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Preparing to move your car

Moving to Germany? Taking a Bavarian vacation? If you want to bring an auto along for the journey then you need to get it there first. Germany is home to some of the best driving roads in Europe, wide open autobahns and the world famous Nürburgring - so if you’re a bit of a petrolhead then it should be your #1 destination for driving.

Car transport to Germany – Der Guide

When you want to take a drive to Dortmund or import a motor to Mannheim then you should make the necessary preparations and know, in advance, what to expect in terms of taxes and customs.

For permanent imports you need to visit the Vehicle Registration Office, locally known as the Kraftfahrzeugzulassungsstelle – the process does differ depending on where you’re bringing the car from.

Importing from the EU: Before it can be registered in Germany any car will need an EU safety conformity certification – older vehicles may need a new inspection from the relevant German authorities. You will also need information of your manufacturer and vehicle type, chassis number and model year.

New models: New vehicle imports require that you pay duty to the local Finanzamt (tax office) within a week and a half of purchase. You must also obtain a tax certificate from the Motor Vehicle Authority.

Used Autos: Like other EU countries you can import a used vehicle (for personal use) provided that it has been registered in another state and has 6,000km+ on the clock. Used vehicles require a bit more information:

- Proof of ownership
- Vehicle registration certificate
- Proof of insurance
- EU conformity certificate
- Exhaust emissions check (if older than 3 years)
- Tax clearance from the Federal Motor Vehicle Authority. You may also want a certificate of permanent export from the DVLA if coming from the UK.

Registering your car: The Germans are slightly more laid back than other nations when it comes to car imports. When travelling temporarily to Germany (for less than a year) you don’t need to register at all – though you will need a translation of your original registration documents.

You will need (in addition to the above):

- Identification
- Residency proof
- Proof of payment of duty (on new cars)
- Vehicle licence plates

From outside the EU: Vehicles from further afield are subject to VAT and duty, but you may be able to gain exemption if importing a car as part of personal effects when relocating. You must also get customs clearance, confirmation from the CVR that the car has never been registered before and a German roadworthiness test.

Before Transporting Your Car

Prior to your car delivery to Germany, you should make a few precursory checks to ensure that the transportation comes off without a hitch.

Cleaning Up: Washing your vehicle will help you identify any damage that may be caused to it during transport and will also help avoid wind-caused scratches.

Taking Photos: Will provide you with solid proof of the car’s pre-transportation condition – this will be essential when making any claims against transport companies in the rare case of damage.

Check it’s Running: Especially with older models, it is imperative that you know the roadworthiness of your motor. Anything that is not up to scratch could end up costing you later on.

driver picking up car for transport to Germany

Comparing transport options

If you want to drive it yourself then you and your car are in for a great trip, but if for whatever reason you are unable to take your car across Europe personally then you can always employ a professional car transport to Germany company.

Trade Plate Drivers: A type of delivery service popular with car auctions, trade platers are specialist drivers who ship cars all across the world as long as there’s a road to where they’re going. This type of service can be quite inexpensive – especially if you can find a service already making a trip to Deutschland.

Single Trailer: A bespoke individual trailer is often the best way to haul a valuable or antique car, especially one that isn’t currently roadworthy. You can generally choose between covered or uncovered trailers, with the former being the more expensive option. So if you need to transport an antique car or new luxury car, this could be the choice for you – of course this method also boasts the highest cost for your car delivery to Germany.

Multi Vehicle Option: When many people picture car transporters they envisage a large lorry-like behemoth, barrelling along the motorway laden with cars. These huge multi car trailers can be used to ship vehicles internationally and are a good choice if moving multiple vehicles.

The drawback to using multiple car transporters is that they are unable to provide very localised drop-offs, meaning that you face another journey to collect your car when it arrives.

Shipping Options: When it comes to ferrying to Germany there are two options, to the hook of Holland and then driving, or going direct to a German port. The former is the more feasible option from the UK – the ship travels from Harwich docks and should see you in the Netherlands in a few hours and it’s only a couple more to drive to Germany from there.

