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A-1 Importing A Car Into US From Canada

🇨🇦 Canada, (CA)

What's in this article?
  1. How To Import A Car Into The U.s From Canada
  2. Canada To U.s Vehicle Import Resources
A-1 Importing A Car Into US From Canada

How To Import A Car Into The U.S. From Canada

This page explores some of the finer details of importing a car into the U.S. from Canada. Though it can be a headache to import a car from some countries—or not allowed at all—it’s a relatively pain-free process coming from Canada. That said, there are some important things to know, especially those that relate to U.S. emissions standards and safety protocols.

Any vehicle imported into the United States must conform to the standards set forth by both the Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Transportation. Cars that do not meet the standards may be imported into the U.S. on a temporary basis while changes are made to make them compliant. The following are the two forms you will need to submit in order to verify you are importing a compliant vehicle:

  • EPA Form 3520-1*
  • DOT Form HS-7*

EPA Form 3520-1 is a standard declaration document that must be submitted to U.S. Customs and Border Protection for the importation of any of any motor vehicle. There are exceptions granted to those vehicles that are new and imported by the original manufacturer of the vehicle. Additionally, this exception only applies to those that meet EPA emissions standards and have an accompanying certificate of conformity. It’s important to note that each vehicle being imported must have a separate form submitted. You can view and print a PDF of the form by clicking here. 

The DOT Form HS-7 is also a declaration document, but it must be submitted to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, which is an arm of the U.S. Department of Transportation. This form, like EPA Form 3520-1, applies to any motor vehicle or motor vehicle equipment that is imported from another country. The form includes basic information like the made, model, and year of the vehicle, as well as the VIN and information related to customs and the port of entry. If you are submitting the form as the importer of the vehicle, you’ll also have to provide your personal information and that of the company handling the shipment. To view and print a copy of DOT Form HS-7, you can view a PDF of the document here

*See the resources at the bottom of the page for more information about these forms and how to submit them.

There are exceptions to the EPA requirements for some vehicles. This includes those that are more than 25 years old with no modifications, as well as vehicles that are imported on a temporary basis of no more than one year. As of this writing, you are permitted to drive in the U.S. with a Canadian driver’s license and plates while operating a temporarily imported car.

A-1 Auto Transport ships vehicles worldwide, including to and from Canada on a regular basis. If you have questions about the process or you’d like a FREE instant price quote, simply click here or call 1-800-518-8708! All estimates are given in real time by an authorized shipping agent and require no payment or obligation on your part.

For foreign vehicles permanently imported into the U.S., you will likely need a letter of compliance from the manufacturer. Some cars may have a label stating that it meets U.S. emissions standards, but the majority of vehicles outside of the United States do not, in which case the compliance letter is required.

Depending on the state you’re shipping your car to, you may also be required to complete a smog check upon initial registration.

Cars manufactured in Canada can generally be brought into the U.S. duty-free, but there may be some exceptions. For most standard sized vehicles, the applicable duty is 2.5%. To qualify for duty-free car shipping to the U.S., your must arrive with your car; it cannot be stored for later arrival without paying a duty.

If you have questions about importing a car to the U.S. from Canada, contact us today to find out how we can help! We offer free price quotes with no obligation required and we’re happy to answer your questions. Call us today at the number at the top of the page!

Canada To U.S. Vehicle Import Resources

EPA Import Restrictions - Information about the Environmental Protection Agency’s standards for vehicle emissions. Topics covered include standards for all types of vehicles, as well as engines, generators, and gardening tools.

Customs & Border Protection Information – If you plan to import a car into the U.S., you’ll need to acquaint yourself with the procedure and legal requirements. This resource specifically addresses these issues as they relate to importing a motor vehicle, including contact information for the various agencies involved in the process.

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Joe Webster began his journey in the auto transport field by attending the University of Southern California (USC), where he graduated with a Bachelor of Business Marketing. 

After college, he started his career in the auto transport industry from the bottom up and has done virtually every job there is to do at A-1 Auto Transport, including but not limited to: Truck Driver, Dispatch, Sales, PR, Bookkeeping, Transport Planner, Transport Manager, International Transport Manager, Brokering, Customer Service, and Marketing. Working with his mentor Tony Taylor, Joe Webster has learned the ins and outs of this industry which is largely misunderstood. 

