- This Is How You Can Make Shipping Heavy Equipment Overseas Easy
- Working with an Expert
- Understanding How Trade Works in the United States (Simplified)
- But it isn’t that easy
- Determining Import and Export Requirements for Shipping Heavy Equipment Overseas
- Here are a few other details you should know
- Duties, Taxes, and Tariffs
- Importing / Exporting on Your Own
- Importing / Exporting with Help
- Measuring Your Heavy Machinery
- Roll-On Roll-Off Method
- Disassembling Your Vehicle
- Check the Legitimacy of Your Shipping Contacts
- Don’t make this mistake!
- Know Your Budget
- Relevant Statistics
- General Facts
- Here’s what we recommend you do
This Is How You Can Make Shipping Heavy Equipment Overseas Easy
The idea of shipping heavy machinery overseas may seem difficult at first glance. After all, these types of machines are large, heavy, and require a lot of preparation to ship properly.
.Heavy Equipment Pricing & Time To Ship Examples
|Estimated Time In Transit
|San Antonio to Columbus
|3 - 5 days
|Scottsdale to Charlotte
|3 - 5 days
|Nashville to Detroit
|3 - 5 days
|Paterson to Jackson
|2 - 3 days
|Bridgeport to Bellevue
|6 - 8 days
|Surprise to Syracuse
|6 - 8 days
|Cedar Rapids to Columbia
|3 - 5 days
|Norman to Fargo
|3 - 5 days
If you are looking to ship a piece of heavy machinery internationally, there are several things you will want to consider before you get started.
- Will you handle the shipping process or will you hire an expert to oversee it?
- Does your heavy equipment have any special import or export restrictions?
- Do you have to pay any taxes or duties on your heavy equipment?
- Have you properly measured and weighed your piece of heavy machinery?
- Do you have legitimate shipping contacts that can help with your needs?
- What kind of budget are you working with?
- Are you considering Ro-Ro shipping or container shipping?
All of these questions are important to ask as they deal with specific portions of international heavy equipment transportation.
Working with an Expert
If you are new to international shipping, it is highly recommended that you work with an expert.
All too often people try and take on international shipping without any help.
Guess what happens almost every time?
They cut corners, they ignore import and export laws, they misclassify their shipments, and they get into trouble with the government, and sometimes their items get lost or damaged in the process.
International trade is a serious industry that is overseen by many major government departments from the origin port to the destination country. The last thing you want to do is get into trouble with the government because you didn’t do your research properly.
Understanding How Trade Works in the United States (Simplified)
In the United States, the Department of Commerce, the Department of State, and the Department of Treasury all oversee trade. Each of these departments has its own extensive list of rules, their own classification systems, and consist of a lot of red tape that can be stressful to try and understand.
When it comes to shipping heavy equipment overseas, you need to be aware of what classification codes your machinery falls under as well.
Any goods or load that are deemed to have military use have to be classified as such.
But it isn’t that easy.
Something as simple as a ball bearing can be classified as a military good if it can be used in both civilian and military vehicles. Now you see where it gets confusing.
You also cannot ship heavy machinery to a nation that is involved in the manufacturing of weapons of mass destruction or any country that the U.S. has placed sanctions on. These nations are often referred to as restricted or prohibited countries.
For a full list of these countries, check out the Department of Treasury’s website.
In addition, you also have to consider several other factors like:
- Are you trading with a restricted party?
- Have you screened your import or export against denied party lists?
- Do you have proper paperwork and document for the piece of heavy equipment?
- Did you file all the proper paperwork for the shipment?
- Do you have money set aside to pay the required customs fees and other shipping costs?
- Does your shipping company have a good risk management policy?
The shipping process can quickly become overwhelming when you consider that breaking any of these rules can lead to massive fines and even criminal charges.
Save yourself the trouble and hire an expert.
Determining Import and Export Requirements for Shipping Heavy Equipment Overseas
By now you are probably leaning towards hiring a shipping company to help you oversee the international heavy equipment transportation process.
Here are a few other details you should know
- You have to determine which classification codes your piece of heavy equipment require as determined under the Export Administration Regulations (EAR).
- You can file your export license application online through the Bureau of Industry and Security. Most heavy machinery will require you to fill out a Simplified Network Application Process Redesign (SNAP-R) application.
- You will have to determine if the country you are importing to has their own regulations regarding shipping heavy equipment overseas. Even though the United States may approve its export, your target country may not.
- Heavy equipment is also regulated by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) – meaning that anything you import will have to conform to U.S. emissions regulations.
- Is the heavy machinery a tractor or a piece of construction equipment? The government classifies the two very differently.
We always advise that you work with an experienced shipping company, especially if it is your first time engaging in international shipping.
A lot of things can go wrong when shipping heavy equipment and the experience and contacts that a shipping company has will provide you with peace of mind. For example, you'll need to know the shipping method and how your items will be handled. You don't want exposure to the elements, inclement weather conditions, and other risks during sea freight. This is why you should only hand over your loads to experts.
