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The Best Family Cars of 2018

If you have a family, you need a family car. You will need them for comfortable road trips, convenience, and safer travels for family outings or vacations. And as your family grows finding the right car to fit these qualities is a must!

There are many more factors involved with family cars than with other car purchases; such as child seats and cargo friendliness. And with all the choices available on the market the process can become overwhelming. Whether you are purchasing a family vehicle for the first time or perhaps luckily upgrading, one thing is for sure: being informed is key; and for that you have come to the right place. Using sources from the top sites1 on car purchasing we have made a full, all-factor considered, list for the best family cars of 2018. So lets get to it!

Categories:

Mini Vans

Winners: Honda Odyssey 2018

Priced at $30,090+. Minivans are often a dreaded category since they are suually associated with antiquated soccer moms. However, the Honda Odyssey is worth the consideration. Perks include: ease of entry despite minivan large size, ample space for gear, easy car seat installation.

Three Row SUVs

Winners: -Volkswagen Atlas

-Chevrolet Traverse

-Honda Pilot

-Toyota Highlander

This category is the next best thing to a minivan, but with more room. Perks: seats 5+ people, comfortable, fuel efficient, easy drive, great leg room, 5 out 5 star rated steering (Volkswagen Atlas).

Two Row SUVs

-Ford Edge

-Acura RDX

-Honda CRV

-Chevrolet Equinox

These Two Row SUVs can be mistaken for your typical luxury SUV, but not as pricey. Priced at $36,000+ (Acura RDX). Perks: highend features (heated seats and sunroof)!, new beautiful colors, good option even if you are tall.

Full size SUV

-Chevrolet Tahoe

-Ford Expedition

Powerful vehicles for powerful families. These are the top of the class in stregth, endurance, security and amazing ameneties. Perks: 3 Row seating, significant upgrades from previous models, lighter in weight, suprisingly fuel efficient, best driving manners (Ford Expedition).

Best SUV-wagon

-Subaru Outback

-Kia Soul

Wagons aren’t always on the popular list. But these options will make you think twice. Perks: The Kia Soul (priced at $16,200+) is the lowest-cost family vehicle on the list with the highest safety rating (DMV.org). The Subaru Outback comes with integrated rails and crossbars on all models. Wonderful choice for the outdoor family!

Sedans

-Honda Accord

-Chevrolet Malibu

If your family doesn’t look like the Brady bunch or perhaps you have older children, Sedans are still a classic choice for family cars. Perks: better gas mileage compared to larger vehicles, ease of entry/exit, models are getting increasingly roomier, they are great as hand-me-down to your teenager.

Hybrid

-Toyota Prius

For the Eco-conscious family that also wants to save some money. Priced at $23,475+. Perks: 52 MPG! dubbed ‘the car of the future’, wireless charging, large enough to fit the family plus gear, saves about $500 a year on gas compared to a non-hybrid vehicle of its size.

 

Citations

 

1 https://www.kbb.com/car-news/all-the-latest/best-family-cars-suvs-minivans/2100001791/. Kelleybluebook. Dec 13, 2017.

2 https://www.edmunds.com/car-buying/10-best-family-cars-from-parents-magazine-edmunds.html June 5, 2018

3 https://www.dmv.org/articles/top-family-vehicles-2018 July 5, 2018

Auto Shipping and Travel to the Hawaiian Islands

Auto Shipping and Travel to the Hawaiian Islands

Hawaii is a beautiful island chain, or archipelago, located in the Pacific Ocean waters. Called the Paradise of the Pacific, it is a popular destination for traveler, tourists, even scientists. It is home to one of the most active volcanoes, has the tallest sea mountain, abundant beautiful beaches, tropical climate, and an exotic island culture that we now share since its addition to the United States in 1959.

The archipelago of Hawaii is comprised of eight main islands. Hawaii, Maui, Oahu, Kauai, Molokai, Lanai, Niihau, and Kahoolawe. Out of these eight only six are major islands to visit.

