- Shipping to Australia
- Shipping from Australia
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Reviews of Australia International Shipping Companies
International Car Shipping
Given the distance between the two continents, the only practical way to ship cars is over the ocean. Australia international shipping companies will offer you the choice of shipping your car via Roll on Roll Off (RoRo) shipping or in a container carrier. If you plan on shipping several household goods and personal items along with your car, your best bet would be to use a 20′ or 40′ shipping container. If cost is a consideration, or the only item you plan on shipping is your car, you would be better off using the RoRo option. With this option, your car will be driven on board the ship, transported in a parking garage-like space on the ship, and driven off it at its port of destination.
Australia international shipping companies, on average, take between 21 days and 40-days to ship a car between the U.S. and Australia. For example, shipping a car between Savannah and Melbourne takes 28 days, while shipping it between Baltimore to Brisbane takes about 25 days. Once your car arrives at port, you will be expected to clear it through all customs formalities. To do that, you need to arrive at your port of destination before your ship arrives. You will need your original title, foreign registration, bill of sale, emissions records and other documents in order to clear customs.
Australia allows you to bring your car in under cover of what is known as a carnet. A carnet is a document that contains all the details of your vehicle. You can use a carnet to import a car into Australia for periods of up to one year. You will need to obtain the carnet at your exit port. Both Australia and the U.S. have strict safety requirements that your vehicle will be required to comply with before they clear customs. Before attempting to import a car into either country, it is a good idea to verify that your vehicle meets those requirements.
Tips for International Car Shipping
When shipping a vehicle between the U.S and Australia, keep the following tips in mind.
- International car shipping rates depend on the traffic in a particular shipping route. If a shipping company has a high volume of traffic both ways, you can expect to get very attractive rates.
- The size of your car will determine its ultimate shipping costs. In general, bigger cars cost more to ship than smaller ones.
- If you live far away from the port of exit, be prepared to pay extra money for the cost of shipping your car from your home to the port.
- Car shipping insurance on international lines only begins at the port of exit. If you want to insure your car from door-to-door, you will need to pay extra for it.
Australia international shipping companies are specialized in handling traffic between the two countries, and are really your best option if you have a car that you need to ship from the U.S. to Australia, or the other way around.
Two options for shipping to Australia
Basically, the government offers two options for importing a car to Australia via international auto transport companies. You can either bring it on a temporary basis, or you can import it into the country permanently. The rules associated with each option vary significantly.
You have two options for importing a car to Australia temporarily. You can either import it under the cover of what is known as a carnet, or you can import it under a subsection of Australia’s Customs Act. A carnet is basically a kind of passport for the car. It is a document that contains all details of your vehicle, including its make, its model year, engine displacement, seating capacity, registration and retail value. A carnet is valid for a period of 12 months, after which the car will need to be exported out of Australia.
To obtain a carnet, you will first be required to deposit a sum equal to the retail value of the car together when any other taxes that may be applicable. The money will be held as a security deposit until you export the car out of Australia at the end of the temporary period. At that time, the entire amount will be refunded to you.
Obtaining a Vehicle Import Approval
The other option for obtaining a temporary permit to import a car to Australia is to obtain a Vehicle Import Approval (VIA) from the country’s Department of Infrastructure and Transport. Temporary Visa holders and visitors to the country can import a car to Australia for a period of up to 12 months, tax free and duty free. Here, again, you will be required to make a security deposit that is equal to the value of the car together with applicable taxes. The Customs agency will return the deposit after you export your car back out of the country at the end of the temporary permit period.
Permanent car import
Australian citizens who are returning to the country permanently or new immigrants to the country can permanently import cars using the same VIA process. However, they will be required to pay all applicable import duties and tariffs before they can clear customers.
Factors to Consider
Before shipping a car to Australia, there are a few things you need to keep in mind.
- If you are using a carnet, you will need to obtain it before shipping a car to Australia. If you are importing it through Customs, you will need to obtain the VIA from them first before making your shipping arrangements.
- Your vehicle will be inspected by Customs officials and by the Australian Quarantine Inspection Service at the port of entry regardless of how you import the vehicle.
- If you bring in your car on a temporary basis, you will be expected to export your car back out in 12 months or you will forfeit your deposit.
It is generally easier to ship a car to Australia from the US than it is to many other countries, however, it is still advisable to use the services of a professional shipping company to transport your vehicle for you.
Roll On Roll Off and Container Shipping
Regardless of the reason, the process and the procedures involved in shipping a car from Australia remain the same. International car shipping companies transport cars and other vehicles in large, specially constructed car carriers, some of which are capable of transporting up to 8,000 cars in one load. You will have the choice of transporting your car either on a Roll on Roll off (RoRo) basis or in a large container.
With the first option, you car will be driven on board the ship and secured for transportation in a parking garage-like space on the ship. With container shipping, your car will be stored in a 20′ or 40′ container, which is then loaded on the transport carrier. Most shipping companies will allow you to store household goods and other personal items in the same container, but containers typically cost substantially more to use than RoRo shipping.
Duty Free Imports
When you ship a car from Australia, you will need to comply with several customs, safety and emissions regulations before your car is allowed into the US. If you are a US citizen or permanent resident returning to the country after a stint in Australia, you will be allowed to bring your car in duty-free if you can show that you purchased the car in the US You can also import a car from Australia duty free for personal use for a period of up to one year, regardless of whether you are a citizen or non-citizen. Cars imported in the US for races and other special purposes are also exempt from duties. If you are importing a car from Australia on a permanent basis, you will be assessed an import duty of 2.5 percent of the value of the car.
Emission Requirements for Importing a Car
All cars that are imported to the US are required to meet strict US standards for safety and emissions control. When your car arrives at its US port of destination, it will be subject to an emissions testing protocol that could sometimes last 14 hours. The cost for such testing is around $1,000. In addition, when shipping a car from Australia, your vehicle will be tested by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration to see if it meets federal safety requirements for bumpers, restraints and headlights.
Importing Non-Conforming Vehicles
Even if your car does not meet these requirements, you will still be able allowed to import it as a non-conforming vehicle if you pay a bond equal to 150 percent of the value of the car. However, you will need to bring the car into compliance within 45 days of entry into the country, or you will forfeit the bond. Importing a car from Australia can be a somewhat complicated and time consuming process, which is why it is a good idea to have your car transported by a shipping company that specializes in importing cars to the U.S.