Cars loaded on a trailer

14 Questions to Ask Car Shipping Companies in Minnesota


If you want to make your move to or from Minnesota less stressful, one thing you can do is hire an auto transport company. However, with so many car shipping companies in Minnesota to choose from, you must find the best one.

What is the right way to find the best car shipping companies in Minnesota? Research is key and there are also several critical questions you can ask along the way.

What questions to ask when shipping a car 

Let’s help you out by sharing some of the most important questions to ask Minnesota car shipping companies.

1. What is your USDOT or MC number?

If you ask a Minnesota car shipping company for their USDOT or MC number, you can check information about the company via the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration website. The information includes:

  • Vehicle maintenance
  • Unsafe driving details
  • How many accidents an auto transporter has had
  • Check for any driver infractions

2. What services do you offer?

Do you know what type of auto transport service you’re looking for? The standard option is open car shipping. However, if you own a high-value, custom, classic, antique, or sports car, you might want it shipped in an enclosed trailer to ensure full protection. You must make sure a company can accommodate your needs.  

3. How will my car be transported?

There are two primary methods you can choose: open or enclosed car shipping. Each of these methods comes with advantages and disadvantages. It’s up to you to decide which best suits your needs.

Open car shipping is the more economical option and the industry standard. However, your car is not completely protected from external elements such as the weather and road grime. If this is a concern, you might want to choose enclosed car shipping instead. It’s more expensive, but 100% protection is guaranteed. 

4. Do you offer a free, no-obligation quote?

You’ll find that most reputable auto transport companies you contact offer free, no-obligation quotes. If you encounter one that doesn’t, consider this a red flag and look elsewhere. 

Here at SGT Auto Transport, we offer free and instant shipping quotes online and over the phone. 

Get a Free, Instant Quote 

5. Do your quotes include everything?

In terms of car shipping rates, this question is very important because you don’t want to be landed with unexpected charges and costs. You can reduce the risk of this happening by asking an auto transport company to clarify what a quote covers. 

When it comes to signing the shipping contract, be sure to read everything carefully and if there’s anything you don’t understand, ask more questions. One thing to check closely is that the charges in the contract are what was agreed upon. If you spot any additional penalties or costs you weren’t aware of, query them immediately.

6. What payment methods do you accept?

Generally, auto transport companies require some form of payment before a car is picked up. The payment of a deposit is the policy for most companies. However, be very wary of a company that asks for all the money up-front. 

Here at SGT Auto Transport, we require no down payment to secure your booking. However, a small partial payment is taken when a carrier has been assigned to pick up your car. You can pay by cash, cashier’s check, or money order directly to the driver. 

There is also the option of payment in full when a carrier is assigned to pick up your vehicle. 

7. Do you offer door-to-door shipping?

Door-to-door shipping is one of the most convenient ways to ship a car. You don’t have to worry about getting your car to a terminal or collecting it from another terminal at the other end. 

SGT Auto Transport’s standard shipping service is door-to-door. It’s offered at no additional cost. Should a large auto transport truck be unable to deliver or pick up from outside your front door, they’ll meet you as close as possible. 

8. Can I leave personal items in my car during shipping?

Being able to move personal belongings in your car while it’s being shipped could be very convenient, however, most companies do not allow this. 

Here at SGT Auto Transport, you can transport up to 100 pounds of personal belongings, as long as they are secured in a box in the trunk of the car. 

9. How quickly can my car be delivered?

A common question is how long does it take for a car to be delivered. There are several different shipping methods you can choose and the delivery time will depend on the method, as well as several other factors including how far the carrier must travel to deliver the vehicle. 

10. What do I need to do to get my car ready for shipping?

Before you ship your car, an auto transport company will advise you to do the following: Give the car a thorough clean, remove all personal items, and ensure the gas tank is 1/4 full. Check with individual car shipping companies for additional recommendations. 

11. What documents do you require?

If you don’t want there to be any hold-ups, you must be prepared with all the necessary documentation. Ask in advance about any paperwork that might be required to prevent any delays. 

Typically, an auto shipper will require the registration and title, proof of insurance, and photo ID. 

12. How long have you been in business?

A company with many years of experience is likely to provide a smooth and hassle-free auto transport experience. They will have a good understanding of the ins and outs of shipping cars and know what to do should something go wrong.

If you’re not sure about a company’s experience, check online to see what other customers are saying about the company. 

13. Will my vehicle be insured?

If you’re transporting a car, insurance coverage is a key part of the process. Before you book your car shipping in Minnesota, be sure to ask what is and what is not covered by the company’s cargo insurance. Also, check that the cost of insurance is included in your quote. 

Any auto transport companies in MN that don’t offer coverage, should be avoided if you don’t want to take the risk of being responsible for any damages should they occur.

14. Do I have to be available for pick-up and delivery?

In general, auto transport companies require that someone is present at the time of the pick-up and delivery. It doesn’t necessarily have to be you, but it should be someone you trust that’s over the age of 18. They will have to hand over the keys, sign important paperwork, and complete an inspection report.

If you’ve got any more questions that don’t appear in this list, don’t hesitate to pick up the phone and dial (864) 546-5038. Our shipping advisors will be happy to answer any questions you have. There is also a Live Chat option if you prefer. 


What to be aware of when shipping a car?

Here is a list of some things to be aware of when shipping a car:

  • Gather together all the documents for your car
  • Carefully research car shipping companies
  • Investigate your car shipping options
  • Decide whether you want open or enclosed shipping
  • Ask about payments and deposits
  • Discuss your schedule, location, and destination
  • Check the company has cargo insurance
  • Learn how to get your car ready for shipping
  • Carefully review the shipping contract and the bill of lading

How to negotiate shipping on a car?

If you can be flexible with your schedule for pick-up and delivery, this will help you negotiate a better price and save money. 

How do you know if a car shipping company is legit?

You can determine the legitimacy of an auto transport company by asking for their USDOT number and MC number. You should also check review sites such as BBB and Trustpilot, to see what other customers are saying about a company. 

How do I not get scammed shipping my car?  

Unfortunately, scammers are preying on unsuspecting customers in almost every industry. Usually, there are things you can do to protect yourself. In the case of auto transport, here are our top tips

  1. Check an auto transport company is registered with government organizations such as the US Department of Transport and the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration.
  2. Look out for missing or fake reviews
  3. Check with the Better Business Bureau
  4. Avoid un-trackable payment methods such as wire transfers
  5. Don’t be in a hurry to “lock in” an unusually low price
  6. Read the contract carefully
  7. Get photo evidence for damage claims


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