Shipping a car or motorbike to Australia
If you are moving to Australia, you may be using shipping your items to Australia but why not consider shipping your car to Australia as well? Your international mover should be able to take care of your shipment door to door. Your car shipping to Australia costs should be tailored to suit individual needs, to ensure you don’t pay for something you shouldn’t be! The quote will be based on location, car size and your chosen shipping method.
The Australian government body responsible for monitoring the importing of cars is the Department of Infrastructure and Transport. The work with the Australian Customs and Border Protection Service.
Before you go
To import a vehicle there are strict regulations with which vehicles must comply. The age and origin of the vehicle and status of importer will all affect whether a vehicle can be imported into Australia and what documentation may be required by.
Eligibility for Vehicle Importation
• You have owned and used the vehicle overseas for a period of not less than twelve continuous calendar months
• You are of driving age
• You are an Australian citizen
• You are a migrant holding permanent residency in Australia
• You are allowed to import any vehicle which is 15 or more years old on the date it lands in Australia
• Cars are required to be right hand drive
Before your vehicle can be imported you must obtain a Vehicle Import Approval from the Federal Office of Road Safety in Canberra. If your vehicle arrives at destination port without the appropriate import approval, the vehicle may be sent back to origin or destroyed.
Car Shipping to Australia Methods
Roll on roll off: this is one of the most cost effective methods to ship your vehicle. You will drive your car to the port of origin, ready for our movers to load onto a vessel and secure in place. Upon arrival in Australia, your car will be driven from the vessel at the desired port and made available for you to collect after it has cleared customs and quarantines. This method means you will have to be in the destination country before the car arrives ready to collect it – or appoint an approved individual to collect it for you.
Share Container: This is where you share the space on a container, it may be shipped along other items or another car with safety procedures in place to protect your vehicle from damage. This option is relatively cost effective as you are only charged for the space your car occupies within this container.
Dedicated Container: Dedicated is the most costly method of shipping a car to Australia. But you will have sole use of the container and so will be able to fill the remaining space with your personal effects, at no extra cost. You will have the sole use of a 20ft or 40ft shipping container, depending on the size of your car or amount of things you want to ship to Australia.
Australian Port Charges
All vehicles arriving in Australia are subject to Australian Port Service charges and Australian Terminal Handling Charges, these are considerably cheaper when prepaid. Please contact your international mover as your quotations may include these charges.
If you are using an appointed agent your destination representative will be able to lodge customs entry on your behalf before the vessel arrives they will require copies of the following documents which will accompany the entry: Vehicle Import Approval, passport, Permanent Residence Visa, purchase documents and UK registration documents. Charges for customs clearance, associated haulage from port of entry to customs bonded facility and handout are payable locally to representative agent.
Quarantine Inspection / Steam Cleaning
The Department Of Health (Quarantine) will inspect the vehicle on its arrival. The Quarantine inspection fee is AU$250 depending on the port of entry. Please ensure your vehicle is thoroughly cleaned and vacuumed prior to shipment, paying particular attention to the wheel arches, the underside and engine compartment and interior, passenger and boot compartments. In the event that Quarantine fails the vehicle you will incur a charge of approximately AU$ 475 (Motor cycle) or AU$595 (Motor car) for steam cleaning and subsequent re-inspection.
Registering your vehicle
To register a vehicle in Australia it must be roadworthy, meet minimum safety standards and be right hand drive. If eligible, a Personal Import Approval will be issued and you may then apply for a Personal Import Plate; this is evidence that the vehicle is approved and may then be registered. Before applying for a Personal Import Plate the vehicle will have to be brought to acceptable standards. You should contact your State or Territory Registration Authority to have your vehicle inspected. Following registration there is no restriction preventing the subsequent sale of an imported vehicle.
Customs Duty and Sales Tax
All motor vehicles imported into Australia after 1 July 2000 are subject to duty and Goods and Services Tax (GST), calculated on the Customs Value of the vehicle.