Registering An Imported Car In The Bahamas: Process & Guidelines
Before we get into the topic of how to register an imported vehicle in the Bahamas, there are a few points that should be made clear. The first is that driving in the Bahamas is done on the left hand side of the road as opposed to the right, though you will find vehicles with steering columns on either side of the vehicle.
The second is that driving conditions in many areas, especially those that are less heavily trafficked, are not on par with what you’re used to on American roads. Areas like Freeport and Nassau may have roads in better condition, but you’ll also experience the heavier traffic that comes along with them.
Vehicle Weight & Registration Costs
Due to recent changes in the Road Traffic Act, registration costs more for heavier vehicles and several different designations based on weight and price differences were created. Category A is up to 5,000 pounds, Category B is up to 15,000 pounds, and Category is over 15,000 pounds. The registration costs break down as follows:
- Category A: $150
- Category B: $550
- Category C: $700
The customs duty on vehicle imports in the Bahamas is still high, though it has been reduced in recent years. Still, it sits at over 60% for most vehicles, in addition to a value added tax (VAT) of roughly 8%. The exception to the high import duty is for electric and hybrid vehicles, which are only assessed at 25%.
Required Registration Documents
Though not extensive in comparison to some other countries (or commonwealth, in this case), there are some registration documents you’ll need to have on hand before starting the process. These include the following:
- Proof of insurance
- Purchase invoice or bill of sale
- Passport or personal identification
- Driver’s license (from the Bahamas)
Want to know about shipping a vehicle to the Bahamas? Visit our international shipping page for the area to learn more about what’s involved, how much you can expect to pay, and much more!
It’s difficult to cover all the topics and intricacies of shipping a vehicle to another country so we’ve put together some helpful resources to offer more clarify to the process. Both of the links below provide tons of helpful information from the official local departments that govern vehicle imports and general transport issues.
Bahamas Vehicle Registration Resources
Road Traffic Department - The Road Traffic Department of the Bahamas is where you’ll need to take your vehicle to get it registered. Their website also has a lot of helpful information and resources.
Registration & Inspection Process - A good general guide to the process of registration and vehicle inspection, including expected costs, as well as locations and contact information for local registration resources.
For our readers who wish to know more about shipping to the Bahamas, or if you’d like a FREE cost estimate, contact us today! Our staff are available any time of day, year round, to answer your questions and provide guidance!
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.