Anytime you ship a vehicle, it’s an investment of your time, money, and assuming you find a good company, your trust. Moving a car from one country to another is no small task and it’s essential that you find a qualified, experienced shipper when considering the task of international auto transport. This article will explain how to do just that and cover some of the basics of what you should look for.
Transporting a vehicle within the U.S., even from one state to another, is pretty straightforward, but that’s not always the case when shipping to another country. Because of the different laws and taxes that apply to imports, it’s especially important to deal with a company that knows the ins and outs of the system.
To give you an example, the import tax on a vehicle shipped to western Europe would be around 20%, depending on the country. If you shipped to Ecuador, on the other hand, you’d be faced with a 40% or more duty. This is in addition to the cost of shipping so make sure you have a good understanding of what sort of tax payment you’ll be responsible for.
An experienced company should have a thorough knowledge of the current taxes on vehicle imports for the regions in which they operate. By the same token, it’s helpful if the company you choose has a local office in the area you’re shipping to. That way, any delays or hangups can be sorted up much more easily than having to call another country, not to mention you can go to the office in person, if necessary.
What To Look For: Experience & Reliability.
There are a few markers of an experienced international car shipper that you can look for when feeling out companies. The is the services page on the company website. This gives you an idea of what their focus is and, in most cases, what they do best. The second major thing to look for is a track record of safety and experience.
A company website can tell you a lot about what they do not just in the usual manner, but because it’s in an indicator of their primary services. Some may offer international transport as an afterthought on their services page and not mention it anywhere else or go into much detail about it. That’s generally a sign that overseas auto transport is not a specialty of theirs and likely a signal that it’s not a service they provide often.
When it comes to assessing the safety rating of an auto transport company, there is only one true resource you should use: The Safety and Fitness Electronic Records System (SAFER). SAFER is a database kept on all auto transport companies that includes safety performance, current operating status, and accident reports. If you’re searching for the best international auto shipper, it’s an invaluable resource.
Call us at the number at the top of the page if you have questions about the best way to ship a car internationally! We offer FREE cost estimates for all shipments, to any part of the world. Call or email us today!
Written By:Joe Webster
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.