International Car Shipping by Sea

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International Car Shipping by Sea
International Car Shipping by Sea

What is the International Car Shipping by Sea?

If you have a car, truck, motorcycle, ATV or moped and are going to be traveling outside of the United States, you may want to import your vehicle so you can travel at leisure.

The most important thing to have when shipping a vehicle internationally is security while the vehicle is in transit.

A-1 Auto Transport 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.

Foreign Rules and Regulations.

Before shipping to another country, you may want to contact the consulate in the country you plan on traveling to in order to get answers to a few questions you may have before the importing process begins. Some important questions to ask before choosing international car shipping by sea include:

  • How much will it cost for your import?
  • What taxes and duties are you required to pay and when?
  • Which shipping option is available for the port you will be shipping to?
  • Will you be able to sell your vehicle while in the country if you choose to?
  • Does your vehicle qualify to be a luxury vehicle? If so, will you be charged luxury car tax too?

Most European ports will charge an entry tax, on average around $200.00. Will the country you are transporting to require this entry tax as well? You need to talk with A1 Auto Transport service to know more about.

Prior to Shipping Documentation.

Before you begin international car shipping by sea the process of shipping, you must fill out the proper paperwork in order to obtain permission to ship. It's very important that you pay particular attention to this part of the process because it will determine many factors, one of which is if you can gain permission to enter another country. You will also want to have A1 Auto Transport Service shipping agents go over the paperwork before you submit it to determine if you have everything you need. You will need to have both originals and copies of all paperwork required. You will need the following:

  • Vehicle title.
  • If you do not have a title, you will need a manufacturer's statement.
  • A letter of permission from alien holder if your vehicle has a lien against it.

Ask A1 Auto Transport Service agents for a complete list of documents you will need to bring with you. Additionally, there are other steps to take when international car shipping by sea as it will need to be prepped for transport. This includes:

  • Cleaning your vehicle out so that no personal items are inside.
  • You have no other tools in the vehicle, except for a car jack and spare tire.
  • All alarms have to be disabled.
  • No loose objects such as antennas can be left on the vehicle.

You will need to ensure that your vehicle will pass inspection prior to shipment in order to avoid any delays.

The cost for Shipment.

You will also want to verify the amount it will cost you when choosing to ship your car internationally by sea so you are not hit with any unexpected costs during or after the vehicle is unloaded in the new country. Find out how much A1 Auto Transport Service will charge you for their assistance and also the peace of mind you get from having a team help you every step of the way.

Shipping Methods.

Your vehicle can either be driven on the ship and strapped down for security and then driven off the ship when it reaches the new port or it can be placed inside of a container and loaded on a cargo ship. The first method is called the Roll On/ Roll Off method of shipping and the second method of shipping is called container shipping. If you have a valuable car or you want to ship over a few of your household goods, you will want to choose the container shipping option. If you want to transport your vehicle on a budget or the lowest prices possible, then Roll On/ Roll Off is the best way to do that. The cost stays low because hundreds of vehicles can be shipped at one time, dividing the cost among everyone who has a vehicle aboard the ship. This is the most common way to transport a vehicle from the United States to another country.

Joe WebsterWritten By:Joe WebsterConnect with Joe Webster on facebookConnect with Joe Webster on linkedin

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.

Email me -

Satisfied Customers

“I am meticulous when it comes to everything. At first, I was thinking of just driving all the way to Illinois from New Jersey. A friend recommended me to go to A1 Auto Transport and told me a lot of good things about them. I refused initially because I had filed a 4 day leave just to drive and visit my mother. But things did not go well. My boss asked me to cancel my leave because a very important client asked for an urgent meeting, and the manager could not attend to it. I was hopeless and took the risk of asking help from A1. The notice was short and I forgot I needed to inform them in advance. After a couple of hours, I received a call and they told me they found a way to book me with no extra fees. I am so thankful I got to attend to my work matters. I did not get to see my mother, but the vehicle and items inside it were in perfect condition as if it was me who took care of it. I owe you guys big time! I got one huge deal from our client.”

“The plan was to ship my car from California to Utah. I went through nearly 20 quotes after using an auto shipping site which linked to a bunch of brokers. Finally, I found A1 Auto Transport, a company with its own trucks with great reviews. I was sold. Joe was very competent, gave off the impression he’d done this a million times, and it really showed throughout the transport. He listened to my request carefully, offered me several options, stayed in touch during the transport, and made sure I was happy with everything. Overall, a great company which I would definitely recommend to others!”

“I’m so glad I met you Joe!! A truly fortunate experience. Having to transport a car to Minnesota, I was stunned to see the company, who was supposed to take care of it, just vanish. I couldn’t reach them anymore, like they went bankrupt overnight. However, I was lucky enough to not pay anything, so I simply researched some more until I found A1 Auto Transport. Joe answered my call the first time and we soon agreed on a date and a quote. Unfortunately, I got caught up in work and forgot about it. The order was not confirmed, so Joe must’ve thought I changed my mind. I called him the next day and arranged for a new date. This time, I made a note on my phone and it went well. I replied to his email this time, and the driver arrived at a parking lot down the street on time, as promised. The driver was nice enough to not mention my previous mistake. He delivered my car in just 3 days. Upon careful inspection, there were no scratches or damage done to it during transport. Joe was there along with the driver and they both waited patiently until I was satisfied. Thanks!”

“A1 Auto is kind of like your favourite mom and pop pizza parlour, the one you can’t get enough of despite all the new, expensive avant-garde pizza shops that have mushroomed conspicuously across the entire neighbourhood and seem to have taken over the whole world...but not you. Because you value quality and genuine customer service, and know this business understands and works doubly hard to give you your money’s worth. I’ve been using A1 Auto Transport whenever I left California for business: they may not be the cheapest car transporters around, but the sheer professionalism, dedication, and heart they put into their work is just amazing and worth my every dime. I’m probably one of the most sceptical people you would ever meet. I’m rarely convinced when bombarded with dubious, self-congratulating ads of companies that look like they’ve spent tons of money on marketing materials just to lure your average guy in. A1 Auto Transport is the complete opposite of these companies. My car always arrived promptly on schedule, never with a hint of scratch or dirt or damage, and they keep me updated every step of the process. When you’ve found a company whose genuine care for their customers comes naturally, you stand by them no matter what. It’s the most logical thing to do.”

“A1 Auto Transport helped me move a vehicle to Iowa from Houston. I was a bit nervous, no knowing much about such services. Thanks to Joe, I was able to clear the fog a little. He answered all my questions and explained everything in a way that left no room for interpretation. The details were straightforward. I picked Sunday as the pickup date, since I wasn’t at work, and they accommodated me. The truck arrived an hour early, yet the driver patiently waited for me to arrive. He thoroughly checked my car for scratches or anything that might affect the transport then drove it onto the truck. I was given a 2 day time window during which the car was supposed to arrive in, and it got to Iowa in the evening of the first day. The trip didn’t damage it at all. Next time a friend wants to move, I’ll surely recommend A1 Auto Transport.”

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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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