When it comes to military car shipping services, the needs and requirements are unique and challenging. Military members, especially those on active duty, often face the challenge of relocating their Privately Owned Vehicles (POVs) at short notice, over vast distances, and sometimes even overseas.
This calls for a reliable, experienced, and understanding shipping partner that can shoulder the responsibility of making the move seamless and stress-free. With over two decades of industry experience, Military Car Shipping has emerged as a trusted name in the market.
We pride ourselves in assisting our brave armed forces and veterans, making their transition smooth and straightforward. Our military car shipping services not only involve moving vehicles, but we also offer comprehensive moving services, managing every aspect of your move while you focus on settling into your new life.
How Military Car Shipping Works
When military personnel receives a Permanent Change of Station (PCS) order, they need a quick and reliable solution to transport their Privately Owned Vehicles (POV). The intricacies and nuances associated with military vehicle shipping services are comparable to other services in the auto transport industry, though the scheduling tends to be tighter, and costs can be elevated.
Understanding the Military Car Shipping Process
The necessity of military car shipping arises due to the short notice of PCS orders, compelling service members to move their POVs quickly to new locations. This need amplifies when the PCS orders are for locations outside of the contiguous U.S. (OCONUS), including Alaska, Hawaii, Guam, and international destinations.
The frequency of such services decreases in such instances, although reimbursement for the shipment of one POV is often provided. The military car shipping process can be simplified through careful planning and collaboration with the right service provider. The steps to ensure a stress-free transport of your POV include:
- Choosing a Military Auto Transport Company: Kickstart your PCS vehicle shipping process by obtaining instant quotes from reputable providers, such as Montway Auto Transport, Sherpa Auto Transport, and AmeriFreight, who offer military car shipping discounts. This comparison of rates and services across the market will guide your decision.
- Booking Your Car Shipment: While cost is a significant factor, it’s crucial to evaluate the quality of service and insurance coverage offered. Upon finding a viable option, proceed to schedule a military car shipping appointment.
- Preparing Your Car for the Move: Collate essential documents such as your driver’s license, PCS orders, and the car’s title and registration. Make a spare set of keys, empty your vehicle of all but a quarter tank of gas, and clear out all personal items to ensure a smooth transition.
- Vehicle Drop-Off: As the day of the move approaches, bring your POV to a designated terminal or arrange a home pickup if you’ve opted for door-to-door military car transport. It’s vital to inspect the car thoroughly for preexisting damages before its journey.
- Car Pick-up Upon Arrival: Upon reaching your new duty station, reinspect your vehicle for any potential damage during transit. If the condition is satisfactory, sign the bill of lading and drive away to your new home. Please note that it may take some time for your car to clear customs if you’re moving to an overseas base.
Requirements for Shipping a Car to a Military Base
In order to initiate the military car shipping process, you’ll need to prepare several documents. Regardless of whether you’re booking your auto shipment independently or through military-arranged services, these documents are essential for providing the necessary information about your POV, insurance coverage, and your military PCS vehicle shipping orders.
The key documents and details include the following:
- Vehicle Details: This includes the make, model, and VIN (Vehicle Identification Number) of your car. This information allows the transport company to understand the specifications of your vehicle better, ensuring it’s properly handled and shipped.
- Auto Insurance Policy: Before shipping your vehicle, the auto transport company will need to verify your auto insurance policy. This is to ensure that the vehicle is adequately insured in case of any unforeseen circumstances during transit.
- Photo ID: A government-issued identification such as a driver’s license or passport is required to verify your identity.
- Proof of Vehicle Operability: The transport company needs to know that the car is in working condition. This usually involves a quick inspection or test drive of your vehicle.
- Proof of Ownership: A title or registration document is necessary to confirm you are the rightful owner of the vehicle being shipped.
- PCS Order Documents: These documents certify the need for shipping the vehicle and can be used to request reimbursement from the military if applicable.
Despite the initial complexities, understanding how the military ship vehicles and what it requires can significantly ease the transition for active duty military members. It’s worth noting that some of the best car shipping companies offer car shipping military discounts to lessen the financial burden.
By meticulously following each step and ensuring all required documents are in order, you can ensure a smooth, stress-free process for your next PCS vehicle move.
What Should You Look for in a Military Car Shipping Company?
Choosing a reliable military car shipping company is crucial when dealing with the demands of a PCS move. It’s essential to consider several factors that can significantly impact the overall quality of service, timeliness, and satisfaction.
1. Reputation and Customer Reviews
A company’s reputation and past customer reviews provide valuable insights into its service quality and customer satisfaction. Investigating online reviews and ratings on various platforms, such as Google, Better Business Bureau, and customer review websites is essential.
These reviews can reveal patterns in the company’s performance, customer service, and any potential issues. An ideal shipping company should have consistently high ratings and positive reviews that speak to their reliability, professionalism, and promptness.
2. Experience in Military Car Shipping
Shipping military vehicles is a complex process that becomes even more intricate when catering to the specific needs of our military members. The unique demands of military car shipping require specific experience and an understanding of military protocols, timelines, and reimbursement procedures.