How Shiply can help

Finding the right car transport to Germany company is easy, if you know where to look! Trawling websites and directories for individual quotes can be an arduous task. Shiply eases the process by sneding the quotes directly to you.

Just list your car with us and any transporter of our 48,000+ members will be able to quote to carry out your vehicle shipment. When multiple firms quote for your business they’re competing against one another so the price gets driven down.

You can then compare car delivery to Germany companies based on their quotes as well as their feedback from other Shiply users.

Once you’ve found a quote that suits you, simply accept the transporter’s quote to get your motor moving.

When your vehicle is delivered

When Your Car Arrives

Whether imported by ship, trailer or driven, your first step should be to inspect your vehicle for any signs of wear and tear from the journey (this is where the photos come in handy). If your car has suffered any damage then it’s important that you take it up with the transporter as soon as possible.

You must also notify customs of your import (make sure to bring the documents mentioned earlier). The second thing to take care of, should you wish to keep your car in Germany, will be registration, which can be done at a local Vehicle Registration Office.

Once your car is settled in Germany we’d appreciate it if you left a review for the transporter you found on Shiply. Feedback helps drivers know how to improve their service and also assists users searching for European car transporters.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Does Shiply Cover My Area?

Yes! There are couriers using Shiply all over the country and abroad, so whether you need to move a sofa across town or send a car across Europe, we have got you covered.

Does Shiply Have Different Sized Vehicles?

There are thousands of couriers on Shiply, with a wide range of vehicle sizes capable of handling any delivery. Providing the rough dimensions (and pictures if possible) on your listing will allow the delivery company to get the right vehicle sent out to you.

Can I Call Shiply?

Shiply Support is available from 9am - 6pm Monday to Friday on 020 3137 2454. You can also send an email to .

Who Will Carry Out My Delivery?

Whoever you choose! There are thousands of rated transport providers on our platform ready to make a bid to carry out your delivery. It is up to you to decide which quote to accept.

When Will I Receive A Quote?

You will typically start to receive quotes within 30 minutes. If you are worried about the lack of quotes, try adding some more detail to your listing as transport providers may be unsure of dimensions or weight and feel unable to provide an accurate quote. If your delivery is urgent, you can try our 'featured delivery' feature which moves your listing to the top of the search page for couriers.

How Many Quotes Will I Receive?

Whilst there is no guarantee of quotes, 98% of our listings receive at least 3 quotes, so you are likely to find someone who can undertake the delivery of your items.

Does Shiply Provide Packing Materials?

If your item requires packing materials or extra care then you should make sure this is highlighted in your listing and discussed with any transport provider whose quote you are considering. Couriers on Shiply are able to provide all levels of service and can help pack your items, just ensure you inform them of your needs.

Will My Goods Be Tied Up Securely?

Transport providers will almost always tie up an item in the transport vehicle, as the risk of damage from moving around during transit is high. You should always confirm safety precautions and packing needs with transport providers before accepting a quote.

Can Items Be Taken Upstairs?

Yes, items can be taken upstairs if needed, and can also be assembled. Transport providers on Shiply are happy to provide these services, but you should ensure that you are mentioning these requirements in your listings as it may mean a second person is required for the move.

Can I Travel With My Goods?

The majority of transport providers on Shiply are only insured for the transportation of goods, however, some are also able to take people. If you need to travel with your goods, make sure to mention this in your listing and highlight this to any courier who quotes on your listing.

What If I Need To Cancel My Booking?

If you have accepted a quote and paid the deposit but wish to cancel the delivery, then you should first inform your chosen transport provider that you no longer require the delivery. You should then contact us at to have your deposit refunded.

Can I Change The Address Of The Delivery?

If you have not yet accepted a quote then you are able to change the address of your listing. Note that editing details of your listing after publishing will result in active quotes being voided, so you will have to wait for new quotes to come in. If you have already accepted a quote and need to change the address, please let your transport provider know and contact us at .

How Shiply works

How Shiply Works

How Shiply Works

  • 1

    Request quotes from our 341,707 rated transport providers.

  • 2

    Compare prices and read previous customer feedback to pick the right delivery quote for you.

  • 3

    Sit back and relax while your item is safely delivered by your chosen transport provider.

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