How to Ship a Car Internationally
If you are moving across the world, you may be dreading the prospect of leaving your car behind. Fortunately, the advent of direct-to-consumer car shipping companies means you needn’t leave your vehicle in your home country. If you want to ship a car internationally, with a bit of preparation, it can be surprisingly straightforward. Read on for a quick guide on shipping your car safely and cost-effectively.
Compare Shipping Companies
Today, there is a multitude of shipping companies available for those looking to transport their cars overseas. This means that you can end up spending much more than you need to if you don’t do some prior research. Any company that you end up hiring should, at the very minimum, offer the service from your current location to your ultimate destination, be fully licensed, and only partner with other fully licensed logistics companies. This information is generally freely available on company websites. Beyond that, you can compare pricing, reviews, and company transparency on additional fees. The best car shipping companies offer secure transportation, good value for money, and do not use hidden fees.
Choose Your Shipping Method
In general, there are two widely available commercial car shipping methods – RoRo shipping and container shipping. RoRo shipping involves the car being driven onto a ship at one port and secured in place below deck. While this can be appealing, as it is significantly cheaper than container shipment, it is also riskier, as the car is more exposed. Additionally, RoRo shipping also often involves multiple stops at ports, meaning it can be longwinded. Conversely, container shipping offers the best security and convenience but can be prohibitively expensive for some.
Acquire the Necessary Documents
If you have ever moved anything internationally in the past, you will know that generally, you will require some sort of paperwork to ensure you are complying with all laws and regulations in your destination country. Unsurprisingly, shipping a car is no different. It is likely that the shipping company can advise you on the specifics of what you will need to supply, which can be helpful, as these requirements can vary substantially from country to country. The United States, for example, requires a host of documentation, including the bill of lading, bill of sale, and safety compliance forms.
Inspect Your Car, Prior to Shipping
While car shippers must adhere to strict standards to ensure that the risk of cargo damage is minimal, there is always the potential for your car to be scratched or damaged in transit, especially on long journeys. As a result, it is critical that you conduct a full inspection of your car prior to shipping it. Taking detailed images will enable you to point to them if you find that damage has occurred. Otherwise, you may find it difficult to prove that the damage occurred when the car was shipped. Additionally, it is advisable to ensure your brakes, specifically, are in full working order, so the car can be safely loaded and unloaded off the ship.