Turbo Auto Transport Frequently Asked Questions

Snowbirds Packing Their Vehicle

Auto Transport carriers continue to remind personal moves that their vehicle is not a shipping container. In 1998, the Department of Transportation ruled that you may NOT load any personal items in a vehicle on auto carriers. The Federal Motor Carrier licensed issued to Turbo Auto Transport, LLC states:


“This license is evidence of the applicant’s authority to engage in operations, in interstate or foreign commerce, as a broker/carrier, arranging for transportation of freight (except household goods) by motor vehicle.”


However, we understand Snowbirds prefer to move some household and personal items in their vehicle. If this is the case, all items must be restricted to the trunk compartment of your vehicle and are shipped strictly at the owner’s risk. No guns, alcohol, baking supplies such as flower, powders, etc. If your vehicle is going through Customs, it will be x-rayed and if suspicious items are identified, they will be removed.


1. How long does it take to ship my vehicle?

Auto carriers pick up and deliver six or nine vehicles at a time. Delivery schedules vary depending on load time, vehicle availability, weather, road conditions and mechanical breakdown are unforeseen factors the affect the schedule. There are NO guarantees on shipping times unless a dedicated truck is assigned to your order and the price would reflect this request. Normally, it takes seven to fourteen days for the carriers to complete the trip from west coast to east coast. Distance is a factor and Turbo Auto Transport will present our best effort on estimating the delivery time.

2. How many days in advance do I need to call?

Plan enough time for us to pick up your vehicle. Two weeks in advance is recommended. We can handle urgent situations on an individual basis, which will be given priority status. If time sensitive, we can arrange a local pickup and hold until the big truck can pick up the vehicle. Additional fees may apply.

3. How long does it take to have my car picked up?

We normally schedule shipping for your vehicle with a truck within two to three days of the scheduled pick-up date. We can always arrange to accommodate your schedule, but you may incur additional costs.

4. How far in advance are reservations accepted for vehicle shipping?

We accept reservations up to two months in advance.

5. How much does it cost to ship my car?

Prices are determined by mileage, vehicle size, pickup and delivery location, and seasonal demands.

6. Do I need to pay in advance to ship my vehicle?

No. A deposit is not required but a signed order is required before your vehicle is scheduled for transport. A credit card is required to be submitted with the order and will be processed once the vehicle is confirmed loaded. However, there are exceptions to using a credit card if paid by wire or Cashier’s Check.

7. What payment options do I have?

We accept Cashier’s Checks, wire transfers, direct deposit, VISA, MasterCard and Discover Card (we require the customer’s signature on order for credit card payment and authorization). We do not accept American Express.

8. Can I pack my belongings in my car?

As of 1998 the Department of Transportation ruled that you may NOT load any personal items in a vehicle on auto carriers. All trucks are occasionally subject to be inspection, which includes unloading the vehicles off the truck and items contained from the vehicle. This risks leaving the items behind.

Personal belongings left in the vehicle are shipped strictly at the owner’s risk. Auto carriers are NOT licensed to carry household goods or personal items, therefore any personal items in a vehicle are not covered by the carrier’s insurance. Any damage to your vehicle due to household goods’ shifting or breaking is also not covered. Carriers do not inventory any belongings left in the vehicle and will not assume responsibility. Also, items packed in the vehicle add weight and may be subject to additional shipping costs and potential damage to the exhaust system or suspension of the vehicle.

9. Is my vehicle insured during transit?

Your vehicle is insured for the private value during transit on the truck. Total loss or minor external body damage does not include glass or motor/undercarriages. Classic vehicles should have an updated appraisal for insurance purposes. Please reference our Terms and Conditions for more details.

10. Will you ship my car if it’s inoperable?

We will transport your vehicle if it is inoperable at an additional fee. It must roll and steer, and MUST have brakes or emergency brakes. If no brakes, or requires a fork lift to load, the carrier will not be responsible for any damage.

11. What if I am unavailable to pick up the car?

You can have a friend or relative sign the Bill-of-Lading/Inspection sheet on your behalf. If you are not available, your vehicle may go to a terminal for you to pickup. Please reference our Terms and Conditions for more details.

12. What if my location is inaccessible to the truck?

Most trucks are over 75 feet long and very wide, which makes it impossible to reach most residential areas due to narrow roads, trees, power lines, city ordinances, and other road factors. The driver will attempt to get as close as possible to the delivery location, or we will arrange a convenient location, like a shopping center or major street crossing, to pick up or deliver your vehicle. If you require delivery to your door and there are restrictions, a towing company will be hired and you will owe them for that part of the delivery in addition to the transport provided by Turbo Auto Transport.