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Cheap Car Shipping: Ways to Save Money (Podcast)

Cheap Car Shipping: Ways to Save Money (Podcast)

Mike Scenna, Sales Manager from Preowned Auto Logistics talks with John Maher about why the cheapest option isn’t always the best when shipping a vehicle. He explains the hidden costs and logistical issues of most cheap shipping deals, and he gives listeners tips on how to balance quality and cost in auto shipping.

John Maher: Hi, I’m John Maher. I’m here today with Mike Scenna, Sales Manager at Preowned Auto Logistics, a car shipping and auto transport and logistics company in Massachusetts. And today our topic is cheap car shipping, ways to save money. Welcome, Mike.

Mike Scenna: Hey John, thanks for having me.

Why the Cheapest Shipping Price Isn’t Always the Best

John: Sure. I probably know how you’re going to answer this, Mike, but you know, is cheap car shipping always the best type of car shipping?

Mike: Yeah, great question. Obviously, that’s something we come across a lot in this industry here is people want to ship their car the cheapest way possible. And the way I always explain it to people is that there’s so many factors that ultimately go into the cost of shipping a car that choosing the company that’s the cheapest might not necessarily be the best option for a lot of reasons, but it might not ultimately be the cheapest option either.

So if you choose a car shipping company because you want to save some money and it’s a little bit cheaper than another option, it could cost money in other areas. So say the vehicle takes longer to get where it needed to go because you wanted to save a little money and use a cheaper option, then you might add up costs on the other end, so your rental car. Or maybe there was some time off of work involved, and now you need to be more available waiting for this shipment. So you need to really think about the entire process as a whole, and not just necessarily that dollar amount you’re spending on that specific shipment.

Benefits of Choosing an Experienced Car Shipping Company

John: Right. Is it just a matter of you get what you pay for like you do with some product that you’re buying or something like that, or is there really more that goes into it?

Mike: Yeah, so just like anything… I like that, you get what you pay for, right? That the cost of something is relative to what you get. So if you spend less money, you’re probably going to get a less qualified driver. Again, transit time might be a little bit more. It might not be the overall most effective shipping. Where you’re paying more money, you’re more likely to get a more qualified driver, more experienced company that’s able to get the job done a little quicker, the resources that might add to that company’s costs, and other elements that add up in order to provide better tracking and understanding of just how to move the vehicle in a safe and in reasonable amount of time.

Balancing Cost and Quality When Shipping Cars

John: Right. Say you do want to have good car shipping, you want your vehicle to get there safely, but you do want to try to kind of do it as inexpensively as possible. What are some ways that people could do it or options that they could choose that might be able to save them a few dollars?

Mike: Yeah, that’s a great question. I’m glad you asked that. So shipping a car for someone is something that people don’t usually have to do too many times, so you don’t have a ton of experience doing it. And as I mentioned earlier, it’s not always just the cost of shipping the car itself that you need to look at. So here, we understand the importance of saving money. We know that usually if you’re shipping your car, you have a lot of expenses going on.

You’re moving somewhere else in the country, whether short-term or permanently. So we really try to help guide people through the steps of how to save money overall throughout this process. So how to properly plan when to give up your car at its origin in order to figure out when you’re going to get to that destination so you can look into the cost of rentals, the other costs that go into the trip. So really we just overall help people organize efficiently to save money. You’d be surprised with an inefficient move, how quickly costs outside of that actual shipping cost add up. So yeah, again, it’s just really helping people save money in this overall process.

The Most Efficient Approach to Shipping Cars

John: So you work with your clients to make sure that you’re doing things in the most efficient way possible. You’re looking at outside costs that might be involved in it. Like you said, if somebody doesn’t get their car right away, what are going to be the costs of a rental car for the few days that they don’t have their car yet or things like that.

So you’re helping to sort of work with the client and say, “Hey, this is going to be your overall cost for this move,” and then figure it out if there’s ways that you can get that efficiency up.

Mike: Right. Yeah, we really built up a reputation for ourselves when it comes to customer service. Keeping in mind that cost is important, we realized that it’s not so much shipping the car itself where the majority of the costs come in, it’s all of these other elements outside of that. So if it costs a little bit more to move the car in an effective way, you could ultimately be saving more money on some of those efficiencies to bring your overall cost of this entire process down.

How to Save Money When Shipping a Car

John: Right. What about some of the actual options that people can choose? I know that you mentioned maybe if you’re willing to wait a little bit longer for your car and not get it right away, or maybe not waiting till the last minute. Obviously, there’s things like an open car carrier versus a closed car carrier is going to save you money. What are some of those options that people can choose that are going to save them the most money?

Mike: Sure. So, as I said, we’re going to talk to people and we’re going to dive into what their move looks like, what their situation looks like. And I’ve said a lot that we’re helping people become efficient to save money in other areas. Sometimes the answer is I’m moving and I have another car. I don’t need this car. I can get it whenever, timing is not a problem here.

If that’s the case, that’s great. We’re going to drive down the cost of that shipment as much as we can. We have time to be patient and wait for a spot on a truck to come up when it’s kind of that perfect trip where someone needs that car to fill that last spot and we’re able to save some money there. So when people are flexible on time, we can accommodate and go way down on the price.

And sometimes that’s not the case. Sometimes, people aren’t flexible on time. They need the car right away and it’s going to cost them a lot of money if they don’t get it. We have options for that. You can pay a little bit more, but we’re able to use the resources we have here with that money to really expedite the process and get it to the place that it needs to be as quickly as possible.

If it’s an expensive car and we’re worried about the smallest road debris or weather that could cause an issue that could be very expensive for repair, as you mentioned, we have enclosed shipments. The car is completely covered, the whole shipment, and the likelihood of any kind of damage is much lower than on an open ship. So lots of options to really accommodate. And it all comes down to, like we were talking about, really digging into what the individual needs and figuring out what their best option is.

Contact Us for an Auto Shipping Quote

John: All right. Well, that’s really great information, Mike. Thanks again for speaking with me today.

Mike: Of course. Thanks, John.

John: And for more information or to request a quote for your auto shipping needs, visit the website at or call 877-542-1955.