Car Shipping to The UK
England, Scotland, Wales & Northern Ireland
Shipping one’s belongings to the UK varies slightly from other European nations. Whether it is a car, motorcycle, boat or even household goods, it is still important to do your research and contact the nearest customs office to avoid surprise changes in import duties and other taxes.
For automobiles being shipped overseas to Ireland, Scotland or Great Britain, a good starting point is determining whether or not your vehicle is eligible for importation into the UK. It is a good idea for everyone to contact either the DVLA in Great Britain or the DVA if they intend to import a motor vehicle that is over 10 years old. This is to insure that it meets the requirements for approval.
Major UK Port Cities:
- Southampton (leading vehicle-handling port)
Below is information on international car shipping to the UK and Europe.
Mutual Recognition and Why It's Important
Mutual recognition only applies to those who are importing a car that was originally registered in the EU. It is important because it will save time and a lot of extra work in assessing the cars conformity status to UK roadways.
Instances Requiring VAT and Vehicle Tax
- You are importing a new vehicle, less than 6 months of drive time
- Staying for a period of time over 12 months and you normally live outside the EU
- You received a refund on the VAT or sales tax of the vehicle prior
- You purchased the vehicle under a duty or tax free scheme
Instances NOT Requiring VAT and Vehicle Tax
- You live in the EU and it is only a temporary import
- You are moving to the UK and meet the qualifications for residency transfer
- Someone from outside the EU imports it for temporary individual use
- Must be visiting
- Only use the car for a 6 month period
- Vehicle must be registered and taxed in its home country
- Students and workers that live outside the UK are eligible for a slightly longer period
*It’s important to contact the HMRC to obtain proper documentation for proof of customs relief
UK Shipping Taxes:
If the above mentioned scenario does not apply to your situation, then you will have to pay the import duty and VAT tax with customs. You must also make sure that you have valid car insurance for the UK. Those numbers are:
- Import Duty: | 10% |
- VAT: | 20% |
- Import Duty for Collector's Vehicles: | 5% | with no VAT
You can obtain more information regarding vehicle importation to the UK here.
For further information on any of above service options, please call and discuss your shipping needs with one of our Car Shipping Specialists at: US Tel: 800 599-0190 // 562 408-6677
Written by Damien Shields