Hawaii Island

Hawaii, the Big Island, twice as large as the others, is also the main island and it is where the state is said to get its name from.

Upon arrival in Kona international airport you will be awed and inspired by the beauty that surrounds this island. From the black sands of Punaluu beach to the rainforests along the coast, this will only be the beginning of an unforgettable journey.

There are many places to enjoy such as the luxurious resorts, the golf courses, and the many historical landmarks, just to name a  few. With so much to see and so little time, one visit to the Big Island, and you will surely hope to return soon.  

Maui

Maui, the wonderful Valley Isle, is the second largest of the islands with a surprisingly modest population. Visitors that seek more private diversions and small town resorts certainly  find Maui more than welcoming.

Imagine yourself cruising down the winding roads that stretch alongside a beautiful array of waterfalls down the Hana Highway; scaling the slopes of the upcountry landscape; or walking along the shores of the breathtaking beaches. And just to add to the excitement is doesn’t hurt that Maui beaches are repeatedly ranked among the best in the world. Making it a common spot for weddings, honeymoons, Sweet Sixteens, and many other private events. Ah, paradise.

Kauai

Kauai is the fourth largest island. This island truly has classic beauty. Ancient tropical rainforests, rivers, waterfalls, and emerald valleys that adorn the story book-like landscape make it easy to see why Kauai is called the Garden isle.

It is as rich in outdoor activities as it is in beauty. Snorkeling, kayaking, hiking, and even zip lining through the valleyside are among the most popular activities for travelers. Kauai is also home to Poipu beach, frequently voted as America’s best beach. The inviting waters of Poipu beach are great for snorkeling as there is much marine life to see. It is not uncommon to spot humpback whales, Hawaiian sea turtles, and the endangered Hawaiian monk seal which almost exclusively swim around in Kauai waters.

Many places in Kauai are only accessible by sea or air, which adds to its mystery and allure. Reaching these places is like traveling back in time to the era in which the islands were discovered. And yet the best part of visiting Kauai is experiencing the small town life, the locals, and laid-back atmosphere the island has to offer. If you’re visiting Hawaii, Kauai island  is a definite must.

Molokai

Molokai is known as the Friendly Isle. And it truly is since it is the island with the best preserved Native Hawaiian culture. A plurality of Native Hawaiian locals have made the aloha spirit of Hawaii a well kept and guarded tradition. Once you set foot here you are in another time and place. A time of preserved natural island beauty, before technology and mass population conquered over the uncharted territories. This is the experience on Molokai island.

There is plenty to do and see on Molokai. If you are looking for an island of outdoor adventure, look no further. Molokai has the highest sea cliffs in the world! And Hawaii’s longest fringing reef located off the southern coast. Hiking along the cliffs will take you to the Kalaupapa National Park, a very popular and well known visitor attraction on the Kalaupapa peninsula. However, don’t plan on reaching it by car as it is only accessible by mule ride. And don’t leave without visiting Papohaku beach! Known as Three Mile beach, Papohaku is one of Hawaii States’ largest white sand beaches.

Whether you want to hike along the cliffs, learn about the compelling history of the Kalaupapa peninsula, or have a family picnic on the shores of Papohaku beach, you will surely have your fill of adventure on Molokai island.  

Lanai

Lanai is The Pineapple Isle, named rightfully after the fact that it was the world’s primary exporter of pineapples for most of the 20th century under the rule of James Dole. But these days more than pineapples are to be found here.

Lanai is the smallest inhabited island in Hawaii and still offers a complete array of vacation amenities. From luxury, world class resorts, championship level golf courses, to good old fashioned 4-wheel driving along the otherworldly landscape of keahiakawelo path (known as the Garden of the Gods),  Lanai may often feel like being in two places at once!

Popular places to visit include the beaches and Four Seasons resort in Lanai city, Sweetheart rock, and the secluded Kaiolohia (Shipwreck Beach) which features a ghostly shipwreck that is still visible offshore. Interesting facts about Lanai is its small population, old style living (no traffic lights!), and only 3o miles of the roads in Lanai are paved. It is a very exclusive place and the locals are more than happy to keep it that way.  Whether you’re seeking a luxurious family getaway or a romantic vacation, without doubt Lanai is the island of choice if you seek a true tropical island experience.  

