Mike Scenna, sales manager at PreOwned Auto Logistics, a car shipping and auto transport and logistics company in Massachusetts, discusses the benefits of using an auto transport company instead of driving yourself.
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. Our topic today is why using an auto transport company is better than driving. Welcome, Mike.
Mike Scenna: Hey John, how are you?
Using an Auto Transport Company is Safer
John: Good, thanks. Mike, one of the factors in deciding whether or not I’m going to just drive my car to my destination or hire an auto transport company is safety. Is auto transport, or using an auto transport company, actually safer than driving?
Mike: Sure. This is a topic that I actually find myself talking about quite often. The answer is yes, we find that it’s a lot safer to have the car shipped and fly than it is to drive. As far as it goes for the car, it’s a lot safer for the car. You’re putting less wear and tear on the car, less miles on the car, and you’re obviously a lot less likely to get in an accident if you’re not driving a car versus driving it. It’s safer for the individual as well. You’re not a lot less likely to get in an accident, and obviously it’s very safe.
I find myself having this conversation a lot with parents of college students. Each year, we talk to new parents who of course are very concerned with their children going to school out of state, and the idea of taking on this big drive is very cumbersome. It’s something they’d rather not have them do. Aside from the dangers of driving along, there are other things involved. It’s a big trip to drive across the country, so this is something you have to plan out.
So, you’re staying in areas you’re not familiar with, you’re driving on roads you’re not familiar with, you’re doing a type of driving that you’re probably not familiar with. Maybe for most people, you’ve probably done locally one, two, maybe three hours of driving long drives. Now, going across the country you have to understand your own limits. You could be driving six, seven, eight hours a day. You might get tired in a different way that you don’t realize. It’s something that could be dangerous.
John: Right, the hypnotizing effect of the road is something that maybe you don’t understand, especially when you’re a new driver like a college student, the hours of just being on the highway and just driving straight, especially if you’re somewhere like in the Midwest where the roads are just straight for miles, and miles, and miles. It can kind of put you to sleep, and that’s a real thing.
Mike: Yes, absolutely. I don’t know if it’s something you’ve ever done, but I did Boston to Austin, Texas once and when I got to the Midwest, like you said, I didn’t realize these very long straight roads, and it gets difficult to focus.
Which Option is Cheaper?
John: Right. What about the cost? How does the cost of auto transport compare to driving? What are the factors involved there?
Mike: Yeah, this is something we find ourselves talking about often. It’s a huge part of the decision. First and foremost, people want to know how much this is going to cost, driving versus shipping the car. When you add up the elements involved with driving, it gets up there pretty quick. You have, of course, gas, there are tolls along the way, you’re buying food: breakfast, lunch and dinner every day, hotels depending on how many nights you’re going to need to pull off and sleep before getting back on the road. There’s wear and tear and depreciation on the car. Depending on how long the trip is, you may have to take some time off of work. So, there’s the cost of your own time.
We do a lot of shipping for people who ship on a consistent basis. They live in one part of the country one part of the year, and another part of the country the other part of the year. So, they’re shipping a car twice a year. Each year, I talk to people. We get referrals for new people who have been driving and switch over to shipping, and they tell me, “Wow Mike, I never realized that shipping the car and flying is actually cheaper. This whole time I thought I was saving money by driving.” That’s really not the case if you take the time to do the math.
John: Right, that’s interesting. I definitely think that a lot of people would think that initially, “Driving is free. I just get in my car and I just drive,” but we don’t think the gas really adds up when you’re driving for hundreds of miles at a time. So, that’s definitely a factor. When you add in all of those other things that you said that you have to consider, yeah the wear and tear on the car, and the time that you have to maybe take off of work in order to do it, all of those things are huge factors.
What about speed? I might think that you know what, if I need to do this and I need to have my car when I get to my location, I’ll be able to just drive and then I’ll immediately be able to just have my car. So, it’s going to be faster for me. What would you say to that?
Speed of Auto Transportation
Mike: Yeah, I get asked that a lot. Really, when it comes to speed, I tell people you should look at it in two different ways. There’s speed for the car to get to the destination, as you just mentioned, but there’s also the speed for you to physically get to your destination. As far as the car getting to the destination, I would say it’s about the same, maybe a bit longer, to have a car shipped than for you to drive it yourself. Your car is on a truck with anywhere from seven to nine other cars, so that truck has to stop at different places, drop cars off, pick cars up. So, it might take a bit longer than if you were driving yourself.
Good companies such as ourselves, we want to make sure this is all done safely and properly. So, our drivers really take their time at these destinations and make sure they’re loading the car and unloading it properly, and strapping them down correctly. As far as getting to where you’re going, it’s going to be a lot faster to just hop on a plane than it is to get in the car. So, how important is it for you to have your car right away? But how important is your time and the safety of your vehicle? Those are the things to consider when you’re asking yourself the speed question when it comes to transportation.
Convenience of Using an Auto Transport Company
John: Is convenience a factor as well in choosing an auto transport company?
Mike: Oh, yeah. Convenience is a huge factor. This is probably the biggest factor. Anytime you need to ship a car, you probably have a lot more going on than just shipping the car. So, whether you’re moving permanently or for a short period of time, or off to college, these are all big things happening and you probably have a lot of planning going on in your life at that moment. I’m sure we’ve all moved before. Everyone’s experienced moving, so you know how overwhelming that process can be. If you’re getting ready for school, you have a lot going on and you’re picking classes, you’re planning what your semester is going to be like. If you’re moving seasonally, if you don’t own you might be looking for a rental in the place that you’re going.
So, to add the drive into driving to this place into all of that, now you’re really essentially planning an entire trip. That’s something people overlook a lot. It’s not as simple as just getting in the car and driving. You need to figure out how many miles a day you’re going to drive, where you’re going to stop at night, where you’re going to eat. I talk to a lot of people who just think that if they can take that off their plate with all of the other things they’re doing, it’s great. We get thanks from people every year saying, “It’s such a relief to not have to plan something else during this time I’m planning more things than I ever have.”
John: Right, like “Here I am. I’m planning on moving.” Especially when you said that some people move twice a year, back and forth from a winter home to a summer home. They have to plan on moving a lot of their stuff, and whatever. Then that’s just one more thing that they would have to deal with, is planning my three day trip, or however long it is to where I’m going to eat, where I’m going to stay, all of those factors. It’s just something that they can tick right off their minds if they can just hand it off to you guys.
Mike: Right, exactly.
Dependability of Auto Transport Companies
John: What about dependability? Are auto transport companies dependable? Can I really count on them?
Mike: Yeah, auto transport companies are very dependable as far as getting the job that we’re setting out to do. I don’t think we’ve ever had a problem with accomplishing that. I’ve never had to call anyone and say, “We can’t do this shipment,” or, “It’s going to take drastically longer than you thought it would be.” Obviously, it depends on the company that you choose. I think that goes for any industry. So, dependability, it is important to look into the companies that you’re considering using for that reason. Check reviews. Decide what’s important to you. Is it safe for the vehicle? Is it an expensive car? Are you more about safety? Would you rather they take their time moving the car and just make sure that nothing happens? Or do you need the car right away?
These are all good questions to ask yourself before choosing an auto transport company, and being able to find that one that’s dependable and going to get the job done that you need.
John: All right, well that’s really great information, Mike. Thanks again for speaking with me.
Mike: Yeah, thank you John.
John: And for more information or to request a quote for your auto shipping needs, visit the website at PreOwnedAutoLogistics.com or call 877-542-1955.