Typical Shipping Prices – How Much Does It Cost?
Shipping a car to Canada from the U.S. can be both inexpensive or pricey depending on the method you use and the timeline you need it shipped on.
Several factors that influence prices, including:
- Where in the U.S. you’re shipping from and where in Canada you’re shipping to
- The time of the season you are looking to have your vehicle shipped
- Your chosen method of transportation
- Uncontrollable factors such as gas prices, regulatory fees, and import duties
The typical transport costs for our customers is between $700 and $2,500, with the higher prices being for shipments that are furthest away.
Cost & Time Examples For Shipping a Car to Canada
|San Jose, CA to (California port) to Prince Rupert||$200||$900||5+12|
|New York, NY to (New York port) to Halifax||$275||$700||5+9|
|Los Angeles to (California port) to Prince Rupert||$350||$900||5+12|
|Boston, MA to (New York port) to Halifax||$400||$700||5+9|
|Las Vegas, NV to (California port) to Prince Rupert||$450||$900||5+12|
|Phoenix, AZ to (California port) to Prince Rupert||$550||$900||6+12|
|Charlotte, NC to (New York port) to Halifax||$575||$700||6+9|
|Denver, CO to (California port) to Prince Rupert||$775||$900||7+12|
|Memphis, TN to (New York port) to Halifax||$800||$700||6+9|
|Houston, TX to (New York port) to Halifax||$1,075||$700||7+9|
*Prices and times are estimated and are not guaranteed quotes..
Ways You Can Save Money On Your Auto Shipment to Canada
There are several tips you can follow if you want to save money on your car shipment. Here are a few of the most common ones we recommend:
- Ship your car during the offseason. A decreased demand for auto shipments will allow you to find the best prices possible.
- Save the ground transport cost by delivering the vehicle to the nearest port yourself.
- Allow at least ten days for your documents to get processed by Transport Canada.
- The above prices are for a single car in a dedicated 20ft container. This is the safest and most reliable way to transport a vehicle internationally.
- Save additional time and money by shipping your personal belongings in your dedicated container.
- The roll-on, roll-off (RoRo) method is less expensive, and shipments can be completed in fewer days. Need a RoRo quote for your vehicle? Contact us today.
Door-to-door shipping is the most popular method for shipping your car from the United States to Canada. This method involves a scheduled pickup for your vehicle at a location specified by you and delivery to the destination province of your choice.
Terminal-to-terminal shipping is the only alternative to door-to-door. Using this method, you are required to drop your vehicle off at a favorable location for the shipper where it will be picked up for transportation. In some cases, special arrangements can be made, but this is an agreement that would be made between you and the shipping company you are working with.
Navigating Transport Canada and Canada Border Services Agency Rules and Regulations
Vehicle imports are handled by Transport Canada, a branch of the federal government, while all border requests are taken care of by the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA). Canadian import regulations are straightforward and favorable for imports coming from the United States. We recommend you familiarize yourself with the following resources and information if you want a streamlined shipping process.
- All vehicles need to be verified using the Registrar of Imported Vehicles (RIV). Check that your vehicle is on RIV to avoid any complications. RIV provides a useful Importer Checklist tool that you can use to determine your vehicle’s eligibility and to search for vehicle manufacturer information.
- Verify that your vehicle is admissible to Canada. Eligibility for admission to Canada is based on a set of criteria that can be found on Transport Canada’s website here. This document details requirements such as maximum vehicle age, permitted vehicle types, weight restrictions, and other specifications that will simplify the import process.
- Check for vehicle recalls. Imported vehicles must not be part of an active recall. RIV’s import checklist will provide you with your manufacturer’s contact information if you search for your vehicle using it.
- Have your documentation in order. There are several documents you will need to prepare to import your car to Canada. You must submit an Electronic Export Information (EEI) using the Automated Export System (AES), CBSA will require Vehicle Import Form - Form 1 (E-form), your title and ownership will be required, as well as valid identification.
- Pay your fees. You should expect to pay several fees throughout the import process. These fees include your RIV registration fee ($310 + tax), duty, excise tax, 5% GST, potential provincial taxes based on your destination location, and licensing fees.
- Obtain an RIV Inspection. Vehicles being imported to Canada must follow established regulations. Your RIV inspection must be completed within 45 days of the date of importation. You will need to supply your Federal Inspection Form and Vehicle Import Form - Form 1 at the time of inspection. Once passed, you will receive a Canadian Statement of Compliance (SOC).
- Consult with the provincial licensing department. Each province has its own licensing branch. These branches are as follows: Alberta Government Services (Alberta), ICBC Licensing Programs (British Columbia), Manitoba Highways & Government Services (Manitoba), Department of Transportation (New Brunswick), Motor Registration Division (Newfoundland), Ministry of Transportation (Northwest Territories), Registry of Motor Vehicles (Nova Scotia), Department of Economic Development & Transportation (Nunavut), Ministry of Transportation (Ontario), Société de l'assurance automobile du Québec (Quebec), Saskatchewan Government Insurance (Saskatchewan), and Community & Transportation Services (Yukon).