Travel tips

-A main travel perk when it comes to Hawaii is that you are not required to use your passport to travel there, even though it is not part of continental U.S as it is treated like any other state.

-In order to get around it is useful to have a vehicle. You may opt to have your car shipped out before your arrival or rent a car once you are there. Tour buses, taxis, and even private limos are also options for traveling within the island. Whichever the case it is best to book your transportation and have it ready before you arrive.

-Many airlines now offer direct flights to each island’s main airport; but you may also choose to fly directly into Honolulu Airport in Oahu, then take a short flight out to each island.  

-Hotels, motels, Inns, cottages, and hostels are among the many available accommodations for travelers, locals, and visitors.

-The main languages spoken in Hawaii are English, Hawaiian, and Filipino

-Hawaii doesn’t observe Daylight Saving Time. It also follows Hawaii Standard time. Which is 2 hours behind Eastern Standard time and 5 hours behind Pacific standard time.

-Hawaii is warm all year round, so make sure to pack attire for warm weather.

-the currency in Hawaii is the U.S. dollar.

There is no place on earth like Hawaii. If you’re planning on a vacation or a new place to move, make Hawaii your getaway destination.

 

The process of auto shipping to Hawaii

Auto shipping is common throughout the United States mainland. But what most might not realize is that shipping to other U.S. territories is also possible through most auto shipping companies. The Hawaiian islands, though overseas, is still technically U.S. territory. Therefore shipping to Hawaii has a special process.

If you live on the west coast you can have your car shipped out directly to Hawaii by the only three shipping carriers Pasha Hawaii, Horizon Lines, and Matson.  If you don’t live on the west coast you can still ship out your vehicle from a local shipping company to one of these three main ports. The latter process is more costly but it might end up being worth it depending on the value of your car. Check the value of your car first to determine if it is worth shipping. Keep in mind however that new cars sold in Hawaii are more expensive than new cars sold on the mainland. No matter how you factor the costs shipping your vehicle might turn out less expensive and less risky than purchasing a car on Hawaii soil.

Once you’ve made your choice the process of shipping the vehicle is generally the same:

Rules and Regulations

When shipping to the Islands of Hawaii the following will be required:

-Copy of the title or Ownership Document of the vehicle

-Proof of Valid Registration and Insurance

-A picture ID or Identification Card

-A booking reservation number provided by Coastal Auto Shipping

 

Vehicle Preparation

-Automobile must be cleaned inside and out.

-No personal belongings inside the vehicle. Only items allowed are the documents kept in the glove box and one baby seat.

-The fuel or gas tank must contain 1/4 or less

-Chips or cracks on the windshield have to be repaired

-The emergency brake has to be in proper working order

 

Payment Methods

-Cash

-Cashier’s Check

-Money Order

-Master Card, VISA, Discover, American Express

History of Automobile Transportation

The History of Automobile Transportation

 

If you are interested in auto shipping and are shopping around for quotes, learning a little bit of its history might come in handy. This will help you be as informed as possible and you will walk away with some interesting knowledge of the transportation industry that dates back even to the 1500s!

First let’s take a look at the parent of the industry: the invention of the car.

The Invention of Automobiles and Transportation Devices:

The earliest automobile on record is perhaps the Fardier, a steam powered vehicle that was built in 1771 by Nicholas Cugnot for the French Minister of war. However, the challenge in operating it coupled with its slow speed of only 2.3 mph, made the vehicle fail to go into production. But let’s give credit where credit is due, seeming as this got the wheels turning for another French inventor, Amedee Bollee. Over a whole century later, in 1873, Amedee Bollee built an upgraded 12 passenger steam car. However, this version also proved impractical because steam engines simply weren’t able to keep up with the speeds of the common horse and buggy.

