A row of caravans
Written on
March 15, 2021

The ultimate guide to shipping a vehicle to New Zealand

Caravan Shipping

The ultimate guide to shipping a vehicle to New Zealand  

Exporting or shipping your caravan from the UK to New Zealand is no easy feat. From duty to taxes, decontamination regulations to licensing, it’s tricky to wrap your head around everything you need to do before you can get started. Unsworth RV move over 2500 units a year and have done for over 40 years, so you can trust that we know how to help. We have created this comprehensive guide to give you the tools you need to move your units successfully and smoothly.  

Before you start

Entry Certification

It is recommended that all vehicles entering New Zealand go through the Entry Certification process; this means the vehicle must be checked, certified, registered and licensed in line with the Importation of Vehicles rules and regulations. An Entry Certifier, while not required, can eliminate any potential issues further down the line, as you have immediate knowledge on whether your vehicle can be imported, and the necessary documentation needed. The certification and issue of a Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) can cost around NZ$350.

What you can expect from the Entry Certification process:

  • The vehicle is inspected on arrival
  • Vehicle examined to find if it is in road worthy condition and will pass a Warrant of Fitness (WoF) test, similar to an MOT
  • If it’s a passenger car, it must be right hand drive (there may be exceptions to this)
  • Meeting an approved frontal impact standard
  • Evidence of fuel consumption

Quarantine Rules

Before your vehicle is shipped, it has to go through thorough cleaning and fumigation processes. They are extremely strict on this in New Zealand and many cars will need to be cleaned in line with the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry requirements.

Due to the strict controls imposed on caravan imports, to reduce the risk of Brown Marmorated Stink Bug contamination, we ensure full compliance with BMSB procedures through our MPI (Ministry for Primary Industries) approved fumigation centres in the UK and across Europe.

Customs Rules & Taxes

Duty and Goods and Services Tax

Duty is no longer levied on motor cars or motorcycles. Duty on camper vans and motor homes is 10%. GST is levied on the customs value plus the total cost of shipping. The current rate of GST is 15% on all vehicles that do not have concessionary entry.

Customs Valuation

The customs value, upon with Goods and Services Tax (GST) is imposed, is usually determined as being the actual purchase price paid, minus the allowance for depreciation if the vehicle has been personally owned and used by the importer for more than 90 days prior to the date the vehicle arrives in New Zealand, plus the cost of shipment.

Depreciation Allowance

If a vehicle has been owned and used overseas for more than 90 days then a depreciation allowance can be deducted from the purchase price, before adding the cost of shipment. This will give you a ‘customs value’:

less than 90 days = 0.0 %

more than 3 but less than 4 months = 13.0 %

more than 4 but less than 6 months = 20.0 %

more than 6 but less than 9 months = 27.5 %

more than 9 but less than 12 months = 35.0 %

more than 1 but less than 2 years = 50.0 %

more than 2 but less than 3 years = 60.0 %

more than 3 but less than 4 years = 70.0 %

more than 4 years = 75.0 %.  

After leaving the UK

From the moment we receive your unit, to arrival at destination, our specialised platform comes equipped with live tracking to give you visibility over your shipments. You’ll be able to log-in and get a detailed view of your booking, including the shipper, consignee and section on the vehicle. There is a gallery section that allows you to see what your unit looks like at different stages of the process from inspection, preparation and loading.

On arrival at destination, we can administer the local customs procedures and quarantine inspections, as-well as provide duty and tax assistance. You can choose to either collect your vehicle from our depot or choose to have us deliver it to your local compliance centre or chosen address.

Documentation we need

To ship your vehicle to New Zealand there are a few documents that we require copies of. These include:

• A Copy of the vehicles licence document (V5) – we do not need the original.

• A Copy of the photo page of your Passport

• A Copy of a valid MOT certificate will only be requested if you require us to arrange collection of your vehicle in the UK using an insured driver. If your vehicle does not have a valid MOT, or if you would simply prefer, we can arrange collection using a recovery vehicle or enclosed collection vehicle.

Now you’ve got the information you need, get in touch with our team to start shipping your caravan

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