This article discusses the differences between motorcycle shipping versus car shipping.
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We have been shipping motorcycles for decades and that is our specialty. From time to time we have customers contact us about shipping cars. We do not specialize in shipping cars but we can refer you to another company who does specialize in shipping cars.
Many people think that motorcycle shipping and car shipping are basically the same but you would be surprised to know how many differences there are in those two types of shipping services.
Motorcycle shipping is much more specialized than car shipping. There are a handful of motorcycle specific transporters in the industry. There are thousands of car shipping companies in that industry. When we say that motorcycle shipping is specialized we mean that there is certain equipment needed to handle motorcycle shipments that is different than the equipment needed for car shipments.
Motorcycle shippers usually have a ramp gate or a liftgate on their trailers for loading and unloading. Additionally, the motorcycle transporters that we work with use enclosed trailers. They have the right kind of equipment needed to load and unload motorcycles safely. They have the right kind of equipment needed to secure the motorcycle in their trailer as well. A number of the motorcycle shipping companies we work with use pallets to mount the bikes to while in transit.Most car shippers use open trailers and also use different types of equipment than motorcycle transporters use to secure vehicles on their trailer. Car shippers usually use heavy duty 3 inch ratchet straps to secure a vehicle on their open trailer. Again, motorcycle specific transporters use enclosed trailers and use soft tie down straps to secure the bikes in their trailers.
We never recommend shipping a motorcycle through a car shipping broker who refers your shipment to a car transporter because in most cases they do not have the right skill set nor do they have the right equipment to secure motorcycles on their trailer. The motorcycle specific shippers that we work with are trained at handling motorcycle shipments and trained how to secure motorcycles within their trailers.
Most car shippers that you contact are actually car shipping brokers who do not have their own trucks and drivers. Almost every car shipping broker utilizes a service called Central Dispatch when transporting a car or other vehicles such as motorcycles. Central Dispatch is a service where car shipping brokers post car shipments and other vehicle shipments and where car transporters look for car shipments. The problem with this method is that in difficult to get an accurate reading on the transporters track record for timeliness and safety. Additionally, in most cases the car shippers will place the car shipment or other vehicle shipments with any transporter who contacts them about the shipment, regardless of their safety record or expertise in handling car shipments or other vehicle shipments. A car shipping broker will not have years of experience with the transporters they refer you to.
What sets us apart from car shipping brokers is that we work with the same companies year in and year out and have worked with most of these companies for 15 years or more placing thousands of bike shipments with them over long periods of time. We keep track of their DOT license, Motor Carrier license and their cargo insurance. We also keep track of their safety record. They specialize in motorcycle shipping and most have been shipping motorcycles for decades. Also, we do not use Central Dispatch since we have a select group of motorcycle transporters to handle our customers motorcycle shipments.