Gift Icon Get a 20% discount from our partners! Discount code will get added automatically when you submit the form.
4.7 Star Rating4.7 (67,926 reviews)
How much does shipping your Vehicle cost?
Free Instant Online Calculator based on quotes from Trusted Auto Shipping Companies
Customer Images
7790 people shipped using A-1 Auto Transport last week

Joe brought me peace of mind. I can’t thank you enough for being so reliable and trustworthy

No risk, no contracts. Just calculate your quote first and choose your contractor later.

Globe
190+
Countries
Served
Car
2M+
Delivered
Services
Car
97%
Customer
Recommended
Dave loved the fast deliveryDave C.
★★★★★
Dave loved the fast delivery
My relocation to Chicago was fast, smooth and without any delay thanks to A1 Auto.
Courtney enjoyed the honest guidanceCourtney J.
★★★★★
Courtney enjoyed the honest guidance
Just what you need when trusting someone with your wheels! Kudos to this company!
Jeff enjoyed the fair priceJeff D.
★★★★★
Jeff enjoyed the fair price
Moved my ride hassle-free with these folks.Fair pricing, no surprises. Definitely recommend them!
Maria enjoyed the special care and safetyMaria L.
★★★★★
Maria enjoyed the special care and safety
Huge thanks to the movers – they were meticulous with my car. Love these guys.
Recently featured on USA Today

“A1 Auto Transport became synonymous with top-notch service delivery, unfailing punctuality and constantly preoccupied with customer satisfaction.

See Article— USA Today

Can I Move My Car to Japan?

Published by Tamar Hela.

What's in this article?
  1. Considerations Before Moving Your Car to Japan
  2. Shipping Methods and Costs
  3. Preparing Your Car for Shipping
  4. Shipping Methods and Costs
  5. Alternatives to Shipping Your Car
  6. Key Takeaways
  7. Ship Your Car to Japan with Confidence
Can I Move My Car to Japan?

Moving abroad is an exciting opportunity that also presents challenges when it comes to logistics. If you're an American considering relocating to Japan, one decision you'll need to make is whether to ship your car overseas or look into alternative transportation options once you arrive. This guide provides an overview of the factors to consider when shipping your vehicle to Japan to suit your situation.

car-image-14.jpg

Considerations Before Moving Your Car to Japan

There are several important considerations before committing to ship a vehicle to Japan. The first is cost - the average price to ship a car from the US to Japan ranges from $2,000 to $4,000+. This wide range depends on the size and weight of your vehicle and the selected shipping method.

In addition to direct shipping expenses, you'll need to budget 1-2 months for the entire process. The average transit time from the US to Japan ranges from 23 to 40 days. During this time, your car will be unavailable for use.

From a legal standpoint, there are also requirements and regulations to understand. All imported vehicles must go through Japanese customs, which involves paying duties, a Consumption Tax (equivalent to US sales tax), and an Acquisition Tax based on the car's age and specifications. You must also ensure your vehicle meets Japan's emissions and safety standards

Shipping Methods and Costs

There are two primary methods for shipping a vehicle overseas - container shipping and roll-on/roll-off (RORO) shipping. Container shipping involves loading your car into a standard shipping container that is sealed and shipped via a cargo vessel. RORO shipping allows you to drive your vehicle onto the boat, which remains closed until arrival.

Container shipping costs average $2,500-$3,500+ depending on the port of departure in the US and destination in Japan. Additional costs may include a few hundred bucks for tarping and securing the vehicle. RORO shipping ranges from $2,500 to $4,000, with $100 to $300 in additional fees.

When comparing options, consider the type of vehicle (size/weight affects container capacity), specific pickup/drop-off locations, and desired delivery time frame. RORO is usually faster at 20-30 days, while container shipments take 5-7 weeks on average. Door-to-door service is also more accessible with RORO.

Preparing Your Car for Shipping

Proper preparation helps ensure a smooth shipping process and vehicle condition on arrival. Your vehicle must be thoroughly cleaned inside and out to remove any dirt, debris, or liquids. Check fluids, tires, and lights, and ensure the battery is fully charged.

Documents like the title and registration must match the importer's name in Japan. You'll also need a Carnet de Passage en Douane (CPD), an international customs document, to import the vehicle temporarily. Be ready to provide vehicle details for the accurate declaration form as well.