With over 30 years experience in the industry, we've been helping people ship their vehicles, motorcycles, RV's, heavy equipment, household goods and more across the country or overseas without a hitch. Ask us anything.

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Mylene Rutllant
It’s my number one pick in auto shipping to this day.

Due to the nature of my work, I must relocate every couple of years to where my company needs me. Because of this, I’ve tested several moving and auto transport companies over the years.

And my choice in terms of auto transport has to be A1 Auto Transport. It’s in the name, but also in the quality with which they do their jobs. I’ve never had a problem with this company.

The only time my shipment was delayed was during winter when a snowstorm closed down all the major roads. And they still found an alternative and got my car delivered before roads got unstuck.

When I moved to West Virginia, they picked up my car the very day I called them. I like to think they take special care of me considering all the business I’ve sent them. I’ll continue to support A1 Auto Transport. It’s my number one pick in auto shipping to this day.

Luis Rodriguez
You have my full support and recommendation!

I considered selling my car when I moved to Washington. It was old and rusty, but I grew attached to it. So, I called a couple companies to transport it to my new home, but they both fell through.

The first one couldn’t decide on a schedule. He would constantly change the pickup date till I got frustrated and canceled. The second was insufferable, very rude on the phone, even worse in person.

They started picking a part my car asking me why I still have it. If that’s their opinion of my vehicle, how can I trust they’ll take care of it? If something happened midway, why wouldn’t they just blame it on the car instead of paying up?

So, I cancelled this company as well and turned to A1 Auto Transport. From the get go, they were very different from my past options. Their website was very professional and up to date, full of useful information. I requested a quote using their online form, and I got an email response within an hour. Surprisingly fast!

If I didn’t know any better, I would’ve thought they were lacking customers, but the email spoke for itself. In just one email, everything I needed to know was there, including a contact number I could use to get more information or confirm the transport.

I called and got things rolling. I was very pleased with the driver. He followed standard procedure and represented his company well. Can’t remember his name, but props to him!

The car arrived in Washington 6 days later in excellent condition. From what I understand, the transport was delayed a bit by a storm, but since the time window was 4-6 days from the beginning, I don’t really care. You have my full support and recommendation!

Testimonial by Cristine Benoit
Cristine Benoit
I can safely say this is a legit company that will get the job done.

There are a lot of options for auto transport these days, which surprisingly makes it harder to find a good company. I received more than 10 offers to ship my car, but I couldn’t decide on any of them.

After doing some research, I got even more worried reading about all the scams and accidents that can happen. But, I have work to do and couldn’t afford to drive my newly purchased Mini Cooper all the way to Virginia.

Fortunately, I made the right choice with A1 Auto Transport. They are very good at their jobs. I spent more than an hour drilling Joe with various questions, and he never once lost his patience. He saw I was interested, so he bore with me until I was satisfied. The driver was also very courteous and my car was intact on arrival. I couldn’t have asked for more.

By the way, the price we first agreed on stayed the same. There were no delays or unexpected “surprises.” I can safely say this is a legit company that will get the job done.

David Osallo
We give A1 Auto Transport a big 10 out of 10!

We give A1 Auto Transport a big 10 out of 10! We chose them to move our car from California to Vermont, since we needed professionals.

We were abroad during the transport, so the transport was a bit tricky. The driver had to pick it up from storage on short notice and get it to its destination within at most 10 days. I was happy to note it arrived sooner. We got it 3 days early, right when we got home to pick it up. It made getting around way easier. Awesome service!

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A-1 Auto Transport is a disclosed agent for the following shipping companies:

Trans Global Auto Logistics, Inc.
3401 E Randol Mill Rd
Arlington, TX 76011
NO. 018191NF
CFR Rinkens
15501 Texaco Avenue
Paramount, CA 90723
NO. 013055NF
ABC Worldwide LLC
2840 NW 2nd Ave #105
Boca Raton, FL 33431
NO. 025472F
CSI Logistics
435 Division Street
Elizabeth, NJ 07201
FMC 22206
Intl Cargo
45 Campus drive
Edison, NJ 08837
NO. 17858N
ShipYourCarNow LLC
1160 South Rogers Circle Suite 1
Boca Raton, FL 33487
NO. 025646
Merco Air & Ocean Cargo, Inc.
6 Fir Way
Cooper City, FL 33026
NO. 021869F
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