- Meet environmental requirements. Environment Canada handles all environmental requirements in Canada. RIV offers a detailed breakdown of what environmental requirements your vehicle must have here.
Popular Shipping Destinations
- Brampton, Calgary, Edmonton, Hamilton, Kingston, Mississauga, Moncton, Montreal, Ottawa, Quebec, St. John’s, Toronto, Vancouver, Winnipeg, Abbotsford, Barrie, Guelph, Halifax, Kelowna, Kitchener, Oshawa, Regina, Saguenay, Saskatoon, Sherbrooke, St. Catharines, London, Victoria, Windsor, Trois-Rivieres, Airdrie, Belleville, Beloeil, Bandon, Brantford, Charlottetown, Chateauguay, Chicoutimi Jonquiere, Chilliwack, Cornwall, Courtenay, Drummondville, Fort Mcmurray, Fredericton, Granby, Grande Prairie, Joliette, Kamloops, Kanata, Lethbridge, Medicine Hat, Nanaimo, North Bay, Peterborough, Prince George, Red Deer, Saint John, Saint Hyacinthe, Saint Lean Sur Richelieu, Saint Jerome, Sarnia, Sault Ste Marie, Sudbury, Thunder Bay, Vernon, Victoriaville, Welland Pelham, White Rock
The Real Cost of Shipping a Car to Canada
The price of shipping/exporting your vehicle to Canada will depend on a few factors. Your shipping carrier can provide you with an accurate quote only after you’ve determined your method of shipping and destination.
For example, you’ll need to determine a few things like:
- Whether you want to ship your vehicle using enclosed or open transport. This choice will depend on the value of your vehicle and the level of protection it requires. The open transport method is cheaper since your shipment will be shared with other vehicles, reducing your costs.
- Where you plan to ship your vehicle to. Gas prices and total mileage determine vehicle shipping rates. You should expect to pay less to ship a vehicle to Vancouver or Toronto than to a remote province like Nunavut.
- Seasonal costs. The time of year you ship your vehicle will influence shipping rates too. Generally, there are fewer shipments into the northern provinces during the winter, so this reduced demand lowers costs.
- The type of vehicle you are shipping. The type of vehicle you are trying to ship is one of the most important factors when determining your quote. The dimensions of your vehicle (weight, size, etc.) influence how much space it will take up on a transport carrier and whether its weight meets international shipping limitations.
Preparing Your Paperwork
Any vehicles imported into Canada from the United States will need to complete an E-Form using RIV. In addition to your import paperwork, you will need to complete the following:
Required Documents For Shipping A Vehicle To Canada
- Original bill of lading (BOL)
- Bill of sale/purchase invoice
- Competed EPA emissions from (3520-1)
- DOT form HS-7
- Provide personal identification
Get a free, no obligation to buy, price quote for your shipment.Get my free quote now
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Preparing Your Vehicle
It’s important that you take the time to prepare your vehicle for the shipping process. There are certain requirements that you’ll need to follow, including:
- Making sure the vehicle is clean for the inspection process. Remove any personal belongings, potentially illegal items, and anything that may stall the inspection process.
- Cleaning your vehicle. We recommend you give your vehicle a thorough cleaning and wash. This will allow you to document any damage that may occur during its transit.
- Documenting any damage on your vehicle. Accidents can and will happen. Before shipping your car, make note and take photos of any existing damage. Should new damage appear after your shipment, you’ll have the necessary documentation to prove it.
- Ensuring your foot and emergency brake work. The foot and emergency brake must both be operational and in good condition.
- Emptying your gas tank. The vehicle’s gas tank must be ¼ full.
- Providing your vehicle’s insurance. The vehicle’s auto insurance must be inside the vehicle or provided by your shipping carrier at the time of shipment.
Shipping Heavy Equipment and Oversized Cargo to Canada
No one enjoys the shipping process, and the thought of shipping heavy equipment and oversized cargo from the U.S. to Canada can seem intimidating.
A-1 Auto Transport puts it decades of experience to work and simplifies the entire process for you. We have extensive experience transporting cargo overseas. We offer a full suite of shipping options and the best rates in the business. Top that off with our exceptional customer service and customized planning, and we are just who you need to make your shipment to Canada a seamless experience.
No two shipments are the same. Every shipment of heavy equipment or oversized cargo is unique and requires knowledge and care to ensure safety, proper handling, and compliance with the different regulatory authorities. We help you understand the requirements, which regulations apply to you, and guide you through the entire process.
