How To Prepare Your Classic Car For International Shipping

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How To Prepare Your Classic Car For International Shipping

Prepare Your Classic Car For International Shipping

Classic cars require a lot time, effort and good old-fashioned hard work to keep them in peak condition. Given the effort expended on these vehicles, cost is not often the first consideration when shipping them overseas. It comes down to quality of the transport company.  However, preparation is key on behalf of the owner is as well. Preparing your classic car for international shipping is key to a successful transport.

Consider a few tips to ensure a smooth process:

  • Gas up: Ensure that your vehicle has just enough gas to get to the transport and to your destination once the car arrives. However, don’t fill up as a heavier vehicle means more weight – and therefore a higher fee for transport. But don’t leave your classic vehicle bone dry or you may not have enough gas to pull off once you are ready to put the car on the road overseas.
  • Top off fluids and have the car inspected: To avoid any issues once the vehicle arrives, take steps to have a qualified mechanic look over the vehicle before shipping. Top off the important fluids and inspect everything from the tires to all belts, gaskets, etc. Given that the shipping process can sometimes be extensive, a fact to which classic cars are sometimes more sensitive than their newer counterparts, having the vehicle checked can avoid any hiccups at the other end of the process.

A-1 Auto Transport, Inc. ships vehicles worldwide. Click here or call 1-800-518-8708 to get a free, no obligation to buy price quote to ship your car.


  • Inspect the vehicle: People who own classic cars have taken the time to perfect the look of the vehicle down to the most minute details. And while choosing a shipping company that will take good care of one of your most prized possessions is paramount, problem can sometimes arise. Catching them later may make it harder to reconcile. Therefore, do an inspection of the vehicle well in advance. Make a list of all “dings” and imperfections, so that there is no misunderstanding when the car arrives at its destination.
  • Stow any removable ornamentation: Classic cars are well-known for having ornate aspects that act as a calling card to the year, make and model for which it is best known. In preparing the vehicle for transport, stow any removable objects that can fall off or be inadvertently removed and/or lost during transport.
  • Be specific with your transport company: Provide all special instructions in writing. If there is anything unusual about the vehicle or any aspect of it with which you would like the company to take care, inform them in writing. While you can also communicate this information in-person when booking the appointment and even the day of, given the time parameters of international auto transport, giving them a reference in writing is also prudent. This is particularly poignant for classic vehicles, which are often customized with years of hard work and special care.

By heeding these ideas and working closely with your transport company of choice, odds are greater that your classic car will arrive at its destination in the same top condition in which it left its point of origin.

Joe Webster

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 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, Inc., 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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