What do you do with your car when you move overseas, sell it or take it with you? We asked car shipping experts Autoshippers for their advice.
Moving to a new country presents a whole list of challenge, a list that, as often as not, is written in an unfamiliar language! As a result, the question “What shall we do about the car?” often doesn’t occur to people who are moving abroad until all the wheels – if you’ll pardon the pun – are already in motion.
It’s a question the majority of those moving overseas will have to address, though. Some may simply scrap their vehicle or pass it on to a friend or relative, but for most it’s a case of deciding whether to sell it, or have it shipped to their new country of residence.
For some car owners, that’s an easy decision to make. If you’re lucky enough to be driving around in a 1908 Thomas Flyer, a 1967 Cobra 427 or any other classic/collectable car, then your love affair with said vehicle is unlikely to come to an end just because you’ve moved to a foreign country. The same can go for humbler vehicles, too, if there’s enough sentimental value attached. Autoshippers recently shipped a Land Rover nicknamed ‘The Beast’ that had driven the 12,000 mile journey from Durban, South Africa all the way to Durban, Scotland, and we can’t see that car’s owners letting go of it any time soon!
For most people, though, selling up and buying an equivalent vehicle on arrival often seems like the easiest and cheapest option. But you’d be surprised – both buying and selling a vehicle can be costly processes that eat up valuable time, time you may not have to spare when your whole life is changing around you.
It also depends where you’re moving to: if you’re going to somewhere with a very high standard of living, such as Norway, you could find yourself selling your car only to realise that an equivalent will set you back nearly twice as much as you got for it!
For these reasons, it’s often actually cheaper, in the long run, to take your car with you overseas. And the good news is that the process of doing so doesn’t have to be as complicated as you might think it is.
Yes, the rules and regulations around international shipping are complex and arcane; yes, ports and custom authorities can take you by surprise with hefty demands for payment. But that’s where a company like Autoshippers comes in: shipping cars is what they do, all day every day, and they take care of all those little niggles and hassles so that you don’t have to.
Shipping costs vary depending on how far you’re going, what the customs rules are in your destination country, whether you want the car shipped port-to-port or door-to-door and various other factors. Shipping your car could cost as little as £800 or as much as £2,500, so we’d always recommend that you contact your company for a detailed (and obligation-free!) quote as early in the moving process as possible.
Once armed with that information, you can then compare secondhand prices for your particular vehicle in the UK and your destination country, and work out for yourself whether it’s more economical to sell it or ship it.