Preparing your Vehicle for Shipping
Choosing the right company
Vehicle shipping can be an exceptionally frustrating and expensive exercise if you are not aware of precisely what is required well in advance. At a price, the majority of professional auto shipping companies will be willing to take care of all the finer details of overseas shipping for you.
There are however a few less-polished services who will require you to deal with documentation and customs clearance yourself. Listed below are some basic guidelines to keep in mind when planning on shipping a vehicle to an overseas destination.
Important documents needed to accompany vehicles overseas
If you are not going through a full service vehicle shipping company then it is vital that you obtain the necessary customs regulations and export documentation information yourself. Vehicles may be barred from entry if necessary regulations have not been complied with. Regardless of which country you are planning on exporting your car to, there are certain documents that will always be essential. These include:
*the original title slip of the vehicle
*proof of the owner’s identity
*the original invoice of sale
Other important documents which you may be called upon to present include the following:
*proof of residency in your home country for a year or longer i.e. a utility bill
*a manufacturers statement of origin
*lien release forms from creditors
*a salvage certificate
*a shippers export declaration/bill of lading
*foreign registration certificates
*emission and safety clearance certificates
It is advisable to begin preparing for vehicle shipping months in advance, as without the necessary documentation vehicles will not be cleared by customs officials. You may then end up footing the rather expensive bill for the return shipment of your vehicle.
Preparing your vehicle for international transit
Countries vary in their approach to foreign vehicle specifications and what they regard as acceptable. Certain countries such as Jordan and the USA require pre-export vehicle inspection and customs clearance before vehicles even leave their port of origin, while others are for more lenient and need only the correct documentation to be presented when vehicles reach their port of destination. It is advisable to research export specifications thoroughly before even contacting auto shipping companies, as in some cases attempting to ship your vehicle will not even be worthwhile.
As a general guideline, most countries require vehicles to be cleaned of any foreign soil or plant matter which could prove hazardous to the local environment.
In some cases vehicles will also be tested to see if they comply with specific safety and emission regulations. It is therefore advisable to make sure that your vehicle has undergone a full service and road worthy test prior to even considering shipping it to another country.
There should be less than a quarter of a tank of petrol in your gas tank and any spare petrol containers should be removed from the vehicle. A spare tire and tire changing tools may be stored in the boot of the vehicle, but apart from these items the car should be empty. CD’s, tapes, stereos, cellular hands free kits and any other items that did not come with the vehicle when you purchased it should be removed. No additional boxes or items that are stored in the car will be permitted to pass through customs.