Therefore, a company with substantial experience in military car shipping can provide an edge. They’ll be familiar with PCS-related processes and OCONUS shipping and can guide you effectively throughout the process.
3. Insurance Coverage
Insurance is vital when transporting valuable assets like a vehicle, especially over long distances. Before choosing a military car shipping service, make sure to inquire about their insurance policies.
This includes understanding the extent of coverage, situations, and the claim process if anything goes wrong. A reputable company will have comprehensive insurance that protects your vehicle from the moment it’s picked up to its delivery.
4. Pricing and Affordability
Pricing, including the availability of military discounts, is a crucial consideration when selecting the best car shipping companies for your needs. It’s crucial to gather quotes from multiple companies to get an idea of the average cost. However, remember that the cheapest option may not always be the best.
Prices can vary based on several factors, like the distance of transportation, vehicle size, type of shipping (open or enclosed trailer), and additional services like door-to-door delivery. Transparency in pricing without any hidden charges is also a marker of a reliable company.
5. Customer Service
Exceptional customer service is a crucial factor that often gets overlooked. From the moment you first contact a company, pay attention to their responsiveness, clarity of communication, and willingness to assist.
Quality customer service can significantly reduce the stress associated with car shipping, ensuring you’re informed and comfortable throughout the process. Furthermore, a company with a dedicated support team indicates its commitment to customer satisfaction.
6. Delivery and Pick-Up Options
Most companies offer two main types of delivery options: terminal-to-terminal and door-to-door. Terminal-to-terminal shipping requires you to drop off and pick up your car from specified locations.
In contrast, door-to-door shipping provides the convenience of picking up and delivering your car directly to your locations. While the latter is usually more expensive, it offers convenience, especially during a stressful PCS move. Evaluate which option suits your needs and budget better.
What Affects the Cost of Military Car Shipping?
While military car shipping is typically more complex and demanding than standard vehicle transport, the factors influencing the cost remain largely the same. The total cost of shipping your vehicle can be influenced by a myriad of variables, from the time of the year to the size and condition of your vehicle. Understanding these factors can help you budget effectively and navigate the process with more ease.
1. Shipping Distance
The shipping distance is one of the most significant factors affecting the cost of car transport. Generally, longer distances mean higher overall costs but lower per-mile rates. This is due to the economies of scale—carriers can spread out the fixed costs over more miles.
However, it’s crucial to remember that certain routes may be more expensive due to geographical challenges, traffic conditions, and the availability of transport networks.
2. Time of Year
The time of year can significantly impact car shipping costs, particularly for military moves, which often peak during the summer. This period is the busiest time for auto transport companies, leading to increased demand and, consequently, higher prices. Conversely, shipping your vehicle during off-peak seasons, such as winter, may result in lower costs due to reduced demand.
3. Transport Type
The type of military vehicle shipping service you select—open-air or enclosed—can influence the cost. Open-air transport, where vehicles are shipped on open trailers, is typically less expensive. It’s the standard choice for most customers, as it offers a balance between cost-effectiveness and safety.
However, if you have a luxury, vintage, or particularly valuable vehicle, you might opt for enclosed transport. This type offers enhanced protection against road debris, weather conditions, and prying eyes, but it comes with a higher price tag.
4. Vehicle Size and Type
The size and type of your vehicle also play a role in determining the shipping cost. Larger vehicles, like SUVs and pickup trucks, occupy more space on the carrier and add more weight, leading to higher shipping costs. Conversely, smaller vehicles like sedans and compact cars cost less to transport due to their lighter weight and smaller footprint.
5. Vehicle Condition
The operational condition of your vehicle can affect the shipping price. If your car is inoperable, it requires additional resources to load and unload from the carrier, resulting in higher costs. On the other hand, operational vehicles are easier to handle, reducing the overall shipping cost.
6. Delivery Method
The delivery method you choose—door-to-door or terminal-to-terminal—can significantly affect the shipping cost. Door-to-door service offers the convenience of having your car picked up and delivered as close as possible to your specified locations, saving you time and hassle.
However, this military car shipping program typically costs more due to the additional time and resources required. On the other hand, terminal-to-terminal service, where you drop off and pick up your vehicle at specified locations, is typically cheaper but may be less convenient.
7. Fuel Prices
Lastly, fluctuating fuel prices can also impact the cost of car shipping. As fuel costs rise, so do the per-mile rates for auto transport, reflecting the increased operating costs for the carriers. Staying informed about current fuel prices can help you understand potential changes in your quoted shipping price.
Case Studies: Success Stories in Military Car Shipping
When it comes to assessing the effectiveness and efficiency of a service, there’s no better validation than hearing from satisfied customers who have experienced it first-hand. In this section, we will discuss a few success stories that reflect the reliable and high-quality service provided by our military car shipping services.
