Using a car pickup and delivery service is your best option if you want to transport a car long distances and cannot drive it to its destination. Car pickup and shipping service providers usually endeavor to ensure punctuality. However, this isn’t always easy considering the many logistical variables impacting car pickup and delivery services, and late deliveries are more common than you would expect. Fortunately, scheduling a pickup for a car shipment in advance usually helps prevent delays and save money. Here is a brief guide on how far in advance you should schedule a pickup for a car shipment.
Car Shipment Timing is Complicated
Car shipment timing is not as complicated an equation as e=mc2. However, considering all the uncontrollable and variable factors involved, it comes relatively close.
Delays are almost inevitable in long-distance car shipments. A 2013 study reveals that 19% and 6% of long-distance trucking trips are impacted by expected and unexpected delays, respectively. Many factors determine car shipping times, including:
- Driving breaks for eating, sleeping, restroom use, and other necessities.
- Dense traffic.
- Poor weather.
- Multiple deliveries and pickups along the way (most car shipping service providers usually ship multiple cars on one trip).
Car pickup and delivery service providers usually factor in time for expected delays (such as driving breaks) into their delivery date estimates. However, they cannot account for certain unexpected delays such as dense traffic and bad weather.
Unexpected delays make it impossible or impractical to offer an exact delivery schedule. Most shipping providers usually pad their delivery time estimates by up to three days (depending on the distance).
Scheduling a Pickup in Advance Helps
Besides expected and unexpected delays, how long you wait before scheduling a pickup also affects delivery times. Interestingly, this is the only aspect of the car shipping schedule within your control.
Car shipping availability and delivery times depend on demand. In simpler words, the likelihood of getting your car shipped on time reduces as the delivery window narrows – waiting too long to schedule the pickup and shipment makes delays inevitable!
Scheduling a pickup for a car shipment in advance helps reduce or eliminate delays. The extra time allows the car shipping company to adequately plan the trip to minimize expected delays, increasing the likelihood of getting your car on time. Scheduling a pickup in advance is especially recommendable if you are on a shared delivery window because the car shipping service provider will make multiple deliveries and pickups along the way.
How Far in Advance Does a Pickup Need to be scheduled for Car Shipment?
The best time to schedule a pickup for a car shipment depends on how long the shipping service provider will take to transport and deliver the car. Car shipping service providers typically provide estimates of how long the shipment will take, typically with an allowance of up to three days to account for unexpected delays. For example, many cross-country shipments can take up to ten days.
It is advisable to consult the shipping company and ask for a delivery time estimate before scheduling the pickup. Experts recommend scheduling the pickup several days before the recommended date. For example, if the shipment takes ten days, you should schedule a pickup at least one or two days before the road trip starts.
It is also advisable to book the shipment at least one month before the scheduled pickup date. Delays are more common during the car shipping industry’s busy season (from May to September), so it would be prudent to book the shipment at least six to eight weeks in advance during this season.
Shiplux Offers Reliability!
Shiplux makes cross-country shipments in seven to ten days and covers more than 500 miles daily. We can coordinate with you to schedule your car’s pickup and shipment dates in advance to ensure that you get in on time. Get in touch today to learn more about our services.