By the early 1900s the Germans and the Americans had their chance to shine with the invention of the gasoline powered automobile. The Germans built the first gasoline powered cars, or motor cars, with great ingenuity. They (the vehicles) had a two cylinder gas engine, a four speed transmission, and could travel up to 10 mph. But it was the Americans that are credited with the first line of cars to be mass produced. The curved Dash Oldsmobile in 1901, built by Ransom Olds; and the first official assembly line mass produced vehicle, the Model T built by Henry Ford in 1908.

The Development to Modern Day Auto Shipping:

By the 1930s, mass production of vehicles had reached the millions. It was around this time that the transportation industry really gained popularity. In the early days, ships, trucks, planes, and railways were used to transport goods such as food, fuel, and clothing. With vehicles being mass produced and in high demand, it wasn’t long before they were also added to the list. Auto Dealers looking to purchase vehicles found that rail shipping was inefficient; taking too long and costing too much. This was the birth of the auto shipping industry.

The ‘labor pains’ were indeed great when auto dealers were often forced to find other more efficient methods of transporting vehicles. Earlier in the century semi-trucks were being used with varying degrees of success but nothing that proved successful long term until the early 1960s. During the 40s and 50s railroads were using boxcars to transport as many vehicles as possible. Over half a century of trial and error later, German engineers designed the first auto carrier rack that could carry up to ten vehicles at a time.  This was later improved on by Canadian engineers who designed enclosed bi-level carriers, similar to the traditional boxcars but with two floors and closed at both ends. Railway methods are still used to this day.

The auto shipping industry really took off in the 1980s and has been steadily growing for the past several decades; and ever since then railway methods were largely replaced in favor of big trucks and car trailers. However, Sea and Air freight are still the most popular modes used for any overseas auto shipping.

 

Modern Day Auto Shipping:

Modern day shipping uses the latest transit technology, offering door to door transport, insurance coverage, custom made service, hassle free shipping, as well as new features that allow the car to be located en route.

Cutting edge technology includes options between open vs. enclosed auto carriers, for when weather and other external factors are to be considered. This ties in to custom services that allow you to ship different types of vehicles, including luxury cars, with drivers having expert experience in handling them. For added safety, companies offer different insurance policies to choose from. Choosing the right one depends on your personal situation, budget, and vehicle type. Hassle free shipping means you no longer have to take care of the delivery details on your own. Companies carry much of the responsibility for safe transportation of your vehicle, even offering before, after, and during transit inspections. In addition, finding a shipping company is also easier than it used to be. Most companies can be found online and offer quotes right off their websites. This allows you to do background research and shop around for the best prices before you make your final decision.

Indeed much has changed since the early years of the auto shipping industry. And it doesn’t hurt to have a bit of extra knowledge on its history while you do your research. The auto shipping industry continues to grow, and like technology, is always evolving.

Transporting Your Classic Vehicle

            Car shipping is popular throughout the country for many reasons including an online car purchase, moving to a new home, or need for transportation during a vacation or business trip.

Car shipping is common and safe for many different types and styles of vehicles. However, classic vehicles are a special case. Antique cars or valuable classic cars need extra care and attention, making it imperative that you choose a company that has specific knowledge and experience in caring for these kind of vehicles.

            Coastal Auto Shipping can help you make the best decision possible here are a few tips to consider:

 

  1. Find a company that specializes in antique car transporting. There are many shipping companies to choose from. However, not all have the necessary equipment (such as nylon straps) needed to transport classic vehicles safely. So how do you find the best company? Do some research in your area or online. Ask around museums, local car clubs, car collectors, and auction companies about recommendations. All of these are good places to start and once you’ve found your company that’s half the battle won.

 

  1. Look for service that will transport your car in a closed carrier. In the case that you can’t find a shipping company that is reputable and experienced in classic vehicles then the next best thing is to look for a service that will transport your vehicle in a closed carrier or single car carrier. Most shipping companies will give you the options for open or enclosed auto shipping . Don’t be easily swayed by companies offering low prices on enclosed carriers. This often indicates the quality of service you’ll be receiving. And although open carriers are most common and more economical, consider that a classic valuable vehicle is safer in an enclosed carrier to decrease the likelihood of property damage.

