How Much Does It Cost To Ship a Car Overseas?

Have you ever wondered how a bulky item such as a vehicle could possibly be transported abroad? Well, there is no rocket science involved if you are thinking along that line. All it takes is sufficient amount of money on your part to cover the cost of shipping and all documentation required from the point of origin up to the point of destination and the shipping companies would do the rest. You would get the exact same vehicle with the exact same condition on the other side of the world.

But how much does it cost to ship a car overseas and what are the other expenses it entails? Let us find out below.

ship sailing

Average Cost to Ship a Car Overseas

It varies depending on several factors such as the size of the vehicle, the destination, the method of shipment, etc. but typically range between $750 and $5,000 for the standard ocean transport and around $5,000 up to $40,000 if you opt for air transport. But for the benefit of this article, we would only be tackling about ocean transport.

Shipping cars overseas price samples by destination include:

To Europe

  • Compact cars – starts at $750
  • Full-sized SUV – $2,000 to $2,400

To Australia

  • Standard-sized car – $2,950
  • If shipped in a 20-foot container with other goods – $3,200
  • If shipped in a 40-foot container with other goods – $4,600

Below are the rates of for different destinations in case you opted to ship your car through containers:

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What are Included

One of main factors affecting pricing is the method or the manner by which the vehicles are being transported.

Two main methods are being used in transporting vehicles by boat. These are either by using a shipping container or the one called RORO or Roll on, Roll off.

Shipping containers are typically preferred by those who also have other items to be shipped aside from the car. Containers are easily stackable on ships and are easily transferred to a truck bed for the eventual delivery to a specific destination or literally at your doorstep or in the car manufacturer’s showroom.

The RORO method is whereby the vehicle is driven onto the ship and is being secured in the cargo deck through the use of special equipment, straps, and tie-downs. Once the ship arrives in the country destination, the car is just being driven off. This is often preferred by those who follow timelines and needs the vehicle on a specific time and date because the cargo ships for this type of method follow a specific schedule just like an airplane flight.


Additional Expenses

Extra expenses includes the following:

  • There are some countries that may be requiring you to follow their safety standards. If you need to replace some vehicle parts, some countries may have a higher cost for repair or replacement of spare parts.
  • You should also take into consideration the insurance for the shipment of your car. Typical insurance quote would be between 1.5% and 2.5% of the vehicle’s value.
  • Entry taxes must also be considered when shipping in Europe which usually amounts to around $200 or approximately 150.
  • If you only paid for the shipment up to the port of the country destination and you do not intend to pick it up yourself, inland shipping typically costs $125 up to$800 or even more.

Aside from that, there may be a need for declaration forms, notarized titles, and documents. Also, as mentioned, if your vehicle stays longer in the port because you did not pay for inland delivery or shipping, then prepare an extra budget for storage fees.

Shopping for Overseas Car Shipping

Get free quotes from the following shipping companies:

You may also compare prices from various movers in your area through

Factors Affecting Cost to Ship a Car Overseas

Type of vehicle – the type of vehicle plays an important role as each is priced differently according to the value, shape, and size.

Condition – whether the vehicle delivered is in good running condition or not would hugely affect the price as there could be more effort to offload and to deliver a car that is not running and may use additional equipment to accomplish as compared to cars in good condition that you could just drive out of the port and into your house.

Expected time – usual shipment period is 3-12 weeks depending on the final destination of the vehicle. If you want it faster than that, then prepare to pay a heftier sum.

Destination The farther the destination, the more expensive the cost. Also, the popularity of the destination, such as if there is a lot of traffic in that particular part of the world, chances are, the cost is also higher.

Door to door or pick up  choosing between these two options may save you some cost, but it is not always what you think. While it may appear more cost-effective to just pick up the vehicle yourself at the port thereby saving you the cost of a chauffeur delivering your car at your doorstep, it is not always the case as some ports may charge you storage fee for the time you have not been able to get the car off the port once it lands. 

Additional Information

You may be considering getting additional services of transporting your car to the port to avoid any hassle. But if your car is in good running condition, you might just as well make an arrangement with the shipping company to cut down the price as you would be driving the vehicle yourself up to the port.

Your car should only contain around a quarter fuel enough to drive the car off the ship and short distance destination as anything in excess would customarily be removed prior to departure.

Depending on the value of your vehicle and the duration of the trip, you might want to consider the RORO shipping to avoid getting your car placed below deck where it is exposed to salty air and weather in the case of container shipping.

When considering shipping your car in case of your relocation to other countries and you do not want to give your car up for sentimental or any other reasons, always consider the value of the car. If your car model is somewhat old, chances are that cost of the shipping might be higher than the value of the vehicle itself which is very impractical. In that case, just consider buying a new one at your new home.

In case you just want to have a means of transportation that is readily available anytime if you are expecting a prolonged vacation overseas or a few months of assignment or designation at a particular country due to work, you might just want to consider car-for-hire. They are even usually cheaper in other countries especially in some parts of Asia, Latin America, and Africa.

Most importantly, make sure that the driving convention of your car is compatible with that of the country destination. If your car has a left-hand drive convention and you intend to ship it to a country that uses right-hand drive, chances are, you would not be able to use it. Not that it is prohibited because it is perfectly legal in most parts of the world. The only trouble is that you might not be used to driving on the side of the road which the country destination utilizes that you might be prone to accidents unless you want to consider converting it which can be very costly.


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