Looking to get your vehicle overseas? Perhaps you’re moving to a new country, or you’re a dealer who needs to ship their assets? Whether you own a truck, car, van or boat, it’s important that it has a smooth ride, and reaches its destination safely. To guide you through the process, and make your experience worry-free, we’ve put together ten top tips for shipping your vehicle abroad.

truck driving overseas

Shipping Your Vehicle Overseas

1. Research Shipping Companies

Vehicles are expensive, so it’s important to choose a reputable, experienced shipping company with a professional approach. Are they members of BIFA (British International Freight Association), and do they have an accessible contact number or email address? Also check things like online reviews, the look of their website, and their presence on social media – which will help you judge their legitimacy, and whether your vehicle will be in safe hands.

2. Work Out the Costs

Before shipping your vehicle abroad, you need to work out how much it’s going to cost. This depends on a number of factors, such as:

  • The vehicle’s size, weight and condition
  • Chosen insurance policy
  • Overseas taxes and charges
  • Distance to destination

However, even though competitive rates are kinder on your wallet, you shouldn’t base your company choice on price alone – the most important thing is that your vehicle is handled carefully, and reaches its destination country in good condition.

3. Confirm the Type of Shipping

There are different types of shipping out there, so you need to confirm with the company which type they offer. For getting vehicles overseas, the most common type is Roll-on Roll-off (also known as Ro-Ro), where the asset is placed on a vessel under a ship’s deck reserved for vehicle freight forwarding. But, if you have something particularly valuable, you might also want to consider a container – though this option is more expensive.

vehicle shipping cargo

4. Will the Vehicle Be Collected?

You need to confirm with the company if they can collect your vehicle. Can it be from a private home address, or does it need to be directly from a dealership? Will it reach its exact destination, or will it need to be picked up from the terminal? 

5. How Long Will it Take?

We suggest planning your vehicle shipping at least a few weeks ahead, as the total journey duration can understandably vary, dependent on the starting port and destination. To get an idea of how long it will take, just ask your shipping company, and they should be able to give you an estimate.

6. Communicate Important Info

Are there any unique features on your vehicle that the shipping company needs to know about? They’ll already be aware of the key things to look out for, but you should communicate any additional needs with them.

7. Choose Your Insurance

In the unlikely event of an accident, you need to check what insurance policies are available for shipping your vehicle overseas. The level you need often depends on the vehicle’s age, and whether you want it covered for loss only, or for damage as well. This decision is down to you, and varies based on personal preference.

man writing insurance policy

8. Check Your Documents

You can never be too prepared when it comes to documentation! Do you have all the relevant paperwork for shipping your vehicle? Necessary documents usually include a copy of the vehicle’s V5 registration, as well as its purchase invoice – but it’s always best to confirm with the shipping company beforehand.

9. Prepare the Vehicle

It’s a good idea to get your vehicle cleaned and serviced before putting it through the shipping journey. This aids the inspection process, and should help it get through customs smoothly. We also recommend leaving the fuel tank about a quarter full, and removing any important documents such as the vehicle’s insurance and registration papers.

10. Record Damages

Although a rare occurrence, in case your vehicle gets damaged, you should always record how it looks before transit. The shipping company will probably carry out its own condition report, but having your own log too gives added security and peace of mind.

From reading the above advice, you should be better informed about overseas vehicle shipping! If you need any help or require a quote, contact us to find out more. At Andrews Shipping, we’ll get your vehicle where it needs to be safely, and in good time.