How to Ship a Boat Overseas



How to Ship a Boat Overseas

Published 26 Feb 2021


Owning a boat can be the ultimate expression of freedom, the open seas allow you to travel wherever you want before mooring at whichever beautiful seaside town takes your fancy.

Of course, despite this, when it comes to exporting a boat across the ocean from Australia, even the most reliable boats out there can often use a little help from something a little bigger.

Unlike cars and motorbikes, boats come in a huge array of sizes, shapes and types which means there are a few more options when it comes to shipping a boat.


There are four methods you can use to ship a boat and ultimately the type of shipping you go for will most likely come down to the specifics of your boat.


The first is roll-on/roll- off. To use this method the boat will need to be on a trailer for the entire trip so that it can roll onto and then off the carrier. It is possible to reduce the cost of this method of shipping by removing any antennas, radars or sails that boost the height or volume of your boat.


Another option is container shipping. Containers come in either 20ft or 40ft options and as such whether or not you can use this option will obviously come down to whether or not your boat can fit into a container!

In container shipping the boat is loaded into the container and then the container is loaded onto the boat. The container is never opened so this can be one of the most reliable methods of shipment if your boat is the correct size.


Flat rack is an option that is mainly used for bigger boats. The boat is shipped in its own custom cradle and strapped down to the vessel. As with roll-on/roll- off, it is recommended that you remove anything that adds height or volume to your boat. This can end up saving you a lot of money.


The final method is the submersion method. If you use this method your boat will be loaded and unloaded directly from the water.


When exporting a boat from Australia the exact legal/import requirements will vary depending on which country you are exporting the boat to. However, some things to consider are the customs procedures and any registration requirements of the country you are exporting too.

Another thing to check before exporting your boat is that if you have a boat with air con or a fridge you may need to apply for a license from the department of environment and heritage.

With so many things to think about it can be much more difficult to ship a boat than other vehicles such as cars or motorcycles.

However, if you are considering shipping your boat, please Click here for an Instant Quote or to request more information, or feel free to drop us an email to or call directly at +61 (7) 3267 3694

If you are looking to ship your boat to New Zealand you can find more information on boat shipping here.