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International Boat Shipping and Yacht Transport

Boat Shipping

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The logistics involved during international boat shipping and yacht transport from the USA can take a lot of preparation and planning no matter what the final destination is.

Furthermore, due to the highly specialized equipment and nature of shipping a boat overseas, it makes going through all the steps much more vital to ensuring the safe transport.

That is why it is important to discuss this with a professional boat shipping company and work out a plan that will make the relocation of your vessel overseas as easy and pain free as possible.

If you're planning to ship a boat overseas and would like to get an estimate for the costs, call 800-599-0190 or use our quick form to get a free quote from one of our boat transport specialists.

In addition to the size and type of vessel or yacht in question, the destination can play as big a part in terms of the estimated costs and time frames. Some of the overseas destinations we ship boats to include Germany, Australia, UK, the Mediterranean and many others across the world.

Types of International Boat Shipping Services

There are often ways to help speed up the process. While you're planning your vessel's international move, here are a few suggested steps for effectively shipping a boat overseas:

How to Prepare Your Boat for Overseas Shipping in 5 Steps

1. Measure your boat carefully. This is crucial as it determines the cost of shipping.

You will need the exact length, width and height. You will need to include the bow platforms, swim platforms, motors or any protruding parts that may extend the exterior dimensions.

For height, consider the highest part of the boat that cannot be disassembled. For the width, measure the widest part of the boat.

You need this because you may need special permits from the Department of Transportation (DOT), and because the shipper needs to know what type of handling to use.

The legal height for transporting boats on the road is 13ft 6"- that means that the boat has to be at most about 12ft high.

For larger boats, there is more clearance required. Boats that are over 8"6' wide are considered oversize load and require special road transportation permits.

2. Winterize your boat.

  • Remove all propellers, lights, antennas, electronics, anchor and valuable items and store safely below.
  • Secure all cabinets and covers.
  • Remove all fuel.
  • Disconnect batteries.
  • Latch and tape cabin windows.
  • Remove any cargo out of your boat.
  • Empty all the water out of the boat, including the drain plugs and air conditioner.
  • Clean the exterior of your boat.
  • Wrap your boat in plastic wrap or canvas to protect it from bumps.
  • If you have a boat made of wood, you can protect by applying a coat of linseed oil to prevent it from drying.
  • You may consider having your boat transported on its own custom cradle - ask us for a quote.

3. Speak to your boat shipping agent.Find out the boat transport rates and all the shipping details of your boat, such as:

  • Type of transportation (roll-on/ roll-off or RO-RO, lift on/lift off or semi-submersible). Boats can be shipped on trailers, cradles, and containers or by submersion, depending on their size.
  • Boat pick-up location
  • Trailer transportation details

An international boat shipping quote usually includes these services:

  • pick-up, delivery to port and ocean freight to final destination
  • marine shipping insurance
  • shrink-wrapping
  • cradle information
  • loading and unloading
  • customs clearance,
  • export declaration
  • bill of lading

4. Prepare your boat's loading and unloading in advance, find out all the customs clearance and taxes that may be due in the country the boat is being shipped to.

5. Prepare your boat transport documents in advance. Contact the embassy of the country where the boat is being shipped, find out all the custom regulations and documentation you need.

The usual documents required are a bill of lading, shipping documents from your shipping company, a copy of the boat title and a bill of sale.

Some countries may require import permits for the boat or the trailer or both!

Damien Shields

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