It's wise to research Japan's import regulations on the Customs and Tariff Bureau website for the most up-to-date rules governing duty amounts and restrictions. Certain modified vehicles may have issues clearing customs. Budget extra time for any repainting or repairs needed to satisfy compliance.

Shipping Methods and Costs

Proper preparation helps ensure a smooth shipping process and vehicle condition on arrival. Your vehicle must be thoroughly cleaned inside and out to remove any dirt, debris, or liquids. Check fluids, tires, and lights, and ensure the battery is fully charged.

Documents like the title and registration must match the importer's name in Japan. You'll also need an international customs document to import the vehicle temporarily. Be ready to provide vehicle details for the accurate declaration form as well.

It's wise to research Japan's import regulations on the Customs and Tariff Bureau website for the most up-to-date rules governing duty amounts and restrictions. Certain modified vehicles may have issues clearing customs. Budget extra time for any repainting or repairs needed to satisfy compliance.

car-image-11.jpg

Alternatives to Shipping Your Car

Shipping a vehicle is a significant commitment requiring time and money. Fortunately, Japan has excellent public transportation options that may suit your needs better depending on where you live and work.

The train system is fast, frequent, and goes nearly everywhere, including most rural areas. Regular commuter trains called Shinkansen provide high-speed rail connections between major cities.

Metros, subways, and buses are abundant in cities and connect residential areas to business hubs. Ride-sharing services complement fixed routes. Bicycles can also replace short car trips in some parts of Japan, where infrastructure facilitates a cycling culture.

Renting a car is quite affordable for periodic use as well. Short-term rentals start around $35/day with prepaid discounts. If you need a long-term car, used vehicles sell for reasonable prices compared to maintenance/ownership costs in Japan, including taxes and mandatory inspections. Many expats spend years relying solely on public transit before getting a vehicle.

Key Takeaways

In summary, transporting your vehicle overseas requires extensive planning, time, and investment. Weigh the benefits of having your car in Japan against alternate means of transportation carefully based on your unique needs and lifestyle.

For shorter assignments, public transit or rental cars provide cost-effective mobility. But if staying long-term, shipping may prove worthwhile if you require the independence/cargo room a vehicle offers regularly. Do your research into documentation, regulations, shipping providers, and any car adaptation needs upfront to smooth the import process. Considering the factors discussed here will help you decide the best option for your Japan relocation goals.

lambo13.jpg

Ship Your Car to Japan with Confidence

Are you preparing to relocate to Japan but unsure about moving your vehicle overseas? Let A1 Auto Transport handle the logistics so you can focus on your move. As Japan's top-rated auto shipping company, we have years of experience navigating customs regulations and delivering vehicles safely and on schedule.

Our seamless door-to-door service takes the stress out of international relocation. We'll pick up your car at your home in the US and deliver it directly to your new Japanese address, so there is no need to track down your vehicle after the long journey. Choose from enclosed container shipping or RORO transport based on your car and destination.

Shipping with A1 Auto Transport gives you peace of mind that your most precious possessions will arrive smoothly. Contact us today for a free quote.

Share this content on social media for a chance to get up to 20% off your next shipment.
Copy link

Tamar Hela is one of our featured writers at A-1 Auto Transport, researching everything from AI auto shipments out of China to what paperwork is required to move long distance. We can safely say she's become well versed in all things shipping and logistics while making the information easy to digest and understandable. 

Tamar has been a copywriter for over 16 years and was trained in the 7-Figure Copywriting Accelerator course through American Writers & Artists, Inc. (AWAI). She's also an incredibly seasoned copyeditor, having previously been the Chief Editor and Publishing Director for Cosby Media Productions, based in Atlanta, Georgia. 

Email Me


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

...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.

Testimonial
Luis Rodriguez
You have my full support and recommendation!
★★★★★

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!

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... Fortunately, I made the right choice with A1 Auto Transport.

Testimonial
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.

Visit our social, and see what our clients are saying about us:

Ship Your Vehicle With A-1 Auto Today
Get an instant free Quote Now

Or Call Us Today and Speak Directly to Our Sales Team:

Call Us 1-888-230-9116

Our Partners:

Better Business Bureau Accredited
FMCSA Member
INC. 500 Member
VeriSign Secured
AMSA Member

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

CSI Logistics
435 Division Street
Elizabeth, NJ 07201
FMC 22206
Intl Cargo
45 Campus Drive
Edison, NJ 08837
NO. 17858N
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
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
Copyright © 1988-2024, A-1 Auto Transport - All Rights Reserved.