this potential headache by working directly with multiple carriers on your behalf in negotiating schedules, routes, and the best possible rates.
It’s also important to look into the type of transport (open vs. enclosed trailer) and any special considerations, like if you have a sidecar or other accessories.
At Montway, we ship more than 100,000 vehicles annually backed by leading industry experience. Contact us today at 866-618-7655 to let us help arrange your motorcycle shipment or visit our motorcycle transport page to learn more about our service options.
Get a quote
Before signing a contract with a carrier or broker, request a cost estimate. While researching it’s wise to gather quotes from a handful of carriers and brokers, view how the final cost is broken up, and compare each. Getting a quote means you avoid surprises when you receive a bill from your chosen carrier.
Choose a reputable carrier or broker
In addition to comparing pricing, look through carrier reviews to get an understanding of how they do business. After all, you are trusting them with an important asset. If one carrier offers low prices but has a lot of negative reviews, it’s a sign that you should keep looking.
While you can work directly with a carrier to ship a motorcycle, working with a broker means you have access to thousands of carriers to choose from. They will help you find the most suitable option for your budget, timeframe, and unique vehicle, and assist you through the entire process.
Prepare your motorcycle for shipment
Before your scheduled pick-up date, there are some steps you can take to get your vehicle ready for the trip ahead. Clean your bike and check for — and document — any existing damage, including minor scrapes or dents. Inspect the battery, fluid levels, and tire pressure and drain the gas tank so it is ¾ full or less.
Motorcycle transport don’ts:
Avoid doing the following to ensure your motorcycle shipping process goes as smoothly as possible.
Automatically choose the cheapest option
It’s tempting to just select the carrier that offers the lowest price, but cheapest doesn’t always mean best. It’s critical to evaluate what you get for the quoted cost, including type of trailer transport, pick-up and drop-off locations, insurance offered, and more. You also want to be sure the carrier you choose is trustworthy and will do everything they can to protect your motorcycle.
Consider your insurance options
Even with the most reputable carrier, accidents can happen. In the event the driver gets into an accident and your motorcycle is damaged, you don’t want to be stuck paying thousands of dollars in repairs. Carriers usually offer some insurance, but check that the coverage is sufficient. You should be able to pay for additional coverage, and if not, find another carrier. Your own insurance provider may also offer some coverage for motorcycle shipping.
Leveraging a broker to assist you in arranging your motorcycle transport is strongly encouraged as they can also verify actual carrier insurance coverage, recommending supplemental coverage when needed.
Leave personal items in or on your motorcycle
In addition to draining gas, unlocking the steering, and other preparations, make sure to remove all personal items and accessories (GPS equipment, cameras, etc.). You don’t want them to fall off or become damaged over the duration of the journey.
Finally, don’t let the process become overwhelming. You can rest easy knowing you’ve taken all the necessary steps to protect your motorcycle and that it’s in good hands.
Montway Auto Transport is an industry leader in automotive transport services. Our team will work closely with you to ensure your motorcycle shipment is hassle-free. Call us to request a quote at 888-989-8526 today.