Maybe you’re moving to a foreign country. Maybe you’re selling it to an international buyer. Whatever your reasons for shipping a car overseas, it’s important to plan its journey well in advance. Here are just a few tips for ensuring that your vehicle reaches its next destination in the same shape as it departed.
1. Gather Your Paperwork
Cars being shipped overseas will pass through a number of checkpoints. Make sure that you have a Motor Carrier (MC) and Department of Transportation (DOT) number to identify it, and double-check that all of your insurance and registration is up to date while you’re at it.
2. Choose Your Shipping Company
Before you sign on the dotted line, make sure that your chosen shipping business is fully qualified to handle your affairs. Ask for licenses, certificates, professional memberships and any other credentials that will prove them to be a legitimate shipping company.
3. Negotiate the Price
The price of shipping a car overseas will depend on things like its weight, transportation type and the amount of distance it needs to cross. Discuss these matters with the shipping company before they’re allowed to even touch your vehicle. You don’t want any surprises on the final bill.
4. Get Insured
It’s required by law for car shipping companies to provide you with insurance, but the type and scope of that insurance can vary wildly depending on the brand. Make sure that it’s enough to cover the full cost of your car, and ask about liability in the event of damage.
5. Hammer Out the Details
Will you drive your car to the shipping port, or will the company come out and retrieve it for you? How many times will it pass through customs, and where are those checkpoints located? Who should you call if something happens to your car in a foreign country?
6. Prepare Your Vehicle
Remove any items of value from your car. Leave only a small amount of gas in your tank. You might also want to take pictures of your vehicle’s condition before it gets shipped; this will help you if you need to make an insurance claim later.
You can’t be too careful when shipping your car overseas. Whether it’s traveling 50 miles or 500, it’s worth the effort to ensure that your vehicle will make it to its intended destination in one piece. Good luck!