Hiring a Car Shipping Service? 7 Tips to Get Your Vehicle Ready for the Journey

Trucks on the Bridge at Downtown Miami, Florida USA

Whether you are starting your post-graduation life in a brand new city or moving halfway across the country as an adult, it makes sense to ship your car instead of making the drive on your own. When you drive long distances on your own, your car faces premature wear and the possibility of an unexpected and costly breakdown, and you face high levels of stress and dangers from bad weather and other drivers.

Hiring a car transport service can also save you money, especially when you factor in the cost of gas, the hotel stays you will need to get there safely and the food you eat while on the road. In the end, a car shipping service is probably the least costly option, especially if you go with a quality carrier that has a solid reputation in the industry.

If you have decided to ship your car to its new home, you will want to prepare the vehicle carefully. Even though the car will be making the journey on a well-appointed car carrier, there are things you need to think about, and things you need to do to make the journey safer for all involved. Here are seven tips to help you get your vehicle ready for the car shipper.

  1. Make copies of your important documents. Make sure you have copies of your registration, car title, insurance cards and other documents. Leave one copy with the car transport service and keep a second copy with you.
  2. Having your vehicle inspected before you go. Ask your mechanic to give your car the once-over before you contract with the car shipping service. You want to know your vehicle is in great shape, and you want to note any current damage or mechanical deficiencies.
  3. Wash and wax your car. Your vehicle will be exposed to the elements for much of the journey, so make sure the paint and finish are well protected. Washing and waxing the vehicle, either at an automatic car wash or in your own driveway, is a must.
  4. Clean the interior. The interior of the vehicle should be clean and free of unneeded items, so pull everything out and give the floors and carpets a good vacuuming. Cleaning your car now will give you one less thing to do on the other side.
  5. Disable your car alarm. The staff from the car transport service will need full access to your vehicle, and they do not want to deal with a shrieking car alarm. Be sure to disable the alarm before the transport service picks up your car.
  6. Check your tire pressure. Be sure to check the pressure in your tires and top off the air if necessary. Your tires could lose a few pounds of air on the journey, so having them filled now will make your life easier.
  7. Do not fill the gas tank. You do not have to completely empty the gas tank, but resist the urge to fill up before the transport service picks up your car. If you can run your vehicle down to a quarter tank or less, you will be doing the car shipper a favor.


Having your car shipped to its new home will be far less stressful than making the drive yourself. When you hire a car transport service, you can sit back and relax, secure in the knowledge that your vehicle will be waiting for you when you arrive, Preparing your car properly now will pay off later, so take the time to follow the seven steps listed above before you put your car on the carrier.