1. Swift Shipping for a Last-Minute PCS
One of our customers, a military officer, was facing an abrupt Permanent Change of Station (PCS) from California to North Carolina. With a limited time window of just a week, the officer approached us for help. Despite the tight schedule, we managed to pick up the vehicle from their residence and deliver it to the new location in North Carolina on time, ensuring a smooth transition.
2. Seamless International Shipping Experience
Shipping a car internationally can be a daunting task, especially for military personnel who have to juggle multiple responsibilities. In one case, a service member was assigned to a base in Germany and was concerned about safely shipping their family SUV overseas.
We took on the challenge of handling all the paperwork and logistics. The vehicle arrived in Germany within the estimated time frame, and the service member was pleased with the stress-free process.
3. Shipping Vintage Cars with Utmost Care
We had the privilege of transporting a vintage 1968 Mustang for a Navy officer moving from Texas to Washington. Given the car’s value and sentimentality, the officer was understandably concerned about the transportation process.
Our team assured him of our dedicated enclosed transport service for such valuable vehicles. The Mustang was delivered in perfect condition, leaving the owner highly satisfied and appreciative of our meticulous handling and care.
4. Overcoming Difficult Routes
Alaska is one of the more challenging destinations for car shipping due to its remote location. An Air Force pilot was reassigned from Florida to a base in Alaska and needed their family’s two cars shipped. Despite the difficult route and unpredictable weather conditions, our experienced drivers navigated the roads successfully and delivered both vehicles safely and on schedule.
5. Dependable Service during the Pandemic
During the Covid-19 pandemic, a soldier was reassigned from Georgia to Hawaii. Despite numerous challenges, including stringent lockdowns and safety protocols, we provided reliable service.
The soldier’s car was shipped across the Pacific and arrived in Hawaii just as the soldier was settling into their new station. This timely and efficient service was all managed while strictly adhering to safety and hygiene guidelines, providing peace of mind to the service member.
Each of these case studies exemplifies our commitment to providing excellent military car shipping services under diverse conditions and unique challenges. Our team prides itself on going above and beyond to ensure a stress-free and efficient car shipping experience for our military customers.
Why Choose Our Military Car Shipping Services?
In the crowded space of auto shipping services, our company stands out with a clear commitment to exceptional service, comprehensive coverage, and competitive pricing. Below, we delve into the unique features and benefits that make our military car shipping services the trusted choice for countless service members.
1. Extensive Experience and Expertise
We’ve spent years refining our services and processes, learning from every move we’ve facilitated. This experience enables us to tackle even the most complex shipping situations with ease and confidence. We understand the unique needs and challenges of military relocations, and our team is specifically trained to handle them efficiently.
2. Comprehensive Insurance Coverage
We prioritize the safety of your vehicle above all else. That’s why we provide comprehensive insurance coverage for every car we ship. Our coverage protects your car from any potential damages during transit, giving you peace of mind that your vehicle is in safe hands.
3. Competitive Pricing
We understand that military families often operate on tight budgets. That’s why we strive to provide our superior services at competitive rates. Additionally, we offer various discounts for our military clients to make our services even more affordable.
4. Flexible and Diverse Shipping Options
We provide a range of shipping options, from open and enclosed carriers to door-to-door and terminal-to-terminal delivery. This flexibility allows us to cater to your specific needs and preferences, ensuring personalized and convenient service.
5. Exceptional Customer Service
Our commitment to customer service sets us apart. We believe in clear communication, honesty, and transparency. From your initial quote request to the final delivery of your car, our team is there to guide you through each step, answering any questions and addressing any concerns you may have.
6. Robust Network
With a robust network of professional carriers, we offer car shipping services across the contiguous United States and to non-contiguous U.S. territories and international destinations. No matter where your military service takes you, we’re equipped to get your car there safely and efficiently.
Choosing our military car shipping service means choosing a company that understands your needs, appreciates your service, and is dedicated to making your move as smooth and stress-free as possible. Trust us to handle the logistics of transporting your vehicle while you focus on the other aspects of your relocation.
Relocating for military service is a challenging process, and handling your vehicle’s transportation shouldn’t add to your stress. With our expert military car shipping services, you can be assured that your car is in safe hands.
We offer efficient, cost-effective, and reliable solutions that cater to your specific needs, making your move easier and more convenient. So, whether you’re heading to a new domestic base or an overseas location, let us take care of your car shipping needs.
Request a quote today and experience the difference in our exceptional service.
Military car shipping services specialize in transporting the privately-owned vehicles (POVs) of military personnel. These services are often more flexible and quicker to respond to changes due to the nature of military relocations.
Yes, many car shipping companies, including ours, offer special discounts for active military personnel as a way to thank them for their service.
The time it takes to ship a car largely depends on the distance. However, military car shipping companies understand the urgency of military relocations and aim to provide expedited services whenever possible.
Typically, you need your military ID, proof of vehicle ownership (title or registration), proof of insurance, and your permanent change of station (PCS) orders. Specific requirements may vary depending on the shipping company.
If your car is damaged during transit, the shipping company’s insurance should cover it. Make sure to thoroughly inspect your vehicle at both pick-up and delivery and document any changes.