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Shipping a car with personal items: Is it possible?

712 W Algonquin Rd, Arlington Heights, IL 60005

While shipping your car with stuff inside sounds like the perfect idea, you need to know the possible downsides to it. Even though it is not technically illegal, there are numerous limitations when it comes to transporting a car with car shipping companies. It mostly depends on the car shipping company’s policy. Some car shipping companies will flat out refuse to ship a car with personal items inside, but some are willing to let you pack personal belongings, with limitations.

Shipping car with stuff inside

Risks of shipping the car and belongings together

Imagine the beauty of simply flying to your destination, and having your car readily awaiting you there. It’s possible, with car transportation companies, and perfectly safe if you follow rules. A proper risk assessment is a great way to prevent anything bad from happening to your car if you decide to ship it with your stuff inside. Here are some of the risks of shipping a car with personal items , and how to avoid them:

The risk of a damaged car

Placing your personal items inside a car while it is being transported has many downsides. One of them is the damage they can do to a car. If not neatly packed and tucked away, luggage or smaller items may end up scattering in the trunk of a car. Or if you put your personal belongings on the back seat, or the floor of the car, the possibility of them rolling around your car is much larger than if your belongings are packed securely, and safely put in the trunk of the car. Other than the risk of those items being broken while car hauling, they can in turn damage your car from the inside.

The next thing you should think about is the budget. As you might know, traveling expenses aren’t the same when you book for the holiday season or travel in the summer. The same thing goes for car transport, and many things affect the price of total shipping costs. Some of those things are distance, route, shipping date, vehicle type, and the shipping service type, and in the and, seasonality is also significant. There’s usually a base price measured by a mile, and everything else is calculated based on these factors. If you want to know more about this, you should check our guide about car shipping where we explained everything in detail.

The risk of broken windows and/or theft

When transporting a car with personal items with an open carrier, the danger of theft is considerable. When in an open carrier, your car is exposed, and anyone can peek inside the car and see what you are carrying when the driver takes a break from driving. There is significant danger of theft if you overfill your automobile with personal belongings. People will attempt everything to get into your car and take your belongings, whether they are expensive or not, even break your windows. The danger of having your windows broken and personal stuff stolen is reduced if the objects are neatly packed in the car trunk, or if you are doing the auto transport with an enclosed carrier.

The risk of causing problems on the carrier

If your car is full to the brim with your stuff inside, the driver might have a problem getting your car on and off the carrier. His line of sight needs to be unobstructed, and he needs to be able to maneuver your car with ease. Boxes or other personal stuff can only get in the way of them doing their job.

Shipping car with personal items

Why shipping a car with personal stuff is not a good idea?

There is no guarantee that the trip in the back of a truck and trailer will be a pleasant one. It's inevitable that the trailer would sway from side to side and tremble a little bit. The carrier's insurance protects your vehicle and keeps it safe while it is being transported. When it comes to personal belongings, the rules don't apply.

This might cause damage to your car, therefore it is best to keep your belongings in a secure container such as a suitcase, a box, or a bag. Similarly, the things may be damaged or even broken, needing repairs or replacements on your part. You should avoid bringing any personal things or items that may break into your car.

Rules and best practices for shipping cars with stuff inside

Some rules are enforced by the car shipping companies to protect you and your car/belongings from damage or theft. Here are a few:

  • 1. The ‘under 100 pounds’ rule

    There’s a reason why there is a vehicle weight limit. Additional vehicle weight may cause the carrier to be overweight, and then pay a fine. However, most car shipping companies allow you additional 100 pounds. If you fill up your car with items that are weighing under 100 pounds, you will not have to pay any additional fees. However, if you go over, you’ll have to pay extra, depending on the size of your car and the vehicle weight.

  • 2. The ‘below the window’ rule

    Ensure that everything in your car is tucked away and that the driver's seat is empty so that the carriers may drive your automobile on and off the truck. That way, the people transporting your car will not have any difficulties in doing their jobs.

  • 3. All items must be in the trunk of a car

    If everything is securely and neatly tucked away in a car trunk, where no one can see it - it is less likely to be stolen. If you insist on transporting your personal belongings in a car, make sure you pack it all up in a box or other firm container like a tote, and secure it in your trunk firmly, so it does not move around. The bigger the container (tote, suitcase, duffel bag, box), the less likely it will shift around during the move.

  • Final Thoughts

    When you need to travel or go to the other side of the country, and you know you’ll need a car there, shipping a car is the best solution. However, it is important to properly inform yourself about this service. This post mentioned all the risks, and how you can prevent them from happening, as well as some rules imposed by many car shipping companies. If you are still unsure about the details of a car hauling with belongings inside, contact us by filling the form and ask us anything. We will reach you as soon as possible.



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