Duties, Taxes, and Tariffs
The amount you will pay in duties, taxes, and tariffs will vary based on where you are importing or exporting your heavy machinery from.
For example, if a piece of heavy machinery was legitimately manufactured in North America, you will be able to import it to the U.S. duty free as per the North American Free Trade Act (NAFTA).
Importing / Exporting on Your Own
If you elect to import or export on your own, you will want to do extensive research on the specific country you are looking to trade with. As a general rule, anything North America (U.S., Canada, and Mexico) is duty free, while various other countries including in Europe will have their own duty rates and customs clearance process for both importing and exporting.
You will also be required to pay a fees to your broker, any shipping companies you work with, and for any applications that have costs associated with them.
Don’t be surprised as the costs mount. Shipping on your own is really expensive. There are a lot of fees.
Importing / Exporting with Help
You will still pay the same fees when you work with a dedicated shipping company, but you will save yourself a lot of trouble.
Importing and exporting heavy equipment overseas isn’t easy. There are a lot of regulations, tons of paperwork, and many opportunities for you to make a mistake if you try and do it on your own.
Reputable shipping companies have created a business specifically to deal with shipping goods. Here at A1 Transport, we specialize in shipping vehicles, heavy machinery, and other large objects.
Measuring Your Heavy Machinery
One of the best ways to get the most value out of your heavy equipment shipment is to properly measure and weigh your machine. Knowing the specifications of your vehicle will help you negotiate the best shipping rates and it may save you a lot of regulatory trouble.
Roll-On Roll-Off Method
This is one of the most popular methods for shipping vehicles. As the name suggests, a piece of heavy equipment is rolled-on and rolled-off its shipping bed, or the deck or flat rack of the vessel.
When using this method, rates are often determined by the heavy equipment’s weight per ton or its dimensions in cubic meters (whichever is greater). The other method is container shipping using forklifts or cranes.
Disassembling Your Vehicle
Certain countries may require that you disassemble a piece of heavy machinery before shipping it. This is something you will want to avoid at all costs as it will cost you additional labor to put the heavy equipment back together.
Check the Legitimacy of Your Shipping Contacts
It should no longer come as a surprise to you how challenging it is to ship heavy machinery across international borders. Shipping large pieces of machinery requires careful attention to many specifics, any one of which could cause a major problem if overlooked. Many newcomers to the international trade industry make the mistake of putting their faith in the incorrect individuals.
Don’t make this mistake!
If you are going to try and import or export heavy equipment overseas, take the time to verify that the people you are working with are legitimate. There are a lot of cases of fraud taking place in the world of international shipping – don’t become a victim.
This is why it is important that you work with an experienced shipping company. We spent decades building our international contacts, sourcing the best prices, and developing relationships that we are willing to stake our reputation on.
Heavy equipment is expensive, protect that investment by taking the time to verify any individuals or companies that you are planning to work for. The last thing you want to happen is to lose a major purchase because of a reversed payment, lost shipment, or other regulatory tape.
Know Your Budget
We mentioned it before, but were going to say it again.
International heavy equipment transportation can be expensive. There are a lot of forms to fill out, a lot of rules to follow, you often have to pay duty and taxes, and you will have to pay fees to customs, your brokerage agent, shipping company, and any other services you require to complete the shipment.
If you don’t have connections in the industry, the costs can be staggering.
- Over 95% of heavy equipment manufacturers rely on international shipping to export their products.
- The average weight of heavy equipment shipped overseas is approximately 32 tons.
- Approximately 78% of all heavy equipment shipped overseas originates from North America.
- The global market for heavy equipment shipping is estimated to be worth over $10 billion annually.
- On average, it takes around 25 days for heavy equipment to be transported from one continent to another via sea freight.
- Shipping heavy equipment overseas involves transporting large machinery or vehicles to international destinations.
- Specialized shipping companies handle the logistics of transporting heavy equipment, including securing permits and ensuring compliance with customs regulations.
- Heavy equipment can be shipped via various modes of transportation, such as container ships, roll-on/roll-off vessels, or even by air in certain cases.
- Prior to shipping, proper packaging and securing of the equipment is essential to prevent damage during transit.
- Shipping heavy equipment overseas requires careful planning and coordination, considering factors like weight restrictions, dimensions, and country-specific import requirements.
Here’s what we recommend you do
Give A1 Transport a call. Tony has been helping business people like yourself ship heavy equipment around the world for decades.
Before you start the international shipping process for your heavy equipment, determine your budget. Price out how much you can afford to pay for each leg of the shipping process. Here are a few things to consider:
- How much is the heavy equipment itself?
- What are the shipping fees (brokerage, shipping, packing, etc.)?
- Do you have to pay duty or tax?
- Are you doing business with an approved country?
Determining your budget is essential if you want to go into the international heavy equipment shipping process with a plan.
If you are still feeling overwhelmed by the prospect of shipping your heavy equipment – contact us through our website today.
