Moving to a new country takes a lot of careful planning and strategic planning. Shipping your car to Cologne is a simple process when you contact a reputable international auto transporter. Your agent will take all the worry and stress away as they take you step by step through the entire shipping process. Cologne is one of the most historical States in Germany and is filled with a plethora of museums and amazing architecture. The roadways are modern and they are adding new infrastructure often. Importing your car to Cologne takes filling out some paperwork, scheduling the type of shipping you will use and clearing your car through customs when it reaches Cologne. Sounds simple enough, doesn’t it? Your shipping agent will have all of the knowledge needed to let you know what paperwork you need for the shipping company, customs and can provide you with customs information that you will need. If your car is an American made car, you may need to modify the headlights, brakes, emissions, and tires prior to shipping into Cologne so you’ll be able to drive when you get it there.
Required Documents and Shipping Methods
Before you can schedule the shipment of your car, you will need to give the agent a few documents so they can handle your request. You will need to give them:
- Driver’s License
- Social Security Card
- Car Title
- Car Insurance Certificate
- Power of Attorney
You will also need to determine the kind of shipping you will need. If you only need to transport your car, the most efficient way to ship is with Roll-On Roll-Off (Ro-Ro) Shipping. With Ro-Ro your car will be driven onto the cargo ship and then secured with brackets and a wheel block to be transported to Cologne. Once it reaches Cologne it will be driven off the cargo ship and you’ll be able to take it through the customs checkpoint for clearance. You will need to empty any personal items or paperwork from your car prior to shipping with Ro-Ro.
If you need to ship household goods or personal items with your car, you will want to use Container Shipping. You will choose from a 20 or 40-foot container, depending on the room needed, and then the car, as well as your personal items, will be loaded into the container and onto the cargo ship. Once the ship reaches Cologne, your personal belongings and car will be unloaded and checked by customs. Once everything has cleared you will be able to transport your car and household goods to your new home.
Another option you may choose is shipping by air. Shipping a car via air cargo is the fastest way to ship a car internationally. When shipping in a cargo plane, your car will be shipped much faster than by sea and is great for those who need their car in a hurry.
Car Registration and Driving in Cologne
Once your car reaches customs you will need to pay taxes and import duties. You can be exempted from paying these fees if you can prove that you plan on becoming a resident of Cologne, have lived outside of the EU for the past 12 months, you own the car and the registration is in your name, and you agree to either sell the car in Germany or export it back to the U.S. when you leave Cologne. You will also need to register your car in Cologne if you plan on staying longer than 12 months. If you will not be remaining permanently you will be able to drive with your current U.S. registration and license plates for up to 12 months.
Your shipping agent will go over all details of the total cost of shipping internationally as well as answer any questions you may have concerning customs regulations, what you can pack into your car while it is being transported and what you will need to do to arrange pick-up and delivery if that will be necessary.
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.