Costs and Fees to Consider When You Import Car to New Zealand

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to find out costs and procedures involved in shipping your car from Australia to New Zealand.

Posted on 20th October 2022

Are you planning to ship an automobile to New Zealand? Aside from looking at the most convenient logistics, consider the different fees involved when you import cars to NZ. If you prepare yourself for these cost obligations, you can save time and ensure the process is easy and stress-free. 


This article lists the costs you should know before transporting motor vehicles to the country. These fees and duties may vary depending on the shipping scenario and the type of vehicle involved.


The following sections enumerate cost obligations that don’t only apply to private cars but to other motor vehicles.


Cost Obligations When You Ship Your Vehicle to NZ

Know which fees and costs you will need to pay when you ship your vehicle from outside the country.


Method of Shipment

How much you pay for shipping depends on the method you choose. Typically, freight transports are a more affordable option compared to container shipments. 



Not all vehicles require to pay tax duties. There are exceptions, but boats, motorhomes, and campervans are typically required to pay tariff duties on top of the goods and services tax (GST).



Vehicles delivered to shipping terminals or from shipment ports contribute to your overall car import fees.



Possible pick-up or delivery delays (once your vehicle arrives in New Zealand) may cost you storage fees, charged daily or weekly. It’s best to coordinate with your shipping company to avoid these scenarios.



Insurance is non-negotiable. It will help cover potential loss or damage to your vehicle during transit. A reliable customs and freight forwarding service helps minimise these possibilities, so choose well!


Goods and Services Tax (GST)

Cars coming into NZ are obligated to pay GST. However, you can enjoy a reduced GST payment if you transport your car as a returning resident or a new immigrant.


Cleaning Fees

Biosecurity policies require all vehicles that have been in contact with foreign soil or non-indigenous plant to be cleaned before entry. 


Vehicle Registration Fee

If you are planning to use and drive your car on a public road, you must register and pay the relevant vehicle registration fees. The NZ Transport Agency will charge a vehicle registration fee of around $100NZD, plus other miscellaneous fees to cover a year. 


Take All the Help You Can Get from Car Import Service Providers

These are the most common fees you should be aware of if you want a hassle-free vehicle shipping experience. As mentioned earlier, these fees apply to specific shipping scenarios and types of vehicles. 


The overall importing process can be more complicated and overwhelming, especially if you’re shipping a car for the first time. The good news is you can rely on shipping providers that will walk you through the process. These providers will also take care of the complex paperwork and legwork to provide you with a straightforward and transparent car importing process. Good luck bringing your car into New Zealand!

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