Relocating can be as nerve-wracking as it is exciting, especially when you need to ship an expensive item like your car. Our partners at ConsumerAffairs researched the best car shipping companies in Indianapolis to help you choose the right one to deliver your vehicle to your new home.
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How to choose car shipping companies in Indianapolis
Whether you’re moving to Indianapolis to take advantage of the city’s growth or from Indianapolis to pursue other opportunities, you’ll need to choose how to handle your relocation. Finding the right car shipping company makes your task much easier.
Before you decide on a car shipping company, keep in mind the auto transport industry is full of scams. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration has reported a dramatic increase in the number of complaints about businesses who defraud customers looking for long-distance auto transport. Because the industry is mostly unregulated, you should protect yourself.
A few red flags to watch out for include:
Companies that demand payment by wire transfer. A reputable company should take payment by check or credit card. Using a credit card provides additional fraud protection.
Companies that do not clearly state what they do. Car shipping companies may either be auto transporters, which will move your car themselves, or auto transport brokers, which will find you the best deal by negotiating with third-party companies to ship your car. Beware of any company that does not clearly state whether it is a transporter or a broker.
Unlicensed companies. Auto transport brokers and carriers are required to be registered with the FMCSA if they operate interstate. Be cautious of any company that does not display their license on their website.
Here are tips to keep costs lower and make the process smoother:
Plan Ahead. Spring is moving season in Indianapolis, and moving rates rise sharply as April draws near. If you need to move in the spring instead of off-peak times in the fall or winter, you can get the best deal by making arrangements 30 to 45 days in advance.
Don’t automatically accept the lowest bid. Moving brokers will sometimes dangle a lowball quote in the hopes of enticing a customer. Brokers will then have to find a company to move your vehicle at the quoted price, however. If they’re unable to do so, your car will not be transported.
Understand the cost structure. Factors beyond your control, including weather conditions, your vehicle’s weight and the distance of your move, influence the price of auto transport. If you’re trying to keep costs as low as possible, focus on factors you can control, such as carrier type. An open carrier is the industry standard and is the cheapest option. An enclosed carrier better protects your vehicle from rocks and debris but can cost 60 percent more.
Insist on an inspection. When picking up your vehicle, the driver should inspect it for any damage and note it on a form called the bill of lading. Make sure you get this form from the driver and keep it until the car is delivered to you. It is the only protection you have if your car is damaged en route.
Estimated transport rates to/from Indianapolis
Note: Based on shipping a large, operable sedan in an open carrier with availability 45 days in advance.
eShip is a high-volume shipper that transports 3,000 vehicles annually and is available seven days a week. The company offers enclosed carriers if you want better protection for your car. Reviews from Indianapolis say the company is reliable and helpful while your car is being shipped.
Sherpa Auto Transport offers a customer-oriented, smooth transport experience. Backed by their Price Lock Promise, Sherpa offers one data-driven price and sticks to it. After your vehicle is delivered, customers can redeem a free car wash through their Clean Car Guarantee. A licensed and bonded company, Sherpa Auto Transport services all continental states and offers free online quotes. Cancellations can be made before the vehicle is picked up for a small fee depending on the timeline.
AmeriFreight is known for its reliability and competitive pricing, and it provides a price calculator on its website for online shoppers. Indianapolis reviewers praise the company’s sales representatives for providing regular updates and say the drivers are professional and punctual.
Ship a Car Direct offers both open and enclosed car shipping at competitive prices, and all orders include an additional $500 in insurance at no cost to the customer. Indianapolis customers appreciate the company’s strong communication and friendly personnel.
Our partners independently research and analyze the companies mentioned in our guides and work with subject matter experts to add valuable information that helps consumers make smart purchase decisions. Our partners will not include companies on these guides that do not meet specific quality standards. The compensation we receive from our partners may impact how and where companies appear on our site, including the order in which they appear.
Our partners independently research companies, and use editorial discretion to award companies with special recognition (i.e. Best Value) based on their staff’s judgement or subject matter expert’s judgement. Our partners do this to help you identify companies that will meet your specific buying needs, and do not receive compensation for these designations.