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Auto Transport Brokers vs. Carriers

Auto Transport Brokers vs. Carriers

At Dellcy we ensure seamless car transportation, making it hassle free for our customers by connecting them with auto transport carriers and ensuring efficient and timely vehicle shipping all across the country. In this respect, judging from our business model perspective, we act as a broker, however we happen to be a carrier also, so before we confuse you any further, we’ll dedicate this post to explaining the distinction between the two, and how their relationship gets your car hauled.

The biggest difference between auto carriers and brokers is that carriers operate the trucks that ship your vehicle, while brokers coordinate shipments using a network of carriers, and usually connect the customers to the carriers, seeking to offer the best value for both. In case of Dellcy, we act in a double capacity, since we operate our own fleet of car transporters, whilst our core business focuses on car shipping brokerage or auto transport management to be perfectly precise. Hold on! We’ll get to explaining this latest jargon below.

A single driver who owns a truck can be a carrier.

These solo carriers will usually schedule their shipments through a broker that will verify the trucker’s licenses, cargo insurance, and USDOT credentials. Larger carriers may operate and coordinate the movements of a fleet of their own trucks — though they may also sometimes work with brokers. And that same carrier might work with an owner-operator, if they needed extra resources during the busy season.

Brokers typically work with a lot of different carriers — some big, some small — to serve the entire country, whereas a single carrier may only operate in one or two regions of the U.S. or have limited car shipping capacities.

So what is with the fancy jargon of auto transport management companies? Well, these are firms that manage the entire auto shipment process from end to end: coordinating car shipping, updating clients, handling any hiccups that might arise, and making sure that vehicles are delivered on time. From quote to delivery, an auto transport management company, such as Dellcy, will take care of your car transportation on your behalf, hassle free, and taking into account all your peculiar needs.

To sum it up, a carrier operates trucks, and often times could be an owner-operator who only schedules shipments through a broker and serves only a few routes. A broker has a huge network of car carriers serving the whole country. In most cases, a broker can give you a lower rate since they have multiple carriers competing to transport your vehicle. Brokers also verify the USDOT authority, federal licenses, and the cargo insurance of the carrier company transporting your vehicle, ensuring there is no cat in the sack. A broker is an expert in the industry and will guarantee that your car is shipped by a legitimate carrier. It can be difficult to verify these things on your own, let alone have the peace of mind that your rights and interests will be represented and guaranteed should anything go wrong. 

Brokers are facilitators, the middlemen of the industry. They represent 95% of the companies you find on the internet and don’t actually ship cars, but post their shipments for individual carriers to do the shipping. Brokers usually pay your deposit with the rest of the money going to the carrier at delivery. Brokers are great for communication, but the responsibility for shipping your car ultimately falls on the carrier.

Carriers are the trucks you see on the highway; typically single drivers, partners, or husband and wife teams that are the backbone of the industry.

They can transport vehicles with individual trailers, enclosed or open trailers, 3 car haulers, or large multi-level car carriers. These drivers rarely sell their services directly to consumers, and rely on load boards and brokers to fill their trucks. They are regulated by the DOT and MC rules.

Auto transport management companies are the evolved and refined versions of the broker companies, ensuring seamless, end-to-end car transportation for their clients. Dellcy acts in all three capacities mentioned above, having initially started as a carrier (and continuing our business in this respect), later developing into a full-fledged auto transportation broker, and ultimately refining and maturing into an auto transport management company. We hope that now we’ve got you covered!

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