Frequently Asked Questions
Yes, the United States government has a list of prohibited countries where shipping is restricted. Countries on the list may be involved in manufacturing weapons of mass destruction or are under other sanctions from the US. You will need to verify that the destination country is not on the restricted list.
Defining what qualifies as oversize cargo can be complicated. It can vary according to where and how the equipment is being transported. Keep in mind that it is important to accurately measure and weigh your equipment so that you can determine the proper shipping class. Getting this wrong can result in fines and other potential problems. Also, be aware that shipping oversize cargo can mean additional fees.
We have over 25 years of experience shipping everything from exotic cars to heavy equipment.
There are several governmental agencies that help oversee and regulate international shipping. The Department of Commerce, Department of State, Department of Treasury, and Environmental Protection Agency each have their own requirements for shipping. This can make it complicated to navigate all the various rules and regulations for shipping heavy equipment.
Shipping options can be broken down into three main categories.
Roll-on/roll-off: Essentially, this means that the equipment has wheels or treads that allow it to be driven on and off different transportation vessels.
Flat-rack: If your equipment can’t be driven, it will be loaded onto a rack and then put on the vessel.
Container: Some heavy equipment can be loaded into an enclosed shipping container. A crane will be used to lift and load the container onto a boat. For equipment that can be disassembled, this is usually the best option.
First, be sure to check the owner’s manual for any specific instructions from the manufacturer. Next, take the time to thoroughly wash the machine so that it can be properly secured and you can accurately identify any existing or new damage. You will also want to inspect the interior and secure anything that is loose and bubble wrap sensitive levers, knobs, and gauges. Smokestacks should be covered so that debris can’t enter the stack. Finally, disconnect the battery and latch doors with zip ties.
Any mechanical problems, including oil and fluid leaks should be fixed before shipping. Cargo ships can decline to transport your equipment if it is leaking.
Breakbulk shipping is a technique used to transport cargo that doesn’t fit in a shipping container or bin. Items are stowed individually and will come with multiple bills of lading. Boxes, barrels, and crates are used to store cargo. These loads are also often attached to a pallet to make loading and unloading easier.
There is some risk that your heavy equipment will be damaged during transport, but there are ways to reduce these risks. If you are shipping a delicate and expensive piece of equipment, you will want to verify the risk management policy of your freight shipping company. You may also want to have an expert supervise the on and offloading process. It is a good idea to work with shipping companies that follow military specifications that are designed to help ensure the safety of your equipment.
Paperwork requirements can vary widely based on what you are shipping and where it is being shipped to. When it comes to heavy equipment, properly classifying your machinery is essential. Even something as seemingly simple as a ball bearing can change whether a piece of equipment is considered a piece of military equipment or construction equipment.
In general, you will need to file for an export license through the Bureau of Industry and Security. It is also likely that you will need to submit a Simplified Network Application Process Re-design application. Be sure to have the title or bill of sale to prove ownership along with a detailed packing list and identification information for you and the shipper. Finally, you will need to determine whether the county of import has its own regulations and paperwork requirements.
It is always a good idea to purchase marine insurance. Weather can be unpredictable and rough, especially during hurricane season. Marine insurance can help protect your expensive equipment.
The final cost will depend on the size and weight of the equipment. It is also cheaper to transport self-propelled equipment that can be rolled on and off.
The timing of your shipping depends on the import and export ports and the distance that will need to be traveled. Of course, we will do our best to deliver your equipment according to schedule. However, we can’t guarantee exact delivery times. Anything from weather to mechanical failures may cause delays. You can rest assured that we will work hard to accommodate you in any way possible.
The best way to make sure that you are following all rules and regulations is to contact the import authority at your destination. They will be able to provide you with all the information you need to safely transport your heavy equipment and avoid running into costly problems.
If at all possible, disassemble your equipment and detach any accessories so that you can reduce the overall size of the equipment and avoid the need for oversize permits. You may also want to look into whether it is more cost-effective to ship your equipment in several containers rather than one large container. Finally, take advantage of more affordable ocean shipping rates and reduce the need for road transportation as much as possible.
A1 accepts a wide range of payment methods and can work closely with you to find the method that works best for you.
Even unintentional violations of heavy equipment shipping rules can lead to significant fines and criminal charges.
Navigating international shipping laws can be difficult, especially if you are new to shipping. Hiring a professional can help you accurately measure your equipment, make sure you are adhering to important shipping laws, safely transporting expensive equipment, and paying competitive prices for shipping.
Yes, we provide free estimates. You can call us directly or fill out an online form to start the process.
Yes, we offer satellite tracking so that you can be kept up-to-date on the status of your shipment.
Depending on where you are shipping, you will be subject to various taxes, tariffs, and duties. There may also be application fees.
Oftentimes, shipping rates are determined by weight and distance shipped.
Some countries will require you to disassemble your equipment before it is shipped. Unfortunately, this requires additional labor costs.
It is important to work with an experienced company that is fully licensed and insured. An established company will be able to help you avoid fraud, overpaying, and dealing with unscrupulous import partners. Look for companies that have reputable contacts in the countries where you will be shipping to.