By Jason Mueller
If you’ve ever had to travel long distances, you already understand how terrifying the thought of shipping your motorcycle is. While it’s not an impossible task, it can be a difficult one if you don’t properly prepare for it.
If you do not transport your motorcycle correctly, you can quickly run into legal troubles. In this article, we will cover the basics of motorcycle transport so that you can have an enjoyable experience, whether you are transporting your motorcycle across town, or to a different country.
Follow the Shipping Company’s Instructions
Every company will have its own rules and regulations that they will recommend you follow. This is especially true if the company specializes in a specific type of transport, like shipping motorcycles by boat or truck.
Each type of motorcycle transport requires slightly different prep work. If you have any questions at all about the process, ask whatever shipping company you are considering.
Make Sure Your Motorcycle Is in Good Working Condition
Regardless of how you choose to have your motorcycle shipped, it should be in working condition. There are two main reasons for this.
- It reduces the liability on the part of the shipping company.
- An operational motorcycle is easier to ship. A courier can simply ride your motorcycle from the port or shipping terminal to your home. A broken motorcycle is harder to move and will often cost more.
Clean Your Motorcycle and Document Its State
A quick pre-shipping inspection can save you a lot of headaches. Start by cleaning your motorcycle as guided by your manufacturer’s manual. Take notes and photos of any damage on your motorcycle. This documentation protects both you and the shipping company.
In the unlikely event that something happens, or you believe something has happened to your motorcycle during its transport, those notes and photos will help you prove your case.
Simply compare your motorcycle before and after transport. You will know if something has happened and then you can take the necessary measures to fix the situation.
Don’t forget this important step.
It is often recommended that you purchase motorcycle insurance to protect your bike during transit. Some companies may require it before they want to transport your motorcycle. Comprehensive motorcycle insurance is required if you want insurance protections in the event that your motorcycle is damaged by flooding, accidents, or other unforeseen outcomes that take place during transport.
Do Thorough Research Before Contacting Shipping Companies
Before you contact shipping companies, create a sample shipping plan detailing your budget and overall expectations.
- Figure out how much you want to spend.
- The types of transport you want to purchase for your motorcycle.
- The steps you need to take to prepare your motorcycle.
- An estimated timeframe for the shipment.
Once you have all this information, and you know how much leeway you are willing to give, start contacting companies. You will be able to get better deals and better service since you will be negotiating from a position of strength. Use this to your advantage.
Be Willing to Compromise When Necessary
This may be necessary if you want your motorcycle shipped under less-than-desirable circumstances. For example, if you are shipping your motorcycle to an event, but the event is in a few weeks, you may not be able to find a shipping company that can work under that deadline unless you compromise on a shipping method, or a quoted rate.
To avoid compromising as much as possible, prepare to ship your motorcycle as soon as possible, preferably as soon as you realize you must ship it.
Shipping a Motorcycle Is a Straightforward Process
Motorcycle transportation is only stressful if the shipping company that you choose is less than desirable. Save yourself potential legal trouble and choose a reputable shipping company. This will save you a lot of time and money in the case that something does go wrong. Once ready, make sure you prepare your motorcycle for transport by following the tips we provided in this article.
You’re now prepared to ship your motorcycle wherever you need to go. No matter where the road takes you, be safe, ride safe, and create your own adventures.