With international rules always changing, you need to work with a company that understands international freight, regulations and has the experience to get your shipment from point A to B, effortlessly. Below are a few examples of some heavy equipment and oversized cargo that we have shipped recently:
- Track loaders & graders
- Pile drivers
- Trenchers & scrapers
- Engineering & agricultural equipment
- Boom lifts
- Construction equipment
- Crawler loaders
- Farm equipment
- Heavy trucks
- Industrial plant equipment
- Motor graders
- Scissor lifts
Need something that wasn’t listed? Contact us directly for all your U.S. to Canada shipping needs.
Need Help Deciding Which Overseas Shipping Method Is Best for You?
Choosing the right shipping method for your vehicle can be difficult. Depending on the size, weight, and whether or not your cargo is operable is a deciding factor on what shipping method works best for you.
Here’s what we recommend:
- Shipping via container may be the best way to go for smaller cargo, including anything that can be disassembled, or cargo that requires extra protection from the weather. Your items will be safely transported to Canada in a shipping container stacked amongst hundreds of others.
- Items too large for a shipping container may need to use a full rack container instead. This type of container is open on all sizes, including the top. It allows for unique shapes and awkward-sized items, while also providing flexibility when it comes to shipping cargo that doesn’t fit via other means. Flat rack containers are open to the environment, and you may need to shrink wrap your belongings before shipping.
- The least expensive and simplest method of shipping your equipment is the RoRo method. Wheeled vehicles, railroad cars, semi-trailer trucks, and trailers are all eligible for this method and are loaded by driving them onto a trailer.
- Lift on, lift off (LoLo) is another available method. Ships and docks are equipped with cranes to load and unload cargo. This method is typically used for oversized items that aren’t able to move onto the vessel on their own like crated cargo or inoperable vehicles.
If you have any questions about the shipping methods offered, don’t hesitate to contact A-1 Auto Transport directly. Our team is more than happy to answer any questions that you may have.
Additional Information and Resources
- Shipping a new car to Canada
- Shipping a used car to Canada
- Clearing Canadian Customs
- Short term vehicle transport to Canada
- Open car carrier shipping to Canada
- Enclosed auto transport to Canada
- Shipping a boat to Canada
- Shipping an RV to Canada
- Shipping a jet ski to Canada
- Moving an antique car from USA to Canada
- How much does it cost to ship a car to Canada from the USA?
- How long does it take to ship my vehicle to Canada?
- How many days in advance do I need to book my shipment?
- What is a Transportation & Exportation bond (T&E Bond)?
- Ship a car: Canada to U.S.
Other Services Offered by A-1 Auto Transport
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the top ports in Canada for shipping by sea freight?
- The Port of Vancouver is the largest major seaport in Canada. The port trades over $200 billion in goods yearly with 170 different economies around the globe.
- The Port of Montreal is an AI-driven port and considered one of the world’s most cutting-edge ports.
- The Port of Prince Rupert is the third-largest port in Canada. While it doesn’t have the popularity, Vancouver and Montreal have, it does have the numbers to support its ranking.
- The Port of Halifax is another major port in Canada, which prides itself on being data-driven. Halifax is connected to more countries than Montreal’s port.
- The Port of St. John is the largest Canadian port in the Atlantic. The port has connections with the rest of Canada, both by road and rail. It is easily accessible to the Trans-Canada Highway.
What is the Pre-Arrival Review System (PARS)?
The Pre-Arrival Review System (PARS) allows customs brokers to submit release information provided by the importer and carrier to the Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) for review and processing before arriving in Canada. PARS speeds up the release or referral for examination for the carrier when arriving at the border with the freight.
A PARS sticker/label will be affixed to the documents for the freight before the shipper picks it up. These are then forwarded to the customs broker so that they can set up the shipment with the CBSA in advance. When faxing the broker, the port in which the freight will cross must be listed, along with the estimated date and time of arrival. Contact information should also be present in case the broker needs to reach out.
How long does it take to ship to Canada?
Shipping to Canada can take anywhere from three days to several weeks – depending on the distance that has to be covered. A shipment from Wisconsin to Toronto would take less time than a shipment from Florida to Vancouver. As your shipping company, we will work with you to keep you in the loop about your shipment and how long it will take.
Why is my shipment stuck at the border?
When you find out that your shipment has been delayed at the border, it can be frustrating. Here are the common reasons you may end up stuck at the border:
- The documents make no mention of who the customs broker is to assist with the clearance.
- The documents are hard to decipher and determine who the Importer of Record (IOR) is; the IOR can be the consignee, the shipper, or a third party.
- The shipper or consignee has set nothing up with a Canadian customs broker to gain customs clearance.
