HOW TO SHIP YOUR CAR OR VEHICLE FROM AUSTRALIA TO THE UK

 

Shipping your car or vehicle from Australia to the UK can seem like a complicated and expensive process.

While there are certainly a number of things that you need to take care of, if you break the process down into smaller steps it can seem much simpler.

This guide to shipping your car from Australia to the UK aims to do just that!

The steps you need to take to send your car to the UK can be split into two categories. These are things you need to do in Australia to ready your car for export and things you need to do in the UK to ready your car for import.


THE FULL LIST OF STEPS YOU NEED TO TAKE IS AS FOLLOWS:

 

IN AUSTRALIA:

 

1. Work out the total cost
2. Choose your preferred shipping method
3. Choose an appropriate sailing date
4. Prepare export documentation
5. Choose a drop-off/collection date
6. Clean the vehicle
7. De-register vehicle (if registered)
8. Drop vehicle off and collect ‘Bill of Lading’

 

IN THE UK:

 

1. Import duties
2. UK compliance and registration
3. Drive!

 

CALCULATE TOTAL COST

 

The first thing you need to do is estimate the total cost. This will help you decide if shipping your car is the best option for you. The main fees you need to take care of are as follows:

1. Transport cost and Escort fee
2. Local charges and Ocean Freight to your destination
3. Arrival and Clearance charges
4. Import taxes and duties
5. Transit insurance
6. Compliance and registration costs

If you are interested in finding out how much it would cost to send your car to the UK, use our free instant quote tool at the top of this page to find out.

 

CHOOSE YOUR PREFERRED SHIPPING METHOD

 

The first step when thinking about sending your car to the UK is to choose your preferred shipping method.

The two options you have here are roll-on/roll-off and container shipping. Both of these shipping methods have plus and minus points but a quick summary of each is as follows:

If you choose the Roll-on/Roll-off method your car will be rolled or driven onto the ship and then lashed to the deck. It is the cheaper of the two methods but unfortunately you are unable to put any extra luggage or items in the car.

In container shipping, your car will be put into a container. Despite being more expensive you can fill your car up with other items which can be useful if you are moving house or have a lot of luggage.

For a more in-depth look at the two shipping methods please click on the link HERE.

 

CHOOSE AN APPROPRIATE SAILING DATE

 

After you have decided on your preferred type of shipping you will need to choose a shipping date.

Shipping a car from Australia to the UK can take a while, up to several months. When planning your car’s journey make sure to think about how long you will need to use your vehicle in Australia, as well as when you will need it in the UK.

 

PREPARE EXPORT DOCUMENTATION

 

The next step is that you need to prepare your export documentation. This includes things such as a bill of sale or the vehicle’s registration paperwork, a copy of your passport and photos of the vehicle plus the vehicle’s price if you want to get it insured for the journey.

 

ARRANGE A DROP-OFF/COLLECTION DATE

 

Once you have all the required paperwork and you have set your dates and shipping method you can arrange a date for collection/drop-off with your shipping company. This is usually three to five days before the ship set sail.

 

CLEAN THE VEHICLE

 

The next step is to clean the vehicle, this includes all cobwebs and plant residue that may be in or on the car. If your car is not clean enough it can fail the inspection and be banned from loading onto the ship. This can lead to extra fees and delays. Read more about preparing your car for shipping here.

 

DE-REGISTER VEHICLE

 

You will then need to de-register your car at the appropriate transport authority in Australia. Then when the day for collection/drop off comes, you will need to remove your plates.

 

DROP VEHICLE OFF AND COLLECT ‘BILL OF LADING’

 

The final thing you need to take care of in Australia is actually dropping the car off with the shipping company. They will take care of loading the vehicle and once this process has been completed you will receive a ‘Bill of Lading’. This allows you to track your vehicle throughout its journey.

So now your car is on its way to the UK, you can just sit back, relax and prepare for your trip over!

Well, actually, not quite.

Before you can drive your car in the UK there are a number of things you will need to take care of. These are mainly to do with getting through customs and getting your car or vehicle ready for the UK roads.

 

UK IMPORT TAXES AND DUTIES

 

The first thing you will need to take care of is the import duty on your car.

Luckily there are a number of agreements and deals between the UK and Australia that mean many people are eligible for exemption from import duties. Some of the reasons for eligibility include:

1) That you lived outside the EC for at least 18 months
2) That you have possessed and use the vehicle outside the EC for at least six months
3) That you are moving to the EC to live for at least six months in the following 12 months
4) That the vehicle arrives no more than six months after you arrive
5) That you do not sell the car for at least 12 months after UK customs clearance

If it turns out that you do not meet the above criteria then you will need to pay import duty based on the value of your car, the cost of shipping and insurance.

 

COMPLIANCE AND REGISTRATION

 

After getting your car or vehicle through customs you then need to check your vehicle for compliance and register it for use on the road.

While most vehicles from Australia are compliant for use in the UK, a few changes often have to be made to the vehicle. These changes include things such as switching the speedometer to one that uses mph and fitting a rear fog light to the UK off-side. The exact work that needs to be done will depend on the make and model of your car.

Luckily for those of you with cars over ten years old, no compliance work is necessary. Instead, the car simply has to pass its MOT test.

Once your car has passed its MOT and compliance checks you will still need to pay road tax and get the car insured before you use it on the UK’s roads.

At that is the final step! Once you have completed this process your car will be good to use in the UK.

While there are certainly a lot of things to get your head around, shipping your car can be a cheaper and more convenient option that selling your old car and buying a new on.

And remember, if you need any help with the process, Willship can organise your journey from the collection of your car in Australia to customs clearance and compliance in the UK. For more info gives a call on (61) 7 3267 3694 or enquire online to find out how we can help you!