Shipping a car to Ireland from the U.S.?
Has anyone tried it? I know that it will be awkward driving a left-hand drive car in Ireland but apart from that does it make any sense? Seems like a comparable car in Ireland is more expensive, and providing we own the car for 12 months (which we do) we should not have to pay any VRT in Ireland. Would love to hear if anyone considered it or tried it.
My in-laws did it many years ago. I don't know any of the details re: costs etc, but I'm sure it can't be cheap to ship a car across the Atlantic.
While in Ireland, you'll find plenty of people driving cars with the wheel on the 'wrong side'. All of Europe, besides ourselves and the UK, drive on the right. You'll find many tourists who came over by ship with their cars. Also, I've known people over the years who have bought cars on the continent, and brought them back to drive in Ireland.
I'm not sure if you'll run in to any maintenance issues e.g. finding replacement parts and having higher cost repair fees.
Have you looked into the transport costs? I'd love to hear what it entails.
I'm really curious on a quote on this as well! I had considered this but assumed it would be easier to sell my car here and buy another when I arrive.
I've reached out to a couple of companies to see if they'll provide a few examples of costs. I'll update when I get responses.
I received a reply from Damien Shields at Schumacher Cargo Logistics.
Here's what he had to say.
"From the west coast, an average sized car in a shared container will run approx $1600 or so from LA to Dublin. From the east coast, $1400 or so. These rates include all the US origin charges such as customs clearance/ loading and port fees. Do not include any destination fees in Ireland- they are usually around €500 per car to get it out of the port. Then there is the usual tax and excise for importing the car, this depends on the nature of the import, and the age of the car."
In response to a couple of followup questions, Damien added this:
"We usually ship motorbikes, classic cars etc, but we do move some newer models too. The left hand thing is still allowed in Ireland but insurance may be higher etc"
My understanding is a car can qualify in the one time import duty exemption when you initially move. I read it somewhere, but the vehicle must pass NCT right away.
There was a time in the 70's and maybe into the 80's when my grandparents used to vacation in the UK, buy a UK luxury car, and then have it transferred to the US and sold. They made enough to pay off the car and pay for the vacation. It helped that he worked for an auto dealership that also owned a specialty dealership that would have a buyer already lined up.
Also, when it says you must "own" the car, does it mean the title in your name with no liens?
Liam, thank you for the shipping cost info, that is most helpful. We are moving from the East Coast and my husband was given a quote of about $1500 earlier this year. I was not aware that we would also have a destination fee in Ireland so will have to factor that in.
David, I love your grandparents entrepreneurship... what a great way to cover your vacation costs.
Kelsey, I found some information on VRT (Vehicle Registration Tax) and transfer of residence here: http://www.revenue.ie/en/tax/vrt/leaflets/tax-relief-transfer-residence.html
My feeling is that you could not bring a leased car, but could bring a car that you have a car loan on. I'm going to research that further.
Also, NCT is a National Car Test, essentially a roadworthiness and emissions test. See below:
The NCT is conducted every 2 years for vehicles younger than 10 years and vehicles that are being presented for their 10th anniversary inspection or older than 10 years must undergo an annual inspection. This regular evaluation of cars will result in a more frequent car servicing culture, which will provide better fuel economy, reduce overall repair costs and lower the risk of breakdowns and hence could result in potentially lower insurance premiums.
I really appreciate everyones information, thoughts and suggestions. I'll let you know what we eventually decide to do and how that works out for us.