Shipping A Boat USA To Australia

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Shipping A Boat USA To Australia
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There are various reasons why one would choose to purchase a boat in USA and ship it to Australia. Firstly, the U.S market has a greater range of boats as compared to local dealers in Australia. Secondly, boats are cheaper in the U.S than in Australia. The latter is made possible by the fact that there is no import duty for American boats because of the USA Australia Free Trade Agreement (USFTA). This said, every country has its customs and regulations for imports so when shipping a boat USA to Australia, there are some crucial steps you need to follow. This article highlights the necessary process needed when shipping a boat USA to Australia (not only from Florida) without any problems.

Get a Survey Report before you purchase the boat

Once you identify a boat in the USA that interests you, get a pre-purchase report or a survey from a marine surveyor. Essentially, the job of a marine surveyor is to confirm that the vessel is in a worthy condition; that it’s fit for the intended purpose, and that it’s safe for export. Marine surveyors survey everything from small crafts, to yachts, to commercial ships. Part of a marine surveyor’s job is to ensure that the boat meets the international regulations and government classifications. You should never purchase a boat that hasn’t gone through a pre-purchase inspection and here is why:

  • As you probably well know, there are plenty of cons online, so you need to take caution and guard against scams. The process of boat survey confirms that the boat is real and genuine.
  • Some sellers use old photos that were taken when the boat was in a good condition. Having a pre-purchase inspection done will save you from purchasing an old or damaged boat.
  • In case the boat got damaged while in transit, a pre-purchase report will confirm its initial condition and as a result, speed the process of having your claim approved and processed.
  • Inspections help you know the real condition of the boat. If you’re buying a used boat which needs repairs, having the boat repaired in the USA before importing is often cheaper than importing it then repairing it locally. Furthermore, knowing the extent of damages will allow you to negotiate prices.

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.

Taxes, Import Duties, and Permits

There is no import duty on American made boats shipped from the U.S to Australia. However, there are some variables here: If you buy a boat in the U.S which was manufactured in another country, you will need to pay a 5% FOB cost. And if the boat is American made but imported from another country other than the U.S, you will also incur an import duty of 5%. Then, import GST of 10% applies to all boats on the CIF value, which refers to the cost of insurance, cost of the boat, and any inland transport or repairs to the boat. If the boat is a 2nd hand one, it will be inspected by Australia Quarantine at a minimum charge of $139. And if it needs cleaning, they will add an extra fee.

All boats with air conditioning units need an import permit from the government. When shipping a boat USA to Australia, it’s advisable to de-gas and decommission the boat before exporting it. To avoid pre-charged equipment licenses on arrival, you will need to get a certificate from the service provider that degassed your boat before exporting. Alternatively, to avoid paying for this permit, get your boat dealer or whoever was involved in air conditioning inspection state in their report that ‘No air-conditioning or refrigeration was found on this boat’. Finally, regardless of whether you intend to use the trailer in Australia or not, boat trailers also require a permit from the department of infrastructure.

Some tips before you ship a boat USA to Australia

  • To avoid additional charges when the boat arrives Australia, make sure the boat gets a thorough inspection before it leaves the U.S. You could also ask your transporter to confirm the boat condition before loading it. Ensure that you’re dealing with a transporter who is familiar with shipping boats to Australia. Otherwise, they won’t know what to be on the lookout for.
  • If the boat is very dirty, it most likely won’t be allowed onto the ship. To avoid delays and inconveniences, make sure the seller cleans it beforehand.
  • And finally, when shipping a boat USA to Australia, just know that the Australian customs are very strict when inspecting used boats, so when preparing yours, don’t leave any stone unturned.

If you have any questions regarding importing your boat from USA to Australia, we are here to help. Please contact us.


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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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Mylene Rutllant
It’s my number one pick in auto shipping to this day.
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Due to the nature of my work, I must relocate every couple of years to where my company needs me. Because of this, I’ve tested several moving and auto transport companies over the years.

And my choice in terms of auto transport has to be A1 Auto Transport. It’s in the name, but also in the quality with which they do their jobs. I’ve never had a problem with this company.

The only time my shipment was delayed was during winter when a snowstorm closed down all the major roads. And they still found an alternative and got my car delivered before roads got unstuck.

When I moved to West Virginia, they picked up my car the very day I called them. I like to think they take special care of me considering all the business I’ve sent them. I’ll continue to support A1 Auto Transport. It’s my number one pick in auto shipping to this day.

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Luis Rodriguez
You have my full support and recommendation!
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I considered selling my car when I moved to Washington. It was old and rusty, but I grew attached to it. So, I called a couple companies to transport it to my new home, but they both fell through.

The first one couldn’t decide on a schedule. He would constantly change the pickup date till I got frustrated and canceled. The second was insufferable, very rude on the phone, even worse in person.

They started picking a part my car asking me why I still have it. If that’s their opinion of my vehicle, how can I trust they’ll take care of it? If something happened midway, why wouldn’t they just blame it on the car instead of paying up?

So, I cancelled this company as well and turned to A1 Auto Transport. From the get go, they were very different from my past options. Their website was very professional and up to date, full of useful information. I requested a quote using their online form, and I got an email response within an hour. Surprisingly fast!

If I didn’t know any better, I would’ve thought they were lacking customers, but the email spoke for itself. In just one email, everything I needed to know was there, including a contact number I could use to get more information or confirm the transport.

I called and got things rolling. I was very pleased with the driver. He followed standard procedure and represented his company well. Can’t remember his name, but props to him!

The car arrived in Washington 6 days later in excellent condition. From what I understand, the transport was delayed a bit by a storm, but since the time window was 4-6 days from the beginning, I don’t really care. You have my full support and recommendation!

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Cristine Benoit
I can safely say this is a legit company that will get the job done.
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There are a lot of options for auto transport these days, which surprisingly makes it harder to find a good company. I received more than 10 offers to ship my car, but I couldn’t decide on any of them.

After doing some research, I got even more worried reading about all the scams and accidents that can happen. But, I have work to do and couldn’t afford to drive my newly purchased Mini Cooper all the way to Virginia.

Fortunately, I made the right choice with A1 Auto Transport. They are very good at their jobs. I spent more than an hour drilling Joe with various questions, and he never once lost his patience. He saw I was interested, so he bore with me until I was satisfied. The driver was also very courteous and my car was intact on arrival. I couldn’t have asked for more.

By the way, the price we first agreed on stayed the same. There were no delays or unexpected “surprises.” I can safely say this is a legit company that will get the job done.

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David Osallo
We give A1 Auto Transport a big 10 out of 10!
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We give A1 Auto Transport a big 10 out of 10! We chose them to move our car from California to Vermont, since we needed professionals.

We were abroad during the transport, so the transport was a bit tricky. The driver had to pick it up from storage on short notice and get it to its destination within at most 10 days. I was happy to note it arrived sooner. We got it 3 days early, right when we got home to pick it up. It made getting around way easier. Awesome service!

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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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