In short, the answer is no, you cannot reduce costs by transporting vehicles by air. While the cost of shipping has risen significantly due to Covid and other factors, many car transporters are considering different options, including air freight.
It is easy to see why shipping by air is appealing for one or two cars, mainly because of the faster speed a journey will take, but there is so much that can go wrong it is simply not a safe or wise option, and is not cost effective for high volume consignments.
How Are Cars Transported By Plane?
Air transportation usually requires the car to be driven onto the plane, again causing the same issues as RoRo given the drivers may not be used to your particular car. Air safety guidelines also denote that cars are only allowed to hold one-eighth of a tank of fuel, which could be inconvenient if there isn't a fuel source close to the destination airport. Most worryingly, air travel tends to use wooden pallets or racking to secure the car, with fabric straps to hold the car in place. Add to that the potential for turbulence or sudden movement in the air and it is easy to see how vehicles can often be damaged should the wooden pallet collapse or the straps break. Smaller vehicles, especially motorbikes, could be packed into wooden crates before loading, which carries an even greater risk of the vehicle being damaged if the integrity of the crate is damaged, or if it were to collide with other crates during a turbulent journey.
Preparing Cars For Air Transport
Another factor that makes air travel more complicated is the car has to be in very good condition to meet regulations before being allowed on a plane. As the vehicles must be driven on and off, cars that aren't in running order are not suitable for air transport. Similarly, if a car has any leaks, it would not be allowed to board as oils or fuel could pose a serious danger to the plane. In addition to the risks involved, air shipping is usually about three times more expensive than shipping by ocean cargo, even considering the currently inflated shipping container prices. Vehicles are also open to the elements during loading or disembarking of the plane, which might expose them to risk of damage from bad weather or debris as remaining cargo is loaded. Why pay so much more for a service that puts your cargo at so much risk?
Container Shipping – The Safest and Most Reliable Method For Transporting Cars
The safest way to secure a car for transport over oceans and between countries is container shipping, using a highly secure and sturdy racking system that ensures the vehicle is not exposed to falling objects or risks breaking free. Wooden racking is simply not strong enough to guarantee that a heavy vehicle like a car will remain in the same position during a journey that might include endless jolts and bumps while navigating turbulence and disruption.
At Trans-Rak, we provide high-strength steel racking that can be adjusted to the exact shape of any vehicle, avoiding any potential for "play" or inadequate restraining methods that might cause expensive damage.
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