Category Archives: Car Shipping Companies

Can I ship my car to France?

Moving abroad is an exciting adventure, but it also comes with logistical challenges. One major consideration is how to transport your personal belongings, including your car, when relocating overseas Car Shipping Companies. In this comprehensive guide, we’ll break down everything you need to know about shipping a car to France.

Why Ship Your Car to France?

Convenience and Familiarity

Driving habits and regulations differ in every country. By shipping your car to France, you maintain the convenience and familiarity of your own vehicle as you adjust to life in a new country. Your car serves as a piece of ‘home’ that makes the transition easier.

Differences in Cars and Driving

Unlike in the US where most cars are automatic, the vast majority of cars in France are manual transmission. Driving on the opposite side of the road also takes adjustment. Shipping your current car avoids these potential challenges until you’re acclimated.

Cost Effectiveness

Selling your car before departure and buying a new one in France involves transaction fees and taxes on both ends. Shipping may end up cheaper, especially if your car retains substantial value. Additionally, cars depreciate faster in other countries due to differences in environmental standards and vehicle specifications.

So in many cases, shipping your car maintains its trade-in or resale value better than selling and re-purchasing in France. This can offset the upfront cost of shipping Car Shipping Companies.

How to Ship Your Car to France

Once you’ve decided to transport your vehicle overseas, it’s time to start planning the logistics. Here are the basic steps:

  • Research shipping companies – Get quotes from multiple car shipping providers who specialize in international auto transport. Reputable companies will have experience and certifications for overseas shipping.
  • Prepare your car – Thoroughly wash and detail the interior and exterior. Check fluid levels and tire pressure. Remove all personal belongings. Consider draining fuel to minimum if driving long distances after arrival.
  • Obtain documentation – You’ll need your car’s title, registration, insurance info. Request an EPA fuel economy sticker if required by French authorities.
  • Book transportation – Reserve your preferred departure and arrival dates with the shipping company. Ask about delivery timeframes, tracking options, and insurance coverage.
  • Prepare for customs – Research any import duty or taxes owed upon arrival based on your car’s age, value, and specifications. Have documents ready for customs inspection.
  • Say bon voyage! – Once your car is picked up, the shipping company will deliver it to the destination port in France. Coordinate delivery details like parking and keys.

Transport Methods for Shipping a Car to France

There are a few common ways for shipping vehicles internationally:

🚗 By Car Carrier

For driving your car onto a cargo ship, it is placed on an enclosed car-carrying transport vessel. This is the most popular option that keeps your vehicle fully protected during ocean transit. Expect 2-4 weeks for transatlantic delivery.

✈️ By Air Freight

If timing is critical, your car can travel in the cargo hold of a passenger plane. However, air shipping is significantly more expensive than ocean transport. It’s best reserved for high-value exotic cars. Delivery time is 1-2 weeks.

🚢 By Roll-On Roll-Off Ferry

For shipping between nearby countries like France and the UK, roll-on roll-off ferries are convenient. You can drive aboard and cargo crews transport cars between vehicle decks. Sailings are frequent but offer limited customization over departure dates.

Potential Costs for Shipping a Car to France

The average cost to transport a vehicle from the US to France ranges from $1000-$3000 depending on the mode of transport and specific shipping routes. Here’s a breakdown of typical expenses:

  • Basic car transport: $1000-2000 for driving your car onto a cargo ship in the US and delivery in France.
  • Expedited transport: $1500-3000 if requesting an expedited schedule, special cargo elevators, or door-to-door delivery.
  • SUV or large vehicle: Add $200-500 for larger vehicles over 6m long that require additional securement on deck.
  • Air freight: $4000-8000 minimum to ship via air due to specialized equipment, small cargo volumes, and expedited customs clearance.
  • Vehicle processing fee: $150-300 paid to the shipping company for intake inspection, export documents, and customs guidance.
  • Import duties: Varies based on car age, value, CC, and emission standards. Expect 5-10% of declared worth.

Ask shipping companies for all-inclusive quotes to simplify budgeting for total transport and delivery to your French address. Extra costs like parking or mileage fees may apply upon arrival.

Important Tips for a Smooth Shipment

To help ensure a hassle-free transport experience, keep in mind a few additional tips:

  • Insurance is mandatory when shipping a vehicle overseas. Make sure yours covers the full declared value.
  • Schedule delivery for when you can receive the vehicle, as drivers won’t hold cars for long at the destination port.
  • Pack personal items carefully to prevent damage. Carry valuables in checked baggage instead.
  • Declare the true value of your car for accurate duty assessment. Under-declaring could mean troubles at customs.
  • Notify your auto insurer about plans to temporarily import to France. Maintain minimum liability in both countries.
  • Inspect for damage promptly upon arrival and note on delivery paperwork to protect your claim if needed Car Shipping Companies.

Keeping organized paperwork, maintaining open communication, and following instructions helps ensure a smooth shipping experience from start to finish. With proper preparation, you’ll be on your way across France in no time!

Handling Overstay or Exporting Your Car Later

Once in France, make sure your vehicle import adheres to local regulations to avoid fees or fines down the road. Considerations include:

  • Temporary import bond: Cars in France >1 year typically require a guarantee to be exported.
  • Overstay fines: Charges apply if the car remains in-country past the authorized temporary import period without changing tax/customs status.
  • Technical controls: Cars meet emission and safety standards through an inspection called a “controle technique” every 2 years at a garage.
  • Documentation requirements: Keep import/export paperwork together in the car in case stopped by police.

If plans change and you need to ship the vehicle back home or elsewhere, contact an international auto transport company again. Estimate 6 months lead time to coordinate export logistics. With attention to details, you avoid issues bringing your car overseas whether short or long-term.

In closing, shipping a personal vehicle internationally certainly takes more effort than a standard relocation. But with strategic planning and the right partners, transporting your car maintains familiarity and value as you start a new adventure in France. Bonne chance!

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