Just like any collector, those who buy, sell, or restore classic automobiles have valuable assets they need to protect. Unlike some other collectibles, cars are difficult to transport across the country or across the world. Shipping antique cars requires extreme care and sometimes nothing can prevent accidents leading to damage or loss of the car.
Transporting cars requires the use of freight carriers such as trucks, trains, or ships. Some basic terminology to understand in the shipping industry includes
- Shipper or cargo owner – the owner of the car that is being transported
- Carrier – the company or vehicle that does the transporting
- Cargo or freight broker – an intermediate logistics company that coordinates activities between the shipper and the carrier
- Contingent cargo insurance – coverage carried by the broker to cover liability
Using a Freight Broker
A cargo owner may work directly with a carrier or may go through a broker, one who knows how to take care of antique cars through the entire process of packing, shipping, storage, and receiving. If the owner uses a broker, it is important to make sure the company maintains good contingent cargo insurance. If something happens to the owner’s classic car during transport, the carrier is usually the first recourse for compensation. Sometimes the carrier’s insurance will not pay the claim. This is when a broker with contingent cargo coverage may pay off for the owner.