 

  1. Ask for extra security measures. If the company hasn’t already offered them, don’t hesitate to ask for extra safety features in the transport service. A reliable shipping company will always provide various insurance policies. Don’t put a price on your peace of mind and go ahead and splurge on a more expensive insurance policy that is more inclusive if you feel your vehicle is worth it.

 

  1. Prepare your car for pickup. Once you’ve decided on a company and chosen your carrier type then you are ready to book your transportation. Before your car is picked up it is a good idea to do some inspections, and make sure pictures are taken. These inspections should cover every detail of your car and can be done by you, the carrier once they arrive, and even a third party that you trust. Have the car clean inside and out. Make sure there are no loose items or personal belongings inside the car as these might be damaged or cause damage while in transport. Give written instructions to the carrier with anything they’ll need to know about your specific vehicle, such as fuel cut-off and hidden switches, alarm instructions, or any other information required to start the car. If there is any preexisting damage to the vehicle the carrier will make a note of it prior to pickup. Make sure your vehicle is inspected again upon delivery in case you need to make any damage claims.

 

 Finally, the most important tip to remember is to take your time, even if you are in a rush, to do proper research and gain as much knowledge as you can about the car shipping company, their policies, and the process of car transportation. Take this as a time to get to know your vehicle and why it is so valuable to you. This way you and your vehicle are sure to have a good car shipping experience.

Open Auto Shipping vs Enclosed Auto Shipping

Auto transport companies provide convenient methods of importing and exporting vehicles across the country. Often driving or moving the car on your own might be costly on gas, time, and vehicle wear and tear. To avoid these concerns auto shipping is the way to go.

            Look no further than to Coastal auto shipping the company of choice when it comes to open or enclosed auto shipping statewide, nationwide or worldwide.

Open Auto Carriers

           IMG_1920Open car carrier is the most common, and least expensive transport method shipping companies provide. About ninety percent of the carriers on the road are open car carriers. This method uses a truck between 75 and 80 feet with a two level trailer. Multiple cars rest upon the trailer distributed over the two trailer levels.  This carrier has no walls and no roof so the vehicle is exposed at all times. While this is a reliable and convenient method, the car may suffer damage from road debris and weather conditions. Many customers with high priced or luxury vehicles find this method too risky because potential damage, however minute, is too high. If this is your situation this may be an important point to consider.

Open car shipping is in higher demand because of its great price, time efficiency, and wide availability. Customers that are worried more about cost and time will benefit from this option. Undoubtedly, every vehicle regardless of value price is of great value to the customer. Companies do keep this in mind and open car carriers are a safe option as well. However, if safety and security are main concerns you may opt for enclosed auto carriers. At that point what you choose varies on your vehicle type and your personal situation.

Enclosed Auto Carriers

            enclosed 1This carrier truck features a fully enclosed trailer. This is the best option if you are transporting a luxury vehicle, high prized car, classic, foreign cars, or expensive sports cars. The vehicle will rest safely completely surrounded by four sides and a roof. It is less spacious, carrying only up to five cars compared to open car carriers that can carry up to ten. It is the safer of the two methods protecting your vehicle from any harm caused by road debris, weather conditions, or other external threats.  Enclosed shipping also means better service with drivers that are experienced in caring for luxury or high priced vehicles. Your car is better cared for and you get you get your moneys’ worth in terms of service.

The downside however, due to less availability it is considerably more costly than open air shipping. Often up to twice as much. Add high insurance rates to that and your pretty car means you’ll be spending a pretty penny for the transport job. As well as it is less fuel efficient for the driver who will also have less ability to routinely inspect the vehicle while it is in transportation. This means that the enclosed vehicle won’t be inspected as often in case anything happens to go wrong while in transport.

Enclosed carriers are not as quick to their destination as open car carriers. Less enclosed carrier drivers means more difficulty in scheduling a service. Another reason for its high cost.

