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What You Need To Know About Overseas Car Shipping

Subscribe January 29, 2015
Car shipping process

Perhaps you're moving overseas, or perhaps you're thinking about buying a car online from a seller in a different country. Either way, you have to figure out:

  • If transporting your car is worth it
  • What you should be looking for in a car transport service

Although the process of shipping a car overseas is a complicated one, many people decide to ship a car (or multiple cars) either because they own some expensive cars they don't want to sell, or because they know that they'll be stressed out enough when they move to another country. Or maybe, when someone moves into the U.S., they just can't seem to get used to American-made cars. Perhaps someone has just received a million-dollar inheritance, which includes cars, after a long-lost and unknown great-great British uncle has passed away (hey, it can happen...).

Basically there are many reasons why people choose to ship cars overseas, and consequently there are many dependable auto shipping services to choose from. So if you find yourself looking into overseas car shipping, here are just a few things to keep in the back of your mind:

Hire the Right Car Shipping Company

You definitely want to make sure that you find a vehicle transport service that specializes in overseas shipping, first and foremost. These car shipping companies will be familiar with all the domestic and foreign paperwork that will be required, and they'll know about customs restrictions and import taxes.

Understand the International Auto Transport Process

It seems like an obvious point to make, but it's surprisingly easy to forget: when you ship a car overseas, most car shipping services have certain urban ports out of which they work (like Baltimore, Miami, or Los Angeles), meaning that you'll have to get your car to one of these cities. If you don't live near a big coastal city, you may have to look into another shipping service, or drive your car yourself, in order to reach the port that the overseas transport company uses.

Fully Prepare Your Vehicle For An Overseas Move

Preparations for any car transport include doing an evaluation of your car and possibly buying extra transport insurance, but there are a couple extra things to keep in mind when shipping a car to a different country. You'll want to make sure that there are no protruding objects on the car, like large antennas or spoilers, as well as electronic devices like alarms and radios, because these can easily get damaged or stolen. You'll want to remove any personal objects from inside your car, because these tend to get lost very easily during an overseas move, and it's always a good idea to make a few extra sets of keys.

Quite simply, the best way to ensure that your overseas car shipping experience is a good one is to do your research prior to picking out a company, and to keep everything -- including important documents and receipts -- as organized as possible. It will be complicated and will cost some money, but a good transport company will take care of the most stressful details for you.

Testimonials

No issues to report, service was dependable and reliable. Our car was available before the scheduled date! Very much appreciated!
T. Rosenthal
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