Auto Transport Terminology



A company that specializes in providing vehicle shipping, transport, and hauling services

They are licensed and insured to ship vehicles anywhere in the nation, or to ports if the destination is out of the United States.

Boat Transport: Most auto transport companies also arrange the transport of boats on specialized carriers.

Bill of Lading: Documentation used to ensure that a private party, company or fleet receives their vehicles for shipment & condition of each vehicle is noted.

Car Shipping Calculator: Located on most auto transport websites this is a free shipping quote to give customers an idea of transport cost. It is always best to contact the company directly after receiving a quote online to confirm the rate and that is the best to suit your needs.

Car Transport: The term used to describe the process of physically moving or shipping a vehicle as freight.

Car Carrier: A trailer that can be loaded with multiple vehicles, for delivery to clients, dealerships or rental yards.

Cut-off Time: This means the latest a shipment can be delivered to its location.

Dealership Auto Transport: Specialized transport services, specifically made for the transporting of vehicles for dealerships.

Diversion:  Changing of the route for a shipment in transit.

Door-To-Door Auto Shipping: This means picking up from a residence and delivering to the doorsteps of the residential neighborhood.

D.O.T.:  The D.O.T. (Department of Transportation) oversees federal highway, air, railroad, and maritime and other transportation administration functions.  

Enclosed Car Hauler: These are the safest of all the carriers because the cars are protected from the elements. Keep in mind there are soft and hard sided enclosed carriers.

En Route: The vehicle has left the pickup address and is on the way to the delivery address.


FMCSA: Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration; is a governmental entity which assists in regulating laws, and it provides information for the States about new statutes and needs. It also offers a public database of information that details insurance and licensing information for automobile logistics service providers.

Motorcycle Shipping: specialized enclosed trailers for safe motorcycle transport.

New/Finished Vehicle Logistics: used to describe management, planning, and shipping services for automobile transport for manufacturers and others in the auto industry.

Open Carrier: Can be a trailer that holds a single car or up to 9 vehicles for transport that is in the open air and is the cheapest method of transport.

P.O.D.: Proof of Delivery; shows the receipt of auto shipment.

Single Vehicle Shipping: A term used to denote the delivery of a single automobile from one destination to another.

Terminal to Terminal: used by high-volume auto transport companies and can be a cheaper way to transport your vehicle. A terminal is a regional storage facility. Oftentimes, vehicles are stored in a towing company's secure lot, which is usually located in a large metropolitan area.

Tracking: Following an auto shipment throughout its delivery process.

TCI Logistics Inc: Is an auto transport company that works hard to earn the trust of our clients. We are licensed and insured offering open & enclosed auto transport for high end vehicles, motorcycle, boat and overseas shipping.

Vehicle Logistics Company: Specialized service provider with the capacity to plan and manage auto transport services.

Vehicle Shipping: The transport or delivery of a vehicle.

Vehicle Transport: The process of physically shipping a car.

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