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The Lowdown on Auto Transport Insurance

Bill of Lading (B.O.L.) – This inspection report is the key to making sure you are covered. If you’ve ever rented a car, you know the drill: you or whoever you designate checks the vehicle out with driver upon pickup and delivery and notes the condition on the B.O.L. You get a copy of this inspection report upon delivery and in the unlikely event that the vehicle is not in the same condition it left in, just give us a call and we will help you with what’s next! » DOT, MC #, Insurance Certificate, W-9 – Each of our carriers is registered with the Department of Transportation, has a Motor Carrier Number with the FMCSA (Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration), proof of liability insurance coverage and a taxpayer W-9 form on file with us. » How Much Coverage – carriers are generally insured for between 500,000-1,000,000 dollars; it varies by type of carrier and the number of vehicles they carry. Your vehicle will be insured for its Kelley Blue Book value. » What Exactly is Covered – The basic answer is anything at all that is driver negligence. For all the ins and outs, just call us and ask or see our terms and conditions.

Is there any special paperwork necessary? (license, ownership…)

If you are transporting within the continental U.S. from residence to residence… NO!  You do not need to show your license, title, registration or anything else.

If you are transporting internationally, we will inform you which is the paperwork needed, according to the country of delivery.

Why Use AutoStar… why not carrier Direct?

Dealing with a broker is the preferred way that carriers like to do business.  It’s good for them, and good for you.  For the carrier, going through a broker means they have access to many more customers, which keeps the prices down.  Good for the customer!  Also, most carriers are not setup with a customer service department to deal directly with the customers, so any inquires, status updates, or any other questions will most likely go un-answered by the carrier.  Most carrier companies are family owned, and have maybe only 1 or 2 trucks in their entire fleet, and so if you book directly with a carrier and their truck breaks down, then you will have wait for them to fix their truck.  This can take weeks for them to repair their truck.  With a broker, we have access to literally hundreds of carriers, and can immediately get on the phone and find another carrier who can get your car back on the road usually in a day or two.

The biggest distinction between a carrier and a broker is service area. While brokers generally have contacts all over the United States and often internationally, most carriers travel very specific routes with limited trucks. Because they have a limited number of resources, they are prone to over-booking and therefore you may experience long delays. While carriers have the authority to physically transport vehicles, many do not meet the federal requirements for brokering your vehicle. If your automobile transport is not along their specific routes, they will be forced to give it to another carrier, sometimes illegally, putting your vehicle in jeopardy. Our quality control department ensures a safe transport with an insured and reputable carrier.

Another major difference is communication. While carriers physically transport vehicles and are vital to any broker’s operation, they often fall short of keeping the customer well-informed throughout the transportation of their vehicle. If there are delays and you need to know where your vehicle is, you will wish you had a broker, whose main purpose is the constant communication with the customer.

A third area of distinction between brokers and carriers is cost. While brokers have very little overhead, carriers have to contend with rising fuel prices and costly mechanical problems. These often lead to higher prices to make a profit. Brokers help carriers by keeping their trucks fully loaded. Because we provide them with this valuable service, often helping them avoid half-full loads, we get your vehicles moved at a discount.