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Tips for Shipping your Vehicle from New York to Miami

snowbirds car shippingShipping a car from New York to Miami can be a stressful experience. Here are a few New York to Miami car shipping tips that we hope will make the process a little easier for you.

Every year thousands of “snowbirds” need to ship a car from New York to Miami for the winter. The first ones start trickling down south in September, but the real rush occurs October through December. Fisher Shipping has been handling these requests since opening our doors in 2006. Transporting a vehicle to Florida is far from rocket science, but it can be more difficult than you think. Finding a reliable company that will take good care of your prized possession can be a challenge.

Do your research!

Just because someone has a good looking website and they rank on page 1 of google, doesn’t mean that they are going to do a good job.Unfortunately, the auto transport industry is not policed very well. That may actually be the biggest understatement in the history of the internet. It’s not easy to find a reputable company that actually cares whether or not the process is a good experience for you. There are many companies that will change the price that they quote. Countless others won’t respect the timetables that you have spelled out for them. There’s nothing more frustrating than having to change your flight because the company you hired didn’t get the car when they said they would.

Know what to expect

Having an idea of how the process of moving your car to Florida will play out is important.

*The trip generally takes anywhere from 3-5 days from most places in New York.  If you are upstate, it could add a day to the trip.  If you are near Canada, it could add two days.

*The drivers should call the day before pickup and the day before delivery, but if there is a flaw in the process, this is it. Oftentimes, drivers call only a couple hours before, even if they are instructed to call the day before. Keep your cell phone on during the pickup and delivery windows that you’ve been given. It’s better to be safe than sorry. You can always call the broker you booked with to get an update if you need.

Set Door to door service expectations

*Door to door service is somewhat of a misleading term. These trucks can be up to 75 feet long.  Not only can they not navigate small streets, but there are also weight limits on certain streets and low hanging tree limbs that will prevent access. Expect to meet your driver at a safe place near your home for pickup and delivery.

*Delays can occur. These are trucks that travel thousands of miles every week. They break down. It happens. Delays dropping off and picking up other vehicles can occur as well.  Just understand that this is not a perfect science.  Keep in mind that these drivers want to get you the vehicle as soon as possible too. Their paychecks are usually based on a percentage of the rate you are paying.

Now that you’ve got the basics down, it’s time to decide on the type of vehicle. Ask yourself, do you want to ship your car to Miami on an open truck or an enclosed truck?

Decide on open vs closed auto transport to Miami

If you’ve hired a good broker (*cough cough* – Fisher Shipping) to handle the transport of your car to Florida, they’re going to make sure that your vehicle is placed on a truck with more than enough insurance coverage to make sure you are protected.

Unfortunately, cargo insurance doesn’t cover what are called road hazards.

Road hazards are objects that fly up of the road and damage your vehicle. It’s not a common occurrence, especially considering that your vehicle is off the ground on a trailer, but it still does happen.

If you choose to transport your car on an enclosed carrier, you don’t have to worry about that. Enclosed carriers can cost 50-100% more than open carriers, so be prepared to pay a premium.

Meet the driver in New Jersey.

If you are transporting your car from Long Island, Manhattan, Queens, Staten Island, or the Bronx, ask if there is a discount for meeting the driver in New Jersey.Fisher Shipping usually charges $100-$150 less if you are willing to meet there. Due to the tolls and heavy traffic in some of those areas, many drivers stay away from those spots when building their loads. If you have the time to make the drive to meet the driver, it’s an easy way to save some money

Your car is not a suitcase.

Most companies will allow you to pack 75-100 pounds of belongings in the vehicle for free, but these items are not covered by the trucks insurance. If you are going to pack items, I would suggest just packing things like clothing or bedding. You don’t want to pack anything that may tempt someone to steal it. If you know you are going to need to send more than 100 pounds of items, tell the broker you are working with up front. If they know ahead of time, they can price it accordingly. You don’t want to have a driver show up and refuse to take your vehicle due to the excessive weight from the items. These trucks have weight limits, and a fully loaded truck is usually right at that limit. Fines for being overweight can be very expensive for these drivers.

One final key takeaway…

Did I mention you should do your research?

I can’t stress this enough. You should visit the Better Business Bureau’s website (www.bbb.org) first. The next step should be Yelp. The unique thing about these two sites is that you need to sign up for an account in order to give a review. These days there are more and more companies that businesses can pay to basically provide false reviews singing their praises. Google can still be a good place to look at reviews for auto transport companies, but this site can be easily spammed with these fraudulent reviews. When looking at these reviews, you should sort by the lowest rating score. This way you avoid all the false positive reviews and you get right to the info that you need to see. If this company has reviews about changing their price, excessively late deliveries, and unresolved damage claims….you probably want to stay away.

This article should hopefully help you navigate the jungle that is the auto transport industry. We know that transporting a car to Miami can be stressful. This should help!

If you have other questions about what to expect or how the process works, feel free to call us at (888) 886-3456.


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