a  s  

Overseas Shipping of Vehicles by RO/RO Vessels

image1Overseas shipping of cars, motorcycles and ATVs, are either in containers or in Roll on - Roll off vessels (RO/RO vessels). RO/RO vessels are specialized vessels that are constructed to carry oversized cargo - cargo that wouldn’t otherwise fit into regular containers. Imagine RO/RO vessels as huge floating parking platforms. Unlike transport in a container, when you have the choice to send the container to almost any port in the world, Ro-Ro service covers only major ports in the US and other world destinations. If your final destination is not on the route of Ro-Ro vessel voyage, steam ship liners offer transshipment to the other major ports overseas. 


Shipping by Ro-Ro vessels makes sense if you:

  • Transport oversized vehicles which cannot fit into 20/40’HC containers – usually it is the only option in such a case
  • Shipping your vehicle in its own container is too expensive
  • You cannot wait for a longer period of time to get other cargo for consolidations to certain destinations

When shipping by RO/RO vessels, we count volume in m3 and determine the rate. Knowing the exact dimensions and weight for any particular vehicle is essential to get an accurate rate.
When you ship your vehicle by RO/RO vessel you cannot put any belongings inside the vehicle. It is strongly prohibited.

image4Documentation requirements are exactly the same as when exporting your vehicle in containers. The procedure is a different, but our professionals will guide you through the process.

Any motor vehicle defined as self-propelled, such as an automobile, truck, tractor, bus, motorcycle, ATV, or motor home, requires an original certificate of title, or for new vehicles, a Manufacturer’s Statement of Origin (MSO).

Other self-propelled vehicles such as agricultural machinery, self-propelled construction equipment, or any other self-propelled vehicle used or designed to run on land but not on rail, requires the original Bill of Sale, which clearly shows the year, make & model, and vehicle’s Serial Number or VIN (Vehicle’s Identification Number). The Provided Bill of Sale has to show that the vehicle has been paid in full, and has to be notarized by a Notary.

The original of the above mentioned document must be presented to U.S. Customs at the port of departure at least 72 hours before departure. US Customs is the ultimate authority; they need to verify the documents and approve export prior to shipment. Once the documents have been verified, they will be returned to the freight forwarder.

The basic rule applying to vehicles requires the gas tank to be almost empty (not more than 1⁄4 of tank).

shutterstock 21845734When you deliver your vehicle to the particular loading port terminal, you should have a set of certain documents in hand. We will provide such a documents to you. In some ports, the port authorities request that an escort team deliver the vehicle. We will advise you on time. If you cannot deliver your vehicle to the port terminal by yourself, we can organize pick up from any point in the United States and transfer it to the designated port.

At the destination port you will need to hire a local customs brokerage company to make a customs clearance and any other necessary paperwork at the destination in order to p/u your cargo. We can recommend our agents overseas, but if you decide to hire someone else, you are more than welcome.
Aqua Air Enterprises’ cargo liability insurance is $500 per vehicle, therefore, we strongly recommend requesting additional insurance. The cost is 1.5% of the value, (including ocean freight cost); the deductible is $500.


The following documents will be needed:

  • Original title or MSO/MCO
  • Bill of Sale (letter of Lien Release from financial institution, if vehicle bought on a loan)
  • Automobile Shipping Info Sheet
  • Export Power of Attorney
  • Insurance Form