Ship Cars To & From Germany

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Taxes & Duties When Shipping A Vehicle To Germany

Shipping A Car To Germany.

Typical Shipping Prices – How Much Does It Cost?

  • The typical shipping costs for a car from the U.S. to Germany are $1,800 to $3,900, with much of the cost depending on which part of the U.S. you’re shipping from.
  • Both container and RORO shipping are generally available to Germany within the price range mentioned above.

Cost & Time Examples For Shipping a Car to Germany

To/FromGroundOceanEstimated Time
San Jose, CA to
(California port) to Dortmund
$200$35505+33 days
Denver, CO to
(California port) to Bremerhaven
$775$33007+30 days
Boston, MA to
(New York port) to Berlin
$400$24005+20 days
Portland, OR to
(California port) to Munich
$475$38506+37 days
Phoenix, AZ to
(California port) to Bremen
$550$33006+30 days
Detroit, MI to
(New York port) to Munich
$575$26506+24 days
Chicago, IL to
(New York port) to Bremen
$675$21006+17 days
Los Angeles to
(California port) to Berlin
$350$36005+33 days
Memphis, TN to
(New York port) to Dortmund
$800$23506+20 days
Miami, FL to
(New York port) to Bremerhaven
$925$21007+17 days

*Prices and times are estimated. They can vary depending on the season and the type of vehicle.

*Save the ground transport cost by delivering the vehicle to the nearest port.

*Allow an additional 10 days to process the documents.

*Prices are for 1 car in a dedicated 20ft container. This is the safest and most reliable way to transport a vehicle internationally. Other items may be included in the container to help save you money when moving.

*Using the RoRo (roll on, roll off) method is less expensive and shipments can be completed in fewer days. Contact us now for a free RoRo quote.

It can be complicated to ship a vehicle internationally, but the import and export laws of Germany are more or less consistent with the United States, which makes the process a little easier than it would be from some other parts of the world. As a general rule, the duty on imported autos in Germany is 10% and there’s also a value added tax (VAT) of 20%. For motorcycles, the duty is usually between 6% and 8%. For more information about the value-added tax in Germany, this resource has a good explanation.

*Note that the value added percentages on vehicle imports can fluctuate slightly depending on a number of factors.

Germany has strict environmental standards, which can cause an unexpected expense for people that are having a car shipped to the country. There are also restrictive environmental zones in the country, which require a sticket if you’re going to operate a vehicle in the area.

If you’re becoming a permanent resident of Germany and forfeiting residence in the U.S., you may be able to import a vehicle without paying duties. This is contingent on being a new resident and having been outside of the country for 12 months consecutively.

Something that shouldn’t be overlooked when transporting a vehicle to Germany is that many of the roads are smaller and narrower than in the U.S., which can make it difficult to navigate with the larger, wider vehicles that are more common in the States.

Popular Germany Shipping Destinations:

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.

Required Documents For Shipping A Vehicle To Germany

The paperwork needed to ship a car to Germany is pretty standard as far as import and export laws for vehicles. Here’s what you’ll need to make sure everything goes smoothly when moving your car, truck or motorcycle to the country.

  1. Original title & registration.
  2. Passport.
  3. Export permit (from U.S.)
  4. Proof of insurance.
  5. Bill of lading.
  6. German driver’s license.
  7. Proof of ownership.
  8. German registration (Anmeldebestatigung)

If you have questions about required forms or documents before shipping a car to Germany, your auto transport company should be able to explain the details and give you any assistance you might need along the way, including forms, documents, laws, duties, permits, licensing and taxation.

How to register your vehicle in Germany.

Germany Auto Transport Resources

U.S. Embassy In Germany – Information and resources for U.S. citizens in Germany, including citizenship, visas, security and general assistance with living in Germany for residents of the United States.

Getting Around In Germany – Learn the rules of the road for Germany, including right-of-way, licensing, legal and parking issues, traffic regulations and other resources for driving in the country.

Shipping Of Heavy Equipment & Oversized Cargo To Germany

Shipping heavy equipment or oversized cargo to Germany requires precision and a logistical aptitude that come with decades of overseas shipping.  At A-1 Auto Transport, we have that experience to get your cargo to Germany and help you through all the permitting and regulatory processes along the way.  Depending on what your shipping, there are going to be different procedures to get it there.  Size, weight, and industry all play a part in the process and we are happy to have a wide array of successful transports in our history.  Just in recent experience we have shipped:

  • Pile drivers
  • Pavers
  • Cranes
  • Large trucks and heavy vehicles
  • Engineering equipment
  • Agricultural equipment & machinery
  • Forklifts
  • Hydraulic equipment
  • Engines
  • Tractors, combines & other farm equipment
  • Backhoes and excavators
  • RVs and motorhomes
  • Industrial equipment

There are several ways to ship your oversized cargo and/or heavy equipment to Germany. The following methods are the most popular, yet we are open to special cases and welcome a call concerning those.

  • Lift On/Lift Off (LoLo) is a common form of transport for inoperable cargo like boats, crated equipment, or machinery. A bit more expensive than container and RoRo shipping due to the use of a crane and the precision involved.
  • Roll On/Roll Off, also known as RoRo Shipping is the most inexpensive way to transport heavy equipment or oversized cargo overseas. Given that your cargo is wheeled and operable, it will be stored within the ship’s hull.  This shipping method requires the use of a ship’s ramp and there are height restrictions depending on the vessel and hull size.
  • Flat Rack shipping is a form of international transport that allows the most flexibility when it comes to your oversized cargo. Comes in variations of a flat rack, or a shipping container sans walls to allow your cargo to be attached to the corner points of the container frame. Your heavy cargo will be secured and then placed on the back of the ship. Since this type of shipping exposes your cargo to the elements you may want to consider having it shrink wrapped.
  • Container shipping is what most people are familiar with as it’s easy to see ships stacked high with shipping containers. As far as oversized cargo is concerned, 40ft shipping containers may be too small for your purposes. This is the most expensive and secure form of shipping we have available. It will protect your cargo from the outdoor elements.

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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 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.

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