- There is a lack of information on the documents or commercial invoices. These can include:
- Not enough information to assign Tariff Classification
- Total value or individual values are missing
- Country, where manufactured, is missing
- The total number of pieces is missing
- Weight is missing
- Commercial invoice document only shows product numbers
- Missing the Bill of Lading
- Sometimes the imported item can cause delays – there may be additional approval from another governing agency or additional permit required
What is the USMCA (United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement)?
The United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) was enacted July 1, 2020, and is the renegotiated North American Free Trade Agreement. Under the leadership of Former President Donald J. Trump, the USMCA is a mutually beneficial win for North American workers, farmers, ranchers, and businesses. The agreement creates more balanced and reciprocal trade, supporting higher-paying jobs for Americans and the growth of the North American economy.
What is a customs broker?
A customs broker is a private individual, partnership, association, or corporation licensed, regulated, and empowered by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP). These individuals assist importers and exporters, ensuring they meet the Federal requirements that govern imports and exports.
Customs brokers also submit necessary information and the appropriate payments to the CBP on behalf of the clients they represent and charge a fee for the services rendered.
Brokers must have expertise in:
- Entry procedures
- Admissibility requirements
- Rates of duty and applicable taxes and fees for imported merchandise
To become a customs broker, applicants must be a U.S. citizen at least 21 years old, cannot be a current Federal Government employee, and must possess good moral character. Those who are eligible candidates must:
- Pass the Customs Broker License Examination
- Submit a broker license application with the appropriate fees
- Have the application approved by CBP
What is a freight forwarder?
Freight forwarders are experts who are connected within the supply chain, concentrating on the logistics and the physical transportation of the cargo. They communicate with all applicable entities within the exporting process that handles or is aware of the shipment via truck, boat, plane, or any combination thereof. Most freight forwarders are in charge of assembling and completing the documentation or compliance filings needed.
What documents may be required to ship a car (interstate and international)?
There are several different types of documents that may be required when shipping a car. Even though you may not need all of these documents when shipping your car, it is good to know exactly what documents may be asked of you.
- Original registration and title, but if the car is leased or financed and the original title is not available, a notarized letter from the bank that acknowledges the shipment will suffice.
- Proof of insurance must be provided, but it will not be accepted if the insurance policy is expired.
- Photo identification is required and can be presented as an unexpired driver’s license or passport from the country of your origin.
- If you are acting on behalf of someone and the vehicle is not in your name, you will be required to produce a notarized letter from the owner with the VIN of the vehicle and your authorization to transport it.
- International shipments will require the Bill of Sale or a notarized copy of it.
- Documents that prove the state sales tax was paid when the vehicle was purchased.
- The import duty or tax will have to be paid before the vehicle can be transported internationally.
Documents required by your vehicle carrier or by the importing/exporting country are only to combat stolen vehicles from being moved.
What if I don’t have the required documents?
You may be wondering what happens if you don’t have the documents required to ship a vehicle. Some documents may work in place of others, but it is usually determined on a case-by-case basis. If you aren’t sure you have the right documents, we can help you figure out the best course of action for you and your shipment.
What can cause delays in shipping?
Sometimes delays in shipping cannot be stopped. Sometimes delays in shipping schedules are due to unforeseen circumstances and may include:
- Issues with customs – shipping a car requires paperwork and sometimes the required documents are misplaced or missing. When customs perform an inspection, and a vehicle doesn’t pass, the shipment may be delayed until it is corrected.
- COVID-19 – some ports around the world are still experiencing delays due to the pandemic. There are shortages of workers and a lack of equipment, which is only worsened by the restrictions.
- Port congestions/strikes – too many containers in a port lead to congestion. Whether due to peak season circumstances or extraordinary events, congestion can occur within a port and result in delays. Sometimes when labor strikes occur, ports can experience weeks of delay.
- Extraordinary events – the open sea is not always predictable. There are natural elements at play on the open sea, making it hard for cargo ships to sail. Some of the factors that shipping companies are forced to deal with include piracy, fire, weather, wars, and other events that are described as “force majeure.”
- Miscommunications – there are times when delays are the result of a simple miscommunication between parties. It doesn’t always have to be someone’s fault, sometimes these things happen.
What is a Bill of Lading?
The Bill of Lading (BOL) is a part of your “contract” with the shipping company. It is a staple part of auto transport and cargo shipping. The BOL is a legal document that specifies what is being shipped from one location to another and who is shipping it.
The BOL will include an inspection before the vehicle is picked up. The shipping company representative and the vehicle owner or representative will do an inspection, noting all of the pre-existing damages that may be present. Both parties will sign off on it before the vehicle is loaded. Once the vehicle arrives at its destination, the driver (or representative) and the designated party will look the vehicle over again, comparing it against the original specifications on the BOL.
If anything is conflicting, it should be notated and acknowledged, and brought up with the shipping company for insurance purposes. The BOL is a legally binding document and of importance and can also be used as a receipt of the shipping transaction.