In summary, Keep in mind both open car and enclosed car methods are designed to get your car safely from point A to point B. Given the advantages and disadvantages of each shipping method you will be better able to make a decision that is right for you according to your very personal circumstance.

By Gerson F.

Snowbirds & Auto Transport

The snowbird season happens every year during Autumn and Spring.
During the months of September through as far as December.Customers
are shipping their vehicles from the North to the South due to the cold
climate. Then again in the Spring South to North. These routes can
include Florida,Arizona,California and Texas. The most common and
busiest routes are from the Northeast to the state of Florida. With hundreds of vehicles being transported during the Snowbird season it is best to prepare in advance to not only save valuable time but also some change. It is during these transport seasons the auto transport business peaks and the rates get higher. Which could make finding a carrier to provide a transport of a vehicle almost impossible. In some cases due to extreme climates transport is not even possible. As a precaution please make sure to go over with your transporter dates of pick up and potential plan B and C’s in case weather does not permit shipment.

snowflake-310071_640

On instances some customers will take the daring task of driving themselves to avoid extra charges. Keep in mind driving in bad winter conditions is extremely risky. You can be stranded in cold conditions without being to move. Leaving the task to auto transport professionals will cut down on any unnecessary spending’s like food,hotels,gas or even automotive damage.Preparing for these seasonal relocation’s well  in advance will definitely save you a headache. Don’t be left out
during the winter call, Coastal Auto Shipping and prepare your
auto transport well in advance.

By Alex D.

Is your next stop on the map, Hawaii?

Is your next stop on the map Hawaii ?

 Here are some tips on shipping a car to any of the connected Islands of Hawaii.
 Hawaii is one of the many destinations tourists flock to all year around. With vast attractions, sandy beaches and scenic roadways why not make it  your next stop. One question customers ask is ,” How easy is it to ship a vehicle to the islands” ?
Transporting a vehicle to Hawaii :
  Even though Hawaii is considered a domestic transport from the mainland United States additional paperwork is required when shipping a vehicle to the each of the Islands of Hawaii. At both ends of the shipment proof of Identification will be asked for as well as contact information, Port of discharge and purchase paper / registration.
Transporting a vehicle from Hawaii :
 The process of shipping a vehicle from Hawaii back to the mainland is more extensive since there are more regulations to meet. You may think that if you shipped to Hawaii before the process will be the samegoing backwards. Shipping a vehicle from any of the islands requires that you provide a certificate of registration and a Letter of Authorization Notarized stating owner is allowing shipment back to mainland U.S or any other destination. Identification of the drop off party is also needed along with contact information to stay in constant communication.
All vehicles leaving and entering U.S ports will be inspected at the exit port to prevent any unlawful material or contaminants. Make sure vehicle is in proper working condition to simply be loaded on the shipping carrier following its inspection and that vehicle intake documents are provided to ensure shipment.
By Gerson F.

Reliable Auto Carriers

Thinking about shipping a car and looking for reliable auto carriers ? All the auto haulers and drivers have to meet Federal Government guidelines no matter the state traveled to. The service extends from the entire U.S including the states of Hawaii, Alaska and Puerto Rico which in that case vehicle will go overseas from major ports. Coastal Auto Shipping is a the leading transport company out of South Florida specializing in Nationwide auto shipping.

  Our reliable auto transporters will give your vehicle a Five Point Inspection upon pick up and delivery of your vehicle. This means that while the driver is at either at origin or destination he will thoroughly check and document any dent,scratches or other impurities the vehicle may have. This ensures that as the customer you will know after vehicle has arrived if anything has occurs while in route to destination. All vehicles are to be covered up
to $75,000 with a 0 deductible.
 Vehicles which can be shipped on Auto Transport Hauler’s include cars,trucks,SUV’s and motorcycles. Normally 10- car haulers can load a variety of vehicles or motorcycles within the specifications required. When transporting an oversize truck or lowered vehicle be sure to provide as much information possible to better assist on the transportation service.
By Alex D.