Transporting a Vehicle by Rail – A Complete Guide

Auto Transport Tips & Tricks
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Publish: 05.03.2019

Overview: The need for shipping your car from one place to another may be an important event for you as it involves moving an asset. There are many modes by which your car can be […]

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    The need for shipping your car from one place to another may be an important event for you as it involves moving an asset. There are many modes by which your car can be shipped, like air, road, water and railways. Of the many choices, auto transport by rail is the most economical, apart from the safety and security it provides. Also, the railway network in India is so wide that you can practically transport cars by train to almost every nook and corner of the country. So, when you need to shift your treasured asset, using auto transport by rail is a wise decision considering all the factors, of which the cost is a major one. Transporting cars by train is the cheapest mode available.

    Why ship a car by train:

    You must understand how vehicle transport by train in India makes sense. In simple words, auto transport by rail means that you use a train to move your car instead of the truck on the road. You will surely wish that your prize car is shifted without losing any of its sheens and as spick and span post shifting. Car transport by train offers all the protection required, but at the same time, it is pocket-friendly. Bulk car shipping by train is resorted to by the manufacturers for just such a factor. The Indian Railways have launched Auto Express freight trains in 2016 to tap this demand and have set a target of capturing 25% share in the cars shipped by train market, offering value for money as their major plank.

    Types of car transport by train:

    The important decision to ship a car by train makes it imperative to know about the methods used for shifting your treasured vehicle. There are two types of transport – Open and Enclosed. The name is suggestive of the method employed.

    1. Open: The car is loaded on the trailer and is exposed to the elements of sun, air and water apart from the dust and debris along the transit route. Though the railway is safer than other modes, it is still important to note that your car needs to withstand the vagary of nature during the journey. In the open form of transport, your car is either parked in the top or bottom load. You must know the difference between the two.
      • Top Load: The trailer is fitted with two tiers. In the top load, your car is placed on the upper tier, leaving it open to the elements completely. On the other hand, it escapes some of the hazards faced by the bottom load, especially from debris. If your preference is for the top load, you will have to shell out extra amount.
      • Bottom Load: As the name suggests, your car is placed in the lower tier and is partially sheltered by the upper tier. Despite such a placement it is still prone to suffer the elements in addition to the debris, which may damage your car.
    2. Enclosed: This is a safer mode of transport, where your car is placed in a covered container and is protected from the elements. If you are shifting a luxury car, you would prefer the enclosed transport of your car as it is too valuable for you to put to risk.

    Procedure to ship a car by rail:

    Car shipping by train involves a few steps to ensure that your experience is seamless and hassle-free. You can approach facilitators who provide all these services to help you cope with the movement of your car. The steps are:

    1. Packers and Movers: It is advisable to engage a professional packer and mover service who specialise in the shipment of cars. You have to provide them with your car shifting requirements, and they will offer you the quote which is inclusive of their door to door service. It saves you from indulging in the tedious process of car shipping by rail in a time bound manner at affordable rates.
    2. Indian Railways booking: The Packers and movers engaged by you books with railways on your behalf. Alternatively, you can do it yourself to save cost. On the flip side, it becomes your responsibility to drop your car and pick it up at the starting and destination termini. You must remember that the railways do not provide door to door service.
    3. Ask for quotes: The prudent step to ease your car transport by train is to ask your packer and mover for quotes. They will provide a comprehensive quote including their charges, which are normally very reasonable considering the services they offer to provide. You will be able to compare the quotes of two or three competent professional packers and movers to arrive at an informed decision.

    Cost Factor of Auto Transport by Rail:

    The cost is calculated depending on your location, the size of your car and the service preference listed by you. The pricing is based on cost per kilometre. The packer and mover will factor in its charges and the railway booking cost to offer you a comprehensive cost. In simple terms, it boils down to the fact that the longer distance your car is shipped and the size of your car, coupled with your specific preferences determines the package offered to you. In such a scenario, transporting cars by train is the best option in India considering the cost and the network available, in the relative safety of your precious asset.

    Checklist for car shipping by train:

    As you are transporting a treasure, you will surely take some measures to ensure that your asset reaches its destination unscathed. If you remember a few simple steps and put them to practice, you will ensure that your car will be with you without a scratch so to say.

    1. Packer and Mover: While choosing the car shifting service provider. It is important that you opt for a reputed entity that has good antecedents. The track record of the firm and its approval rating are a reliable indicator.
    2. Photo Evidence: It is a good idea to photograph your car from different angles before handing it over to the mover. This will enable you to compare on delivery and ascertain if any damage has been caused and its extent. You may claim for damages from the service provider.
    3. Fuel Tank: Normally you have an impression that the fuel tank has to be emptied. Far from it, it should neither be full nor empty. The ideal choice would be to keep the fuel tank quarter full.
    4. Check battery and tyre: Charge the battery if required and ensure the tyre pressure is adequate. If not, inflate to the optimum level before handing it over.
    5. Detachable Gadgets: Removal of all detachable gadgets like music system and similar items is a must. Also, ensure that you leave no personal belongings within your car when you hand it over.
    6. Inspection: It makes sense to get your car checked thoroughly, especially for fluid levels and leaks. Set them right before you part with your car.
    7. Documents: Before you hand over your car, ensure that all the documents are with you in hand. Insurance and pollution clearance certificate must be up to date.

    Of the many modes of car shipment, the most convenient mode happens to be car transport by train. It is not only cost effective but also safe with a wide coverage because of its extensive network. Coupled with the reliability of Indian Railways, your packer and mover play an important role in shifting your valuable asset. The door to door service provision by the moving firm is as important to make your vehicle transport by train a seamless experience.

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