How to Ship a Car to Europe

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There are many reasons to take your car with you to Europe. If you will stay in Europe for months, you can save the costs of a long-term car rental. If you are moving to Europe, taking your car to Europe could cost less than selling it and trying to get another car in Europe. Some people feel safer using car travel as opposed to train travel, where luggage is left on racks that are often unattended.

  • Find a company that ships cars overseas. Allstates Worldwide is one company that offers this service, listed in the Resources section.

  • Contact the company and set up the international transport. It generally costs between $750 and $2,000 to ship a vehicle, depending on its size and weight. You will need to get your vehicle to the closest port. Most companies have more than one port available in the United States.

  • Arrange to get your vehicle to the international port. Some international shipping companies also will arrange the domestic transfer for you. Otherwise, contact a domestic shipper. The other option is to drive the car to the port yourself.

  • Obtain shipping insurance. This is required for international transport and protects you if the car is damaged during transport. Shipping insurance runs about 2 percent of the value of the vehicle. This amounts to around $400 for a $20,000 car.

  • Obtain the necessary paperwork required. You will need a Shipper Export Declaration as well as a Declaration of Dangerous Goods.

  • Take care of any other costs and requirements. For example, your vehicle must meet the safety requirements of the destination country, and you may have to pay an entry fee to have your car offloaded in a European port.

  • Pick up the car at the port in Europe, or have it transported to your local European destination.

Tips & Warnings

  • It costs much less to ship a car that runs than a car that doesn't run.
  • Once the car reaches the port, it has to be loaded onto the ship. Some companies will drive the car onto the ship. Otherwise, the car will be placed in an auto container and loaded by crane onto the vessel.
  • There are certain restrictions on buying a car in Europe if you do not have residence there, which makes it advantageous to ship your own car to Europe. More about this can be found on the website in the Resources on Car Buying in Europe.
  • Photo Credit Jupiterimages/Photos.com/Getty Images
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